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J Ethnopharmacol. 2002 Feb;79(2):265-72.

Anti-inflammatory and cicatrizing activity of Echinacea pallida Nutt. root extract.

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  • 1Department of Pharmacology, University of Bologna, Via Irnerio, 48, 40126 Bologna, Italy.


Among the different species belonging to the Echinacea family, largely used in traditional medicine, Echinacea pallida, Echinacea purpurea and Echinacea angustifolia were investigated. These different species, due to their difficult identification, were commonly confused in the past and probably used indifferently for the same therapeutic purposes. In fact, the three species have in common, some pharmacological activities, based on the presence of active compounds that act additively and synergistically. Nevertheless, the composition of each species has slight variation in the amount of each active component. In particular, echinacoside, a caffeoyl derivative, is present in E. pallida and only in traces in E. angustifolia. It seems to have protective effects on skin connective tissue and to enhance wound healing. The anti-inflammatory and wound healing activities of echinacoside, compared with the ones of the total root extract of E. pallida and E. angustifolia, were examined in rats, after topical application. The tissues of the treated animals were evaluated after 24, 48 and 72 h treatment and excised for histological observation at the end of the experiment. Results confirm the good anti-inflammatory and wound healing properties of E. pallida and of its constituent echinacoside, with respect to E. purpurea and control. This activity probably resides in the antihyaluronidase activity of echinacoside.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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