BACKGROUND: The geographic map of cancer prevalence differs due to environmental and dietary factors in various populations. High prevalence of a number of cancers in some regions is thought to be attributed to local dietary habits. Dorema aucheri (Bilhar) is used commonly as an herbal medicine in some regions including Iran. The aim of this study was to evaluate whether Dorema aucheri has carcinogenic effects in albino mice or not.METHODS: The Dorema aucheri leaves were extracted by Soxhlet method and were injected intraperitoneally and randomly into 28 healthy albino mice which were divided into seven groups. One was put aside as the non-injected control group. The second control group was chosen to be injected by a known carcinogen. Another group was injected by carcinogen and then, Bilhar extract. The left four groups were injected the extracts in a dose- dependent manner, increasingly in the range of 0.4–3.2mL/kg. Extract injections were repeated every 48- hour intervals for three times. Then, liver and serum samples were analyzed biochemically and pathologically.RESULTS: The pathologic and biochemical studies showed that the injection of plant extracts caused necrosis, inflammation of the liver tissue, cell proliferation, cholestasis, and there were significant increases in release of liver enzymes [ALP, ALT (SGPT) and AST (SGOT)] and bilirubin compared to the non-injected control group. The level of liver damage was dose dependent.CONCLUSIONS: Dorema aucheri has potential hepatotoxic capacities and possibly this may be related to the high prevalence of cancer in some regions of Iran.