The berry of Solanum aculeastrum Dunal. is used for treating diseases such as rheumatism, gonorrhea, breast cancer and other inflammatory-related ailments in South Africa. The aqueous extracts of the fresh, dried and boiled berries at doses of 1 and 10 mg/kg body weight was evaluated for anti-inflammatory and analgesic effects in male Wistar rats using carrageenan-induced paw oedema as well as formalin, acetic acid induced writhing and tail immersion tests. Oral administration of the extract showed some inhibition of the paw oedema that was not dose dependent. The percentage reduction in inflammation diameter was more prominent in both concentrations of the boiled fresh berries than indomethacin. The extracts at 10 mg/kg prolonged the reaction time in the tail immersion-induced pain 60 min after administration. Although, only the extracts of the boiled dried berries (10 mg/kg) suppressed pain in the formalin test at the late phase, a more pronounced effect of all the extracts in a dose-dependent manner was observed in the late phase than the early phase. The results of the acetic acid induced writhing test showed that all the extracts possessed analgesic effect at the tested doses (1 and 10 mg/ml). In conclusion, the extracts of S. aculeastrum berry did not show considerable anti-inflammatory and analgesic effects in comparison to indomethacin. This observation in these models might in part be due to the low doses fed to the rats in this experiment.
Key words: Solanum aculeastrum, anti-inflammatory, analgesic.
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