Safety evaluation studies on Garden cress (Lepidium sativum L.) seeds in Wistar rats

P. K. Datta, B. T. Diwakar, S. Viswanatha, K. N. Murthy, K. A. Naidu

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Summary: Garden cress (Lepidium sativum L.) leaves and seeds are used in India as food supplement and also in traditional medicine. We have assessed the safety of Garden cress (GC) seeds by conducting acute and subchronic toxicity studies in adult Wistar rats. For the acute toxicity study, 0.5-5.0 g/kg body weight of the GC seed powder was administered through diet to rats and obvious symptoms of toxicity and mortality were monitored for 72 h. Acute doses of GC seed powder did not induce any symptoms of toxicity or mortality of rats. In subchronic toxicity study, 1.0 - 10.0% of the GC powder was administered to rats through diet for 14 weeks. Dietary feeding of GC seed powder did not produce any mortality, no significant changes in food intake, gain in body weight, relative weight of organs, hematological parameters, macroscopic and microscopic changes in vital organs, were observed between experimental and control groups. Clinical enzymes viz., LDH, SGPT were within normal levels, however, the serum ALP and SGOT were significantly increased in male rats receiving 5.0 and 10 % of GC seeds. The results showed that acute and subchronic feeding of GC seed for 14 weeks did not produce any toxic effects in male and female rats and thus can be considered non-toxic and safe. Industrial relevance: Herbal medicines are very popular and extensively used in the developing countries. Garden cress seeds and leaves are used in food preparations. GC seeds are given to pregnant and lactating women as natural food supplement to increase milk secretion. GC seeds are used in herbal based medicinal preparations. The data on the acute and subchronic toxicity studies on medicinal plants are essential to assess its safety to humans, particularly for its use in pharmaceutical preparations.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)37-42
Number of pages6
JournalInternational Journal of Applied Research in Natural Products
Issue number1
StatePublished - 2011

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology
  • Complementary and alternative medicine

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