Hepatotoxicity effect of some Iranian medicinal herbal formulation on rats


1 Department of Clinical Biochemistry, Isfahan Pharmaceutical Sciences Research Center, School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences, Isfahan, Iran

2 Department of Clinical Biochemistry, Isfahan Cardiovascular Research Center, Cardiovascular Research Institute; Physiology Research Center, Isfahan, Iran

3 Department of Clinical Biochemistry, Physiology Research Center, Isfahan, Iran

4 Department of Clinical Biochemistry, Isfahan Cardiovascular Research Center, Cardiovascular Research Institute, Isfahan University of medical Sciences, Isfahan, Iran


Background: The public conviction that 'herbal remedies are safe' has led to an increased consumption of these products. This study was performed in view of the wide distribution of herbal remedies, the risks posed by self-treatment with these products, and the existing reports about the toxic effects of some medicinal herbs.
Materials and Methods: In this study the effect of some of the most used herbal drops of A, B, C, and D on the liver function of rats was examined at different doses, namely minimum dose, maximum dose, and 2.5 times the maximum dose indicated in the brochures. The rats were administered the said doses via a feeding tube for 50 days. The liver function parameters including aspartate aminotransferase (AST), alanine aminotransferase (ALT), lactate dehydrogenase (LDH), alkaline phosphatase (ALP), total serum protein, albumin, and urea were measured using the spectrophotometric method.
Results: The animals' liver tissues were examined pathologically. The A drop did not change the liver function parameters significantly. The B drop increased the LDH by 34% compared to the controls, at the maximum administered dose. The C and D drops increased the ALT, AST, and LDH significantly compared to the controls. The histological findings suggest the possible effect of C and D drops on the function of hepatocytes.
Conclusions: We recommend that the herbal formulations available in pharmaceutical markets be more closely controlled in terms of quality, as well as toxicity, especially with regard to the possible effects on the hepatic function.


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