Fetal toxicity of Anastatica hierochuntica L. in mice

R. A. Rasheed*, A. K. Bashir, B. H. Ali

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Citations (Scopus)


Anastatica hiercohuntica L. is a medicinal plant commonly used in the United Arab Emirates for various ailments, such as post-partum bleeding. A lyophilized extract of the plant was administered to pregnant mice (plug=day 0) for 3 consecutive but separate gestation days (GD) 8-9, 10-12, and 12-14, at oral doses of 0.25, 1, and 4g/kg. Controls received saline only, and no abnormalities were seen. Results showed that resorption and excencephaly were the main developmental defects resulting from treatment with the extract. The incidence of excencephaly depended on both the dose and the developmental stage. The gestational period most susceptible to the treatment was GD 12-14, where the doses 0.25, 1, and 4g/kg produced 1(1/100), 2(2/100), and 6.50%(10/154) incidence of excencephaly, respectively. The GD 1012 period was moderately susceptible where the doses 0.25, 1, and 4g/kg produced incidence of 2.2(2/90), 2(2/100), and 2.8% (3/106), respectively. The least susceptible stage of development was GD 8-10, where the above doses produced 0(0/68), 2(2/99), and 2%(2/94) incidences, respectively. In addition to excencephaly, the doses used also induced incidence of fetal resorption. The resorption rates were stage dependent, where treatment with the dose 4g/kg on GD 8-10 was most detrimental, producing about 10.4%(11/105) resorption of the total fetuses examined. Therefore, the plant, at the doses used may be considered teratogenic and embryolethal.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)A417
JournalFASEB Journal
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 1997
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biotechnology
  • Biochemistry
  • Molecular Biology
  • Genetics


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