International Journal of Anatomy and Research

Welcome to International Journal of Anatomy and Research




Type of Article : Original Research

Year: 2015 | Volume 3 | Issue 4 | Page No. 1450-1455

Date of Publication: 31-10-2015



Peter E. Ekanem *1, Sunday Abba 1,2, Dare S. Sunday 3, Kendi Nyaga 4.

*1 Anatomy Unit, Biomedical Institute, College of Health Sciences, Mekelle University, Mekelle, Ethiopia.
2 Department of Anatomy, Kogi state University, Nigeria.
3 Department of Anatomy, Faculty of Biomedical Sciences, Kampala International University, Uganda.
4 Paediatrics unit, Mekelle University Teaching Hospital, College of Health Sciences, Mekelle University, Mekelle, Ethiopia.

Address: Peter Etim Ekanem, Anatomy Unit, Biomedical Institute, College of Health Sciences, Mekelle University, Mekelle, Ethiopia, Phone: +251925327490.


Introduction: Datura stramonium (DS) is a tropical ubiquitous shrub which is often used to increase intoxication in some beverages and is also freely used as a hallucinogen. It is a depressant of the central nervous system, yet commonly smoked in like manner tobacco. The present study investigated changes induced by intoxication with DS on the purkinje cells and parallel fibres of the cerebellum in Wistar rats to further elucidate the effects of this drug on cerebellar structure.
Materials and Methods: The study was conducted on both male and female Wistar rats (200-250 g). They were placed into three batches and four groups were derived from each batch, with eight animals per group. Ethanolic dried seed extract of DS was diluted in normal saline and administered intraperitoneally (I.P.) at a dose of 750mg/kg and given to the treatment groups: once in batch 1, twice in batch 2, twelve hourly and thrice in batch 3, eight hourly per day respectively for 4 weeks, while the control groups received an equivalent of normal saline. The rats were euthanized and sections of the cerebellum were histologically processed in all groups. Silver impregnation stain for degenerating axons and neurons was used to elucidate the actions of DS on purkinje cells and the parallel fibres of the cerebellum.
Results: The result of IP administration of DS extract (750 mg/kg) given three times daily to the treated rats showed significant histological changes, which included atrophy of the parallel fibres but no significant changes in the purkinje cells of the cerebellum.
Conclusions: Intoxication of DS seed as a result of excessive ingestion may have a selective degenerative effect on the parallel fibres of the granule cells of the cerebellum while the purkinje cells are spared; the implication being motor dysfunction.
KEY WORDS: Datura stramonium, Cerebellum, Purkinje cells, Parallel fibres, Atrophy, Intraperitoneal.


  1. Parotta, JA.  Healing plants of India. CABI Publishing, Walling Ford, UIC & NY: 2001; p 917.
  2. Wagner, AD. Building memories: remembering and forgetting of verbal experiences as predicted by brain activity.  Science 1998;287:1188-1191.
  3. Arnett, A. M.  Jimson weed (Datura stramonium) poisoning. Clinical Toxicology Review, 1995;18(3):1-6.
  4. Haddad LM, Winchester JF. Clinical Management of Poisoning and Drug Overdose. W.B. Saunders Co. New York;1990:345-350.
  5. Schmitz – Bourgeois M, Amiri R, Boulanger J and Ungerer Y. Isolation and structure of a pseudo peptide gamma-l-glutamyl -1- arspartatic acid from Datura stramonium that impairs learning retention in mice. Biochimee 1998;9:70-80.
  6. Gilman AG.  The Pharmacological Basis of Therapeutics, 8th ed. Bergman Press New York; 1990:78-82.
  7. Jan, C. From mice to men: lessons from mutant ataxic mice. Cendelin Cerebellum & Ataxias 2014;1:4.
  8. Bear MF, Connors BW., Paradiso, Michael A. (2012). Neuroscience: Exploring the Brain Lippincot (Wolters Kluwer Health). Kindle Edition. 2012; Kindle Locations 12791-12792.
  9. Schmahmann JD and Sherman JC. Cerebellar cognitive affective syndrome. Int Rev Neurobiol, 1997;41:433–440.
  10. Manto MU. The wide spectrum of spinocerebellar ataxias (SCAs). Cerebellum, 2005;4:2-6.
  11. Binev R, Valchev I, Nikolov I. Clinical and Pathological Studies on intoxication in horses from freshly cut Jimson weed (Datura stramonium) contaminated maize intended for ensiling. J S Afr Vet Assoc. 2006a;77(4):215-9.
  12. Goldfrank LR. Medical Toxicology Training and Certification. Academic Emergency Medicine, 1994;1:124–126
  13. Bania, TC, Chu J, Bailes D, O’Neil M. Jimson weed extract as protective agent in severe organophosphate toxicity. Academy Emergency Medicine. 2004;11(4):335-338.
  14. Lillie RD. (1965).  Histologic Technique and Practical Histochemistry. McGraw Hill book company, New York; 1965:616-617.
  15. Stem DS and Neil P. Atropine or Hyoscine in treatment of acute organophosphate poisoning.  Lancet, 1985;1:823-824.
  16. Flegel T, Matiasek K, Henke D, Grevel V. Cerebellar cortical degeneration with selective granule cell loss in Bavarian mountain dogs.  J Small Anim Pract. 2007; 48(8):462-5.
  17. O'Hearn E. and Molliver ME. Degeneration of Purkinje cells in parasagittal zones of the cerebellar vermis after treatment with ibogaine or harmaline Neuroscience. 1993;55(2):303-10.
  18. Nelson PD, Mercer HD, Essig HW, Minyard JP. Jimson seed toxicity in cattle. Veterinary and Human Toxicolology, 1982;24(5): 321-325.
  19. Forrester MB.  Jimson weed (Datura stramonium) exposures in Texas, 1998-2004. Journal of Toxicology, Environment and Health 2006;69(19):1757-1762.
  20. Giadado,A, Zainab, A., Hadiza, MU, Serah,, DP., Anas, HY, Milala, MA.. Toxicity studies of ethanol extract of the leaves of Datura stramonium in rats. Afric J Biotech; 2007: 6(8):1012-1015
  21. Bouzidi, A., Mahdeb, N., Kara, N..Toxicity studies of alkaloids of seeds of Datura stramonium and synthesis alkaloids in male rats. J Med Plants Res.201:.5 (15):3421-3431.


Peter E. Ekanem, Sunday Abba, Dare S. Sunday, Kendi Nyaga. SELECTIVE EFFECTS OF DATURA STRAMONIUM ON THE GRANULAR PARALLEL FIBRES AND PURKINJE CELLS OF THE CEREBELLUM IN WISTAR RATS. Int J Anat Res 2015;3(4):1450-1455. DOI: 10.16965/ijar.2015.230




Volume 1 (2013)

Volume 2 (2014)

Volume 3 (2015)

Submit Manuscript