The Effects of Sub-chronic Administration of the Ethanolic Extract of Chromolaena odorata Leaves on the Immune System and Spleen of Male Wistar Rats

D. Chioma Nwosu *

College of Nursing Sciences, Amichi, Nigeria.

M. Izunna Nwosu

Nnamdi Azikiwe University Teaching Hospital, Nnewi, Nigeria.

Ugochukwu Aguwa

Department of Anatomy, College of Nursing Sciences Amichi, Nnamdi Azikiwe University Nigeria, Nigeria.

*Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.


Chromolaena odorata, a neglected weed with wide spectrum is a multipurpose plant that contains high concentration of anti-inflammatory, anti-diarrheal, anti-hypertensive agents that protects against tissue damage. This study was designed to evaluate the effect of ethanolic leaf extract of Chromolaena odorata on the immune system and spleen of Albino Wistar Rats. 41 adult male rats weighing between 110g -140g were used for this study. LD50 was carried out using 13 rats while 28 rats were used for the experiment proper. The rats used for the experiment proper were divided into four groups of 7 animals each. Group A served as control group and received animal feed and distilled water only, Group B received 1000mg/kg of the leaf extract and water, Group C received 3000mg/kg of the leaf extract and water, and Group D received 6000mg/kg of the leaf extract and water. The ethanolic leaf extract of Chromolaena odorata was administered 4-times per week for 13 weeks. The animals were killed using diethyl ether suffocation, blood samples were collected by ocular puncture for haematological analysis of RBC, WBC and differentials, Platelets, CD4 and CD8 cells count, the spleen and peyer’s patches harvested, weighed and  the spleen  immediately fixed in 10% formol saline for histological analysis. Data was considered significant at p<0.05. Result showed a significant increase (p<0.05) in body weight in the groups when compared to the control group A. Peyer’s patches had a significant decrease (p<0.05) in group B and C, while group D had a significant increase (p>0.05). Hemoglobin concentration, and PCV revealed a significant (p<0.05) decrease when compared to the control group. RBC result showed a significant (p<0.05) decrease when compared to group A. Platelet count revealed a significant (p<0.05) increase in the groups. CD4 and CD8 count also revealed a significant increase. Histopathological study showed reactive lymphoid follicles in group B, circumferential zone of necrosis around a disc shaped eosinophilic, foreign material was seen in group C, and group D had necrosis when compared to control group. In conclusion, the ethanolic leaf extract of Chromolaena  odorata have toxic effect on hematological indices of RBC, PCV with no effect on immune cell functions of Cd4 and CD8 cell counts and white blood cells.

Keywords: Chromolaenaodorata, ethanolic extract, spleen, immune system

How to Cite

Nwosu, D. C., Nwosu, M. I., & Aguwa, U. (2022). The Effects of Sub-chronic Administration of the Ethanolic Extract of Chromolaena odorata Leaves on the Immune System and Spleen of Male Wistar Rats. Journal of Complementary and Alternative Medical Research, 19(4), 1–10.


Vital PG, Windell LR. Antimicrobial activity and cytotoxicity of Chromolaenaodorata (L. f.)King and Robinson and Uncariaperrottetii (A. Rich) Merr.Extracts. Journal of Medicinal Plants Research. 2009;3(7):511-518.

Isirima J, Siminialayi I. Effect of Chromolaena odorata Extracton Hematotoxicity and Spleen Histopathology Induced by Salmonella typhi in Wistar Rats. Pharmacology & Pharmacy. 2018; 9:85-99.

DOI: 10.4236/pp.2018.94007.

Ikewuchi CC, Ikewuchi JC, Ifeanacho MO, Jack DP, Ikpe CN, Ehiosun S, Ajayi TB. Protective effect of aqueous leaf extracts of Chromolaena odorata and Tridax procumbens on doxorubicin-induced hepatotoxicity in Wistar rats. Porto Biomed J. 2021;6(6):e143.

DOI: 10.1097/j.pbj.0000000000000143

PMID: 34881354

PMCID: PMC8647896

Uyi OO, Ekhator F, Ikuenobe CE, Borokini TI, Aigbokhan EI, Egbon IN, Adebayo AR, Igbinosa IB, Okeke CO, Igbinosa EO, Omokhua GA. Chromolaenaodorata invasion in Nigeria: A case for coordinated biologicalcontrol Management of Biological Invasions. 2014;5(4):377–393.

King L, Robinson R. "Siam weed or chromolaena (Chromolaenaodorata)". Journal of Weed Management Guide. 1997;3(2):17-34.

Struhsaker TT, Struhsaker PJ, Siex KS. "Conserving Africa's rain forests: Problems in protected areas and possible solutions" (PDF). Biological Conservation. 2005; 123(1):45–54.

Toan-Thang P, Lingzhi W, Patrick S, Renee JG, Sui-Yung C, Lee ST. Phenolic Compounds of Chromolaenaodorata Protects Cultured Skin Cells from Oxidative Skin Cells from Damage: Implication for Cutaneous Wound healing”, Boiling Pharmacological Bulletin, 2001;24: 1373-1379

Nurul AH, Mamati AS, Effendi AWM, Hussin ZM, Sayed MZH. Extract of the leaves of Chromolaenaodorata on gram-positive bacteria. Journal of Ethnopharmacology. 2006;51.

Ngono NA, Ebelle ER, Ndifor, F. Biyiti, L, AmvamZollo PH, Bouchet, P. Antifungal Activity of Chromolaenaodorata (L.)King and Robinson (Asteraceae) of Cameroon international of ethnopharmcognosy; 2006.

Okigbo RN, Ajalie AN. Inhibition of some human pathogens with tropical plants extracts (Chromolaenaodorata and Citrus aurantifolia and some antibiotic). International Journal of Molecular Medicine and Advance Sciences. 2005;1(1):34 -40.

Alisi CS, Onyeze GOC, Ojiako OA, Osuagwa CG. Evaluation of the Protective Potential of Chromolaenaodorata Linn. Extract on Carbon Tetrachloride-Induced Oxidative Liver Damage. International Journal of Biochemistry Research & Review. 2011;1(3):69-81.