NAD_6_009 Essentials Of Pharmacology And Medicines Optimisation


In this essay, a critical review of the paper entitled’ the inhibitory effects of ginger (Zingiber officinale) on rat ileal motility invitro.’ By Francesca Borrelli, RaffaeleCapasso, Aldo, Pinto, Angelo A. Izzo, published in the journal of Life Sciences in the year 2004.  In this article, the effects of ginger on the contractile movement of ileum as a result of induced electrical stimulation (Borrelli et al., 2004). The sample used had been extracted from a rat using aseptic techniques for experimental purposes. The relevance of this experiment was driven due to the widespread use of ginger in the treatment of many conditions which include nausea, diarrhea, flatulence, cardiovascular problems among others. In other cases, ginger herbs have been found to have anticancer effects (Zanini et al., 2015). For instance, ginger has found widespread applications in the food industry and medical care. Ginger is considered to be the top position twenty most selling herb supplements in the United States. It is mostly sold in food stores, market retails and drug stores (Azadpour et al., 2016).

More specifically in Germany, ginger is commonly used for the treatment of prophylaxis as well as dyspepsia in motion sicknesses (Li et al., 2017). It is for this reason that ginger was approved by the United States Pharmacopeia for its monograph to be included in the National drug formulation. The actions of ginger in the digestive tract are as a result of blocking the cisplatin delays when it comes to the emptying of the gastric contents (Mukkavilli et al., 2014). Moreover, ginger reduces the each gastric effect which is caused by the circular section in people. In this way, ginger becomes very effective when treating symptoms of nausea (Luettig et al., 2016). The relevance of this article is that there are some active compounds in ginger which are responsible for these gastric effects. Some of these compounds include gingerols, aryl alkanes. Shogaols, volatile oils and gingerols. However, the gingerols are the major active compounds associated with the gastric contractions in the ileum as well as the unique pungent smell in ginger (Funk et al., 2016).

In animal experiments, the shogaols and gingerols have huge impacts with regards to the motility of the ileum. This is the major reason as to why the investigation of the effects of ginger on the ileum contraction was important to investigate by use of an ileum extracted from a rat. I believe that the concentration more specifically on the ways in which ginger causes the contractions of the ileum upon exogenous acetylcholine or electrical stimulation is important because it indicates the exact mechanisms via which this herb causes the healing of these discomforts (Durak et al., 2015).  The title of this paper clearly indicates the purpose of this paper because it focuses on the ways in which ginger inhibits the motion of ileum through contractions. Since the topic is broad enough, it can shelter other aspects such as the active compounds found in ginger and their specific roles, thus meeting the overall purpose of the paper. On a personal front, the purpose of the study as indicated in the abstract matches the overall objective as illustrated on the title of the paper because it aims at identifying the effects that ginger has on the gastric system as a result of the gastric contractions caused by electric stimulations (Haniadka et al., 2013). Considering the sequence of the statements on the introduction part of this article, the statements lead to the overall purpose of the paper. This is because the authors begin by describing the ginger, its applications in the medical and food industry, the active compounds in it and finally states the objective of the study, which is to determine the inhibitory effects of ileum contractions (Zakariya et al., 2015).  


The study methodology as presented in this article is convenient because it gives an illustration of each and every step that was undertaken from the experimental animal, extraction of the ileum tissue to the study of the responses upon the tissue stimulation and the effects in presence of other drugs was done (Borrelli et al., 2004). In the selection of the experimental animals (the maleWistar rats), the researchers sourced the animals from a standard organization which is the Harlan, technologies, Italy. I agree with this step because the Harlan, technologies would ensure that the recommended experimental animals are supplied for research. Moreover, I agree with the decisions to place the male Wistar rats under controlled room temperature and humidity as well as food and water. These conditions ensure that the rats grow at the same rate so that there can be no bias during the analysis. It is interesting to find out that the protocols followed in this article were regulated by the requirements of European Communities Council Directive.

The method chosen to kill the male Wistar rats is recommendable because it considered the issue of ethics. In this case, the use of carbon dioxide asphyxiation method ensures the male Wistar rats die a slow death devoid of pain and suffering. Upon the extraction of the ileum tissue, it was immediately transferred into the Krebs solution to ensure that it did not disintegrate and affect the downstream processes (Oboh et al., 2013). The contractions were observed on a longitudinal perspective in a Krebs solution placed in a water bath. The use of the isotonic transducer connected through the bath ensured that the tissues are stimulated and their responses recorded on a linear recorder. Ginger was also added to the ileum tissue at the concentrations of 15 minutes time intervals. This interval is to illustrate the exact trend in varying the concentrations of the ginger which are used to inhibit the contractions and to determine the effects of increasing time with respect to its roles in the ileum (Fuchino et al., 2014). Looking through the order of the methodology, the experiment can be duplicated although the details of the preliminary studies, which in this case were the controls, are not clearly explained. Moreover, the authors have not indicated the way in which data for each part of the experiment was collected and recorded. This can bring some problems when trying to duplicate the same experiment in future.

Although the sample selection can be said to adequate because the male Wistar rats were sourced from the same standard supplier. However, the researchers have not indicated the reason as to why the specified weight of between 200 to 220 grams was chosen, the possible age of the male Wistar rats and the number of rats that were used. This information is important because it helps the readers to be able to have a clear understanding of the sampling frame and research design used, which in turn determines the accuracy, credibility, and feasibility of the research. The experimental design in this research paper is not very clear and hence can be said to be inaccurate. This is because the authors were not consistent with their protocols and did not provide full details of the methods used. Going through the methodology section, I can say that most of the information is presented in this section although the order is not very clear. Many steps have been mentioned but the exact procedures have not been explained. The methods section can be divided into several sections in order to increase clarity. For example, I believe that if the preliminary experimental sections were placed on their own, it would be possible to make a comparison with the ginger sections. Moreover, the parts concerning the use of various concentrations and timeframes for exposure periods need to be illustrated on separate subsections that they can be easily understood. If the methodology section is subdivided, them many more details which are lacking in the current article can be included because the sections are put in a chronological order such that no step is skipped until all the necessary data is obtained.


In the results section, the observations have been illustrated in the figure (curves) to enhance the ease of the trends observed. The heading labels of the figure and on the axis are correct and describe parameters that were being tested (Jolly and Menon, 2015). For instance, in figure 1, the effects of ginger alone on inhibition of the contractions of the ileum are presented and relevant statistical summaries indicated below the figure. In this case, the authors indicate, that there was a level of statistical significances observed between the ginger and controls in relation to the inhibitory effects. However, it’s important to note that in figure 1, there was no image title indicated and the reader might need to take some time to realize what the figure was all about. In figure 2 also, the authors did not provide the figure title which again brings about some confusion to the reader. However, in this figure, the effects of various drugs and ginger have been plotted with respect to the level of inhibition on the ileum that they cause at varied concentrations. In this figure (2), the authors indicate that there was no level of statistical significance which was observed among all the curves.

In figure 3 the image heading is lacking but the description on the caption are clear on the effects of ginger inhibition upon addition of capsazepine (Borrelli et al., 2004). On the results section, the in text descriptions are concurrent with the figure descriptions. However, there is some information on the ability of ginger to reduce potassium chloride-induced contractions of the ileum. This section should not be included in the results section because the data is not shown and hence it does not make any sense to the reader. There is also an issue with figure 1 because it is placed in the methodology part yet it contains the experimental results. All the tables and figures concerning an experiment should be indicated on the results section only. The calculations of the data and their presentation on a personal front are okay and the results generally answer the question which was being asked in this research. It clearly indicates that ginger has inhibitory effects on the ileum contraction but this inhibition is dependent on contact time as well as the varying concentrations.


In the first two parts of the discussion, the authors present the discussion of the results as well as the possible cause of the observations (Rakesh et al., 2013). In fact, the author indicates that ginger has a more inhibitory effect on the contractions that were used by the EFS as compared to those induced by acetylcholine receptors. The authors also allude the effects of ginger in inhibiting ileum contractions to the activation of receptors and release of some endogenous materials. This then causes inhibitory effects to the ileum contractions (Borrelli et al., 2004). However, there is other information that the author has taken from other sources to explain the results of this experiment. Even though this information such as the prejunctional system in relation to muscle contraction has been indicated to explain more on the results, it is still too far from the basic understanding which s needed for this experiment. However, the way in which the interpretation of the findings of this study is presented in this article is in line with the arguments of other authors (Muhammad et al., 2014).

By considering the work which has been published on this topic, nearly most of the studies have been considered. There are no future recommendations that the authors of this article have given. In my opinion, I think that future studies can be done in determining the possible antagonists of ginger in the inhibition roles of smooth muscle contractions.


Considering the journal where the article was published, the topic and format of the article are correct. This is because the contents of the paper are all based on biology and physiology which are life sciences. This is in line with the journal of Life Sciences in which the article was published. By rereading the abstract in this article, the summary of the article is accurately presented. However, the summary is not conclusive because the findings from other drugs that were tested in relation to ileum contraction are not clearly captured in the abstract. The arrangement of the headings and subheadings are fine in this article. However, clearer arrangements could be indicated, followed by the numbering of the subsections for ease of flow of information. With respect to the thinking and writing style of the author, the research has been presented in a clear and logical manner. However, I recommend that more details should be added to the methodology section so that the experiment can be easily understood for future needs of redoing similar work.

Reference List

Azadpour, M., Azadpour, N., Bahmani, M., Hassanzadazar, H., Rafieian-Kopaei, M. and Naghdi, N., 2016. Antimicrobial effect of Ginger (Zingiber officinale) and mallow (Malva sylvestris) hydroalcholic extracts on four pathogen bacteri a. Der Pharmacia Lettre, 8(1).

Borrelli, F., Capasso, R., Pinto, A. and Izzo, A.A., 2004. Inhibitory effect of ginger (Zingiber officinale) on rat ileal motility in vitro. Life sciences, 74(23), pp.2889-2896.

Durak, A., Gawlik-Dziki, U. and Kowlska, I., 2015. Coffee with ginger–Interactions of biologically active phytochemicals in the model system. Food chemistry, 166, pp.261-269.

Fuchino, H., Tanouchi, K., Daikonya, A., Wada, H., Iida, O., Sugimura, K. and Kawahara, N., 2014. Relationship between the inhibitory effect of ginger (Zingiber officinale Roscoe) on nitric oxide production and the drying conditions after harvest. Japanese Journal of Food Chemistry and Safety, 21(1), pp.8-14.

Funk, J.L., Frye, J.B., Oyarzo, J.N., Chen, J., Zhang, H. and Timmermann, B.N., 2016. Anti-inflammatory effects of the essential oils of ginger (Zingiber officinale Roscoe) in experimental rheumatoid arthritis. PharmaNutrition, 4(3), pp.123-131.

Haniadka, R., Saldanha, E., Sunita, V., Palatty, P.L., Fayad, R. and Baliga, M.S., 2013. A review of the gastroprotective effects of ginger (Zingiber officinale Roscoe). Food & Function, 4(6), pp.845-855.

Jolly, D. and Menon, V., 2015. Antibacterial effect of garlic and ginger extracts on Escherichia coli and Listeria monocytogenes. International Journal of Applied and Pure Science and Agriculture (IJAPSA), 1(2), pp.2394-5532.

Li, C., Singh, B., Graves-Deal, R., Ma, H., Starchenko, A., Fry, W.H., Lu, Y., Wang, Y., Bogatcheva, G., Khan, M.P. and Milne, G.L., 2017. Three-dimensional culture system identifies a new mode of cetuximab resistance and disease-relevant genes in colorectal cancer. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, p.201618297.

Luettig, J., Rosenthal, R., Lee, I.F.M., Krug, S.M. and Schulzke, J.D., 2016. The ginger component 6?shogaol prevents TNF?α?induced barrier loss via inhibition of PI3K/Akt and NF?κB signaling. Molecular nutrition & food research, 60(12), pp.2576-2586.

Muhammad, A., Rahman, Z., Ayub, M., Durrani, Y., Ali, S.A., Tabassum, A., Shakoor, A., Khan, M. and Khan, A., 2014. Inhibitory Effect of Ginger and Turmeric on Rhizopus stolonifer Growth on Bread. Journal of Food Processing & Technology, 5(5), p.1.

Mukkavilli, R., Gundala, S.R., Yang, C., Donthamsetty, S., Cantuaria, G., Jadhav, G.R., Vangala, S., Reid, M.D. and Aneja, R., 2014. Modulation of cytochrome P450 metabolism and transport across intestinal epithelial barrier by ginger biophenolics. PloS one, 9(9), p.e108386.

Oboh, G., Agunloye, O.M., Akinyemi, A.J., Ademiluyi, A.O. and Adefegha, S.A., 2013. Comparative study on the inhibitory effect of caffeic and chlorogenic acids on key enzymes linked to Alzheimer’s disease and some pro-oxidant induced oxidative stress in rats’ brain-in vitro. Neurochemical research, 38(2), pp.413-419.

Rakesh, K.N., Dileep, N., Junaid, S., Kekuda, P.T., Vinayaka, K.S. and Nawaz, N.A., 2013. Inhibitory effect of cow urine extracts of selected plants against pathogens causing rhizome rot of ginger. Science, Technology and Arts Research Journal, 2(2), p.92.

Zakariya, A.M., Danmalam, U.H., Sallau, A.B., Ibrahim, G. and Hassan, S.M., 2015. Inhibitory effect of Garcinia kola, Heckel (Clusiacea) seed extracts on some key enzymes linked to diabetes mellitus. Nigerian Journal of Natural Product and Medicine, 19(1), pp.139-144.

Zanini, S., Marzotto, M., Giovinazzo, F., Bassi, C. and Bellavite, P., 2015. Effects of dietary components on cancer of the digestive system. Critical reviews in food science and nutrition, 55(13), pp.1870-1885.

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