Wound healing is a process of repair that follows injury to the skin and other soft tissues.1 it is fundamentally a connective tissue response and the initial stages of wound healing involve an acute inflammatory phase followed by synthesis of collagen and other extracellular matrix which are later remodeled to form a scar.1 wound healing can be classified into three types- healing by first intention, healing by second intention and healing by third intention, depending on the nature of the edges of the healed wounds.2 the healing of wounds is a complicated and expensive process and research on drugs that increase wound healing is an on going process. Several drugs obtained from plant sources are known to increase the healing of different types of wounds. Some of these drugs have been screened scientifically for evaluation of the wound healing activity in different pharmacological models and patients but the potential of many of the traditionally used herbal agents remains unexplored.3 Crateva religiosa is a flowering tree that grows upto nine meters tall, with smooth brown bark and prominent yellowish lenticels on the branches.4 It is ubiquitous in tropical Africa, where it is cultivated for its edible fruits, Madagascar, tropical Asia, the Pacific islands and Japan.4 In Nigeria, extract from the leaves is used as an inflammatory, rubefacient, internal febrifuge and as a wound healing agent.4 Extracts from the stem bark and roots are used as appetite stimulant and to increase biliary secretion.4 Even though the leaf extract of C. religiosa has been used traditionally for the treatment of a wide variety of wounds, no scientific investigation has so far been carried out to evaluate the practice. The present study was therefore designed to investigate the effect of the methanolic extract of C. religiosa leaf on experimentally induced wounds in rats.
Materials and Methods
Fresh leaves of C rateva religiosa were harvested in the wild at Nsukka, Enugu State and identified at the Department of Botany, faculty of Biological Science, University of Nigeria, Nsukka.
The leaves were washed with tap water and air dried for fourteen days. The dried leaves were pulverized and five hundred grams was exhaustively extracted in a soxhlet extractor with methanol as solvent. The crude extract was concentrated in a rotary evaporator and stored at 40C.
Chemicals and Drugs
Penicillin ointment and Vaseline (pure petroleum jelly) were purchased from a local pharmacy. Lignocaine hydrochloride was obtained from the Department of Pharmacology and Toxicology, Madonna University, Elele. Methanol and diethyl ether (Analar grade) were purchased locally from a licensed chemical dealer. Soft paraffin, hard paraffin, wool fat and cetostearly alcohol were obtained from the Department of Pharmaceutics, Madonna University, Elele.