Mucuna sloanei is an annual leguminous plant widely used among the various ethnic groups in Nigeria. The effects of aqueous M. sloanei seed extract on the body weight and some biochemical parameters of 48 normal male Rattus novergicus (albino rats) were investigated for 28 days. The rats were divided into control group (A) which received distilled water and treatment groups (B, C and D) that received oral administration of 100, 200 and 400 mg/kg body weight of the seed extract, respectively. Each group was further divided into three replicates of four rats each. Blood samples were collected before the experiment started (week 0) and at weekly interval from one rat per replicate. The biochemical profiles were determined using bioassay. The lethal dose (LD50) of the aqueous seed extracts of M. sloanei may be above 5000 mg/kg, since no death occurred at that dose. The overall change in body weights of treated rats did not differ significantly (P>0.05) from those of the control and were not dependent on treatment duration. However, there was a significant decrease (P<0.05) in alanine aminotransferase (ALT) level at the lowest dose of 100 mg/kg when compared with the control. Also, there was no significant difference (P>0.05) in the mean values of AST from weeks 1 to 4 when compared with the control except at the dose level of 400 mg/kg which showed a significant decrease (P<0.05) at week 4. Similarly, a significant decrease (P<0.05) was observed in the mean serum urea at the dose levels of 100 and 200 mg/kg and BUN at 200 and 400 mg/kg at week 1, and creatinine at dose levels of 200 and 400 mg/kg in the third week of administration when compared with the control. This study indicates that the aqueous M. sloanei seed extract could have some hepato and nephro-protective properties.
Key word: Mucuna sloanei, aqueous seed extracts, liver markers, kidney markers, albino rats.
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