Anthelminthic activity of acetone extract and fractions of Vernonia amygdalina against Haemonchus contortus eggs and larvae

Isaiah Oluwafemi Ademola, J N Eloff
Tropical Animal Health and Production 2011, 43 (2): 521-7
The current control of parasitic nematodes in small ruminants relies on the use of chemical anthelminthics, but the development of resistance and the problem of drug residues require research into alternatives. Acetone extract and solvent-solvent fractions of Vernonia amygdalina Del. (Compositae) were evaluated in vitro for potential anti-parasitic effects against the eggs and larvae of Haemonchus contortus. Significant effects were obtained with the extract and fractions but differences were observed depending on the parasitic stage. The acetone extract and fractions inhibited egg hatching and inhibited larval development and killed larvae of H. contortus in a concentration-dependent manner. Best-fit 50% lethal concentration (LC(50)) values were 957.0, 76.0, 524.0, 309.0 and 224.0 μg/ml for the acetone extract, and the butanol, hexane, chloroform and 35% water in methanol fractions, respectively, when tested against nematode eggs. Best-fit LC(50) values for the larval viability test were 508.2, 485.5, 569.3, 348.9 and 196.6 μg/ml for the acetone extract, and the butanol, hexane, chloroform and 35% water in methanol fractions, respectively. The butanol fraction was most active against nematode eggs while the 35% water in methanol fraction was the most active on nematode larvae, although differences in activity between fractions were not significant (p > 0.05). Overall, these in vitro results suggest that V. amygdalina, traditionally used by small farmers in Western Africa, does possess anti-parasitic properties.

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