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J Educ Health Promot. 2018 Nov 27;7:147. doi: 10.4103/jehp.jehp_48_17. eCollection 2018.

Hepatoprotective effects of Berberis vulgaris leaf extract on carbon tetrachloride-induced hepatotoxicity in rats.

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Department of Biochemistry, Payam-e Noor University of Isfahan, Isfahan, Iran.
Medical Plants Research Center, Yasuj University of Medical Sciences, Yasuj, Iran.
Department of Biochemistry, Payam-e Noor University of Shahreza, Shahreza, Iran.
Clinical Education Research Center, Zeinabieh Hospital, Department of Pathology, School of Medicine, Shiraz University of Medical Sciences, Shiraz, Iran.



Hepatic sickness is a serious problem for human health. The researchers are interested in using medicinal plants including barberry to cure many of these sicknesses. In this study, the effect of hydroalcoholic extract of Berberis vulgaris leaf on hepatic protection was assessed in rats.


Forty healthy male Wistar rats were divided randomly into five groups (n = 8): Group 1 (healthy control), intraperitoneal injection of olive oil; Group 2 (hepatotoxic control), intraperitoneal injection of carbon tetrachloride and daily gavage of distilled water; and testing groups, intraperitoneal injection of carbon tetrachloride along with daily gavage of B. vulgaris leaf extract 40, 80, and 120 mg/kg of weight, respectively. After 6 weeks, the following were checked: enzyme level of alanine aminotransferase (ALT), aspartate aminotransferase (AST), alkaline phosphatase (ALP), as well as serum level of total protein (TP), albumin (ALB), and histopathological status of the liver.


The level of AST, ALP, and ALT was increased to 109 (IU/L), 95(IU/L), and 71(IU/L), respectively, in hepatotoxic control group than healthy control group, and there was a decrease of 0.86 (g/dl) and 0.04 (g/dl) in TP and ALB levels, respectively. The B. vulgaris extract in every three doses caused a significant decrease in hepatic enzymes level. However, the TP had a significant increase in 80 and 120 mg/kg of body weight. Regarding ALB, there was no significant difference among these groups. The histopathological results were not conformed to biochemical findings.


Using the appropriate dose of B. vulgaris leaf extract can help the improvement of laboratory symptoms of fatty liver.


Alanine aminotransferase; Berberis vulgaris; alkaline phosphatase; aspartate aminotransferase; carbon tetrachloride; hepatic toxicity

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