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Acacia nilotica and hepatitis C



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Virol J. 2011 May 12;8:220. doi: 10.1186/1743-422X-8-220.

Antiviral activity of Acacia nilotica against Hepatitis C Virus in liver infected cells.  Rehman S, Ashfaq UA, Riaz S, Javed T, Riazuddin S; Division of Molecular Medicine, National Centre of Excellence in Molecular Biology, University of the Punjab, Lahore, Pakistan.

Hepatitis C virus (HCV) belonging to the family Flaviviridae has infected 3% of the population worldwide and 6% of the population in Pakistan.

The only recommended standard treatment is pegylated INF-? plus ribavirin. Due to less compatibility of the standard treatment, thirteen medicinal plants were collected from different areas of Pakistan on the basis of undocumented antiviral reports against different viral infections. Medicinal plants were air dried, extracted and screened out against HCV by infecting HCV inoculums of 3a genotype in liver cells. RT-PCR results demonstrate that acetonic and methanolic extract of Acacia nilotica (AN) showed more than 50% reduction at non toxic concentration.

From the above results, it can be concluded that by selecting different molecular targets, specific structure-activity relationship can be achieved by doing mechanistic analysis. So, additional studies are required for the isolation and recognition of antiviral compound in AN to establish its importance as antiviral drug against HCV. For further research, we will scrutinize the synergistic effect of active antiviral compound in combination with standard PEG INF-? and ribavirin which may be helpful in exploring further gateways for antiviral therapy against HCV


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