Absence of toxicity and genotoxicity in an extract of Rubus coriifolius.
Rubus coriifolius Focke is a wild plant from the Rosaceae family. It grows in both Guatemala and Mexico. The polar extract of the aerial parts of this plant has antibacterial, anti-inflammatory, and anti-protozoal activities. These properties may explain the traditional use of this plant. In vivo and in vitro assays were used to assess the genotoxic and toxic effects of an ethanol extract of the aerial parts of R. coriifolius. Three groups of rats were orally administered the R. coriifolius extract diluted in ethanol (5%) at doses of 1.89 mg/kg body weight (low dose), 4.72 mg/kg body weight (medium dose), and 9.44 mg/kg body weight (high dose) for 3 weeks. Genotoxic/cytotoxic effects induced by the R. coriifolius ethanol extract were evaluated in vivo by a micronuclei (MN) test in rat's bone marrow cells and in vitro by MN and sister chromatid exchange (SCE) in human lymphocyte cultures. In vivo genotoxicity analyses revealed that the average number of micronucleated polychromatic erythrocytes and the polychromatic erythrocyte/red blood cell ratio at all doses were not significantly different from those of the negative control. In vitro genotoxicity analyses showed that MN, SCE, and proliferative index frequencies in a human lymphocyte cell culture were not significantly different from those of the negative control. These results demonstrate that the ethanol extract of R. coriifolius aerial parts is not toxic or mutagenic (in vitro and in vivo) and does not affect cell proliferation at the concentrations analyzed.