This study examines the effects of anthocyanin extract of the dried calyces of Hibiscus sabdariffa Linn. on the 2, 4 -dinitrophenylhydrazine (2, 4 -DNPH)-induced cytotoxic effects in rabbits. Twenty male adult rabbits used for the study were divided into four groups. Group 1, the control took only water while animals in groups 2 and 4 received 100 mg/kg body weight of the anthocyanin extract of H. sabdariffa once daily for 28 days. After the 22nd day of treatment, the rabbits in groups 3 and 4 received 28 mg/kg body weight of DNPH for the remaining 5 days of treatment, after which the animals were sacrificed. Relative to control, DNPH caused significant (p < 0.05) increase in the formation of malondialdehyde (MDA) in serum, liver and brain and decreased the levels of reduced glutathione (GSH) in liver and brain. Also, DNPH caused a significant (p < 0.05) elevation in the activity of glucose- 6 -phosphate dehydrogenase (G6PD) in the serum and liver. However, pretreatment with H. sabdariffa anthocyanin extract significantly (p < 0.05) reduced MDA formation, increased the levels of GSH and maintained at normalcy the activity of G6PD in the tissues, thereby effectively ameliorated the toxic effects of DNPH. These findings indicate that anthocyanin extract from dried calyces of H. sabdariffa protects the rabbit against 2, 4 -DNPH lipoperoxidative and cytotoxic effects.
Key words: Anthocyanin extract, 2, 4-dinitrophenylhydrazine, glucose-6-phosphate dehydrogenase, Hibiscus sabdariffa, rabbit, reduced glutathione, malondialdehyde
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