ABSTRACTCissus rotundifolia is used as a fertility regulator in Kenya. However safety and efficacy of the plant extracts has not been validated. The present study was carried out to evaluate the phytochemical composition and the safety of Cissus rotundifolia leaf extracts by acute and sub-acute oral toxicity studies.
Phytochemical screening was carried out using standard qualitative methods. The acute and sub-acute oral toxicity study was conducted as per OECD guidelines (423 and 407). The sub-acute oral toxicity study, aqeous and organic extracts were administered at 100, 200 and 400 mg/kg body weight daily for 28 days. Rats were monitored for adverse effects and mortality. Food intake, water intake, body weight, organ weight, hematological and biochemical parameters and organ histopathological changes were evaluated.
Qualitative phytochemical screening of the leaf extracts of C. rotundifolia established the presence of alkaloids, saponins, phenols, tannins, flavonoids and glycosides in the aqueous extract and saponins, phenols, tannins, flavonoids and glycosides in the organic extract. 2000 and 5000 mg/kg body weight did not cause any mortality or signs of toxicity in the rats during the observation period. In sub-acute oral toxicity, there were no treatment related changes in the hematological and biochemical blood parameters. There were however significant differences in body weight and organ weight between the control and treated groups. Histopathological analysis of the liver and kidneys revealed non-significant changes. The was a non significant decline in food and water consumption. Cissus rotundifolia leaf extracts are safe when administered orally for long durations at doses lower than 400 mg/kg body weight. The LD50 of both extracts is more than 2000 mg/kg.