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International Journal of Phytomedicine and Phytotherapy

Table 2 The most important pharmacological effects of diosgenin

From: Diosgenin and galactomannans, natural products in the pharmaceutical sciences

Health benefits Key points Reference
Anti-diabetic effects a. Diosgenin could have a beneficial role against aortic damage induced by oxidative stress in diabetic state. [66,67,68,69]
  b. Diosgenin demonstrated anti-glycating properties and it improved the renal function in diabetic rats.  
  c. Diosgenin can effectively regulate the related targets and pathways of glycolipid metabolism, apoptosis, inflammation and oxidative stress to improve diabetes and it complications. [70]
  d. Diosgenin counteracted the effect of diabetes on the growth plate and cancellous bone microarchitecture in the distal femur, indicating some limited beneficial impact on the skeleton. [71]
Anti-inflammatory activity a. Diosgenin modulates adipokine expression in perivascular adipose tissue (PVAT) against inflammation which depends on AMPK. [72, 73]
  b. Diosgenin down-regulated the inflammatory mediators which prevent the atherosclerotic disease progression and concomitant suppression of inflammatory mediators in liver and brain. [74]
Anti-Obesity effects a. Dioscin and its aglycone, diosgenin, both suppressed the time-dependent increase of blood triacylglycerol level when orally injected with corn oil to mice, which shows their inhibitory potential against fat absorption. [75]
Anti-oxidant effects a. Diosgenin with antioxidant function may show potential to improve cardiac tissue abnormalities. [76]
  b. Diosgenin shows concentration dependent antioxidant potential. [77, 78]
Anti-proliferative effects a. The azasteroidal compounds from diosgenin showed lower cytotoxicity and lactam-type enamide derivative showed activity in cancer cell line MDA-MB-231. [79]
Anti-psoriasis effects a. In animal studies, diosgenin attenuated psoriatic lesions on mice by inhibiting vascular formation partially by reducing the VEGF-α expression in keratinocytes. [80]
  b. Diosgenin down-regulated pro-inflammatory cytokines through TLR4/Myd88 inhibition and up-regulated several differentiation markers, expression in HaCaT cells. [80]
Anti-cancer effects a. Diosgenin is a novel blocker of the STAT3 activation pathway, with a potential role in the treatment of hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) and other cancers. [81, 82]
  b. Diosgenin has shown inhibitory activity on human breast cancer MDA-MB-231 cell migration, and inhibited action polymerization, Vav2 phosphorylation and Cdc42 activation which shows its therapeutic potential for human breast cancer metastasis therapy. [83]
  c. Inhibition of Enhancer of zeste homo-log2 (EZH2) by diosgenin could be a promising therapeutic method for pancreatic cancer (PC) treatment as EZH2 signaling is closely associated with the anti-tumor characteristics of diosgenin in PC cells. [84]
  e. Diosgenin and its glycosidic derivatives are promising anti-cancer compounds as they are compounds with low necrotic activity and selective action. [85, 86]
Anti-tumour effects a. A set of diosgenin compounds should be considered as a promising scaffold for their abilities as anticancer and immunomodulatory agents. [87, 88]
Hepatoprotective effects a. Administration of diosgenin may lead to reduction of liver injury indices and oxidative stress and inflammatory events. [89]
Improve female reproduction a. Phytoestrogen diosgenin promotes basic ovarian cell functions (proliferation, apoptosis, steroid, and peptide hormone release). [90]
Multipe sclerosis a. Diosgenin alleviated the progression of experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis with reduction in central nervous system inflammation and demyelination. [91]
Skin aging a. A restoration of keratinocyte proliferation in aged skin, showed that diosgenin may have potential to be considered as a safe health food for climacteric. [92]
Wound healing a. Genipin crosslinked gelatin/diosgenin-nanocellulose hydrogels showed excellent antibacterial effect towards Gram + and – bacteria, and it is suitable in wound healing. [93]