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Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine
Volume 2016, Article ID 8429398, 8 pages
Research Article

Effect of Betula pendula Leaf Extract on α-Glucosidase and Glutathione Level in Glucose-Induced Oxidative Stress

1Faculty of Pharmacy and Biochemistry, University of Zagreb, A. Kovačića 1, 10 000 Zagreb, Croatia
2Faculty of Sciences and Technology, University of Algarve, Campus de Gambelas, Bd. 8, 8005-139 Faro, Portugal

Received 20 May 2016; Accepted 18 August 2016

Academic Editor: Hilal Zaid

Copyright © 2016 Kristina Bljajić et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


B. pendula leaf is a common ingredient in traditional herbal combinations for treatment of diabetes in southeastern Europe. Present study investigated B. pendula ethanolic and aqueous extract as inhibitors of carbohydrate hydrolyzing enzymes, as well as their ability to restore glutathione concentration in Hep G2 cells subjected to glucose-induced oxidative stress. Phytochemical analysis revealed presence of rutin and other quercetin derivatives, as well as chlorogenic acid. In general, ethanolic extract was richer in phenolic substances than the aqueous extract. Furthermore, a comprehensive analysis of antioxidant activity of two extracts (determined by DPPH and ABTS radical scavenging activity, total antioxidant activity, and chelating activity as well as ferric-reducing antioxidant power) has shown that ethanolic extract was better radical scavenger and metal ion reductant. In addition, ethanolic extract effectively increased cellular glutathione levels caused by hyperglycemia and inhibited α-glucosidase with the activity comparable to that of acarbose. Therefore, in vitro research using B. pendula plant extracts has confirmed their antidiabetic properties.