Original Research

Dryopteris filix-mas (Dryopteridaceae) leaves inhibit mouse uterine activity

Enitome E. Bafor, Wellington O. Omokaro, Osamuyi H. Uwumarongie, Uloma B. Elvis-Offiah, Osemelomen Omoruyi, Christina V. Viegelmann, RuAngelie Edrada-Ebel
Journal of Medicinal Plants for Economic Development | Vol 1, No 1 | a25 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/jomped.v1i1.25 | © 2017 Enitome E. Bafor, Wellington O. Omokaro, Osamuyi H. Uwumarongie, Uloma B. Elvis-Offiah, Osemelomen Omoruyi, Christina V. Viegelmann, RuAngelie Edrada-Ebel | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 20 May 2017 | Published: 25 October 2017

About the author(s)

Enitome E. Bafor, Department of Pharmacology & Toxicology, University of Benin, Nigeria
Wellington O. Omokaro, Department of Pharmacology & Toxicology, University of Benin, Nigeria
Osamuyi H. Uwumarongie, Department of Pharmacognosy, University of Benin, Nigeria
Uloma B. Elvis-Offiah, Department of Science and Laboratory Technology, University of Benin, Nigeria
Osemelomen Omoruyi, Department of Pharmacology & Toxicology, University of Benin, Nigeria
Christina V. Viegelmann, Strathclyde Institute of Pharmacy and Biomedical Sciences, University of Strathclyde, United Kingdom
RuAngelie Edrada-Ebel, Strathclyde Institute of Pharmacy and Biomedical Sciences, University of Strathclyde, United Kingdom


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Abstract

Background: The plant Dryopteris filix-mas has been used traditionally for its uterine-stimulant effects.

Aim: The current study is therefore aimed at investigating and determining the effect of the leaves of D. filix-mas on uterine contractility in vitro.

Setting: Fresh leaves of D. filix-mas were collected from a river bank in the south-western part of Nigeria.

Methods: The leaves of D. filix-mas were cleaned, dried and extracted in methanol. The extract (0.07 µg/mL–21.0 µg/mL) was tested on the isolated mouse uteri in order to determine activity on spontaneous-induced uterine contractions. Subsequently the extract (0.005 mg/mL and 0.05 mg/mL) was tested on oxytocin-induced contraction (0.00017 ng/mL–4.98 ng/mL) in calcium-containing media, submaximal oxytocin-induced contraction (0.116 ng/mL) in calcium-free media and in the presence of high KCl-induced uterine contractions (80 mM). The extract was also subjected to mass spectrometric determination of secondary metabolites.

Results: The plant extract inhibited spontaneous-induced contractions with IC50 amplitude = 658.41 ng/mL ± 0.11 ng/mL and IC50 frequency = 175.32 ng/mL ± 0.53 ng/mL. The plant extract inhibited oxytocin-induced and high KCl-induced uterine contractions (p < 0.01 at 0.5 mg/mL). The plant extract had no effect on oxytocin-induced contractions under calcium-free conditions. Secondary metabolites belonging to classes of fatty acids, alkaloids, saponin glycosides, amino acids, limonoids, terpenes and porphyrins were identified.

Conclusion: The current study reports an inhibitory effect of the plant on uterine contractility in this study, suggesting possible application as a tocolytic or as a contraceptive, as most contraceptive plants have shown uterine-relaxing effect.


Keywords

Dryopteris filix-mas; uterus; oxytocin; fatty acids; porphyrins

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