Comparative Clinical Pathology

, Volume 28, Issue 1, pp 195–202 | Cite as

Evaluation of the toxicopathological lesions of Calotropis procera using a chick embryonic model

  • Hadi Tavakkoli
  • Amin DerakhshanfarEmail author
  • Javad Moayedi
  • Ali Poostforoosh Fard
  • Somayeh Behrouz
  • Mohammad Amin Piltan
  • Mohammad Navid Soltani Rad
Original Article


Toxicopathological effects of herbs have always been a major concern. There is scant information available about the toxicopathological effects of Calotropis procera (C. procera) in the fetus. Since the chick embryo is a suitable preclinical model to evaluate the toxicopathological effects of chemicals, the objective of this study is to evaluate the lesions of various dosages of C. procera using a chick embryonic model. Fertile chicken eggs were divided into three equal treatment groups; phosphate buffered saline-injected group and C. procera-injected groups whose individuals were treated with C. procera extract at dosages of 50 or 100 mg/kg egg-weight. Embryos were re-incubated post-treatment and allowed to develop until day 18, after which they were examined for macroscopic and microscopic lesions. Although the embryos which were treated with 50 mg/kg egg-weight of C. procera extract macroscopically were normal as well as the controls, those treated with 100 mg/kg egg-weight were stunted and under developed. Microscopic evaluations showed that in embryos treated with 100 mg/kg egg-weight of C. procera, the brain was congested, and severe dilation of central veins and sinusoids as well as hepatocellular degeneration was occurred in liver. Moreover, the kidney and lung were under-developed, but the structure of the heart was normal. Based on our findings, C. procera at dosage of 100 mg/kg is toxic to the chick embryo or/maybe to human fetus during growing period. Further studies are needed to clarify the toxic effects of this plant on the development of fetus.


Calotropis procera Chick Embryo Fetus Pathology 



The authors wish to thank Mr. S. Hasanzadeh for his kind cooperation in tissue slide preparation.

Funding information

This study was financially supported by grant no. 94-01-45-10742 from Vice-Chancellery of Research of Shiraz University of Medical Sciences, Shiraz, Iran.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Ethical approval

All applicable international, national, and/or institutional guidelines for the care and use of animals were followed.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag London Ltd., part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Clinical Science, Faculty of Veterinary MedicineShahid Bahonar University of KermanKermanIran
  2. 2.Diagnostic Laboratory Sciences and Technology Research Center, School of Paramedical SciencesShiraz University of Medical SciencesShirazIran
  3. 3.Center of Comparative and Experimental MedicineShiraz University of Medical SciencesShirazIran
  4. 4.Vice Chancellery for Research AffairsShiraz University of Medical SciencesShirazIran
  5. 5.Medicinal Chemistry Research Laboratory, Department of ChemistryShiraz University of TechnologyShirazIran

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