Histomorphological Observations in Reproductive Organs of Wistar Rats Administered with Aqueous Leaf Extract of Momordica charantia

Benard A. Solomon *

Histopathology Laboratory, Pathology Department, University of Ilorin Teaching Hospital, Ilorin, Kwara State, Nigeria.

Frederick O. Akinbo

Department of Medical Laboratory Science, Faculty of Basic Medical Sciences, University of Benin, Edo State, Nigeria.

*Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.


Effort to explore the adverse effect of the plant, Momordica charantia on mammals has remained inadequate despite previous attempt by earlier investigators. More glaring is the paucity of information on the histomorphological effect of the plant’s aqueous leaf extract hence the need to determine possible alteration of tissue structures in reproductive organs of adult Wistar rats  which may affect their functions.

This study aimed at determining the effect of Momordica charantia aqueous leaf extract (MCALE) on the reproductive organs of experimental adult Wistar rats.

Materials and Methods: Twenty five rats (male and female) weighing 180-200g were randomly divided into five (5) groups of five rats each.  The experimental groups, A to D were fed on standard diet and administered with 100, 200, 400 and 800 mg/kg body weight /day of MCE orally using gavage for 30 days.  Rats in the control groups were fed on standard diet and physiological saline orally. Organs were harvested, fixed in 10% neutral buffered formalin (ovaries) and Bouin’s fluid (testes), embedded in molten paraffin wax, sectioned with a rotary microtome and stained with the haematoxylin and eosin technique.  Stained slides were examined using the Olympus microscope. 

Results: Sections of ovaries administered 100 mg/kg of the extract showed vesicular spaces in corpus luteum and enlarged blood vessels.  Sections treated with 200 mg/kg revealed follicular cyst and mild vacuolation of zona granulosa. Sections of the ovaries administered 400 mg/kg revealed degenerative changes, follicular cyst, mild vacuolation and reduction of zona granulosa layer while those treated with 800 mg/kg showed severe vacuolation of the zona granulosa layer. 

Conclusion: Momordica charantia caused histomorphological changes in ovaries of Wistar rats which could cause hormonal imbalance and infertility in females. No histomorphological changes were observed in male testes.

Keywords: Histopathology, Momordica charantia, ovaries, wistar rats

How to Cite

Solomon, B. A., & Akinbo, F. O. (2023). Histomorphological Observations in Reproductive Organs of Wistar Rats Administered with Aqueous Leaf Extract of Momordica charantia. European Journal of Medicinal Plants, 34(3), 1–11. https://doi.org/10.9734/ejmp/2023/v34i31125


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