Evaluation of anti-ulcerogenic activity in an Aqueous Extract obtained from Bauhinia forficata leaves
Bauhinia forficata Link, popularly known as pata-devaca, unha-de-vaca, casco-de-vaca, has been widely used in traditional medicine to treat several diseases. Leaves of B. forficata are used in popular medicine as a diuretic, hypoglycemic, tonic and cleanser, and to combat elephantiasis. However, despite the wide range of ethnopharmacological data surrounding the plant, there are no scientific data demonstrating a probable anti-ulcerogenic activity conferred by use of that species. The present study aimed to evaluate the antiulcer properties of an infusion of fresh leaves of B. forficata Link. From the leaves of B. forficata, an Aqueous extract (AqE) was obtained and the phytochemical analysis showed the presence of flavonols in this extract. In the gastric ulcer induced by administration of HClEthanol model performed with four different doses of AqE (125, 250, 500 and 1000 mg.Kg-1), the AqE showed significant preventive activity (*p<0.01) at doses of 1000 mg.Kg-1. The antiulcer activity of AqE (1000 mg.Kg-1) could also be demonstrated in experimental models of NSAID-bethanechol (**p<0.001) and absolute ethanol (**p<0.001). Moreover, AqE (1000 mg.Kg-1) promoted a significant increase (**p<0.001) in the amount of gastric mucus. The data presented here demonstrated the potential gastroprotective activity from AqE, possibly attributed to the presence of flavonols in this extract. These results may serve as a support for the development of new treatments related to the pathology of gastric ulcer.