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Background: Centella asiatica is a medicinal plant commonly used in India and Southeast Asia for healing wounds, reducing high fevers, improving venous blood supply, treating skin patches and other diseases.
Objectives: This study investigated the ameliorative effect of aqueous extract and saponin fraction of Centella asiatica leaves in loperamide-induced toxicity in wistar rats.
Material and methods: Twenty-eight wistar rats were used. They were divided into 7 groups (n = 4). Loperamide was administered orally for 3 days. Group 1 served as normal control and received distilled water and feed only, group 2 served as the untreated control, Treatment groups were group 3; treated with 15mg/kg senokot, group 4; treated with 250 mg/kg aqueous extract (AE), group 5; treated with 500 mg/kg AE, group 6; treated with 125 mg/kg saponin fraction (SF) and group 7; treated with 250 mg/kg SF of Centella asiatica leaves for 7 days. The plasma electrolytes, urea and creatinine concentrations, liver markers, lipid profile and haematological indices were evaluated using standard methodologies.
Results: The plasma concentrations of potassium (K+) and sodium (Na+) ions were increased by treatment with both doses of saponin fraction with 125mg/kg having the higher increase. 125mg/kg SF decreased urea and creatinine concentrations. Both doses of aqueous extract maintained AST, ALT, ALP and GGT activities and lipid profile (TC, TG, HDL-CHOL and LDL-CHOL) in plasma. Haematological parameters were normalized by aqueous extract and saponin fraction.
Conclusion: This study revealed that both the aqueous extract and saponin fraction of Centella asiatica leaves ameliorated possible damages caused by loperamide.
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