Ikechukwu Edwin EZEAGU


The effect of differently processed baobab (Adansonia digitata L.) seed meals on haematocrit and some plasma and liver biochemical parameters in albino rats was investigated.  While the animals placed on the raw seed meal recorded comparable growth and liver and plasma biochemical indices to the casein control diet, the cooked and HCl-extracted meals induced significantly (p<0.05) slower rates of growth than the control. Also raw and acid-extracted meals induced significant hyperglycemic effect. Serum and liver total lipids were elevated but non-significantly in the animals fed the raw and acid-extracted meals relative to the controls. There was no consistent pattern in the serum and liver cholesterol and the haematocrit trend, but red blood cell (RBC), packed cell volume (PCV) and haemoglobin (Hb) were decreased significantly in rats fed the acid-extracted meal relative to the control. The possible reasons and nutritional implications of these observations were briefly highlighted. It was concluded that the raw seed has a better promise as a source of food supplement and is likely to be satisfactory in supporting growth and maintenance in livestock feeding.

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A Publication of Department of Zoology and Environmental Biology, University of Nigeria, Nsukka, Enugu State, Nigeria.