E-ISSN 2577-5669
 

Original Research 


Effects of extract of Urtica dioica L. (stinging nettle) on the immune response of rats with severe malnutrition.

Sara Beatriz Herrera, Leonor Rodriguez, María del Carmen García, José Luis Flores, Rodolfo Velasco.

Abstract
Background. Severe malnutrition is the main cause of immunodeficiency in children under five years old in areas of economic depression in developing countries, and it is associated with generalized atrophy of lymphoid tissues. Urtica dioica L. is a medicinal herb with multiple pharmacological functions; it acts as modulator of the immune response, stimulating the proliferation of T lymphocytes in vitro.
Objective: To determine the ability of U. dioica L. to modulate the immune response of malnourished rats in the first 21 days of life.
Methods: Third-degree malnutrition during lactation was induced by food competition, and treatment with U. dioica L was tested. Day-old Wistar rats were randomly assigned to three groups: a) the well-nourished group, b) the untreated malnourished group and c) the malnourished group treated with 0.2 g/mL U. dioica L. on days 14, 16, 18 and 20. On day 21, animals were euthanized, and the thymus, spleen, bone marrow and blood were obtained. Lymphocyte subpopulations were determined in the thymus and leukocyte subpopulations in blood. The total number of nucleated bone marrow cells was determined, and the proliferative capability of spleen lymphocytes from malnourished rats treated with U. dioica L. was compared to that of other groups.
Results: U. dioica L. decreased CD4-CD8- lymphocytes and increased CD4+CD8+ lymphocytes in the thymus, while in the blood, it increased CD4+ cells, monocytes and total T lymphocytes. The proliferation of spleen cells was stimulated in the malnourished rats, and a decrease in total nucleated bone marrow cells was observed. An increase in the red blood cell count, hemoglobin and white blood cell count was observed in malnourished rats treated with Urtica dioica L. (p≤0.05).
Conclusion: U. dioica L. had immunomodulatory effects since it promoted the differentiation of CD4-CD8- T lymphocytes towards CD4+CD8+ T lymphocytes and counteracted anemia and leucopenia associated with severe malnutrition.

Key words: Severe malnutrition, immunodeficiency, immunomodulatory activity, T lymphocytes, Urtica dioica L.

Key words: Severe malnutrition, immunodeficiency, immunomodulatory activity, T lymphocytes, Urtica dioica L.


 
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How to Cite this Article
Pubmed Style

Sara Beatriz Herrera, Leonor Rodriguez, María del Carmen García, José Luis Flores, Rodolfo Velasco. Effects of extract of Urtica dioica L. (stinging nettle) on the immune response of rats with severe malnutrition.. J Complement Med Res. 2018; 9(2): 63-73. doi:10.5455/jcmr.20180508052039


Web Style

Sara Beatriz Herrera, Leonor Rodriguez, María del Carmen García, José Luis Flores, Rodolfo Velasco. Effects of extract of Urtica dioica L. (stinging nettle) on the immune response of rats with severe malnutrition.. http://www.jocmr.com/?mno=295856 [Access: February 15, 2020]. doi:10.5455/jcmr.20180508052039


AMA (American Medical Association) Style

Sara Beatriz Herrera, Leonor Rodriguez, María del Carmen García, José Luis Flores, Rodolfo Velasco. Effects of extract of Urtica dioica L. (stinging nettle) on the immune response of rats with severe malnutrition.. J Complement Med Res. 2018; 9(2): 63-73. doi:10.5455/jcmr.20180508052039



Vancouver/ICMJE Style

Sara Beatriz Herrera, Leonor Rodriguez, María del Carmen García, José Luis Flores, Rodolfo Velasco. Effects of extract of Urtica dioica L. (stinging nettle) on the immune response of rats with severe malnutrition.. J Complement Med Res. (2018), [cited February 15, 2020]; 9(2): 63-73. doi:10.5455/jcmr.20180508052039



Harvard Style

Sara Beatriz Herrera, Leonor Rodriguez, María del Carmen García, José Luis Flores, Rodolfo Velasco (2018) Effects of extract of Urtica dioica L. (stinging nettle) on the immune response of rats with severe malnutrition.. J Complement Med Res, 9 (2), 63-73. doi:10.5455/jcmr.20180508052039



Turabian Style

Sara Beatriz Herrera, Leonor Rodriguez, María del Carmen García, José Luis Flores, Rodolfo Velasco. 2018. Effects of extract of Urtica dioica L. (stinging nettle) on the immune response of rats with severe malnutrition.. Journal of Complementary Medicine Research, 9 (2), 63-73. doi:10.5455/jcmr.20180508052039



Chicago Style

Sara Beatriz Herrera, Leonor Rodriguez, María del Carmen García, José Luis Flores, Rodolfo Velasco. "Effects of extract of Urtica dioica L. (stinging nettle) on the immune response of rats with severe malnutrition.." Journal of Complementary Medicine Research 9 (2018), 63-73. doi:10.5455/jcmr.20180508052039



MLA (The Modern Language Association) Style

Sara Beatriz Herrera, Leonor Rodriguez, María del Carmen García, José Luis Flores, Rodolfo Velasco. "Effects of extract of Urtica dioica L. (stinging nettle) on the immune response of rats with severe malnutrition.." Journal of Complementary Medicine Research 9.2 (2018), 63-73. Print. doi:10.5455/jcmr.20180508052039



APA (American Psychological Association) Style

Sara Beatriz Herrera, Leonor Rodriguez, María del Carmen García, José Luis Flores, Rodolfo Velasco (2018) Effects of extract of Urtica dioica L. (stinging nettle) on the immune response of rats with severe malnutrition.. Journal of Complementary Medicine Research, 9 (2), 63-73. doi:10.5455/jcmr.20180508052039