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Volume :30 Issue : 2 2003      Add To Cart                                                                    Download

Biochemical and histopathological toxicity of an aqueous extract of ginger in female rats

Auther : MAJED A. ALNAQEEB*, MARTHA THOMSON*, KHALED K. AL-QATTAN*, FATEN KAMEL*, TARIQ MUSTAFA** AND MUSLIM ALI**

*Department of Biological Sciences, Faculty of Science, Kuwait University, P.O .Box 5969, 13060,  Safat, Kuwait.

**Institute of Biology, University of Southern Denmark, Campusvej 55, DK-5230, Odense M, Denmark. E-mail: alimuslim@hotmail.com

ABSTRACT 

In the present study, the effects of oral (P0) and intraperitoneal (IP) administration of an aqueous extract of ginger were investigated in rats at two dose levels for hematological serum enzymes and systemic toxicity. It was observed that hematocrit was not affected by ginger administration, whereas hemoglobin levels decreased in rats receiving an IP dose of 500 mg kg-1 of ginger. Total lactate dchydrogenase (LDH) levels in serum were significantly higher in rats treated with 500 mg kg ginger compared to control rats. This increase was apparently due to increased levels of cardiac LDH isozyme in serum. Serum aspartate aminotransferase (AST) and alanine aminotransfcrase (ALT) levels were variably affected only in the group of rats receiving P0 ginger and not in the IP group. Lactate dehydrogenase levels in liver were also increased in rats receiving 500 mg kg-1 ginger IP. The liver acid phosphatase levels were unaffected by ginger. Serum proteins were also unaffected by ginger treatment, while liver protein content was decreased in both P0 and IP groups receiving 500 mg kg-1 ginger. Histopathological examination of the lungs and livers indicated that only the 500 mg kg-1 ginger treated (IP) rats had apparent histopathological changes in the organs studied. Overall, administration of the low dose of ginger (50 mg kg-1 showed no toxicity or histological changes in liver and lungs of rats. Therefore, we can conclude that toxicity of ginger is low and ingestion of this spice at reasonable levels would he considered quite safe.

Keywords: Ginger (Zingiber officinale), Hb, histopathology, LDH, liver, lung, toxicity.

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