Background and Aim: Medicago sativa (Alfalfa) has been used traditionally as liver protectant, antioxidant agent and also for the treatment of bleeding and digestive problems. The aim of this study was to evaluate the effect of hydroalcholic extract of Medicago sativa on liver function tests, blood biochemical factors and coagulation system parameters in male rats.
Materials and Methods: In this experimental study, 32 male Wistar rats were randomly divided into 4 groups (n= 8) including control, and three experimental groups which received gavage (250, 500, 750 mg/kg/day). These groups were treated for 14 days and on the 15th day plasma levels of total protein, fibrinogen, Na, glucose, alanine amino transferase (ALT), and alkaline phosphatase (ALP) were measured. We also measured platlet count, prothrombin time (PT) and partial thromboplastin time (PTT). The results were analyzed by one way ANOVA.
Results: The results of the present study showed that use of the extract decreased significantly the serum levels of ALP, ALT, and also blood glucose concentration in the experimental groups, compared to the control group. Furthermore, alfalfa increased total protein and fibrinogen in a dose dependent manner in the experimental groups (p <0.01, p <0.001).
Conclusion: The results of this study showed hepatoprotective effect of alfalfa extract. The effect of alfalfa on coagulation system was exerted via increasing the blood level of fibrinogen and it had no effect on other indices.
Key words: Medicago sativa, Liver function tests, Fibrinogen, Blood platelets, Glucose.
Received: May 15, 2016 Accepted: Jul 11, 2016