ABSTRACT: A partially characterized extract of Podophyllum hexandrum rhizomes was studied for its radioprotective potential in mice. A major portion of the podophyllotoxin was obtained from the extract by further fractionation. Acute toxicity and maximum tolerated dose (MTD) of a single intraperitoneal dose of the extract were studied in mice to evaluate the toxicity of the extract, if any. Radioprotective efficacy was determined in terms of survival against 10 Gy whole-body irradiation (WBI), protection against 1 Gy-induced chromosomal aberration (CA), and estimation of dose reduction factor (DRF) in irradiated and extract pretreated mice. The MTD was observed to be 60 mg/kg of body weight, whereas a dose of 90 mg/kg of body weight yielded 50% death in mice within 72 hours of intraperitoneal administration of the extract. A dose range of 15-20 mg/kg of body weight administered 2 hours before 10 Gy WBI of mice yielded 66% survival, while administration of 10-15 mg/kg of body weight of the extract 1 hour before WBI yielded more than 90% survival. A DRF of 1.625 was estimated for 10 and 15 mg/kg of body weight of the extract administered 1 hour before WBI. Further studies on modulation of 1 Gy-induced CA revealed significant radioprotective efficacy of the extract in mouse bone marrow cells. Partial removal of podophyllotoxin was useful in reducing toxicity of the extract without altering its radioprotective efficacy.
Journal of medicinal food 10/2008; 11(3):486-92. · 1.39 Impact Factor