Aframomum Sceptrum Aqueous Extract: Antidote For Cyanide-Induced Metabolic Stressors
Cyanide is a potentcytotoxic agent found in so many places and it is known for its quickdetrimental action and toxic effect (Ghodsi and Baghshani, 2013). As aconsequence of infusion of certain therapeutic drugs, smoke inhalation,industrial accidents, or terrorism, consumption of cyanide-containing foods,cyanide exposure can take place (Alcorta, 2004). The toxic effect of cyanide isas a result of its increased potency as a poison of respiration in all forms oflife that is aerobic (Ghodsi and Baghshani, 2013). Apart from acute cyanideintoxication, in recent years, chronic toxic effect has frequently beenreported and it is said that chronic dietary, industrial and environmentalsources are the most widespread problems emanating from cyanide (Barillo, 2009).
In the cases of cyanideintoxication several key metabolic pathways are affected thus leading to thedepletion of enzymatic and non enzymatic antioxidants necessary for thesystemic buffering which contributes to the shortfall in oxygenated blood aswell as increase in metabolic stress. Fortunately, the body itself has its own free radicaldefense system which leads to the cells production of antioxidant enzymescalled superoxide dismutase (SOD), catalase and glutathione peroxidasewhich contributes to quenching oxidative radicals generated during metabolicstress (Menvielle-Bourg, 2005). When these antioxidants are highly depleted, several other key enzymes andtissue proteins are also affected. For example, the transmaminases Aspartate transaminase (AST) and Alaninetransaminase (ALT) are said to be raised in the serum during acute liver damagewhile AST is also to be raised during myocardial infarction and diseasesassociated with the skeletal muscle (Vozarova et al. , 2002).
Albumins which consist afamily of globular proteins that are water soluble, are moderately soluble inconcentrated salt solutions, and experience heat denaturation of which serumalbumin are the most common. Albumin and globulin are produce in the liver andare abundantly distributed thus; a short fall in the sum total proteins maysuggest dysfunction in the kidney, liver or poor digestion/absorption ofconsumed proteins (Ghodsi and Baghshani, 2013). Lipidperoxidation which is often reported in terms of the Malondialdehyde(MDA) concentrations in the tissue due to the end to end decompositionof arachidonic acid and larger PUFAs, through enzymatic or nonenzymatic (ROS/RNSactivities) processes as a result of tissue antioxidant depletion (Ramalingam,2012; Marrocco et al. , 2017; Zarkovic et al. , 2013). Dietary antioxidant isa substance (commonly found in foods) that greatly reduces the detrimentaleffects of "reactive species", such as reactive oxygen and nitrogenmolecules, that hampers normal physiological activities on a cellular level inhumans (Aruoma, 1994). Spices have beenacknowledged not only to have properties that make food more pleasant but alsoimportant preservative and antioxidant properties (Shobana and Naidu, 2000).
Spices have been used for medicinal purposes as well as food additives overcenturies (Wilson and Demmig-Adams, 2007). Aframomumsceptrum, a well known local spice, is consumed in south-south part ofNigeria, has been analyzed for it chemical and antioxidant composition(Erukainure et al. , 2011). Thepresence of bioactive metabolites such as flavonoids, phenols, tanninsalkaloids and saponins are responsible for it antioxidant activity and thisaffirms the use of A. sceptrum in themanagement of various ailments (George etal. , 2013). It was against this backdrop therefore, that this study focusedon the evaluation of the effect of Aframomunsceptrum as an antidote for cyanide-inducedmetabolic stress in rats.