A Systematic Review of the Potential Effects of Black Cumin (Nigella sativa) on Helicobacter pylori Infection in Gastrointestinal Tract

Muh Zuhal Darwis1, Sri Vitayani Muchtar2

1Wahidin Sudirohusodo Hospital
2Faculty of Medicine, Muslim University of Indonesia

Correspondence : Muh Zuhal Darwis, E-mail : mzuhaldarwis@gmail.com

Background : A large number of diseases are caused by Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori), particularly gastritis, peptic ulcer disease and gastric cancer. Antibiotic resistance against H. pylori is increasing and the discovery of new effective agents is needed. Black cumin (Nigella sativa) has been proven to have antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory properties. This review was conducted to evaluate the efficacy of Nigella sativa on Helicobacter pylori infection in gastrointestinal tract. 

Methods : We searched electronic databases such as PubMed, Scopus, Crossref and Google Scholar until December 2021. There were no restrictions on language or publication date. We selected all relevant clinical, animal and in vitro studies. Review articles on the effects of Nigella sativa and other herbs, conference abstracts, book chapters, and papers on the effects of Nigella sativa for other diseases were excluded. Each article has been critically reviewed for the possibility of bias. Ten articles were reviewed. 

Results : Animal and in vitro investigations supported the favourable effects of Nigella sativa as antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory against H. pylori, in animal studies also found that Nigella sativa can act as a gastroprotective agent via decreasing secretion of gastric acid. Results in clinical studies showed that Nigella sativa can alleviate symptoms in non ulcer dyspepsia patients and have comparable outcomes with triple therapy. 

Conclusion : Nigella sativa possess useful anti-H. pylori activity in in vitro, animal and clinical studies. Further studies still needed especially in clinical studies.

Keywords : Black cumin, Nigella sativa, Helicobacter pylori, Gastrointestinal tract infection