Piper betle L. (locally known as Paan) is a widely distributed plant in the tropical and subtropical regions, its leaves being largely consumed as a masticator and mouth freshener. It is valued as a mild stimulant and also has its use in Ayurvedic medicine.
The present study investigates on the free radical scavenging potential as well as total phenolic and aflavanoid contents of methanolic extract of 9 different varieties of Piper betle leaves (A,B,C,D,E,F,G,H&I). These extracts from diverse localities and varying on treatment, maturation at plucking etc. were used to evaluate antioxidant and antiinflammatory activities. The antioxidant potential of all 9 varieties of methanolic leaf extracts were evaluated by six methods: 1,1-diphenyl-2-picrylhydrazyl (DPPH) free radical scavenging activity, superoxide radical O2-scavenging activity by the riboflavin-light-nitroblue tetrazolium (NBT) system, Lipid peroxidation assay was done by a modified thiobarbituric acid reactive species (TBARS) assay and Nitric oxide (NO) scavenging activity . Total phenolic and total flavonoid content also determined by standard protocol. Anti-inflammatory effect of the extract evaluated on LPS induced RAW 264.7 cell line in dose dependent manner. RP-HPLC analyses of 9 varieties of methanolic crude extract, was done and picks were monitored at 254 nm. All of the nine extracts demonstrated highest antioxidant activities at concentration of 1 mg/ml. Among the nine varieties, five (C,E,F,G and I) demonstrated anti-inflammatory activity, one(H) is proinflammatory and three varieties of P.betle leaf (A,B and D) didn’t show significant antiinflammatory activity. the F variety was most effective at a concentration of 250 μg/ml to retained cell viability 99%, very close to control and positive control (Dexamethasone) but H variety of P.betle leaf extract showed proinflammatory activity and cell viability decreased by 29% than control. The results of the experiments suggest that selected variety of P.betle may be used as natural antioxidant as well as an alternative or supplementary herbal remedy for the treatment of inflammatory disease. Thus, the present study warrants further investigation involving components of P.betle for possible development of new class of anti-inflammatory drugs.