Eyong U Eyong, MA Agiang, IJ Atangwho, IA Iwara, MO Odey and PE Ebong
The root and stem barks of Vernonia amygdalina (VA) are used traditionally in the management of an array of ailments. The present study therefore evaluated their chemical constituents: proximate, phytochemicals, mineral elements and vitamins using standard methods. The proximate analysis revealed (%) the presence of crude protein (6.71±0.10 and 7.30±0.20), moisture content (18.50±0.02 and 12.00±0.20), ash (17.99±0.02 and 11.01±0.01), crude fat (34.03±0.05 and 30.15±0.20) in the stem and root bark extracts respectively. The phytochemicals determined in the stem and root bark extracts respectively were (%): saponins (13.21±21 and 28.52±0.03), flavonoids (1.02±0.04 and 0.51±0.05), alkaloid (7.02±0.04 and 6.11±0.02) and hydrocyanic acid (3.41±0.02 and1.18±0.05). Analysis of vitamin concentration indicated vitamins A (21.5±0.35 and 30.90±0.20 IU/100g), C (49.00±4.4 and 10.30±2.5mg/100g) and E (106.20 ±1.90 and 35.83±1.90 IU/100g); Thiamin (0.50±0.00 and 0.37±0.00mg/100g) and Niacin (0.03±0.005 and 0.05±0.002mg/100g) in stem and root bark extracts respectively. Mineral elements including selenium, chromium, copper, zinc, and iron were also present in trace amounts. The findings from this study besides validating the pharmacological action of this herb, hence its use in trado-medicine also show its inert potentials for use as possible supplement in animal nutrition.
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