ISSN: 2251-8363    eISSN: 2251-8819  
J Nephropathol. 2014;3(2):81-85.
doi:10.12860/jnp.2014.16
PMID: 24772401
PMCID: PMC3999588

Scopus id: 84908201135

Original Article

Nephrotoxicity and hepatotoxicity evaluation of Crocus sativus stigmas in neonates of nursing mice

Mahmoud Bahmani 1,2, Mortaza Rafieian 3, Azar Baradaran 4, Samira Rafieian 5, Mahmoud Rafieian-kopaei 6 *

1 Food and Beverages Safety Research Center, Urmia University of Medical Sciences, Urmia, Iran
2 Razi Herbal Medicine Research Center, Lorestan University of Medical Sciences, Khorram Abad, Iran
3 Isfahan Governor Office, Isfahan, Iran
4 Department of Clinical Pathology, Isfahan University of Medical Sciences, Isfahan, Iran
5 Pharmaceutical Faculty, Isfahan University of Medical Sciences, Isfahan, Iran
6 Medical Plants Research Center, Shahrekord University of Medical sciences, Shahrekord, Iran
Corresponding author: Prof. Mahmoud Rafieian-kopaei, Medical Plants Research Center, Shahrekord University of Medical sciences, Shahrekord, Iran. Email: rafieian@yahoo.com

Abstract

Background: Crocus sativus, known as saffron crocus, is best known for the spice saffron.Saffron use spans more than 3500 years, however, its toxicity on neonates during lactation has not yet evaluated.

Objectives: This study was aimed to examine the acute toxicity of saffron on adult mice and its nephrotoxicity and hepatotoxicity on neonates of lactating mothers that used saffron during lactation.

Materials and Methods: In this experimental study, following acute toxicity evaluation, 32 pregnant mice were randomly designated into four equal groups. Following delivery, the mothers of groups 1 to 4 were administered orally (by gavage) normal saline (control group),500, 1000 or 2000 mg/kg/day of saffron for three weeks, respectively. The newborns’ kidney and liver parameters were assessed at the end of the study for possible nephrotoxicity and hepatotoxicity evaluation. The kidney and liver tissue samples of newborns were histopathologically studied after staining with Hematoxylin & Eosin. Data were analyzed using ANOVA and Scheffe’s tests

Results: The LD50 value of saffron was calculated to be 4120±556 mg/kg in mice. To evaluate lactating toxicity, saffron was administered orally to the mothers once daily for 21 days, after delivery, during lactating period. Saffron increased serum urea nitrogen (p< 0.05). Histological studies indicated that saffron did not have any toxic effect on liver, however, histopathology changes were seen in the kidney of neonates.

Conclusions: From the results of present study, it might be concluded that saffron is a nearly safe spice, however, nursing mothers should avoid high doses of this spice.

Implication for health policy/practice/research/medical education:

Saffron prepared from Crocus sativus is a nearly safe spice, however, nursing mothers should avoid high doses of this spice. The data suggest that administration of high doses of saffron to mothers, in sub-acute evaluation might damage the infants kidneys.
Please cite this paper as: Bahmani M, Rafieian M, Baradaran A, Rafieian S, Rafieian-kopaei M. Nephrotoxicity and hepatotoxicity evaluation of Crocus sativus stigmas in neonates of nursing mice. J Nephropathol. 2014; 3(2): 81-85. DOI: 10.12860/jnp.2014.16

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