Reproductive Biology Section, Indian Institute of Experimental Medicine, Calcutta-700032, India
(Received 19th August 1974)
The crude benzene extract of the stem of Achyranthes aspera (Amaranthaceae), an indigenous herb in India, has been found to possess a significant antifertility effect (Pakrashi, Basak & Mookerji, 1975). The follow-up work to locate the active principle is reported in this communication.
Colony-bred Swiss albino mice of proven fertility were caged in the ratio of one male to two females. The day on which a vaginal plug and spermatozoa were detected was taken as Day 1 of pregnancy. The test samples were dissolved in olive oil and administered orally. The chromatographic fractions were all tested on Day 6 of pregnancy, and laparotomy was performed under ether anaesthesia, usually on Day 10 but sometimes earlier.
The dried and crushed plant material was defatted with petroleum ether and then extracted with benzene in a Soxhlet apparatus. The
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