Antiplasmodial potential of the African mistletoe: Agelanthus dodoneifolius Polh and Wiens
Preparations of Agelanthus dodoneifolius have been used in the traditional Nigerian medicine to treat malaria and this practice has remained till date without scientific validation. The antiplasmodial property of the water extract of Agelanthus dodoneifolius was evaluated in vivo and in vitro against Plasmodium berghei and clinical isolates of Plasmodium falciparum, respectively. There was a doseâ??dependent inhibition of parasitaemia in the in vivo antiplasmodial tests likewise, the in vitro screening demonstrated a strong and concentrationâ??dependent activity (21.54 μg/ml < IC50 < 50 μg/ml) of the extract against the clinical isolates of Plasmodium falciparum. The phytochemical analysis revealed the presence of tannins, saponins, sterols, glycosides, phenols, anthraquinones, terpenes, reducing sugars and resins. It also showed a strong freeâ??radical scavenging activity on 2, 2â??diphenylâ??2â??picrylhydrazyl. The oral median lethal dose (LD50) in mice was estimated to be greater than 5000 mg/kg. Our results evidence that Agelanthus dodoneifolius may contain biologically active principles those are relevant in the treatment of malaria, thus supporting further studies of its active components.