In vitro Antiplasmodial, Antileishmanial, Antitrypanosomal and Antimicrobial Activities of Crude Extracts of Alchornea cordifolia Leaves
Malaria, leishmaniasis, trypanosomiasis and pathogenic microorganisms infections are a public health burden worldwide. And the rapid development of resistance to the currently used drugs is a significant threat that necessitates the search for new anti-infective agents. Alchornea cordifolia (Schumach. and Thonn) Muell. Arg, family Euphorbiaceae, leaves have been used in folklore medicine to treat different disease conditions such as malaria, fevers, diarrhoea, infertility, wounds, inflammations, diabetes and cancers. This study aimed to assess the in vitro potentials of different crude extracts of the leaves against Plasmodium falciparum, Leishmania donovani (promastigotes, axenic amastigotes, and intracellular amastigotes), Trypanosoma brucei trypomastigotes and a panel of pathogenic bacteria and fungi, using established methods. Crude extracts of the powdered leaf sample of the plant extracted with various solvents were used for the experiment. The results of the antiplasmodial screening revealed that aqueous, methanol and ethanol extracts significantly inhibited two strains of Plasmodium falciparum parasites with IC50 values of 4.885 -18.094 µg/mL. The extracts also showed inhibitory activity against T. brucei trypomastigotes with IC50 of 8.68 -15.71 µg/mL, while chloroform was active against L. donovani blood-stage amastigotes. The extracts were equally effective against Cryptococcus neoformans (IC50 range of 32.258 – 161.853 µg/mL), and only aqueous extract was active against methicillinresistant S. aureus (IC50 199.054 µg/mL). The presence of bioactive compounds in the extracts may be responsible for the observed biological effects, and the plant could be further explored for lead compounds.