Acute and subchronic toxicity studies of methanol extract ofPolygonum minusleaves in Sprague Dawley rats
Medicinal plant preparations may contain high levels of toxic chemical constituents to potentially cause serious harm to animals and/or humans. Thus, toxicity studies are important to assess the toxic effects of plant derived products. Polygonum minus is used traditionally for different ailments in Southeast Asia. This study was conducted to establish the acute and subchronic toxicity profile of the methanol extract of P. minus leaves. The acute toxicity study showed that the methanol extract of P. minus is safe even at the highest dose tested of 2000 mg/kg in female Sprague Dawley rats. There were no behavioural or physiological changes and gross pathological abnormalities observed. The subchronic toxicity study of methanol extract of P. minus at 250, 500, 1000 and 2000 mg/kg were conducted in both sexes of Sprague Dawley rats. There were no changes observed in the extract treated animal's body weight, food and water intake, motor coordination, behaviour and mental alertness. The values of haematological and biochemical parameters were not different between the treated and control animals. The relative organ weights of extract-treated animals did not differ with that of control animals. Based on the present findings, the methanol extract of P. minus leaves could be considered safe up to the dose of 2000 mg/kg.