Effect of Khaya senegalensis on uterine contractility in rats

  • T Olurishe
  • H Kwanashie
  • J Anuka
Keywords: <i>Khaya senegalensis</i>, Oxytocin, Rat uterus


In a bid to establish a scientific rationale for the folkloric use of Khaya senegalensis the aim of this study was to determine the effect of the methanolic root bark extract of the plant on the rat uterus. With respect to uterine effects, the rat is the most appropriate animal model which can be extrapolated to man. Contractile response of isolated rat uterine preparations (approximately 2 cm strips) mounted in De-Jalon solution (in 25 ml organ bath) gassed with 95% oxygen / 5% carbon dioxide mixture at 32oC, were recorded using a microdynamometer. Both non-pregnant and pregnant isolated rat uterine tissues were challenged with oxytocin and acetylcholine as standard as well as with different concentrations of the extract followed by interaction studies. The results obtained from the experiments showed that the extract at concentrations between 0.3-3mg/ml (final organ bath concentrations) did not elicit any significant contractile properties but rather antagonized the contractile effects of oxytocin and acetylcholine. The antagonism was rapidly reversed in the non-pregnant uterine tissue while it was sustained in the pregnant uterine tissues. The present data therefore does not provide contractile basis for the purported use of K. senegalensis in abortions. Further studies are in progress to ascertain other possible mechanisms of abortions by the plant.

Keywords: Khaya senegalensis, Oxytocin; Rat uterus

Journal of Pharmacy and Bioresources Vol. 3 (1) 2006: pp. 30-35

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eISSN: 0189-8442