Effect of Vernonia amygdalina Ethanolic Root Extract on the Hepato- and Nephro-Protective Properties of Albino Rats (Rattus novergicus)

Vincent C. Ejere, Chinedu E. Chukwukezie, Emmanuel I. Nnamonu, Christian O. Chukwuka, Paul C. Echi, Godwin C. Ugwu, Elijah C. Odii, Anthony O. Ejim


The hepato- and nephro-protective potentials of Vernonia amygdalina ethanolic root extract was evaluated for 14 days using standard bioassay in 45 normal male albino rats. The rats were divided into four treatment groups I – IV and a control group V. Groups I – IV were given 100mg.kg-1, 200mg.kg-1, 400mg.kg-1 and 600mg.kg-1 body weight, respectively while the control (group V) was given equal volume of feed and water. The extracts were administered orally to the animals for 14 days. Blood samples were collected using the ocular puncture method before and weekly after administration to evaluate the extracts’ effects on aspartate transaminase (AST), acid phosphatase (ACP), alanine transaminase (ALT), alkaline phosphatase (ALP), bilirubin, creatinine and blood urea nitrogen (BUN) levels. The mean serum levels of the liver marker enzymes AST, ACP, ALT, ALP, total bilirubin and direct bilirubin ranged from 10.00±0.53 to 11.44±0.44, 31.29±0.64 to 33.14±0.56, 27.22±0.94 to 29.67±0.37 and 37.83±0.59 to 40.57±1.02, 3.42±0.08 to 3.61±0.07 and 2.06±0.11 to 2.51±0.05 respectively. The mean levels of the nephrotic enzymes, creatinine and BUN also ranged from 39.87±1.79 to 43.04±1.57 and 6.62±0.21 to 15.98±0.17 accordingly. Although no significant difference (p>0.05) was observed in the serum levels of the liver marker enzymes and creatinine when compared with the control, a dose and duration dependent significant increase (p<0.05) occurred in the BUN level. This tends to suggest that the ethanolic root extract of Vernonia amygdalina on a short term basis has some hepato-protective property while its nephro-protective ability is still doubtful.

Keywords: Vernonia amygdalina, Ethanolic root extract, Liver maker enzymes, Nephrotic enzymes, Albino rats

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ISSN (Paper)2224-7181 ISSN (Online)2225-062X

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