Antihypertensive and Anti-inflammatory Potential of the Edible Fruit of Artocarpus altilis (Breadfruit)

Objective: Hypertension is a chronic disease which impacts about half of the US population, increasing their risk of death from heart disease and stroke. Although there is no cure hypertension can be controlled with diet and exercise. Nitric oxide and the inflammatory response are thought to play a critical role in the onset and progression of this disease. We herein hypothesize that due to the high phenolic content of breadfruits, the extracts will display anti-inflammatory, vasodilatory as well as antihypertensive activity.

Materials and Methods: Male Sprague-Dawley rats were used; the rats were anesthetized with a single injection of thiobutabarbital sodium and a tracheal tube was inserted. Following the surgical procedures, rats were allowed to stabilize for 45 minutes. After this initial stabilization period, a 15-minute baseline was collected, and animals treated with vehicle, angiotensin II or angiotensin II + breadfruit extract. The extracts were administered at a concentration of 0.5, 1, 2, and 2.5 mg/ml and an infusion rate of 1 ml/hr and mean arterial pressure (MAP) was recorded. The anti-inflammatory activities of the whole fruit extract were determined using a LPS-treated macrophage cells model at concentrations of 1 and 10 mg/ml.

Results: The whole fruit extracts produced significant attenuation (20-30 mmHg) of the angiotensin II mediated hypertension in Sprague-Dawley rats and displayed a dosedependent decrease in LPS-induced TNF-α and Il-1β. The whole fruits also caused an increase in nitric oxide (NO) production in endothelial cells.

Conclusion: The consumption of breadfruits as a part of a healthy diet may help to prevent the onset and progression of hypertension.

Author(s): Omar E Christian, Keith E Jackson and Somnath Mukhopadhyaya

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