Comparison of Caralluma tuberculata with Metformin for Anti-Diabetic Activity: An Animal Study

  • Muhammad Saleh Faisal Assistant Professor, Department of Pharmacology - Khyber Medical College, Peshawar
  • Waqar Hayat Trainee Medical Officer, Department of Medicine - Khyber Teaching Hospital, Peshawar
  • Asad Inayat Trainee Medical Officer, Department of Medicine - Khyber Teaching Hospital, Peshawar
  • Muhammad Sohaib Research Assistant, Khyber Medical University, Peshawar
  • Waheed Iqbal Chemist, Department of Pharmacology, Khyber Medical College, Peshawar
Keywords: Anti-diabetic, Caralluma tuberculata, Hypoglycaemic


Background: Caralluma tuberculata, is a wild herb, which grows in the hills of Balochistan and has been known to have medicinal and nutritional properties since antiquity. This experimental research was designed to study the hypoglycemic properties of Caralluma tuberculata and to compare them with Metformin.
Material and Methods: This was a laboratory-based animal experimental study. It was conducted in the Pharmacology laboratory of Khyber Medical University, Peshawar from February 2016 to August 2016. Two types of extracts of Caralluma tuberculata [crude extract and carbon tetrachloride (CCl4) extract] were prepared and administered to normal and alloxan treated diabetic rabbits. To study anti-diabetic activity, eighty-four rabbits were divided into two main groups. Group I (Normal/Non-Diabetic Rabbits; n= 21) and Group II (Diabetic/Alloxanized Rabbits; n=63). Each group was further divided into sub-groups (7 rabbits in each). Effect of Caralluma tuberculata, Metformin and 2% gum tragacanth on blood glucose levels were checked at 0, 2, 4, 6, 8, 12 and 24 hours of drug administration. The extracts were given in capsule form and in cooking oil. Data analysis was done using SPSS version 16. For calculation and comparison of the hypoglycemic effects at various doses and different time intervals, analysis of variance (ANOVA) and Tukey’s post hoc test were applied.
Results: The crude extract, 200mg/kg body weight of Caralluma tuberculata showed significant decrease (p<0.001) in mean blood glucose levels from 2-hour till12 hours. Whereas, highly significant reduction of blood glucose was seen from 2 hours after treatment till 24 hours, when carbon tetrachloride (CCl4) fraction of Caralluma (100mg/kg body weight) in capsule form was administered. Metformin 500mg/kg body weight was given to compare its effects with plant crude extract and it was found that metformin appeared to be less effective in comparison with Caralluma tuberculata.
Conclusion: Caralluma tuberculata lowered the blood glucose level and turned out to be more significant in developing hypoglycemia when taken with cooking oil. More work is essential to provide stronger evidence for the use of this natural agent in the management of Diabetes Mellites.

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