Biochemical and Haematological Evaluation of Repeated Dose Exposure of Male Wistar Rats to an Ethanolic Extract of Artemisia annua

by Mbeh U. Eteng(1), Amos O. Abolaji(2), Patrick E. Ebong(1), Ebiamadon Andi Brisibe(4), Ahsana Dar(2), Nurul Kabir(2) and M. Iqbal Choudhary(2)


Artemisia annua is widely used for the treatment of malaria and other disorders. In a previous study, the artemisinin concentration in the dry leaves of A. annua grown under humid tropical conditions was determined to be 1.098% using reversed phase high performance liquid chromatography. In the current study, biochemical and
haematological evaluations of ethanolic leaf extracts derived from such plants (EAA) were carried out in 20 male Wistar rats. Rats were divided into four study groups of saline-treated (control) and test groups exposed orally to graded doses of EAA for 28 days. The results showed that the liver function and haematological indices, and testosterone levels were not adversely affected. High density lipoprotein – cholesterol was reduced at 100 mg/kg of EAA, atherogenic index as well as low density lipoprotein -cholesterol was raised, and glucose concentration was reduced significantly at the 100 and 200 mg/kg of EAA (p<0.05). In addition to serving as a possible antidiabetic agent, EAA may not predispose users to hepatotoxicity, haematotoxicity and testicular toxicity. However, due to the possible risk of atherosclerosis, we advise that the plant extract should be taken with caution in people with atherosclerotic condition.
Keywords: Artemisia annua, hepatotoxicity, haematotoxicity, testicular toxicity, antidiabetic agent.


1 – Department of Biochemistry, Faculty of Basic Medical Sciences, University of Calabar, P.M.B. 1115, Calabar, Cross River State, Nigeria
2 – Dr. Panjwani Center for Molecular Medicine and Drug Research, International Center for Chemical and Biological Sciences, University of Karachi, Karachi, 75270, Pakistan
3 – Department of Biochemistry, Drug Metabolism and Toxicology Research Laboratories, College of Medicine, University of Ibadan, Oyo State, Nigeria
4 – Department of Genetics and Biotechnology, University of Calabar, Calabar, Nigeria

Prof Mbeh Eteng

Mbeh Eteng is a Professor of Biochemistry in the Faculty of University of Calabar. He holds a Ph.D from the University of Calabar (2000). He was Dean of Faculty of Basic Medical Science (2012-2016) and Chairman Committee of Deans (2014-2015). Member Governing Board UCTH, Calabar (2018 -till date). Fellow, Institute of Co-operate Administration. His current area of research is on malaria/prostrate hyperplaxia and medicinal plants research and use in management. He has successfully supervised 25 Ph.Ds.
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