Derangement of hemopoiesis and hematological indices in Khat (Catha edulis) - treated rats
AbstractThe purpose of this study was to identify the sub-acute toxic effects of Khat (Catha edulis) on hemopoiesis and hematological indices of white albino rats. Two groups, each of 10 rats, were used. In the experimental group, a hydro-ethanol extract of C. edulis was administered orally to rats, daily, in single doses of 500 mg/kg body weight, for for weeks. The control group received equivalent amounts of normal saline. Our results show, for the first time, that oral administration of C. edulis hydro-ethanol extract caused significant derangement in hemopoiesis and in gross hematological indices in rats, characterized by macrocytic anemia and leucopenia. Our data show statistically significant decreases in total leukocytes count (TLC) in which, hemoglobin concentration (Hb. conc.), packed cell volume (PCV), and red cell count (RCC), accompanied by significant increases in mean cell volume (MCV), red blood cell distribution width (RDW) and platelets count with no change in mean hemoglobin concentration (MHC). In peripheral blood smears (PBS) of treated rats, there were evidences of dyserythropoiesis- impaired hemoglobinization, macrocytosis, poikilocytosis and anisocytosis, and dysgranulopoiesis- giant forms, hypersegmented neutrophils and bizarre nuclear shapes. In conclusion, our results indicate that oral administration of a hydro-ethanol extract of C. edulis adversely affected blood cell formation and induced macrocytic anemia and leukopenia in rats. However, the exact mechanisms of these hematological changes produced by Khat are still in need for further studies.
Keywords:Catha edulis, hemopoiesis, anemia, leukopenia, rats
African Journal of Biotechnology, Vol. 13(2), pp. 349-355, 8 January, 2014