Effect of Vernonia amygdalina Del. on liver function in alloxan-induced hyperglycaemic rats

  • IJ Atangwho
  • PE Ebong
  • GE Egbung
  • MU Eteng
  • EU Eyong
Keywords: Hyperglycaemia, <i>Vernonia amygdalina</i>, liver function, liver histology


The protective effect of ethanolic leaf-extract of an anti-diabetic plant, Vernonia amygdalina Del. on hepatic cell architecture and some biochemical indices of liver function has been studied in alloxanized Wistar rats. Twenty-one rats (120-160g) were included in the study and assigned to 3 groups of 7 rats each. Groups 1 and 2, normal and diabetic controls received placebo treatment, whereas group 3 the experimentally diabetic rats administered the plant extract (400mg/kg body weight) by gastric intubation for 14 days. Serum aminotransferase activities, significantly raised (P<0.05) in diabetic control group (15.75+ 1.75 and 37.81+ 7.62 respective for alanine and aspartate aminotransferase) relative to their respective normal control values (5.02 + 1.79 and 12.22 + 1.24) were decreased significantly (P<0.05) following treatment with the extract (8.57 + 2.69 and 18.90 + 1.37) representing 45.59% and 50.01% decrease respectively. Alkaline phosphatase activity follow a similar trend: Diabetic extract treated values (307.06 + 54.42) decreased significantly with respect to diabetic untreated (433.08 + 29.96) a 19.75 %. Serum protein total and albumin levels were respectively increased (7.54 + 0.60 and 3.18 + 0.27) compared to their diabetic control values (6.45 + 0.60 and 2.88 + 0.88). However, the increase was only significant (P<0.05) for albumin. Histological studies reveal for the extract treated group a restoration of hepatocyte degeneration, cellular sequestration and disoriented architecture observed in diabetic control group. Vernonia amygdalina Del. therefore can protect against hyperglycemia induced hepatotoxicity, besides its hypoglycaemic action

Keywords: Hyperglycaemia, Vernonia amygdalina, liver function, liver histology

Journal of Pharmacy and Bioresources Vol. 4 (1) 2007: pp. 25-31

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eISSN: 0189-8442