ANTIPLASMODIAL POTENTIAL OF Garcinia kola (HECKEL) STEMBARK EXTRACT IN ALBINO MICE
Garcinia kola stem bark forms part of recipes used traditionally for the treatment of malaria. In view of the prevalence of malaria in Nigeria, this study investigated the phytochemical, mineral and proximate components, as well as antiplasmodial activity and toxicological effect of Garcinia kola stem bark extract against Plasmodium berghei infected mice. The plant sample was screened for phytochemical, mineral and proximate components using standard laboratory techniques. Thirty five mice were divided into seven groups of five mice each. Malaria was induced in all the groups intraperitoneally with 0.2 mL of infected blood containing about 107 of P. berghei parasitized red blood cells, except group 6 (extract only) and group 7 (normal control). Group 1 received 100 mg/kg bodyweight of the extract orally. Group 2 received 200 mg/kg of the extract. Group 3 received 300 mg/kg of the extract. Group 4 received 5 mg/kg of chloroquine. Group 5 (induced but untreated control). The haematology, liver function enzymes and histopathology of the liver were carried out using standard protocols. The plant was rich in alkaloids, iron and fibre. The extract treated groups (1-3) showed significant decrease (p≤0.05) in parasitemia level after seven days of treatment. There was no significant difference in AST, ALT, ALP, bilirubin and GGT activities in all the extract treated groups compared to the control. No pathological changes were evident in histopathology of all the groups treated with various concentration of the extract. The result obtained from this study confirmed the antiplasmodial activity of methanol extract of G. kola stem bark. The highest inhibition of P. berghie parasite was observed at dose 300 mg/kg comparable to chloroquine, with no hepatoxicity which confirmed the safety of G. kola. The phytochemicals and nutritional components could be responsible for the observed antiplasmodial activity of the plant.
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