Effect of the Ethanolic Leaf Extract of Ficus exasperata on Biochemical Indices of Albino Mice Experimentally Infected with Plasmodium berghei (NK 65)
Authors: Lebari B. Gboeloh
Ficus exasperata is a plant used in the traditional management of malaria in south-south Nigeria. An investigation into the effects of the ethanolic extract of the leaf of the plant on some biochemical indices in albino mice infected with Plasmodium berghei (NK 65) was conducted. 48 mice with weight range of 13-23 g were grouped into six (A, B, C, D, E, and F). Each group contained 8 mice. Groups A, B, C, D and E were infected with blood containing the parasite. Group F was not infected and served as the normal control. On the 6th day after infection, 4 mice from each group were sacrificed and blood samples are collected for investigation. The remaining mice in each group were treated. Mice in Groups A, B and C were administered orally with 200, 300 and 500 mg/kg body weight of Ficus exasperata respectively for six days. Group D was not treated while Group F was given distilled water. Group E was treated with 5 mg/kg body weight of chloroquine. On the 6th day post treatment, these mice were sacrificed and blood samples were collected for biochemical analysis. The results indicated that on the 6th day post inoculation, the levels of aspartate aminotransferase (AST), alkaline phosphatase (ALP) and alanine aminotransferase (ALT) in all the mice infected with the parasite were significantly (p < 0.05) elevated. However, on the 6th day post administration of extract, the increased levels of AST, ALP and ALT were significantly (p < 0.05) reduced in groups administered with 300 and 500 mg/kg body weight of the extract compared with groups D and F. The reduction in the levels of these enzymes is an indication that F. exasperata have no hepatotoxic effect on the mice at the dose levels administered.
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