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Vegetos- An International Journal of Plant Research
Year : 2005, Volume : 18, Issue : 1and2
First page : ( 47) Last page : ( 54)
Print ISSN : 0970-4078.

Genotoxic and Pathologic Effects of Experimental Christella dentata (Forssk) Fern in Guinea Pigs

Mishra Jigyasa1,  Alka1Former Post-graduate students, Chaturvedi V.B.2Scientist, Kataria M.3Senior Scientist, Somvanshi R.4Principal Scientist

Division of Biochemistry, Indian Veterinary Research Institute, Izatnagar–243 122, U.P. (India).

1Present address:Allahabad Agricultural Institute, Deemed University, Naini, Allahabad.

2Division of Animal Nutrition.

3Division of Biochemistry.

4Division of Pathology and Corresponding author.


In the present experiment of 50 days duration apparently healthy, 20 young, male guinea pigs were divided into three Grs. Gr I were served concentrate ration and green grasses, Gr II were served with concentrate ration along with Christella dentata fern and Gr III were served with concentrate ration containing 0.5% aluminium silicate, vitamins and medicinal herbs along with fern. Proximate analysis revealed that concentrate ration contained higher percentage of crude protein as compared to fern and green grass. The feed consumption gradually decreased in Grs III and II but the decrease was at the higher rate in Gr III.

Thin layer chromatography results showed that aqueous extract of fresh-green fern did not contained ptaquiloside. In vitro incubation of blood with the aqueous extract of fern for 24 hr does not provoke any DNA damage or harm at genetic level except for the concentration of DNA that decline greatly in blood incubated with 7 μl of aqueous extract of fern. The incubation of blood for 24 hrs was unable to induce resistive responses against fern extract as was evident from the insignificant changes in ceruplasmin whereas in vivo studies showed significant changes.

Mortality was higher in Gr III followed by Grs II and I. Histopathological examination of both dead and sacrificed animals showed that most affected organs included liver, kidneys, spleen and lungs. These organs showed pronounced circulatory changes (engorgement and haemorrhages), degenerative changes (viz. fatty infiltration) in liver and haemosiderosis in spleen. The results indicate that 50 DPF is not enough to cause earlier lesions in target organs including ileum and urinary bladder.

It can be concluded that fern causes toxic effects as was evident by the reduced feed consumption, decreased in DNA content in blood on incubation with 7 μl of aqueous extract of fern, higher mortality rate and the degenerative and circulatory histopathological lesions and the most affected organs were liver and kidneys. Ameliorative effect was evident but not effective at later intervals.



Christella dentata fern, guinea pig, genotoxicity, pathology.


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