Strathprints Home | Open Access | Browse | Search | User area | Copyright | Help | Library Home | SUPrimo

The muscle relaxant properties of Portulaca oleracea are associated with high concentrations of potassium ions

Habtemariam, S and Harvey, A L and Waterman, P G (1993) The muscle relaxant properties of Portulaca oleracea are associated with high concentrations of potassium ions. Journal of Ethnopharmacology, 40 (3). pp. 195-200. ISSN 0378-8741

Full text not available in this repository. (Request a copy from the Strathclyde author)

Abstract

The juice and aqueous extracts from the plant Portulaca oleracea have been used in West Africa for a variety of medical purposes, and extracts were previously shown to have muscle relaxant properties on isolated nerve-muscle preparations. We have attempted to characterise the components responsible for this activity. Ethanolic extracts caused an initial augmentation of twitch height in chick biventer cervicis preparations and then blockade which appeared to be mediated by an action directly on muscle fibres rather than on neuromuscular transmission. Solvent fractionation of the crude ethanolic extract followed by bioassay on the chick biventer cervicis preparation showed that muscle paralysis increased with increasing polarity: i.e. water fraction > butanol > ethyl acetate approximately equal to crude extracts. These fractions contained 28%, 18%, 12.2% and 9%, respectively, of potassium by weight of dried extract. Similar concentrations of KCl reproduced the same effect as the extracts on muscle activity, and when the most active fraction (water fraction) was desalted, it had no neuromuscular activity even at 10 times higher concentration than used previously. We conclude that the neuromuscular activity of extracts of Portulaca oleracea is caused by high concentrations of potassium ions.

Item type: Article
ID code: 31658
Keywords: animals, calcium, chemical fractionation, chickens, drug dose-response relationship, african traditional medicine, muscle relaxation, muscles, plant extracts, medicinal plants, potassium, Pharmacy and materia medica, Drug Discovery, Pharmacology
Subjects: Medicine > Pharmacy and materia medica
Department: Faculty of Science > Strathclyde Institute of Pharmacy and Biomedical Sciences
Related URLs:
    Depositing user: Pure Administrator
    Date Deposited: 13 Jul 2011 09:56
    Last modified: 05 Sep 2014 09:32
    URI: http://strathprints.strath.ac.uk/id/eprint/31658

    Actions (login required)

    View Item