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J Microsc Ultrastruct. 2019 Apr-Jun;7(2):65-71. doi: 10.4103/JMAU.JMAU_62_18.

The Biological and Hematological Effects of Echinacea purpurea L. Roots Extract in the Immunocompromised Rats with Cyclosporine.

Author information

Department of Food and Nutrition, Faculty of Home Economics, King Abdulaziz University, Jeddah, Saudi Arabia.
Department of Nutrition and Food Science, Faculty of Home Economics, Helwan University, Cairo, Egypt.
Department of Anatomy, Faculty of Medicine, King Abdulaziz University, Jeddah, Saudi Arabia.
Department of Histology and Cell Biology, Faculty of Medicine, Ain Shams University, Cairo, Egypt.



The immune system is the body's defense against foreign organisms and harmful chemicals. Cyclosporine A (CsA) is an immunosuppressant drug widely used. Echinacea purpurea root (EPR) extract is used as an immunostimulant plant.

Aim of the Work:

The present study aimed at evaluation of the EPR effects against the CsA immunosuppressive rat model.

Material and Methods:

Thirty-two male Wistar albino rats were randomly divided into control, CsA (immunosuppressive models), CsA + EPR (100 mg/kg/day orally), and CsA + EPR (200 mg/kg/day orally). The biological parameters regarding the food consumption were assessed including feed intake (FI), feed efficiency ratio (FER), and body weights (BW). In addition, the splenic specimens were assessed histopathology. The blood was collected for measuring the blood parameters. All the measured parameters were collected and statistically analyzed. The biological results indicated a significant decrease in BW, FI, and FER in rats treated orally with low and high EPR doses as compared to the control group.


The results displayed that the CsA induced a significant decrease in red blood cells (RBCs) and white blood cells (WBCs) count. Histopathologically, CsA induced a marked decrease in the cellularity of the white pulp with congested blood sinusoids of the red pulp together with significant depletion of periarteriolar lymphoid sheath. Both the high and low doses of EPR significantly reversed the altered RBCs and WBCs counts. Histopathologically, both the low and high doses of EPR displayed apparently increase in the periarteriolar area together with the persistence of the congestion of the red pulp blood sinusoids compared to CsA group, indicating partial amelioration of the structural changes.


In a nutshell, the current findings revealed that EPR extract ameliorated the hematological changes. However, there was a partial correction of the CsA-induced microscopic changes of the rat spleen.


Cyclosporine; Echinacea purpurea roots; immunosuppression; rat; spleen

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