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  • Author: Ramin Rezaee x
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Nigella sativa (commonly known as black seed or black cumin), from the family Ranunculaceae, is a plant that grows in countries bordering the Mediterranean Sea. This narrative review discusses the toxicological profile reported by short- to long-term studies that examined different extracts and oils of N. sativa seeds. Scientific databases including Web of Science, PubMed, Scopus, and Google Scholar were searched using appropriate keywords. LD50 for administered N. sativa seed fixed oil varied from 28.8 mL/kg to 3,371 mg/kg in mice, while 21 g/kg of aqueous, methanol, and chloroform extracts of N. sativa did not lead to any mortality. Subacute toxicity evaluations indicated that aqueous, methanol, and chloroform extracts of N. sativa at doses as high as 6 g/kg do not produce toxicity. Investigation of chronic toxicity found that 2 mL/kg of N. sativa fixed oil is slightly toxic. Cytotoxicity studies indicated that N. sativa chloroform and petroleum ether extracts are more cytotoxic than its other extracts. Although studies that assessed N. sativa toxicity generally introduced it as a safe medicinal herb, to draw a more definitive conclusion on its safety, more detailed studies must be conducted.