Hibiscus sabdariffa Linn (Roselle) is an annual shrub commonly used to make jellies, jams, beverages and used traditionally as a medicinal plant for the treatment of various ailments. The present study was undertaken to investigate the effect of aqueous extract of Hibiscus sabdariffa calyx on male rat reproductive hormones. Twenty (20) male Wistar rats weighing 0.25±0.2 kg were grouped into one water control group and three experimental groups. While the water control group received 1.0 ml of water for 28 days, the experimental group was administered 250 mg/kg oral doses of aqueous extract of H.sabdariffa calyx. The effect on the basal levels of follicle-stimulating hormone, testosterone, prolactin, luteinizing hormone and estradiol were conducted in experimental animals. The 28 days oral administration of aqueous extract of H.sabdariffa L. is associated with decreased circulating plasma levels of follicle-stimulating hormone, Testosterone and prolactin in male Wistar rat compared with the control group. The study did not show a change in the plasma levels of both circulating luteinizing hormone and estradiol following 28 days oral administration of H.sabdariffa calyx to the experimental animal. Moreover, Marked histological changes were detected in testes of the experimental animals after 28 days of administration. This may indicate that H.sadariffa calyx extract can cause both morphological and physiological testicular damage. The study concluded that H. sabdariffa calyx extract at a dose of 250 mg/kg caused mild effects on rat reproductive hormones.


Endocrine-disrupting compounds (EDCs) are natural or synthetic compounds that have the ability within the body to alter endocrine functions often through mimicking or blocking endogenous hormones (James et al., 2013). These actions on the endocrine system have resulted in developmental deficits in various invertebrate and aquatic species (Crain et al., 2007; Elango et al., 2006) and mammals (Christopher et al., 2012). Exposures in adulthood have consequences but fetal and early life exposures appear to have more severe effects that persist through life (Rubin and Soto, 2009). Among these classes of chemicals are phytoestrogens that show effects suggestive of estrogenicity, such as binding to the estrogen receptors, induction of specific estrogen-responsive gene products, stimulation of estrogen receptor(s) and positive breast cancer cell growth (James et al., 2013). Through these interactions by acting as agonists or antagonists, EDCs are able to alter the activity of response elements of genes, block natural hormones from binding to their receptors, or in some cases increase the perceived amount of endogenous hormone in the body by acting as a hormone mimic to its receptor (Ze-hua et al., 2010). 


Hibiscus sabdariffa Linn (Roselle) is an annual shrub commonly used to make jellies, jams, and beverages (Sirag et al., 2013). The brilliant red color of its calyx makes it a valuable food product, apart from its multitude of traditional medicinal uses (Sirag et al., 2013). Infusions of the calyces are considered as diuretic, choleric, febrifugal and hypotensive, decreasing the viscosity of the blood and stimulating intestinal peristalsis (Salleh et al., 2002). Roselle calyx extract is a good source of antioxidants from its anthocyanins and associated with antitumor and inhibitory effects on the growth of several cancer cells (Ajiboye et al., 2011).

Extracts of H.sabdariffa calyces have been reported to be rich in phytoestrogens (Adigun et al., 2006; Orisakwe et al., 2004; Brian et al., 2009; Omotuyi et al., 2011) and some reports indicated that H.sabdariffa calyces have estrogenic effects, although exact estrogen-like ingredient is not determined (Ali et al., 1989).

This study was undertaken to determine to which extent H.sabdariffa calyces extract alters the basal levels of selected reproductive hormones: Follicle-stimulating hormone, testosterone, prolactin, estradiol, and luteinizing hormone as well as the histological features male Wistar rat testes.

1.1     Literature Review

H.sabdariffa L.

Hibiscus sabdariffa L. also known as roselle, is an ideal crop for developing countries as it is relatively easy to grow, can be grown as part of multi-cropping systems and can be used as food and fibre (Da-costa-Rocha et al., 2014). In China the seeds are used for their oil and the plant is used for its medicinal properties, while in West Africa the leaves and powdered seeds are used in meals (Da-costa-Rocha et al., 2014). Additionally, it is used in the pharmaceutical and food industries (Da-costa-Rocha et al., 2014).

A limited number of reviews on H.sabdariffa have been conducted. Only one detailed review on the phytochemical, pharmacological and toxicological properties of H.sabdariffa ( Ali et al., 2005) and two more focused, later reviews are available: One on the effectiveness of H.sabdariffa in the treatment of hypertension ( Wahabi et al., 2010) and another on the treatment of hypertension and hyperlipidemia ( Hopkins et al., 2013).

1.1.1. Botanical description

The genus Hibiscus (Malvaceae) includes more than 300 species of annual or perennial herbs, shrubs or trees (Wang et al., 2012). H.sabdariffa (syn.: Abelmoschus cruentus (Bertol.) Walp., Furcaria sabdariffa Ulbr., Hibiscus cruentus Bertol., Hibiscus fraternus L., Hibiscus palmatilobus Baill. and Sabdariffa rubra Kostel ( The Plant list, 2010) is commonly known as roselle, hibiscus, Jamaica sorrel or red sorrel (English) and in Arabic, karkadeh ( Ali et al., 2005 ; Ross, 2003). Its native distribution is uncertain, some believe that is from India or Saudi Arabia ( Ismail, Ikram, and Nazri, 2008), while Murdock ( Murdock, 1959) showed evidence that H.sabdariffa was domesticated by the black populations of western Sudan (Africa) sometime before 4000 BC. Nowadays, it is widely cultivated in both tropical and subtropical regions (Morton, 1987 and USDA, 2007) including India, Saudi Arabia, China, Malaysia, Indonesia, The Philippines, Vietnam, Sudan, Egypt, Nigeria and México (Chewonarin et al., 1999; Dung et al., 1999; Eslaminejad and Zakaria, 2011; Ismail et al., 2008; Mahran et al., 1979; Rao, 1996; Sharaf, 1962 and Yagoub Ael et al., 2004).

There are two main varieties of H.sabdariffa, the first being H.sabdariffa var. altissima Wester, cultivated for its jute-like fibre and the second is H.sabdariffa var. sabdariffa. The second variety includes shorter bushy forms, which have been described as races: bhagalpuriensi, intermedius, albus and ruber. The first variety has green, red-streaked, inedible calyces, while the second and third race have yellow-green edible calyces (var. ruber) and also yield fibre (Morton, 1987).

H.sabdariffa var. sabdariffa ruber is an annual, erect, bushy, herbaceous subshrub that can grow up to 8 ft (2.4 m) tall, with smooth or nearly smooth, cylindrical, typically red stems. The leaves are alternate, 3 to 5 in (7.5–12.5 cm) long, green with reddish veins and long or short petioles. The leaves of young seedlings and upper leaves of older plants are simple; lower leaves are deeply 3 to 5 or even 7 lobed; the margins are toothed. Flowers, borne singly in the leaf axils, are up to 5 in (12.5 cm) wide, yellow or buff with a rose or maroon eye, and turn pink as they wither at the end of the day. At this time, the typically red calyx, consisting of 5 large sepals with a collar (epicalyx) of 8 to 12 slim, pointed bracts (or bracteoles) around the base, begins to enlarge, becomes fleshy, crisp but juicy, 1 1/4 to 2 1/4 in (3.2–5.7 cm) long and fully encloses the velvety capsule, 1/2 to 3/4 in (1.25–2 cm) long, which is green when immature, 5-valved, with each valve containing 3 to 4 kidney-shaped, light-brown seeds, 1/8 to 3/16 in (3–5 mm) long and minutely downy. The capsule turns brown and splits open when mature and dry. The calyx, stems, and leaves are acid and closely resemble the cranberry (Vaccinium spp.) in flavor (Morton, 1987; Ross, 2003).



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How To Write Chapter Three Of Your Research Project (Research Methodology)

  • Methodology In Research Paper

    Chapter three of the research project or the research methodology is another significant part of the research project writing. In developing the chapter three of the research project, you state the purpose of research, research method you wish to adopt, the instruments to be used, where you will collect your data, types of data collection, and how you collected it.

    This chapter explains the different methods to be used in the research project. Here you mention the procedures and strategies you will employ in the study such as research design, study design in research, research area (area of the study), the population of the study, etc. You also tell the reader your research design methods, why you chose a particular method, method of analysis, how you planned to analyze your data.

    Your methodology should be written in a simple language such that other researchers can follow the method and arrive at the same conclusion or findings.

    You can choose a survey design when you want to survey a particular location or behavior by administering instruments such as structured questionnaires, interviews, or experimental; if you intend manipulating some variables.

    The purpose of chapter three (research methodology) is to give an experienced investigator enough information to replicate the study. Some supervisors do not understand this and require students to write what is in effect, a textbook.

    A research design is used to structure the research and to show how all of the major parts of the research project, including the sample, measures, and methods of assignment, work together to address the central research questions in the study. The chapter three should begin with a paragraph reiterating the purpose of research. It is very important that before choosing design methods try and ask yourself the following questions: Will I generate enough information that will help me to solve the research problem by adopting this method?

    Method vs Methodology

    I think the most appropriate in methods versus methodology is to think in terms of their inter-connectedness and relationship between both. You should not beging thinking so much about research methods without thinking of developing a research methodology.

    Metodologia or methodology is the consideration of your research objectives and the most effective method and approach to meet those objectives. That is to say that methodology in research paper is the first step in planning a research project work.

    Design Methodology: Methodological Approach

    Example of methodology in research paper, you are attempting to identify the influence of personality on a road accident, you may wish to look at different personality types, you may also look at accident records from the FRSC, you may also wish to look at the personality of drivers that are accident victims, once you adopt this method, you are already doing a survey, and that becomes your metodologia or methodology.

    Your methodology should aim to provide you with the information to allow you to come to some conclusions about the personalities that are susceptible to a road accident or those personality types that are likely to have a road accident.

    The following subjects may or may not be in the order required by a particular institution of higher education, but all of the subjects constitute a defensible in metodologia or methodology chapter.

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