Acute oral toxicity of the ellagitannin geraniin and a geraniin-enriched extract from Nephelium lappaceum L rind in Sprague Dawley rats

Mohanambal Moorthy, Joon Joon Khoo, Uma D. Palanisamy

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13 Citations (Scopus)


Despite the lack of its toxicity evaluation, traditional herbal products are being widely used for various health indications. Geraniin, an ellagitannin, is a bioactive compound found in many traditional herbal medicines. In spite its numerous health benefits ranging from anti-inflammatory, anti-hyperglycaemic, hepatoprotective, anti-cancer and anti-microbial, no toxicity data on geraniin is available. The objective of this study is to evaluate the acute oral toxicity of geraniin and an enriched geraniin-extract of Nephelium lappaceum L rind. This study followed the guidelines of the OECD 423 acute oral toxicity test. Subsequent to a single oral administration of the test compounds, the rats were observed for 14 days for signs of toxicity and mortality. Following euthanasia, full blood count, biochemistry of blood and histopathology assessment of organs were carried out. All parameters analysed indicated insignificant difference compared to control. The LD50 cut-off values for both geraniin and geraniin-enriched extract was established to be 2000 mg/kg b. w., following a single oral dose. It was however observed that the hepatocytes of three geraniin-administered rats exhibited a ‘foamy appearance’. As such, the no-observed-adverse-effect level of geraniin is below 2000 mg/kg, while that of geraniin-enriched extract is up to 2000 mg/kg. Further detailed toxicity studies are required to establish geraniin or its enriched extract from Nephelium lappaceum L rind safe for human consumption.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere02333
Number of pages5
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - 31 Aug 2019


  • Acute oral toxicity
  • Ellagitannin
  • Geraniin
  • Medicinal herbs
  • Nephelium lappaceum
  • Toxicology

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