Liver, as an organ, is predominantly responsible for the metabolism of drugs, alcohol, and foreign chemicals; hence, it is vulnerable to injury that may result in different liver diseases. The protective effect of Chromolaena odorata (L.) R.M. King & H. Rob. aqueous leaf extract against Methotrexate-induced hepatotoxicity in male wistar rats was investigated.
24 male rats were divided into four groups of 6. Group one received normal saline only and served as control while group two received 200mg/kg Ch. odorata aqueous extract daily for ten consecutive days. Group three received intraperitoneally, a single dose of 20mg/kg Methotrexate on the ninth day of treatment while group four received 200mg/kg Ch. Odorata aqueous extract for ten consecutive days and a single dose of 20mg/kg Methotrexate intraperitoneally on ninth day of the study.
Results showed that Methotrexate-induced hepatotoxicity decreased liver synthetic molecules (Total Protein and Albumin); decreased endogenous antioxidants (Catalase and Superoxide dismutase); increased liver function enzymes (Alanine aminotransferase and Aspartate aminotransferase), and increased lipid peroxidation (Malondialdehyde). Corroborating biochemical assessment, Histopathological analysis of untreated Methotrexate rats showed liver sections with focal necrosis, dilation and congestion of central vein and portal vein whereas aqueous leaf extract of Ch. odorata reduced the degree of lesions with seen improvement and reduction of hepatocytes degeneration.
Thus, Ch. odorata (L.) offered protection to the liver from damage caused by Methotrexate attributable to its active bioactive agents including flavonoids which scavenges free radicals, enhanced the antioxidant status and protected against oxidative damage and oxidative stress.
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