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Aims: Selection of a suitable solvent is important and utilized in the extraction of desirable chemical components in medicinal plants.
Study Design: Chemical analysis of various extracts of Leea guineensis leaves using standard analytical procedures.
Place and Duration of Study: Forestry Research Institute of Nigeria, between March 2019 and August 2019.
Methodology: Leaves of Leea guineensis were extracted with six solvents categorized into polar (Acetone, Methanol and Aqueous) and non-polar (Ethyl acetate, Hexane and Chloroform) types using cold maceration method, the qualitative and quantitative phytochemical assay was done on the respective extracts using the standard methods.
Results: Phytochemical screening of the non-polar solvent extract revealed the presence of flavonoids, alkaloids and saponins for all the solvents, while tannin was present only in ethyl acetate extract. For the polar solvent extracts, all the secondary metabolites determined were present except terpenoids and phlobatanins. In the quantitative test, alkaloid levels ranged from 1.31-38.25 mg/100 g, saponin: 2.01-14.35 mg/100 g, flavonoids: 1.10-6.25 mg/100 g, Tannin: ND-4.62 mg/100 g, terpenoids: ND-1.02 mg/100 g, cardiac glycosides: ND-0.84 mg/100 g, Anthraquinone: ND-2.58 mg/100 g and phlobatanins: ND-0.95. The results obtained for each of the phytochemicals are significantly different (p<0.05) across all the solvent extracts, while phytochemicals such as terpenoids, cardiac glycosides, anthraquinones and phlobatanins were not detected in the non-polar solvent extract of L. guineensis.
Conclusion: The phytochemical constituents detected in varying quantities depend on the polarity of the substances, L. guineensis could be exploited and extracted very well using a polar solvent like methanol, acetone and aqueous.
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