Humans are exposed to endogenous and exogenous sources of free radicals almost daily. Free radicals are harmful as they can impact several metabolic pathways in cells. Oxidative species known for such harmful effects are the reactive oxygen species, reactive nitrogen species, hydroxyl radical and hydrogen peroxide. The presence of these free radicals in human beings has been documented to lead to many pathological conditions including lethality, mutagenesis, carcinogenesis, aging and also degenerative diseases. Moringa oleifera Lam is the best known and most widely distributed species of Moringaceae family, having an impressive range of medicinal uses with high nutritional value throughout the world. Leaves of this plant are traditionally known for and reported to have various biological activities, including free radical scavenging effect. In this study, the in-vitro and in-vivo hydroxyl radical scavenging activity of fractions (chloroform, ethyl acetate, N-hexane) of aqueous extract of Moringa oleifera leave (AEMOL) were investigated. In-vivo examination of ethyl acetate, chloroform and N-hexane fractions of AEMOL showed that ethyl acetate exhibited outstanding scavenging effect that might be due to its ability to provide a particularly effective way of maximizing the bioavailability of the active phytochemical substances extracted from the plant, which is also in conformity with our in-vitro findings. The mode of action seems to be that ethyl acetate acts to keep the active components in solution after ingesting, thus facilitating their absorption into bloodstream.
in-vitro, in-vivo, hydroxyl radical scavenging activity, aqueous extract, Moringa oleifera leaves