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J Ethnopharmacol. 2008 Jul 23;118(2):246-51. doi: 10.1016/j.jep.2008.04.005. Epub 2008 Apr 12.

Physalis angulata extract exerts anti-inflammatory effects in rats by inhibiting different pathways.

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  • 1Laboratório de Neuroquímica Molecular e Celular, Instituto de Ciências Biológicas, Universidade Federal do Pará, 66075-900 Belém, Pará, Brazil.


Physalis angulata is a popular medicine used in Brazil due to its anti-inflammatory effects, but the pharmacological mechanisms underlying these actions remain to be better understood. In the present work, lyophilized aqueous extract from the roots of Physalis angulata Linneu (AEPa) was used to control the inflammatory response induced by the injection of 1% carrageenan into subcutaneous rat's air pouches. Adenosine deaminase (ADA) activity, nitrite level, and prostaglandin E(2) (PGE(2)) level were used to evaluate the action of inflammatory mediators. Tumor growth factor-beta (TGF-beta) level was used as a bioindicator of immunomodulatory response. Rats were injected with vehicle, indomethacin, or AEPa (0.5 mg/kg, 1 mg/kg, and 5 mg/kg i.p.), 1h before carrageenan administration. AEPa at 0.5 mg/kg had no effect. However, 1mg/kg of AEPa showed significant anti-inflammatory effects, decreasing exudate volume, total number of inflammatory cells, ADA activity, nitrite level, and PGE(2) level in 50%, 41%, 20%, 60%, and 41%, respectively. The anti-inflammatory effects of 5 mg/kg AEPa appeared to be more effective than those of 1 mg/kg AEPa (84%, 80%, 43%, 70%, and 75%, respectively). In addition, TGF-beta level was upregulated to 9700 pg/ml after 5mg/kg AEPa, in comparison with 160 pg/ml in the vehicle-treated group, and 137 pg/ml in the indomethacin-treated group. The results indicate that AEPa exerts powerful anti-inflammatory and immunomodulatory activities, interfering with the cyclooxygenase pathway, lymphocyte proliferation, NO, and TGF-beta production.

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