Inhibition of calcium oxalate crystal deposition on kidneys of urolithiatic rats by Hibiscus sabdariffa L. extract

Urol Res. 2012 Jun;40(3):211-8. doi: 10.1007/s00240-011-0433-3. Epub 2011 Nov 5.


The present study aims at systematic evaluation of the calyces of Hibiscus sabdariffa to establish its scientific validity for anti-urolithiatic property using ethylene glycol-induced hyperoxaluria model in male albino rats. Administration of a mixture of 0.75% ethylene glycol and 2% ammonium chloride resulted in hyperoxaluria as well as increased renal excretion of calcium and phosphate. The decrease in the serum calcium concentration indicates an increased calcium oxalate formation. Supplementation of aqueous extract of H. sabdariffa at different doses (250, 500 and 750 mg/kg body weight) significantly lowered the deposition of stone-forming constituents in the kidneys and serum of urolithiatic rats. These findings have been confirmed through histological investigations. Results of in vivo genotoxicity testing showed no significant chromosomal aberrations in the bone marrow cells of ethylene glycol-induced rats. The plant extracts at the doses investigated induced neither toxic nor lethal effects and are safe. It can be concluded that the calyces of H. sabdariffa are endowed with anti-urolithiatic activity and do not have genotoxic effects. Thus, it can be introduced in clinical practices and medicine in the form of orally administered syrup after further investigations and clinical trials.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Calcium Oxalate / metabolism*
  • Ethylene Glycol / pharmacology
  • Hibiscus*
  • Kidney / metabolism*
  • Male
  • Plant Extracts / pharmacology*
  • Plant Extracts / therapeutic use
  • Rats
  • Urolithiasis / drug therapy*
  • Urolithiasis / metabolism
  • Urolithiasis / pathology


  • Plant Extracts
  • Calcium Oxalate
  • Ethylene Glycol