The effects of scutellaria baicalensis extract on embryonic development in mice

Xiao Ying TIAN, Lok Man Cheung, Kelvin S Y LEUNG, Chen Qi, Bin Deng, Ping Xiang Deng, Min XU*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

21 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

BACKGROUND: Scutellaria baicalensis is a perennial herbaceous plant widely distributed in Oriental areas. Its roots, a commonly used medicinal source, reputedly calm fetuses in pregnant women; however, there is no sufficient evidence to date to assess its safety during pregnancy. This study aims to evaluate the effects of S. baicalensis aqueous extract on embryonic development in ICR mice. METHODS: Aqueous extract of S. baicalensis roots was prepared in accordance with clinical application. Pregnant mice were randomly divided into four groups, i.e., mice treated by gavage with water as negative controls, with aqueous extract of 2 (1.8 times of human daily dose), 8 or 32g/kg/day from gestation day (Gd) 6 to 15 as low-, middle-, and high-dose groups, respectively. The parameters of live and dead fetuses, resorptions, external and skeletal malformed fetuses, maternal body weights, maternal liver, kidney, and heart weights were evaluated on Gd 18. RESULTS: There was no significant difference in fetal parameters among four groups. Maternal absolute liver and kidney weights in the high-dose group were significantly higher than those in negative control group (p<0.05). Relative liver and kidney weights in this group were significantly higher than those in any other group (p< 0.05). CONCLUSIONS: Oral administration of aqueous extract of S. baicalensis roots at or below 32 g/kg/day to ICR mice during organogenesis did not cause significant fetal external or skeletal malformations. However, 32 g/kg/day presented potential maternal toxicity.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)79-84
Number of pages6
JournalBirth Defects Research Part B - Developmental and Reproductive Toxicology
Volume86
Issue number2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2009

Scopus Subject Areas

  • Embryology
  • Toxicology
  • Developmental Biology
  • Health, Toxicology and Mutagenesis

User-Defined Keywords

  • Aqueous extract
  • Embryotoxicity
  • Herbal medicine
  • Mice
  • Scutellaria baicalensis
  • Teratogenicity

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