The anti-plasmodial, hematological, serum biochemical and pathological effects ofChrysophyllum albidum methanolic bark extract were evaluated using Swiss albino male mice as models. The plant is used in Southern Nigeria as a remedy for malaria and yellow fever. The LD50 of the methanolic extract was 1850 mg/kg body weight. C. albidum methanolic bark extract (750 - 1500 mg/kg/day) exhibited significant (P < 0.05) schizontocidal activities both in a 4-day (early) infection and in an established (> 7 days) infection with a considerable mean survival time comparable to that of chloroquine. The plant extract treated mice did not develop appreciable anemia. This observation shows that the methanolic extract of C. albidum contains anti-plasmodial substance(s) which help to reduce parasitaemia and hence the rate of erythrocyte destruction during infection. Organ and tissue pathology during infection was milder at low doses, compared to the untreated mice and insignificant at higher doses of the extract, showing that the extract is non-toxic. It also validates the local consumption of the extracts of C. albidum as an anti-malarial agent. Further studies need to be done to identify and characterize the active principles/substances in the extract. This study has implications in future development of antimalarial drugs with little or no cytotoxic effect.
Key words: Chrysophyllum albidum, anti-plasmodial, haematology, serum biochemistry, organ pathology, albino mice.
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