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Landolphia owariensis - Congo Rubber Plant - Seeds


The proximate composition of the leaves of Landolphiaowerienceswere investigated.Landolphiaowerienceswhich belongs to the family of Apocynaceae commonly known as white rubber vine. Proximate analysis of the leaves using the AOAC Method (2005) showed that it contained moisture (8.09± 0.21) %, protein (15.86±1.46) %, the ash (4.74±0.14) % and fat (1.07±0.42) %, Crude fiber (32.51±1.15) %, total carbohydrate (nitrogen free extract) (37.74±2.01) %, soluble carbohydrate (11.59±0.69) % content. Itindicates that the leaves are good for human consumption.


Table of Contents


Declaration. iii

Certification. iv

Dedication. v

Acknowledgement vi



1.0            INTRODUCTION.. 1

1.1            Background to the Study. 1

1.2            Statement of Research Problem.. 4

1.3            Aim and Objectives. 4

1.4            Justification of Study. 5


2.0            LITERATURE REVIEW… 6

2.1            Introduction. 6

2.2            History of Landolphia Owariensis. 6

2.3            Medicinal Uses of Landolphia Oweriences. 8

2.4            Proximate Analysis. 9

2.4.1                  Moisture Content 9

2.4.2.                Ash Content 10

2.4.3                  Crude Fibre. 11

2.4.4                  Fat 12

2.4.5                  Crude Protein. 13

2.4.6                  Carbohydrate (Nitrogen Free Extract (NFE)) 14

2.4.7    Soluble Carbohydrate. 15


3.0            MATERIALS AND METHODS. 16

3.1            Collection of Sample and Identification. 16

3.1.1                  List of Apparatus/ Equipment 16

3.1.2                  REAGENTS. 17

3.2            Methods. 18

3.2.1                  Moisture content 18

3.2.2                  Ash content 18

3.2.3                  Crude fiber content 19

3.2.4                  Crude fat content 20

3.2.5                  Crude protein content 20

3.2.6                  Carbohydrate/Nitrogen Free Extract (NFE) 21

3.2.7                  Soluble carbohydrate. 22


4.0            RESULTS AND DISCUSSION.. 24

4.1            Introduction. 24

4.2            DISCUSSION.. 26



5.1            Conclusion. 28

5.2            RECOMMENDATION.. 28









1.1       Background to the Study

The medicines, food, fibre, shelters and other items that are used by humans are mainly supplied by plants (Hemingway, 2004). The plant parts that are used are leaves, stem, roots, flowers, fruits and seeds. Plants serve as important constituents of human diet supplying the body with carbohydrates, proteins, vitamins, mineral salts, lipids and water. Edible fruits contain various nutritive substances among which the most important are minerals, organic constituents, vitamin C and growth substances (Louraet al., 2000). Seeds have nutritive and calorific values which make them necessary in diets (Odoememlam, 2005).The plant part commonly eaten is the seeds which are either cooked or eaten raw. Some nuts, grains and seeds such as pumpkin seeds, cashew nuts, almonds, buckwheat, coconut, flax seed, millet, oats, peanuts, rye, sunflower seeds and amaranth have high calorific values and are also rich in protein, dietary fiber and minerals – manly potassium and phosphorus (Decupere, 2011).

The fruits and seeds contribute to the enhancement of nutrition, a better family income and the economy of the country. Moreover, seeds and fruits are good sources of vitamins and minerals. The importance of vitamins and minerals cannot be overemphasized. Vitamins and minerals make peoples bodies work properly. Although you get vitamins and minerals from the foods you eat every day, some foods have more vitamins and minerals than others (Kidshealth, 2011).

Landolphiaowariensis is a shrub in the savanna or a huge liane of secondary deciduous and dense forests, attaining 100m long by over 1m girth, occurring from Guinea to West Cameroons and extending across central Africa to Suda, Uganda and South Tanganyika. Landolphiaowariensis is known to have history of use for soothing injured mucous membranes in the digestive tract. It serves not only as lubricant but equally more important as a protective barrier between the mucosal surface and the luminal contents (Owoyeleet al., 2001). The antiulcer properties and the use of Landolphiaoweriensisexrtracts for the treatment of ulcerogenesis and gastric mucosal injury is linked to the reported presence of flavonoidal compounds in Landolphiaoweriensis.  The extract from the stem bark of Landolphiaoweriensis has been found to possess the ability to destroy parasitic worms from the body.

The crude extract of Landolphiaoweriensisleaf has been found to exhibit very high anti-inflammatory activity. This activity may be linked with the presence of polyphonolic compounds in the extract of Landolphiaoweriensis (Owoyeleet al., 2001). Liver function tests revealed that the serum activities of alanine aminotransferrase (ALT), aspertate aminotransferase (AST) and alkaline phosphate (ALP) as well as the concentration of total protein and albumin were not significantly (P>0.05) affected by the oral administration of the extract. This result suggests that Landolphiaoweriensis leaf extract is not hepatotoxic (Nwoguet al., 2008). Study has shown that the aqueous methanol and chloroform extracts of Landolphiaoweriensis leaf have moderate analgesic activity and reduce sensitivity to pain (Owoyeleet al., 2001). The folkloric use of Landolphiaoweriensis as an antimicrobial agent has been validated by the researchers. Its leaves, stem and roots are of great value in the indigenous treatment of various ailments.

Medicinal plant research starts by people carrying out general screening of plants which are collected either randomly or based on local reputations as medicinal plants after botanically identified by a reputable authority or plant taxonomist. This screening consists mainly of solvent extraction and standard tests of the extracts for the presence of such class of compounds or secondary metabolites as alkaloids, saponins and phenolic compounds. The World Health Organization (WHO) estimates that 80 percent of the population in several Asian and African nations currently uses herbal medicine for some part of primary health care (Beltrame et al., 2002). According to studies conducted in the United States and Europe, the use of herbal medicine is less prevalent in clinical settings, but has grown in popularity in recent years as scientific evidence of its efficacy has become more publicly available (Rashrash, et al., 2017).

Proximate analysis can also be seen as the determination of the major component of foods. Which include moisture, lipid (fat), ash, protein, carbohydrate, fiber and volatile matter. In a practical term the methods used for the determination of the different food compositions do not only vary according to the food materials being studied but also in details of evaluation procedure. These methods were evolved through studies of the inherent properties of the component of interest and exploring the unique advantage such properties have over others, thus allowing the component to be either isolated or estimated. Proximate analysis refers to the quantitative analysis of macro molecules in food (Wikipedia, 2021).

Moisture and fat for example are separated from other component by heat and organic solvent respectively. Protein is indirectly determined as total nitrogen by kjedahl method, ash and fiber determination involve step wise elimination of other components until the product of interest is arrived at these methods are however not in any way perfect but act as guide for empirical estimation. Moisture result from drying method may include other volatile matter such as essential oils, trace of volatile acid and amines. In most of these determinations allowance has to be made for interference arising from the food itself a contamination reagent. It therefore becomes necessary to replicate each experimental determination and also to run a blank determination to compensate for errors (Rudushkin, et al., 2010).


1.2       Statement of Research Problem

The decoction of leaves is used as a purgative and to cure malaria, root is soaked in local gin for about a week and the extract is given two full wine glasses a day to cure gonorrhea (Gill, 1992). The latex is drunk or used in French Equatorial Africa is an enema for intestinal worms and in parts of Ivory Coast, the latex forms an ingredient arrow poison (Owoyeleet al., 2001). The leaf extracts have also been used for treating ulcer, inflammation and pains. The leaves are boiled in some parts for application to sprains. In Congo, the sap expressed from the leaves is dripped into the eyes and used to wash patient’s face in a treatment for giddiness. The sap is also rubbed with massage into scarifications over areas of oedema and rheumatism (Owoyeleet al., 2001). There is limited data available on the nutritional content of landolphiaoweriencesleaves, which are commonly used as a food source in West Africa.

The research aims to investigate the proximate, nutritive and dietary fibre composition of Landolphiaoweriensis leaves for the purpose of determining its nutritional status and provide valuable information for public health initiatives.



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