Cajanus cajan (L.) Millsp., also named pigeon pea, is widely grown in the tropics and the subtropics. C. cajan roots (CR) and ribs stewed in hot water have been used as a traditional medicine in various cultures to treat diabetes. The purpose of this study was to determine the functional components of hot water (WCR) and 50%, 95% ethanol extracts (EECR50 and EECR95) from CR, then evaluating their antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effects. The results indicated that EECR95 had higher polyphenol, especially the isoflavones (e.x. daidzein, genistein, and cajanol) than those of the other extracts, and it also exhibited the most potent anti-oxidative activities by in vitro antioxidant assay. In the lipopolysaccharide-stimulated RAW 264.7 cells, we found that EECR95 significantly decreased intracellular reactive oxygen species and significantly enhanced the activities of superoxide dismutase and catalase. Mechanism studies showed that EECR95 mainly activated nuclear factor (NF) erythroid 2-related factor 2/antioxidant protein heme oxygenase-1 and inhibited nuclear factor kappa B (NF-κB) signaling pathway, and thus exhibited antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effects. Overall, this study suggests that CR may have the potential to be developed as a biomedical material and that genistein, which has relatively high uptakes (3.44% for the pure compound and 1.73% for endogenous genistein of EECR95) at 24 h of incubation with RAW 264.7 cells, could be the main active component of CR.
- Cajanus cajan (L.) Millsp. root
- uptake and genistein
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Physiology (medical)