The indiscriminate use of pesticide is a treat to non-target organisms. This study evaluates the haematological and biochemical changes induced by inhalation of local Nigerian dichlorvos insecticide on rats. The rats were randomly assigned to a control group which received only food and water and a test group which, in addition to food and water, was exposed to the pesticide for a period of 4 h daily for 28 days, after which exposure was discontinued for seven days. Five animals were sacrificed from each group on days 1, 7, 14, 21, 28 and 35, and blood was collected by cardiac puncture for haematological, biochemical and antioxidant analysis. Results obtained showed lowered values of red blood cell count (RBC), packed cell volume (PCV), haemoglobin, mean cell haemoglobin (MCH) and mean cell haemoglobin concentration (MCHC) (p
< 0.05) with increased white blood cell count (WBC) and platelet counts after day 14 when compared to the control group. Liver enzymes aspartate amino transaminase (AST) and alanine amino transaminase (ALT) were higher in the exposed rats compared to the control group (p
< 0.05). Urea and creatinine concentrations increased significantly after day 1 and at day 28, while superoxide dismutase (SOD), gluthathione (GSH) and catalase (CAT) activity increased significantly compared to the control after day 1, day 14 and day 21, respectively. The RBC, PCV and haemoglobin values of all exposed rats were restored to normal following withdrawal of the pesticide, though AST, ALT, urea, creatinine and, glutathione values remained significantly high compared to the control. Inhalation of the local insecticide is toxic to the blood, liver and kidney of laboratory rats and may be deleterious to human health following long-term exposure.
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