The beneficial effects of Momordica charantia (bitter gourd) on wound healing of rabbit skin

PİŞKİN A., Altunkaynak B. Z., TÜMENTEMUR G., Kaplan S., Yazici O. B., Hokelek M.

JOURNAL OF DERMATOLOGICAL TREATMENT, vol.25, no.4, pp.350-357, 2014 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 25 Issue: 4
  • Publication Date: 2014
  • Doi Number: 10.3109/09546634.2012.713459
  • Journal Indexes: Science Citation Index Expanded (SCI-EXPANDED), Scopus
  • Page Numbers: pp.350-357
  • Keywords: Momordica charantia, dekspanthenol, nitrofurazon, wound healing, histopathology, stereology, rabbit, HIGH-FAT DIET, FEMALE RAT, STEREOLOGY, EFFICIENCY, DECREASES, EXTRACT, NUMBER, VOLUME, LIVER, JUICE
  • Ondokuz Mayıs University Affiliated: Yes


Momordica charantia (MC; bitter gourd) is a traditional herbal commonly used for its antidiabetic, antioxidant, contraceptive and antibacterial properties. In the current study, the authors aim to observe the topical effect of MC cream on the wound-healing process in rabbits. Moreover, they compare the healing potential with conventional creams used therapeutically. Towards this aim, 28 New Zealand rabbits were divided into four groups and excision wounds (7 cm(2)) were made on their backs. Open wound dressing was carried out daily for 28 days among the experimental groups with the application of dekspanthenol (Bepanthen (R); BP group, n = 7), nitrofurazon (Furacin (R); FR group, n = 7) and olive oil extract of MC (MC group, n = 7). No application was made to the control group. At the end of day 28, areas of the skin with initial wound area were en bloc dissected and prepared for histopathological and stereological analysis. Inflammatory cells were abundant in the control group and cream application led to a decrease in the number of these cells, especially in the MC group. The highest number of fibroblasts was detected in the MC group. Furthermore, the MC group displayed the highest fractions of epidermis to papillary dermis, fibroblasts to reticular dermis and collagen fibres to reticular dermis. The MC group also presented a high density of blood vessels, moderate density of collagen fibres and mature fibroblasts. The BP group showed better epithelialisation compared with the FR group, but the latter provided more effective reorganisation of the dermis. Different cream supplements caused healthy and fast wound healing according to untreated controls and the results show that administration of the MC extract improves and accelerates the process of wound healing in rabbits in comparison with the BP and FR extracts.