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Pharmaceutical Biology
Year: 2009  |  Volume: 47  |  Issue: 5  |  Page No.: 440 - 443

Effect of tea catechins on erythrocyte Ca++-pump in type 2 diabetes mellitus

Syed Ibrahim Rizvi and Mohd Abu Zaid    

Abstract: An altered intracellular calcium metabolism is known to play an essential role in the pathophysiology of diabetes and its complications. Tea [Camellia sinensis L. (Theaceae)] contains polyphenolic compounds collectively known as catechins belonging to the flavonoids family. Catechins have been reported to possess several biological properties including an antidiabetic effect. The present paper reports the effect of tea catechins on erythrocyte membrane Ca++-pump in normal and type 2 diabetic patients. The activity of erythrocyte Ca++-ATPase was significantly decreased in type 2 diabetes. In vitro incubation with tea catechins (10−3-10−8 M) caused an increase in the activity of Ca++-ATPase in both normal and type 2 diabetic subjects; the effect was more pronounced in type 2 diabetes and was observed at much lower concentrations (10−5 M) compared to normal (10−3 M). The order of effectiveness of individual catechins was in the order: EGCG > ECG > EC > EGC. The increase in Ca++-ATPase activity after incubation with tea catechins may be explained on the basis of alteration in fluidity due to a direct effect of catechins on the membrane.

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