Rauvolfia vomitoria Afzel. disrupts dentate gyrus cells
Herbal remedy for neurological problems may have adverse effects, and could prove detrimental if not regulated properly. Rauvolfia vomitoria (RV) is a herb commonly associated with psychiatry management because of its antipsychotic and sedative properties. Here, we studied the effects of the root bark extract of R. vomitoria on the dentate gyrus of adult Wistar rats. Twenty four adult Wistar rats (220 g average) were divided into four groups (n=6); control (placebo), 200, 300 and 400 mg/kg RV root bark extract, respectively for 7 days. The animals were sacrificed 24 h after last administration, and the brains were processed for histology and immunoreactivity. Results showed hypertrophy and atrophy of granule cells in all 200, 300 and 400 mg/kg RV groups, respectively. There was increased neuron specific enolase and glial fibrillary acidic protein expressions in the 200 and 300 mg/kg RV groups, while these proteins expression were decreased in the 400 mg/kg RV group. These results suggest that RV cause dentate gyrus cell injury in a dose-dependent pattern, and may lead to degeneration and disruption of functions.
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