Heart Failure Reviews

, Volume 24, Issue 1, pp 155–166 | Cite as

Lanosteryl triterpenes from Protorhus longifolia as a cardioprotective agent: a mini review

  • Nonhlakanipho F. Sangweni
  • Phiwayinkosi V. Dludla
  • Rebamang A. Mosa
  • Abidemi P. Kappo
  • Andy Opoku
  • Christo J. F. Muller
  • Rabia Johnson


The epidemic of cardiovascular diseases is a global phenomenon that is exaggerated by the growing prevalence of diabetes mellitus. Coronary artery disease and diabetic cardiomyopathy are the major cardiovascular complications responsible for exacerbated myocardial infarction in diabetic individuals. Increasing research has identified hyperglycemia and hyperlipidemia as key factors driving the augmentation of oxidative stress and a pro-inflammatory response that usually results in increased fibrosis and reduced cardiac efficiency. While current antidiabetic agents remain active in attenuating diabetes-associated complications, overtime, their efficacy proves limited in protecting the hearts of diabetic individuals. This has led to a considerable increase in the number of natural products that are screened for their antidiabetic and cardioprotective properties. These natural products may present essential ameliorative properties relevant to their use as a monotherapy or as an adjunct to current drug agents in combating diabetes and its associated cardiovascular complications. Recent findings have suggested that triterpenes isolated from Protorhus longifolia (Benrh.) Engl., a plant species endemic to Southern Africa, display strong antioxidant and antidiabetic properties that may potentially protect against diabetes-induced cardiovascular complications. Thus, in addition to discussing the pathophysiology associated with diabetes-induced cardiovascular injury, available evidence pertaining to the cardiovascular protective potential of lanosteryl triterpenes from Protorhus longifolia will be discussed.


Cardiovascular diseases Diabetic cardiomyopathy Diabetes Protorhus longifolia Triterpenes 


Author contributions

NF Sangweni, PV Dludla, and R Johnson equally contributed to the conceptualization, design, and writing of the manuscript. All authors, including NF Sangweni, PV Dludla, RA Mosa, AP Kappo, A Opoku, C Muller, and R Johnson edited and approved the final draft of the manuscript.

Funding information

The authors acknowledge the financial support from the South African Medical Research Council/Biomedical Research and Innovation Platform (baseline funding), and the research reported in this publication was supported by the South African Medical Research Council through funding received from the South African National Treasury under the South African Medical Research Council’s Research Strengthening and Capacity Development Funding Opportunity for Selected Universities Initiative (Grant No. PC 57009). Its contents are solely the responsibility of the authors and do not necessarily represent the official views of the South African Medical Research Council. We would also like to acknowledge the National Research Foundation for the financial support (Thuthuka Grant (UID107261)).

Compliance with ethical standards

The manuscript does not contain clinical studies or patient data.

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflicts of interest.


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Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Biomedical Research and Innovation Platform (BRIP)South African Medical Research CouncilTygerbergSouth Africa
  2. 2.Department of Biochemistry and MicrobiologyUniversity of ZululandKwaDlangezwaSouth Africa
  3. 3.Division of Medical Physiology, Faculty of Health SciencesStellenbosch UniversityTygerbergSouth Africa

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