Berberis vulgaris for cardiovascular disorders: a scoping literature review


1 Faculty of Medicine, Ain Shams University, Cairo, Egypt

2 NovaMed Medical Research Association, Cairo, Egypt

3 Pharmacology Department, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, Suez Canal University, Ismailia 41522, Egypt

4 Pharmacology Department, DY Patil Medical College, DY Patil University, Kolhapur, Maharashtra, India


Cardiovascular disorders are the leading cause of mortality worldwide. Berberis vulgaris (B. vulgaris) is a commonly used plant in traditional medicine. In recent studies, B. vulgaris showed antiarrhythmic, antihypertensive, anticholinergic, and cardioprotective effects. We reviewed the literature to explore the possible prophylactic and therapeutic roles of B. vulgaris in cardiovascular medicine. A computer literature search was conducted to identify all relevant studies that have investigated the role of B. vulgaris in prevention or treatment of cardiovascular diseases.We also searched the citations of the retrieved articles. Using a systematic approach, we conducted a scoping review that included a total of 37 articles. Twelve studies examined the antihypertensive effects of B. vulgaris, seven studies investigated its antiarrhythmic effects, while its inotropic and cardioprotective effects were evaluated in four and eight studies, respectively. B. vulgaris showed a beneficial effect in reducing blood pressure, enhancing cardiac contractility, and protection from reperfusion injury. However, the mechanisms of these effects are still under investigation. Moreover, it could modify major risk factors for cardiovascular disorders, such as oxidative stress, hyperglycemia, and hyperlipidemia. Further studies are needed to translate these findings into effective cardiovascular medications.


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