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Year : 2019  |  Volume : 56  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 146-153

Commercial herbal preparations ameliorate Plasmodium berghei NK65-induced aberrations in mice

Department of Biochemistry, University of Nigeria, Nsukka, Enugu State, Nigeria

Correspondence Address:
Innocent U Okagu
Drug Discovery and Medical Parasitology Unit, Department of Biochemistry, University of Nigeria, Nsukka, Enugu State
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/0972-9062.263722

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Background & objectives: The alarming failure in malaria treatment using conventional drugs calls for urgent search of alternatives; one of which is to exploit natural products such as plants. This study evaluated the effects of three selected commercial herbal preparations on albino mice infected with Plasmodium berghei NK65, a lethal strain of rodent malaria. Methods: This study was conducted in the University of Nigeria, Nsukka between February and September 2017. A total of 30 adult albino mice were randomized into six groups of five mice each. Group 1 served as normal control. Mice in Groups 2-6 were parasitized with P. berghei. Group 2 mice were untreated while mice in Groups 3, 4, 5 and 6 were treated with 20 mg/kg body weight of artesunate; and 5 ml/kg body weight of the seleceted commercial herbal preparations designated as HA, HB and HC, respectively. The percent malaria parasitaemia, haematological parameters, lipid profile, liver function markers, antioxidant status and lipid peroxidation index were evaluated using standard protocol. Results: It was observed that mice in Group 2 had significantly higher percentage of malaria parasitaemia when compared to mice in parasitized and treated groups. Also, haematological dysfunctions, dyslipidaemia, oxidative stress and hepatotoxicity seen in parasitized and untreated mice were restored in parasitized and artesunate- and herbal preparations-treated mice. Interpretation & conclusion: Findings from the present study revealed that oxidative stress, characterized by low antioxidant status and high lipid peroxidation, contributes to complications in malaria. The results also indicate that the studied commercial herbal preparations possess good antimalarial and ameliorative effects on malaria-induced haematological, lipid, antioxidant and liver aberrations in mice. The acute toxicity profiles of the commercial herbal preparations suggested that they are tolerable and safe at the doses administered.

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