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The aim of this study was to investigate the validity of antiseizure claims of Ficus thonningii (FT) leaves by some people in Nigeria. Hydro-ethanol leaf extract of FT was obtained by hot extraction and the LD50 value was determined using Lorke’s method. Pentylenetetrazole, maximal electroshock and pilocarpine seizure models were employed to assess the antiseizure activity of the extract using Swiss albino mice. The acute toxicity test showed the extract to be fairly safe with LD50 of 2154 mg/kg. The extract offered protection against pentylenetetrazole and pilocarpine-induced seizures at doses of 200 mg/kg and 400 mg/kg body weight but did not protect mice with maximal electroshock seizures. The observed antiseizure effect of the extract in pentylenetetrazole and pilocarpine seizure models could be due to stimulation of GABA-mediated inhibition in the brain and/or blockade of glutamatergic neurotransmission mediated by N-methyl-D-aspartate. Ficus thonningii leaf is therefore a potential source of drug for management of epilepsy.
Keywords: Seizures, antiseizure, Ficus thonningii leaf extract, albino mice