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Onwusonye J. C.*, Onyemenonu C. C. and Nnaoma I. E.


The continuous increase in the cost of orthodox drugs, amidst their side effects has led to the sustained search in the direction of alternative medicine, mostly from plant products, for the management of various ailments. In the present study, the oral acute toxicity profile of HBF- 19 (a multi herbal formula made from selected African medicinal plants) was evaluated. The study was done in two phases using albino mice as animal models. The mice (n = 28) were randomly distributed into seven groups (n = 4). In the first phase of the study, mice in groups 2, 3 and 4 were administered with HBF-19 at the dose levels of
10, 100 and 1000mg/kg body weight in a single oral dose fashion while in the second phase, mice in groups 5, 6 and 7 received 1600, 2900 and 5000mg/kg body weight of HBF-19. The mice in group 1 served as control and were kept on distilled water. All animals were monitored for toxicity signs for the first critical 24 hours and up to 72 hours. At the end of 72 hours, animals were sacrificed and blood samples taken for the evaluation of haemoglobin(HB), Packed cell volume(PCV), aspartate aminotransferase(AST), and alanine aminotransferase(ALT). Liver samples removed from the sacrificed mice were subjected to histopathological investigations. Results showed that up to the maximum HBF-19 dose of 5000mg/kg administered, no mortality was recorded among the animals. No significant difference in body weight was recorded (p<0.05) as a result of acute toxicity treatment. For all the parameters investigated, it was observed that values obtained with HBF-19 treated mice were similar to those recorded with the animals in the control group. Histological features of HBF-19 treated mice were also in line with that of healthy control mice with well-preserved hepatic cytoarchitecture. It was therefore concluded that the multi-herbal formula is safe without a likelihood of causing toxicity or fatality if the doses are extrapolated to humans.

Keywords: Acute toxicity, HBF-19, herbal formula, African Medicinal plants.

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