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Anti-inflammatory effects of seeds of the tropical fruit camu-camu (Myrciaria dubia).

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Laboratory of Nutraceuticals and Functional Foods Science, Graduate School of Marine Science and Technology, Tokyo University of Marine Science and Technology, Tokyo, Japan.


The methanolic extract of seeds of the tropical fruit camu-camu was screened for its anti-inflammatory activity in carrageenan-induced paw edema model mice. The extract significantly suppressed both the formation of edema in mice by oral administration and the release of nitric oxide from macrophage-derived RAW 264.7 cells in vitro. Based on the results of a spectroscopic analysis, the active compound was identified by in vivo bioassay-guided fractionation to be 3β-hydroxy-lup-20(29)-en-28-oic acid, betulinic acid, known as an anti-inflammatory triterpenoid. These findings suggest that camu-camu seed extract is a potentially useful material as a source of betulinic acid and as a functional food for prevention of immune-related diseases.

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