Genotoxicity and antigenotoxicity study of aqueous and hydro-methanol extracts of Spondias mombin L., Nymphaea lotus L. and Luffa cylindrical L. using animal bioassays

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Spondias mombin (Linn), Nymphaea lotus (Linn) and Luffa cylindrica (Linn) (syn Luffa aegyptiaca Mill) are plants traditionally used as food ingredients and in the management of diseases, including cancer, in Nigeria. Despite the therapeutic potentials attributed to these plants, reports on their genotoxicity are scanty. In this study, the genotoxicity of the aqueous and hydro-methanol extract of these plants was evaluated using mouse bone marrow micronucleus and sperm morphology assays. Antigenotoxicity was assessed by the bone marrow micronucleus test. The highest attainable dose of 5 000 mg/kg according to OECD guidelines was first used to assess acute toxicity of the aqueous and hydro-methanol extracts in Swiss albino mice. For each extract, there were five groups of mice (n=4/group) treated with different concentrations of the extract as against the negative and positive control group for the genotoxicity study. In the antigenotoxicity study, five groups of mice were exposed to five different concentrations of the extracts along with 60 mg/kg of methyl methane sulfonate (MMS), which was used to induce genotoxicity. The mice were administered 0.2 mL of extract per day for 10 days in the genotoxicity and antigenotoxicity groups. Administration of each of the extracts at the concentration of 5 000 mg/kg did not induce acute toxicity in mice. At the concentrations tested, all the extracts, except aqueous S. mombin, increased micronucleated polychromatic erythrocytes. The aqueous and hydro-methanol extracts of N. lotus increased the frequency of aberrant sperm cells. All the extracts were also able to ameliorate MMS induced genotoxicity in bone marrow cells of the exposed mice. The results showed the potential of the extracts to induce somatic and germ cell mutation in male mice. The extracts also ameliorated the genotoxic effect of MMS.

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