Anti-inflammatory and analgesic activities of the aqueous extracts of Margaritaria discoidea (Euphorbiaceae) stem bark in experimental animal models
Margaritaria discoidea is a medicinal plant used for the treatment of various body pains in Central, Eastern and Southern Africa. The aqueous extract of its stem bark was investigated for its anti-inflammatory and analgesic activities in animal models. The extract at 50, 100 and 200mg/kg body weight reduced significantly the formation of oedema induced by carrageenan and histamine. In the acetic acid-induced writhing model, the extract had a good analgesic effect characterized by a reduction in the number of writhes when compared to the control. Similarly, the extract caused dose-dependent decrease of licking time and licking frequency in rats injected with 2.5% formalin. These results were also comparable to those of indomethacin, the reference drug used in this study. Acute toxicity test showed that the plant may be safe for pharmacological uses. This study has provided some justification for the folkloric use of the plant in several communities for conditions such as stomachache, pain and inflammations.