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Shyamal S, Latha PG, Suja SR, Shine VJ, Anuja GI, Sini S, Pradeep S, Shikha P, Rajasekharan S
Correspondence: Dr Latha Gopalakrishnan, email@example.com
Introduction Roots of Ixora coccinea (Rubiaceae), and Rhinacanthus nasuta (Acanthaceae) and whole plants of Spilanthes ciliata (Asteraceae) are extensively used by tribal communities in South India to treat liver diseases. However, the veracity of these tribal claims has not been investigated scientifically using the liver toxin, aflatoxin. This study reports on the protective effects of these three herbal ethanolic extracts on the aflatoxin B1 (AFB1) -intoxicated livers of albino male Wistar rats.
Methods Biochemical parameters, including serum hepatic enzymes (glutamate oxaloacetate transaminase, glutamate pyruvate transaminase and alkaline phosphatase), were studied. Hepatic tissues were processed for assay of reduced glutathione (GSH) and histological alterations.
Results Pre-treatment of the rats with oral administration of the plant ethanolic extracts, Ixora coccinea (IC), Rhinacanthus nasuta (RN), Spilanthes ciliata (SC), prior to AFB1 was found to provide significant protection against toxin-induced liver damage, determined 72 hours after the AFB1 challenge (1.5 mg/kg, intraperitoneally) as evidenced by a significant lowering of the activity of the serum enzymes and enhanced hepatic reduced GSH status. Pathological examination of the liver tissues supported the biochemical findings. The three plant extracts, IC, RN and SC, showed significant antilipid peroxidant effects in vitro.
Conclusion It was concluded that the hepatoprotective effects of the three plant extracts observed in this study might result from their potent antioxidative properties.
Keywords: aflatoxin-induced liver damage, hepatoprotective, Ixora coccinea, Rhinacanthus nasuta, Spilanthes ciliata
Singapore Med J 2010; 51(4): 326-331