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Lead a free-radical generating agent is a multi-systemic toxicant which affects major body systems especially the hepatic axis. Several natural products rich in antioxidant agents have been used to ameliorate lead toxicity. Vitamin C present abundantly in palm wine has been noted for its ability to modulate oxidative stress. This study investigated the ameliorative effects of palm wine in lead-induced hepatotoxicity in Wistar rats. Adults Wistar rats randomly divided into Groups A-H, consisting of 7 rats per group were used for the study. Groups A and B were administered with distilled water and palm wine respectively. Groups C, E, and G were dosed daily with lead nitrate at dosage levels of 50 (low dose), 150 (intermediate dose) and 600 (high dose) mg/kg body weight (BW). On the other hand, Groups D, F, and H were administered daily with lead nitrate at dosage levels of 50, 150 and 600 mg/kg body weight (BW) as well as palm wine (10 mL/kg BW). All experimental animals were allowed access to standard feed and water without any form of restriction. Estimation of biochemical parameters i.e. total protein, albumin, alkaline phosphatase and aminotransferases (ALT; AST) took place using standard biochemical methods. The liver was harvested and processed for histological study using haematoxylin and eosin staining techniques. Statistical analysis was done using one-way analysis of variance (ANOVA) and Student’s t-test. P< 0.05 was considered significant. While albumin concentrations were not significantly different, both total protein and globulin concentrations in lead administered rats were significantly reduced compared with control. Periportal and interstitial hepatitis and necrosis occurred from lead exposure at different levels suggesting hepatotoxicity. Meanwhile, lead and palm wine-administered rats featured similar histologic results. In conclusion, the results of the study, therefore, indicate that palm wine does not possess an ameliorative effect on lead-induced hepatotoxicity.
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