Toxicological analysis and effectiveness of oral Kalanchoe pinnata on a human case of cutaneous leishmaniasis

Phytother Res. 2003 Aug;17(7):801-3. doi: 10.1002/ptr.1242.


Leishmaniasis is an extremely difficult disease to treat. Previously, it was shown that oral Kalanchoe pinnata (Kp) leaf extract is strongly effective against murine leishmaniasis. Here, it is shown that the serum levels of alanine-aminotransferase (ALT), aspartate-aminotransferase (AST), urea and alkaline phosphatase were unchanged in mice orally treated with supraoptimal Kp doses for 30 days, indicating the absence of chronic toxicity to the liver, heart or kidney. Additionally, evidence is presented that human leishmaniasis may also be controlled with oral Kp. A 36-year-old man with an active cutaneous leishmaniasis was orally treated with 30 g wet weight of Kp leaves/day for 14 days. During the Kp treatment, the lesion stopped growing and slightly decreased. No adverse reactions or toxicity was observed. This study reports for the first time that Kalanchoe pinnata contains substances potentially active and safe for the oral treatment of human cutaneous leishmaniasis.

Publication types

  • Case Reports

MeSH terms

  • Administration, Oral
  • Adult
  • Animals
  • Antiprotozoal Agents / administration & dosage
  • Antiprotozoal Agents / pharmacology*
  • Antiprotozoal Agents / therapeutic use*
  • Female
  • Hand
  • Humans
  • Kalanchoe*
  • Leishmaniasis, Cutaneous / drug therapy*
  • Leishmaniasis, Cutaneous / pathology
  • Liver / drug effects
  • Liver / enzymology
  • Male
  • Mice
  • Mice, Inbred BALB C
  • Phytotherapy*
  • Plant Extracts / administration & dosage
  • Plant Extracts / pharmacology*
  • Plant Extracts / therapeutic use*
  • Plant Leaves


  • Antiprotozoal Agents
  • Plant Extracts