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Asian Pac J Trop Med. 2011 Apr;4(4):283-7. doi: 10.1016/S1995-7645(11)60087-4. Epub 2011 May 29.

The antiplasmodial effect of the extracts and formulated capsules of Phyllanthus amarus on Plasmodium yoelii infection in mice.

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Department of Pharmaceutics & Pharmaceutical Technology, Faculty of Pharmacy, Olabisi Onabanjo University, Sagamu, Nigeria.



To investigate the antiplasmodial activity of the extracts of Phyllanthus amarus (P. amarus) on Plasmodium yoelii (P. yoelii) (a resistant malaria parasite strain used in animal studies) infection in mice.


The aqueous and ethanol extracts of the whole plant of Phyllanthus amarus was administered to Swiss albino mice at doses of 200 mg/kg/day, 400 mg/kg/day, 800 mg/kg/day and 1600 mg/kg/day and the prophylactic and chemotherapeutic effect of the extracts against P. yoelii infection in mice was investigated and compared with those of standard antimalaria drugs used in the treatment of malaria parasite infection. Acute toxicity test was carried out in mice to determine the safety of the plant extract when administered orally.


The results showed that the extracts demonstrated a dose-dependent prophylactic and chemotherapeutic activity with the aqueous extracts showing slightly higher effect than the ethanol extract. The antiplasmodial effects of the extracts were comparable to the standard prophylactic and chemotherapeutic drugs used in chloroquine resistant Plasmodium infection although the activity depended on the dose of the extract administered. The extracts showed prophylactic effect by significantly delaying the onset of infection with the suppression of 79% at a dose of 1600 mg/kg/day.


The results obtained indicate that the extracts of the whole plant of P. amarus possess repository and chemotherapeutic effects against resistant strains of P. yoelii in Swiss albino mice. The findings justify the use of the extract of P. amarus in traditional medicine practice, for the treatment of malaria infections.

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