Toxicity study of two herbs used by traditional healers of Rukararwe to treat herpes zoster in HIV Patients

Thumbnail Image
Journal Title
Journal ISSN
Volume Title
Kampala International University.College of Health Science
Despite the fact that herbal medicines are used by 80% of the World's population (WHO, 2002) and are the main source of health care in the rural communities and the most preferred form of treatment of HIV-related symptoms (Orisatoki and Oguntibeju, 20 I 0), less than I 0% of herbal products in the world market are truly standardized to a known active and/or toxic components (Winston et al. , 2007). Study carried out in Western Uganda reported 32.8% of same-day use of herbal medicine and pharmaceutical drugs by HIV patients (Deanne et al., 2007). Herpes zoster as a common disease in HIV patients is treated by traditional healers of Rukararwe with herbal preparations without any knowledge on the possible interactions between the treatments and lack of documented evidences to support their claim. A im The aim or the stud) was to partic ipate in the compil ation of their traditional knowledge and make it available for future research, and also to avail the healers with the information on scientific literature. The study also evaluates the toxicity and interaction with ARVs of herbs used by traditional healers of Rukararwe in the treatment of Herpes zoster infection in HIVpositive patients. Materials and Methods Different concentrations of aq ueous and ethanol extracts of Warbugia ugandensis with or without food were fed on Drosophila 111elanogaster and acute toxicity, locomotion assay, longevity study of the flies was done in 3 replicates, together with preliminary phytochemical screening of different extracts. Sesbania sesban (1.33 ~tg/ l00µ1) with or without ARVs (AZT, LVD and NVP) were fed on D. 111e/anogaster and copulation and mating assay, locomotion assay, longevity study of the fli es was done in 3 replicates. Results and Discussion Traditional healers mostly used oral formulation (80%), herbs for treating herpes zoster (40%). Steroids, Terpenoids and Glycosides were present in all extracts of W ugandensis. Extracts of W ugandensis were .not toxic after I hour of exposure. Ethanol extract of W ugandensis decreased ix negative geotaxis (P<O.O I) and aqueous extract also (P<0.05), S. sesban does not affect the performance. Copulation latency of female flies treated with ARVs plus S. sesban for 7 days was increased (P<0.05). After 14 days of treatment, the flies treated with ARVs plus S. sesban shows decreased copulation latency (P<O.O I) associated with increased copulation index (P<0.001 ), flies treated with S. sesban alone shows decreased copulation latency (P<0.001) associated with increased copulation duration (P<0.05), and finally flies treated with ARVs alone shows increased copulation latency (P<0.05) associated with decreased copulation index (P<0.05). Finally longevity study has shown toxicity of ethanolic extract of W ugandensis at concentration of 1% and 2%. Conclusion and Recommendations These results showed how concomitant administration of ARVs plus S. sesban decrease copulation latency and increase copulation duration, especially after exposure for 14 days, at the same time results showed increase copulation latency and decrease copulation durations in flies treated with AR Vs alone. My study provides some basic information on interaction between first line ARVs combination in Uganda and a commonly prescribed herb by Rukararwe traditional healers to treat herpes zoster and also give an insight into discovery of new drug or supplement for the improvement of sexual performance. Further studies should be carried out to find out the mechanisms at which these agents affect copulation behaviors at molecular level. Finally both S. sesban and W ugandensis were found to be non-toxic at therapeutic doses on experimental model and they can continue to be used without much fear.
Research report submitted to the School of Pharmacy in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the a ward of a bachelor of Pharmacy Degree of Kampala International University
Toxicity, Herbs, Traditional healers, HIV Patients