Bio 104 SP FINAL

Topics: Fruit, Laboratory rat, Crescentia cujete Pages: 29 (4116 words) Published: March 20, 2015
CHAPTER I
INTRODUCTION

Background of the Study
The use of plants for remedies has long been in existence and is among the most attractive sources for developing drugs (Bukantis et al., 1980). Any part of plant can be considered as herbs including leaves roots, flower, seeds, resins, leaf sheath, bark, inner bark (cambium), berries and sometimes the pericarp or other portion (Holetz et al., 2002). Most primates depend heavily on the leaves, fruits, and flowers of tropical plants to meet their nutritional demands (Fashing et al., 2007; Milton, 1979; Rothman et al., 2011). As a result, the chemical composition of these plant parts is critical to understanding primate ecology and evolution. These ancient indigenous practices were discovered by series of ‘trial and error’ which then could not be substantiated by proven scientific theories (Holetz et al., 2002). The Calabash tree, scientifically known as Crescentia cujete (C. cujete) has been used by indigenous system of medicine to treat several illnesses. The pulp of fruit has medicinal properties and acts as remedy for respiratory problems such as asthma and cough. The leaves are used to reduce blood pressure. The decoction of tree bark is used to clean wounds and also to treat hematomas and tumors. Because of this, Calabash tree is considered to be a miracle fruit. (Elejuno et. al., 2011) The calabash (C. cujete) fruit was studied for its chemical constituents- proximate and mineral composition as well as phytochemical properties. The value of the fat, protein, nitrogen, crude fibre, moisture content, sucrose, fructose, galactose and energy content are quite high viz; 1.13, 8.35, 1.34, 4.28, 84.92, 59.86, 25.09, 18.24 and 88.69%, respectively. The pH of the fruit falls within the acidic range (4.80) and the mean value recorded for the electrical conductivity was 163.24 μS/cm. The content mineral elements in the fruit show that sodium, phosphorus, manganese, iron, zinc and copper have high mean concentrations, while low mean concentrations were recorded for others. The presence of phytochemicals like saponins, flavonoid, cardenolides, tannins and phenol as well as the presence of hydrogen cyanide were observed in the fruit sample. The findings on the phytochemical constituents, mineral composition and proximate composition of the C. cujete suggest that the fruit can make useful contribution to both human and animal nutrition and possesses medicinal values. But for the presence of high concentration of heavy metals like lead, arsenic and hydrogen cyanide recorded in the fruit sample, its continual consumption should be discouraged as it can lead to heavy metal toxicity. Although the calabash tree is widely distributed and used in the tropics, little research has been undertaken to underpin the further development of this multipurpose tree (Perez-Arbelaez 1990). In so far as literature is concerned, no study has been explored in the potential of its fruit pulp ethanolic extract for organogenesis in female rat vertebrate model. In light of above information, the main objective of this study is to look into the possible overall development and growth effects on maternal-fetal of Crescentia cujete ethanolic fruit pulp extract gestation in rats.

Statement of the Problem
Calabash tree had been extensively used to treat various health problems. This study determines the probability that the Calabash fruit extract can affect the gestating Sprague Dawley rats and to their developing embryo.

Objectives of the study

This study aims to:
Get the maternal weight of the gestating Sprague Dawley rats from GD1 to GD2 Compare the weights of the liver, kidney and spleen of every gestating rats to every treatments Measure the morphometry of the embryos in terms of Hind-limb length, Forelimb length, Crown-rump length and head-lip length

Significance of the Study
The results of this study will help determine if the Calabash fruit extract has potential effects on the developing...

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