Enriching the drinking water of rats with extracts of Salvia officinalis and Thymus vulgaris increases their resistance to oxidative stress.
Mutagenesis. 2016 Jan ;31(1):51-9. Epub 2015 Aug 21. PMID: 26297740
Nature is an attractive source of therapeutic compounds. In comparison to the artificial drugs, natural compounds cause less adverse side effects and are suitable for current molecularly oriented approaches to drug development and their mutual combining. Medicinal plants represent one of the most available remedy against various diseases. Proper examples are Salvia officinalis L. and Thymus vulgaris L. which are known aromatic medicinal plants. They are very popular and frequently used in many countries. The molecular mechanism of their biological activity has not yet been fully understood. The aim of this study was to ascertain if liver cells of experimental animals drinking extracts of sage or thyme will manifest increased resistance against oxidative stress. Adult Sprague-Dawley rats were divided into seven groups. They drank sage or thyme extracts for 2 weeks. At the end of the drinking period, blood samples were collected for determination of liver biochemical parameters and hepatocytes were isolated to analyze (i) oxidatively generated DNA damage (conventional and modified comet assay), (ii) activities of antioxidant enzymes [superoxide dismutase (SOD), glutathione peroxidase (GPx)] and (iii) content of glutathione. Intake of sage and thyme had no effect either on the basal level of DNA damage or on the activity of SOD in rat hepatocytes and did not change the biochemical parameters of blood plasma. Simultaneously, the activity of GPx was significantly increased and the level of DNA damage induced by oxidants was decreased. Moreover, sage extract was able to start up the antioxidant protection expressed by increased content of glutathione. Our results indicate that the consumption of S.officinalis and T.vulgaris extracts positively affects resistency of rat liver cells against oxidative stress and may have hepatoprotective potential.