Aim: Aqueous extracts of Zingiber officinale and Pentadiplandra brazzeana were tested for their possible androgenic activity in male Wistar rats.
Methods: The aqueous extracts of the two plants were gavaged separately to 2 groups of rats at a similar dose of 600 mg middot kg(-1) middot day(-1) for 8 days. At the end of the treatment, the animals were killed and the blood, testis, epididymis, seminal vesicles and prostate were collected for biochemical analysis.
Results: The aqueous extract of Z. officinale significantly increased in the relative weight of the testis, the serum testosterone level, testicular cholesterol level and epididymal a-glucosidase activity. The aqueous extract of P. brazzeana significantly increased the weights of the testis, seminal vesicles and prostate. It also significantly increased the serum and testicular testosterone level. The fructose, alpha-glucosidase and cholesterol levels in P. brazzeana-treated rats were increased by 28 %, 35 % and 114 %, respectively.
Conclusion: The aqueous extracts of both P. brazzeana and Z. officinale have an androgenic activity, which seems to be more potent with P. brazzeana than with Z. officinale.