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J Med Food. 2013 Jul;16(7):641-6. doi: 10.1089/jmf.2012.0022.

Aqueous extracts of two varieties of ginger (Zingiber officinale) inhibit angiotensin I-converting enzyme, iron(II), and sodium nitroprusside-induced lipid peroxidation in the rat heart in vitro.

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Functional Foods and Nutraceuticals Unit, Department of Biochemistry, Federal University of Technology, Akure, Nigeria.


Ginger has reportedly been used in folk medicine for the management and prevention of hypertension and other cardiovascular diseases. Therefore, this study sought to investigate the inhibitory effect of aqueous extracts of two varieties of ginger on a key enzyme linked to hypertension (angiotensin I-converting enzyme [ACE]), and on pro-oxidants [Fe(2+) and sodium nitroprusside (SNP)] which have been shown to induce lipid peroxidation in the rat's isolated heart in vitro. Aqueous extracts (0.05 mg/mL) of red ginger (Zingiber officinale var. Rubra) and white ginger (Zingiber officinale Roscoe) were prepared and the ability of the extracts to inhibit ACE along with Fe(2+)- and SNP-induced lipid peroxidation was determined in rat's heart in vitro. Results revealed that both extracts inhibited ACE in a dose-dependent manner (25-125 μg/mL). However, red ginger extract (EC50=27.5 μg/mL) had a significantly (P<.05) higher inhibitory effect on ACE than white ginger extract (EC50=87.0 μg/mL). Furthermore, incubation of the rat's heart in the presence of Fe(2+) and SNP caused a significant increase (P<.05) in the malondialdehyde (MDA) content of the heart homogenates, while the introduction of the ginger extracts (78-313 μg/mL) caused a dose-dependent decrease in the MDA content of the stressed heart homogenates. This suggests that the possible mechanism through which ginger exerts its antihypertensive properties may be through inhibition of ACE activity and prevention of lipid peroxidation in the heart. Furthermore, red ginger showed stronger inhibition of ACE than white ginger. Additionally, it should be noted that these protective properties of the ginger varieties could be attributed to their polyphenol contents.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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