YOGYAKARTA – Student of Faculty of Veterinary Medicine UGM, Muhammad Rijki, managed to get the Alltech Young Scientist Award. The award is given for his research on the content of pumpkin which can be used to treat diabetes mellitus type 2. The award in the form of medal and plaque was given directly by the General Manager of PT Alltech Biotechnology Indonesia, drh. Isra Noor, M.M., at Seminar Room of the Faculty, Friday (8/7).
Being witnessed by Vice Dean for Student Affairs, Cooperation and Alumni of Faculty Veterinary Medicine UGM, drh. Setyo Budhi, M.P., Rijki told reporters that pumpkin contains saponins and flavonoids, which are both efficacious in lowering blood glucose levels and improving pancreatic beta cells to reproduce insulin. "These substances are contained in this pumpkin," said the man from Sukabumi, West Java.
Based on his research, content of saponin can significantly lower blood glucose. Although the experiment was conducted on rats, he saw quite encouraging results. From the measurement, the higher dose of saponin will significantly reduce the glucose level.
According to Rijki, to treat diabetes in humans, it takes 400-800 grams of extracted pumpkin to be consumed each day. However, if it is quite a hassle, he suggested to eat the pumpkin after it is mashed in a blender. "Saponin is soluble in water. When it is cooked, the level of saponin will be reduced," he said.
The eighth-semester student said that idea of using pumpkin began when he had vacation in his hometown, Caringin village, Sukabumi, West Java. Viewing many farmers who cultivate pumpkin, he was interested in trying to find information about the efficacy of this pumpkin. Then, Rijki searched on the Internet. Not satisfied with the information found in cyberspace, he tried to do further research by testing in the laboratory using mice as a guinea pig. "But now in my village people rarely plant pumpkins. Hopefully, with this finding, pumpkin production will increase," the fifth child of eight siblings said.
Vice Dean Setyo Budhi is glad with the award obtained by Rijki. According to Setyo, this award further improves motivation for students of Faculty of Veterinary Medicine to acquire other similar awards. "This accomplishment is as a benchmark for the success of learning that is applied up to now," he said.
General Manager of PT Alltech Biotechnology Indonesia, Isra Noor, said Rijki is the only student from Department of Veterinary Medicine who won this award. "This year there were many students of animal science and graduate programs participating," he said