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Studies on the Hypoglycaemic, Hypocholesterolaemic and Acute Toxicity of the Aqueous Gymnema sylvestre Leaf Extract in Rats

The hypoglycaemic, hypocholesterolaemic and acute toxicity effect of aqueous Gymnema sylvestre (GS) leaf extract were investigated in normoglycaemic male Wister rats. Twenty five (25) rats were divided into five groups, (Groups I - IV) and received intraperitoneally 50, 100, 150 and 200 mg/kg body weight respectively of aqueous GS extract. Group V served as the control and received normal saline. Blood samples were collected from the animals after 3 hours and used for the estimation of serum glucose (SG) and total cholesterol (TC) levels using standard methods. Mean SG and TC levels decreased significantly (p< 0.05) in a dose dependent manner from Group 1 to 1V, and the levels were significantly lower (p <0.05) than those of the control group. Oral administration of different doses (50, 100, 150 and 200 mg/ kg body weight) of aqueous GS extract and chlorpropamide separately to different groups of rats for 7 days also produced significant (p<0.05) dose dependent decreases in mean SG and TC levels. The decreases in mean SG and TC levels were more pronounced in animals administered chlorpropamide. Acute toxicity studies showed an LD50 of 4054.12 mg/kg. Elemental analysis revealed the presence of zinc, chromium, manganese and magnesium while phytochemical analysis indicated the presence of vitamin C, tannins and anthraquinones in GS leaf.

1Atiku, M. K. and 2Ubon, G. A. 1Department of Biochemistry, Bayero University, PMB 3011, Kano, Nigeria. 2Department of Biochemistry, Faculty of Medicinal Sciences, University of Jos, Nigeria.

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