Objective: Traditionally, Tephrosia purpurea Linn. (Fabaceae) is known to possess medicinal values in treating diabetes and other endocrine disorders. In this experiment, authors evaluated the beneficial role of Tephrosia purpurea Ethanolic seed extract [TpEt] standard (normal) versus streptozotocin [STZ] induced diabetic male albino wistar rats and studied the membrane stabilizing effects of TpEt in diabetic male albino rats. Methods: Male albino wistar rats (n=30) were used and divided into five groups, each having six animals. Diabetes mellitus was induced by giving streptozotocin intraperitoneally and blood glucose of above 250 mg/dl was considered diabetes. Blood glucose, glycosylated hemoglobin (HbA1c), plasma insulin, lipid profile and activities of membrane bound enzymes in erythrocytes and tissues were estimated. Results: Increased concentrations of blood glucose, glycosylated hemoglobin, and decreased plasma insulin, and accompanied by alterations in lipid profile and membrane bound enzymes activities in erythrocytes and tissues were noticed in experimental diabetic rats. Upon oral management of TpEt (300mg/kg body weight) for 45 days, the blood glucose and other alerted parameters in diabetic rats showed significant improvements. Conclusion: This study clearly showed Tephrosia purpurea seeds to possess membrane stabilizing effect in experimental diabetic rats probably due to the presence of flavonoids and isoflavonoids which could be responsible for its anti-lipid peroxidative and insulin stimulatory effects. Further studies are needed to separate and depict bioactive principle from the seeds of the same plant.
Key words: Blood glucose, Diabetes, Glycosylated hemoglobin (HbA1c), Lipid profile membrane bound enzymes, Plasma insulin, Streptozotocin (STZ), Tephrosia purpurea ethanolic seed extract (TpEt).