Effects of Nigella sativa L. and Urtica dioica L. on selected mineral status and hematological values in CCl4-treated rats

Biol Trace Elem Res. 2003 Winter;96(1-3):263-70. doi: 10.1385/BTER:96:1-3:263.


This study was designed to investigate the effects of Nigella sativa L. (NS), known as black seed, or/and Urtica dioica L. (UD), known as stinging nettle root, treatments on serum Na, K, Cl, and Ca levels and some hematological values of CCl4-treated rats. Sixty healthy male Sprague-Dawley rats, weighing 250-300 g, were randomly allotted into 1 of 4 experimental groups: A (CCl4-only treated), B (CCl4+UD treated), C (CCl4+NS treated), and D (CCl4+UD+NS treated), each containing 15 animals. All groups received CCl4 (0.8 mL/kg of body weight, subcutaneously, twice a week for 90 d starting d 1). In addition, B, C, and D groups also received the daily ip injection of 0.2 mL/kg NS and/or 2 mL/kg UD oils for 45 d starting d 46. Group A, on the other hand, received only 2 mL/kg normal saline solution for 45 d starting d 46. Blood samples for the biochemical analysis were taken by cardiac puncture from five randomly chosen rats in each treatment group at the beginning, d 45, and d 90 of the experiment. The CCl4 treatment for 45 d significantly (p<0.05) increased the serum K and Ca and decreased (p<0.05) the red blood cell count (RBC), white blood cell count (WBC), packed cell volume (PCV), and Hb levels without changing (p>0.05) the serum Na and Cl levels. NS or UD treatments (alone or combination) for 45 d starting d 46 significantly (p<0.05) decreased the elevated serum K and Ca levels and also increased (p<0.05) the reduced RBC, WBC, PCV, and Hb levels. It is concluded that NS and/or UD treatments might ameliorate the CCl4-induced disturbances of anemia, some minerals, and body's defense mechanism in CCl4-treated rats.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Calcium / blood
  • Carbon Tetrachloride / pharmacology*
  • Chlorides / blood
  • Male
  • Minerals / blood*
  • Nigella*
  • Plant Extracts / pharmacology*
  • Plants, Medicinal
  • Potassium / blood
  • Rats
  • Rats, Sprague-Dawley
  • Sodium / blood
  • Urtica dioica*


  • Chlorides
  • Minerals
  • Plant Extracts
  • Sodium
  • Carbon Tetrachloride
  • Potassium
  • Calcium