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Enhanced wound healing effects of herbal gel formulations in a rabbit model: a comparative study

Dunia A. Al-Farraj1, Muhammad Kashif2*, Fateh Ullah2, Hafiz Muhammad Ali3, Abdul Qayyum3, Asma Yamin4, Jawaria Aslam5, Shabana Bibi6, Sayed M. Eldin7*, Iftikhar Ali8, Abd El-Zaher M.A. Mustafa1, Mohamed Soliman Elshikh1

1Department of Botany and Microbiology, College of Science, King Saud University, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia

2Department of Clinical Sciences, University of Veterinary and Animal Sciences, Lahore, Sub-campus Jhang, Pakistan

3Faculty of Veterinary and Animal Sciences, The Islamia University of Bahawalpur, Pakistan

4Department of Zoology, The Govt Sadiq College Women University, Bahawalpur, Pakistan

5Bahawalpur Medical and Dental College, Bahawalpur, Pakistan

6Department of Biosciences, Shifa Tameer-e-Millat University, Islamabad, Pakistan

7Center of Research, Future University in Egypt, New Cairo, Egypt

8Department of Genetics and Development, Columbia University Irving Medical Center, New York, USA


The current study was conducted to evaluate the effects of herbal 2% topical gel formulations of either of Allium sativum, Calotropis procera and Prosopis juliflora or their combination compared to an antibiotic cream (Betaderm-N) on healing of full-thickness skin wounds in rabbit. The wound healing (contraction) rate of treated groups was found to be significantly (p<0.05) higher than the positive and negative control groups. The wound treated with A. sativum were healed on 12th day while those treated with P. juliflora or Betaderm-N cream healed on 15th day. The wounds treated with combination gel showed a significantly (p<0.05) higher healing rate and completely healed the wound by 9th day of the experiment and in the histo-pathological examination, there observed an increased number of collagen fibers in dermis of the skin compared to positive and negative controls. Catalase test was used to differentiate S. aureus from other staphylococcal species. S. aureus has golden or creamy colour colonies raised on mannitol salt agar with coagulase positive activity. While the pink colonies raised at Meckonky agar with Indol positive test were of E. coli. By disc diffusion method, the combination of three herbal extracts showed a significantly (p<0.05) higher antibacterial activity against S. aureus and E. coli than other groups and showed a significant increased level of superoxide dismutase (SOD) and reduced glutathione (GPx) at 7th (p<0.05), 14th (p<0.05) and 21st (p<0.01) days of treatments. It was thus concluded that the combined effects of three herbal extracts accelerated the healing process of surgical wound in rabbits due to presence of active metabolites.


Keywords: Medicinal plants, Phytochemical analysis, Wound healing, S. aureus, Rabbit

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