The present study aimed at determining toxicological profile of Prunus africana, a plant greatly used in traditional medicine. Acute and sub-chronic experiments were perfermed as per standard protocols with slight modifications. Aqueous extract of P. africana was orally administered in Wistar albino of both sexes at doses of 5, 50, 300, 2000 and 5000 mg/kg body weight for 14 days. The plant extract was there after administered at doses 50, 100 and 200 mg/kg for 90 days. General condition and behavior of each animal were recorded and lethal dose at 50% (LD50) was determined at the end of the experiments. Blood and organs (liver) were collected for dosing biochemical parameters (transaminases-ALT and AST, urea and creatinine) and histological analyzes, respectively. No mortality case was noted after 14 days of experiment, thus the LD50 was >5000 mg/kg. In females, serum transaminase levels were significantly higher in all plant extract-treated groups compared to the control group. In males, significant differences between test and control groups were observed only for ALT. Likewise, urea and creatinine were found to be significantly increased in test groups compared to control, and this was observed only in female. The P. africana extract revealed to be non-toxic and coulb be a promising material for producing improved traditional medicines.
Keywords: Prunus africana, aqueous extract, acute toxicity, sub-chronic toxicity, Wistar rats.