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In vitro litholytic activity of extracts and phenolic fractions of some medicinal plants on urinary stones

Kenza Ammor, Fatima Mahjoubi, Dalila Bousta, Radouane Elhabbani, Abdellah Chaqroune


Objective: This study was carried out to evaluate the efficiency of plant extracts used in traditional medicine on the dissolution of oxalo-calcic and cystine stones. Also, the efficiency of phenolic fractions (Tannins and Flavonoids) for the plants that gave us the best stone dissolution rate.

Subjects and methods: Kidney stone of oxalo-calcic and cystine stones were incubated in vitro for 8 weeks in the presence of five plants extracts (hydro-ethanolic and aqueous extracts). NaCl solution (0,9 %) used as negative control and sodium citrate solution at 3 mM/L as a positive control. The studied plants were Herniaria hirsuta L. aerial parts, Opuntia ficus-indica L. flowers, Zea mays L. stigmata, Ammi visnaga L. seeds and Ziziphus lotus L. fruits. After 2, 4, 6 and 8 weeks the stones were weighed after 18 h drying at 40°C and the dissolution rate of the stones and the pH of the solution were measured.

Results: After eight weeks, all the plant extracts and phenolic fractions had revealed a significant effect to dissolve oxalo-calcic and cystine stones in comparison to the control solutions. The best result of cystine stones was showed with aqueous extract of H. hirsuta aerial parts which had a dissolution rate of 88,91 %. Concerning the dissolution rate of oxalo-calcic stones the aqueous extract of Z. mays had the best results with 68 % against 19 % for the sodium citrate solution.  The dissolution rate of the fractions studied showed a better result for Z. mays flavonoids fraction toward oxalo-calcic stones, and Z. mays tannins fraction for cystine stones. The pH undergoes a non-negligible linear increase over the eight weeks for all extracts and phenolic fractions and both kidney stones.

Conclusion: The tested plants' extracts and the phenolic fractions for the plants that gave us the best stone dissolution rate were able to dissolve oxalo-calcic and cystine stones. To confirm the efficiency of these plant extracts on the treatment of oxalo-calcic and cystine stones multiple in vivo tests could be made.

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