Evaluation of antioxidant activity and ameliorative effect of Dactylorhiza hatagirea on sexual dysfunction in hyperglycemic male rats
Dactylorhiza hatagirea (D. Don) Soo. Fam. Orchidaceae, is popularly known as hathpanja or salam panja in Ayurvedic system of medicine in India . The plant is renowned for its aphrodisiac and immunostimulatory activities. In the present investigation the aqueous extract of the roots of D. hatagirea was evaluated for its effectiveness against streptozotocin and alloxan induced oxidative stress and associated sexual dysfunction. Blood glucose levels were significantly reduced to normal in treated hyperglycaemic animals as compared to hyperglycaemic control group animals. The polysaccharide rich extract of the herb ameliorated the sexual dysfunction in diabetic rats as evidenced by improved copulatory performance (p<0.1), reduced mount, intromission and ejaculatory latency time and an improvement in mount and intromission frequency (p<0.05). Treatment with extracts also showed potent in-vitro as well as in vivo antioxidant activity as evidenced by various methods like DPPH assay, Lipid peroxidation assay by the measurement of malon-dialdehyde (MDA) levels in liver on the basis of reaction with thiobarbituric acid etc. The results of this study clearly indicated that the herb has an ameliorative action against diabetes induced dysfunction in sexual behavior. Also, the drug may be acting via the antioxidant mechanism, apart from having an effectiveness in steroid genesis and improvement of anabolism . Seminal fructose count and sperm levels were also evaluated and in case of diabetic animals the in vivo sperm count was significantly lowered, this reduction was restored upto normal level in case of animals treated with aqueous extract of D. hatagirea. Seminal fructose level was also significantly higher in case of animals treated with extract as compared to hyperglycemic controls. The results therefore provide evidence for the purported folkloric acclaim for the herb as a cure for sexual dysfunction and signifies its Ayurvedic Rasayana properties.
Acknowledgements: Werner Praznik and Renate Loeppert Department of Chemistry University of BOKU Vienna Austria
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