This study investigated the phytochemical composition and toxicity potentials of Gouania longipetala leaf extract in rats. Crude extract was prepared from freshly collected leaves of the plant and was subjected to phytochemical analyses including gas chromatography-mass spectrometry (GC-MS) and acute toxicity. 15 rats were used for the sub-acute toxicity evaluation, 5 rats in each group of 3, each were treated such that, group 1 is the control, with groups 2 and 3 administered 400 and 800 mg/kg of the extract orally for 28 days. Results showed the extract contains phenols, saponins, steroids, flavonoids, terpenoids with alkaloids concentration recorded as, 34.30±0.14 mg/100 g, cardiac glycoside 3.89±0.04 mg/100 g being the least. GC-MS chromatogram of the extract showed the presence of 20 compounds with Spartein (24.92%) as the most abundant and ethyl oleate (0.79%), the least. Acute toxicity (LD50) value for the extract was found to be >5000 mg/kg body weight in rats. Sub-acute administration of the extract to rats did not significantly alter values of haematological and liver and renal function parameters when compared with control (p<0.05) but lowered levels of cholesterol and low-density lipoprotein cholesterol. Antioxidant parameters like reduced glutathione, catalase and superoxide dismutase were also increased in the extract treated rats (p<0.05) while Malondialdehyde concentration was lowered significantly (p<0.05). Results therefore showed that G. longipetala leaf extract may be a very safe alternative for oral use in the management of hyperlipidaemia and oxidative stress induced diseases.
Key words: Gouania longipetala extract, phytochemical, antioxidant, gas chromatography-mass spectrometry, toxicity.
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