Hepatoprotective and nephrotoxic effects of methanol leaf extract of Telfairia occidentalis (Hook f.) in adult female albino rats (Rattus norvegicus).

Chidozie Okoye, John Ihedioha, Onyinyechukwu Ada Agina, Izuchukwu Ochiogu, David Ogwu


The leaf extract of the plant Telfairia occidentalis, commonly known as fluted pumpkin is used as a hematinic by post-menstrual and pregnant women and for treatment of many different ailments with little consideration of their toxic potentials. This study assessed the effects of the administration of methanolic leaf extract of Telfairia Occidentalis on serum activity of some enzymes and levels of biochemical indices in female albino rats. Fifteen nulliparous female rats of 12 weeks of age were used for the study. Group A served as untreated control and received only 10 mg/kg distilled water, while groups B and C received 200 and 800 mg/kg body weight of the methanol leaf extract of Telfairia occidentalis respectively for 3 weeks. Results of the study showed that administration of the extract to the treated groups led to significantly  (p < 0.05) lower serum activity of alanine aminotransferase on day 14 in group B rats, aspartate aminotransferase on day 7 in group C rats and alkaline phosphatase on day 7 in group B rats. Significantly (p < 0.05) lower serum levels of proteins and cholesterol were recorded for groups B and C rats respectively on day 14. There was significantly (p < 0.05) higher serum urea level in the treated groups on days 14 and 21 and significantly (p < 0.05) higher creatinine level on day 21. It was concluded that administration of methanol extract of T. occidentalis as used in the study might lead to membrane stabilizing effects on hepatocytes, depressed hepatocyte synthetic activity and impaired renal function.


Keywords: Telfairia occidentalis. Rattus norvegicus. Ethnomedicine. Nephrotoxicity.

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