MODULATION OF IMMUNOLOGICAL RESPONSES IN ALBINO RATS BY LEAF EXTRACTS OF TELFAIRIA OCCIDENTALIS (HOOK F) AND TECTONA GRANDIS (LINN)
The immuno-modulating effects of leaf extracts of Telfairia occidentalis (Hook F) and Tectona grandis (Linn) on both humoral and cell mediated immune responses were evaluated in vivo.The responding cells were defined by flow cytometry and secretion of various cytokines by ELISA. Structural elucidation of the bioactive molecules responsible for the observed effect was equally attempted. Results of the quantitative phytochemical analyses of the extracts revealed abundance of bioactive compounds such as soluble carbohydrates (1.624 ± 0.002; 0.910 ± 0.003 mg/100g), tannin (6.593 ± 0.228; 5.325 ± 0.526 mg/1 00g), flavonoids (3.780 ± 0.228; 3.285 ± 0.526 mg/100g), saponins (3.285 ± 0.526; 0.744 ± 0. 004 mg/g), reducing sugars (293.364 ± 0.002; nil mg/100g), glycosides (8.683 ± 0.003; nil mg/g), terpenoids (2.436 ± 0.002; 2.546 ± 0.003 mg/100g), alkaloids (3.363 ± 2.247; nil mg/100g), phenol (8.574 ± 0.002; 8.096 ± 4.494 mg/100g) and hydrogen cyanide (0.395 ± 0.004; 0.344 ± 0.004 mg/g) for Telfairia and Tectona respectively. Acute toxicity studies carried out on the extracts showed no mortality or adverse reaction to the test mice up to a dose of 5000 mg/kg body weight which indicates that they are safe for consumption. The first stage of this study investigated the immune-modulating effect of aqueous and ethanol leaf extracts of Telfairia occidentalis and Tectona grandis on immune-compromised and non-immune-compromised rats.
The study has provided compelling evidence for an immune-modulatory effect of the extracts investigated. It also confirmed that this effect is mediated via action on cytokine expression and synergistic anti-oxidant activity and that moderate boiling does not affect this effect adversely. The two plant extracts performed similarly in most of the parameters determined.
The reality of our modern society shows a preponderance of activities that elevate free radicals generation, engender stress, ultimately weaken the immune system and increase susceptibility to infections and diseases. The immune system is a system of biological structure and processes within an organism that protect against disease. It is designed to protect the host from invading pathogens and to eliminate disease (Sharmaet al., 2004; Naga and Rajeshwari, 2014).Immune system is core to maintenance of health and general well-being and is intricately associated with the four major causes of death which include injury, infection, degenerative disorders and cancer.