Mahmoud M. Nasser, Abd El-Aziz A. Diab, Soliman S.A. Ibrahim, Ahmed L. El-Said, Eman M.E. Mohallal, Samih I. El-Dahmy


Cerastes cerastes is the most abundant venomous snakes of the North Africa, envenoming by it inflicts local tissue damage, hemorrhage and causing severe systemic toxicity that usually lead to victim death. Therefore, the present study aimed to evaluate the toxicity of Cerastes cerastes venom on male albino rats and the ameliorative and prophylaxis role of Alkanna orientalis extract against venom toxicity. Forty-eight adult male albino rats (180±200g) were divided into 6 groups. Group I injected intraperitonial with physiological saline (100μl). Group II with Alkanna orientalis extract (250mg/kg/BW). Group III was injected with 1/10 LD50 of Cerastes cerastes venom (0.435mg/kg/BW). Group IV injected with Cerastes Cerastes venom (0.435mg/kg/BW) then immediately with Alkanna orientalis extract. Group V was given Alkanna orientalis extract orally (250mg/kg/b.wt) then after 2 hours injected with Cerastes cerastes venom (0.435 mg/kg/BW) Group VI was injected with Cerastes cerastes venom then was injected immediately with antivenom immunoglobulin (300μl). Group III  showed a significant increase (p<0.001)  in serum aspartate transaminase, alanine transaminase, alkaline phosphatase and total &direct bilirubin as well as a significant decrease(p<0.001)  in plasma prothrombin and partial thromboplastin concentration, plasma albumin, total protein, serum cholinesterase, hemoglobin, red blood cells and platelets count as compared with control group. In addition, it resulted in internal abdominal cavity hemorrhage. While, group II did not show any significant change in all previous parameters. As well as, Alkanna orientalis extract when given intraperitonial immediately or orally 2 hours before Cerastes cerastes venom as antidote, it minimize the alterations of hematological, biochemical parameters and the internal hemorrhage. By comparing groups IV and V with group VI, we found out that Alkanna orientalis extract could be considered more effective antidote than antivenom immunoglobulin for Cerastes cerastes venom toxicity. In conclusion, Alkanna orientalis extract showed a new therapeutic and prophylaxis agents against Cerastes cerastes venom toxicity.

Key words: Cerastes cerastes; Alkanna orientalis; Boraginaceae family; venom toxicity; haematological effect

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