Effect of the traditional medicinal plants Rhazya stricta, Balanitis aegyptiaca and Haplophylum tuberculatum on paracetamol-induced hepatotoxicity in mice

B. H. Ali, A. K. Bashir, R. A. Rasheed

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This work examines the effects of lyophilized extracts of the medicinal plants Rhazya stricta, Balanites aegyptiaca and Haplophylum tuberculatum on liver damage induced by paracetamol in mice. Rapid HPLC finger prints for some of these extracts were made. The hepatoprotective effects of the plant extracts were compared with that of the standard hepatoprotective agent silymarin. The extracts (1 g/kg) and silymarin (0.1 g/kg) were given orally for 5 consecutive days. On the last day of treatment a hepatotoxic oral dose of paracetamol (0.6 g/kg) was given, and 3 h later, the hepatic function of mice was evaluated using pentobarbitone -induced sleeping time, the concentration of reduced glutathione (GSH) in liver, and the activities of aspartate aminotransferase (AST), alanine aminotransferase (ALT), γ-glutamyl transferase (GGT) and cholesterol concentration in plasma. The livers were weighed and examined for macro- and microscopic changes. Pretreatment with R. stricta or with silymarin protected the livers of treated mice against paracetamol hepatotoxicity as evidenced by a significant improvement of the above liver function tests. B. Aegyptiaca had a relatively modest hepatoprotective activity, while H. tuberculatum was almost ineffective. Oral pretreatment of mice for 5 consecutive days with an extract of R. stricta or silymarin protected about 57% and 92% of the treated mice, respectively, against the lethal effect of paracetamol (1 g/kg). B. aegyptiaca and H. tuberculatum protected only 27% and 16% of the animals, respectively.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)598-603
Number of pages6
JournalPhytotherapy Research
Issue number7
Publication statusPublished - 2001



  • Balanites aegyptiaca
  • Haplophyllum tuberculatum
  • Hepatotoxicity
  • Paracetamol
  • Rhazya stricta

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Drug Discovery
  • Organic Chemistry
  • Pharmacology

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