Liver and Kidney Function Indices of Male Wistar Rats after Oral Administration of Aqueous Extract of Massularia acuminata Root

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Keywords: Massularia acuminata, hepatotoxicity, nephrotoxicity, rubiacea, function indices


This study was aimed at evaluating the effects of administration of aqueous extract of Massularia acuminata
roots on the function indices of the liver and kidney of male Wistar rats. Male rats were completely randomized
into four groups, A, B, C and D. Animals in group A (Control) received orally 1ml of distilled water while those
in groups B, C and D (test groups) were treated like the control except that the male rats received 1 ml that
corresponded to 50, 100 and 200 mg/kg body weight of the extract respectively, once daily for 21 days. The
results revealed that the extract significantly (P<0.05) increased the liver and serum alkaline phosphatase (ALP)
activities and reduced the kidney ALP activity. The reduction (P<0.05) in the activity of γ-glutamyl transferase
(γ-GT) in both the liver and kidney was accompanied by corresponding increase in the serum γ-GT activity. The
serum contents of total bilirubin, globulin and K+ increased significantly (P<0.05) on all the days of intervention,
whereas the increases in creatinine and urea did not manifest until after seven daily doses of the extract. In
contrast, the extract decreased (P<0.05) the serum Na+ concentration, liver- and kidney-body weight ratios.
Ca2+, albumin and conjugated bilirubin in the serum of the animals increased at specific doses and days of
exposure. Overall, the aqueous extract of M. acuminata roots at the doses (50, 100 and 200 mg/kg body weight)
and the duration (21 days) investigated in this study has caused functional toxicity with adverse effects on the
secretory and synthetic functions of the hepatocytes as well as tubular and glomerular dysfunction of the
nephrons of the male rats. Therefore, the extract at these doses is not completely safe as oral remedy.