Author: Ogbonnaya Enyinnaya Anthony and Uadia Patrick Ojeifo
Publishing Date: 2016
Volume: 29 Issue: 3
The phytochemical composition and acute toxicity of Telfairia occidentalis aqueous extracts were investigated in this study. Phytochemical screening was carried out on the pulverized leaf, root, pod and stem samples. Proximate analysis was also conducted for the root to ascertain the effect of drying procedures on its composition. Fifty-six (56) Wister albino rats, male and female were divided into two broad groups of 28 animals per group. The first group was randomly separated into seven (7) groups of four (4) animals per group. The control group received distilled water alone while the other groups received varied doses (1500mg/kg, 2250mg/kg and 3000mg/kg) of the Soluble and Insoluble Tefairia occidentalis root fraction. The second group of 28 animals was also distributed into 7 groups of 4 animals per group. Six test groups received varied doses (1500mg/kg, 2250mg/kg and 3000mg/kg) of Telfairia occidentalis fruit and stem extracts. The animals were observed for the first 12hr for any toxic symptoms and for 48 hr for mortality rate. Surviving animals were sacrificed after 48 hours. Phytochemical screening results reveal the presence of tannins, flavonoid, steroid, terpenoids, saponin, alkaloid, glycosides, proteins and carbohydrates. Flavonoid and saponin was not detected in stem sample; alkaloid is present in all samples except pod; and cyanogenic glycoside was found in both root and pod samples. Except for the fibre content, the method of preparation of the root had no significant effect on the proximate composition of the sample. The root extracts cause insignificant reduction in Alanine aminotransferase (ALT) and Aspartate aminotransferase (AST) activities, except for the significant reduction in ALT activity at highest dose. The pod extract significantly increased the ALT and AST activities, which is dose dependent, while the stem extract only caused increased activity of ALT, but not AST. None of the extracts administered had any significant effect on the levels of serum creatinine and urea. Thus, while the root extract may exhibit some hepatoprotective effect (or nephrotoxic due to cyanogenic glycoside) and its proximate composition, not affected by heat treatment, the pod and stem extracts of Telfairia occidentalis may have some effects on rat hepatocytes.
KEYWORDS: Telfairia occidentalis, phytochemical screening, acute toxicity, aqueous extract.