Nutrients (Oct 2020)

<i>Eurycoma longifolia</i>—Infused Coffee—An Oral Toxicity Study

  • Norzahirah Ahmad,
  • Bee Ping Teh,
  • Siti Zaleha Halim,
  • Nor Azlina Zolkifli,
  • Nurulfariza Ramli,
  • Hussin Muhammad

Journal volume & issue
Vol. 12, no. 3125
p. 3125


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Coffee infused with the additive Eurycomalongifolia, also known as Tongkat ali (TA), has become widely available in the Malaysian market. Safety evaluations for consumption of the products have been called for due to the herbal addition. This study investigates the acute, subacute and chronic effects of a commercial TA coffee in Sprague Dawley rats when given in a single, repeated and prolonged dosage. The dosages of 0.005, 0.05, 0.30 and 2 g/kg body weight (BW) were used in the acute study and 0.14, 0.29 and 1 g/kg BW were used in the repeated dose studies. The in-life parameters measured were food and water intake, body weight and clinical observations. Blood were collected for hematology and clinical biochemistry analyses. All animals were subjected to full necropsies. Non-toxicity-related changes were observed in the food and water consumption parameters. Body weight showed normal increments and none of the animals had any clinical signs of toxicity. Microscopically assessed organ tissues did not reveal any abnormalities. There was significant decrease of platelet count in all the chronic study male treated groups. Significant elevation of renal profile parameters in both gender groups given 0.29 g/kg BW, along with liver and lipid profile elevation in some female groups of the chronic study were noted. No dose-dependent relationship was apparent in the dosage range tested, though these changes may suggest an initial safety indication to the TA coffee. The study concludes that the no observed adverse effect level (NOAEL) for this commercial TA coffee was 1 g/kg BW.