Haematopoietic agent(s) in the crude extract from the leaves of Viscum album (Mistletoe)

  • JO Imoru
  • AE Eno Department of Physiology, College of Medical Sciences, University of Calabar, Cross River State, Nigeria
  • FB Unoh
  • EE Nkanu
  • OE Ofem
  • JO Ibu


Preliminary studies showed that the crude extract from viscum album leaves had an LD50 value of 420.70mg/kg mice. Thirty-six male albino Wistar rats were randomly divided into six groups of 6 rats per group. The groups were: Group 1, the normal rats (controls) were fed with normal rat chow and given water ad libitum. Group 2; consisted of normal rats administered with the extract. Group 3; the salt-induced hypertensive group consisted of hypertensive rats that did not receive extract treatment. Group 4; the salt-induced hypertensives that received extract treatment. Group 5; the alloxan-induced diabetics that were not treated with the extract; and group 6; the alloxan-induced diabetics that received extract treatment. Treatments were by daily administration of the extract (150mg/kg, oral), for six weeks after which the animals in each group were sacrificed and blood samples collected in heparinized tubes for counting using an electronic cell counter (ADVIA TM 60 Haematology system by Bayer). Results showed significant increase in the RBC counts, PCV, %Hb, and platelets count in the group (G2) of normal rats that received the extract treatment. The total WBC counts were decreased by about 24.0%, 32.8% and 38.8% in the normotensive, hypertensive and diabetic groups respectively. Differential counts studies showed significant decreases in lymphocytes and monocytes in the three extract-treated study groups (normotensives, hypertnesives and diabetics) while the granulocytes were increased. There were significant increases in platelet counts in all the three groups. (p < 0.01). Also, in vitro haemolysis studies showed that the extract was probably devoid of a haemolytic agent. About 1.0g/ml extract produced less than 25% haemolysis. From the results it is probable that the extract that the extract produces increases in the haematological parameters of normal, hypertensive and diabetic rats, by stimulating haematopoietic cells, and could therefore be used in anaemic conditions.

Keywords: Viscum album (Mistletoe), haematopoietic, increase, extravasations, anti-anaemic

Nigerian Journal of Health and Biomedical Sciences Vol. 4(2) 2005: 139-145

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eISSN: 1595-8272