Main Article Content
Aim: To overcome the toxic effects attributed to the use medicinal treatments against diabetes there is a desire toward using natural food and folk remedies. So, the aim this study was to use nanoparticles of dried cactus fruit peels (Opuntia ficus-indica) compared with powder materials to control blood glucose in streptozotocin (STZ)-induced diabetic rats.
Place and Duration of Study: Food Toxicology and Contaminants Department, Polymer and Pigments Department, and Cell Biology Department, National Research Centre, Egypt, between April 2017 and March 2018.
Methodology: Powder and nanoparticles were used to determine the fatty acids content and assessment the dietary fiber contents, mycotoxin contamination as well as examine the antimicrobial activity. Moreover, male albino rats were treated with single i.p. dose of STZ to induce diabetes. STZ induced-rats were divided into several groups and treated daily with 50, 100 and 200 mg/kg b.wt of cactus fruit peels powder or nanoparticles orally for 2 months. At the end of the experimental period, blood samples were aspirated to determine glucose levels as well as liver and pancreas tissues were collected for the biological analyses.
Results: The results of the present study exhibited that both extracts of cactus fruit peels either powder or nanoparticles were able to reduce significantly the glucose levels and increase the expression of insulin and insulin receptor genes in induced-diabetic rats. Moreover, cactus fruit peels extracts exhibited antifungal and antibacterial activities and increase in the antioxidant enzymes (GPx and CAT) as well as anti-genotoxic effects in DM-induced rats. Furthermore, nanoparticles of dried cactus fruit peels were more effective in control glucose levels, gene expression, antimicrobial and anti-genotoxic activities compared with powder materials even in its low dose.
Conclusion: The results conclude that the nanoparticles form of cactus fruit peels extracts was much more effective in the therapeutic action than powder form. The anti-diabetic effect of cactus fruit peels nanoparticles could be attributed to its content from dietary fiber. Moreover, the antifungal and antibacterial activities as well as the anti-genotoxic ability of cactus fruit peels nanoparticles could be attributed to fatty acids and/or GABA contents which were more able to control oxidative stress.