Journal of Pharmacy & Bioresources

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Effects of hexane extract of Ricinus communis L. (var. minor) on blood parameters in rats

Rosaleen McNeil, Ekwere Ekwere, Sylvanus Dafur, Francis Okwuasaba


Ricinus communis L. (var. minor), the castor plant, has been proven to possess anti fertility properties in adult cyclic rats. The purpose of this work was to examine the effect of the extract on blood parameters in adult male Wistar rats. Ten male rats weighing between 150 and 200g were divided into two groups (n=5). Group 1 (test group) was given 5mg /kg body weight of the extract. Group two (control) had equal volume of physiological saline. All treatments were given subcutaneously on the abdominal wall after ascertaining the baseline blood parameters of the animals. The rats were monitored closely and weighed weekly for six weeks. At the end of six weeks all the animals were sacrificed under anaesthesia using ether and their full blood count (FBC) carried out. Results showed that the drug significantly improved white blood cells, neutrophils, lymphocytes and monocytes but reduced haemoglobin values as compared to those of the control animals. The rise in the total white blood cells was progressively steady. This effect may be antimicrobial. The reduction in haemoglobin values was attributed to generalized toxicity from the extract or maybe a result of an allergic reaction to the castor bean extract.

Journal of Pharmacy & Bioresources Vol. 2(2) 2005: 70-74
AJOL African Journals Online