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J Med Food. 2010 Apr;13(2):336-42. doi: 10.1089/jmf.2009.0079.

Preliminary studies on the antinociceptive activity of Vaccinium ashei berry in experimental animal models.

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Faculdade de Farmácia, Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Sul, Porto Alegre, Brazil.


The aim of this study was to carry out pharmacological screening in order to evaluate the potential effects of lyophilized fruits of different cultivars of Vaccinium ashei Reade (Family Ericaceae) berries, commonly known as rabbiteye blueberries, on nociception. This was achieved using the formalin, hot plate, tail-flick, and writhing tests in mice. During this experiment the mice consumed approximately 3.2-6.4 mg/kg/day (p.o.) of the anthocyanins. The extract was administered for 21 days or 60 minutes before test. Morphine and diclofenac (10 mg/kg, p.o.) as the standard drug (positive control) and water (via oral gavage) as the negative control were administered before all tests. The blueberry extract produced a significant decrease in constrictions induced by acetic acid and caused graded inhibition of the second phase of formalin-induced pain. Moreover, in both the hot plate and tail-flick tests, it significantly increased the threshold. These data suggest that the extract from V. ashei produced antinociceptive effects, as demonstrated in the experimental models of nociception in mice. Additional experiments are necessary in order to clarify the true target for the antinociceptive effects of rabbiteye blueberry extract.

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