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J Med Food. 2011 Sep;14(9):944-6. doi: 10.1089/jmf.2010.0159. Epub 2011 Jun 11.

Rosmarinus officinalis L. essential oil inhibits in vivo and in vitro leukocyte migration.

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Department of Pharmacy and Pharmacology, State University of Maringá, Maringá, Brazil.


Rosmarinus officinalis L. (Lamiaceae), popularly known as rosemary, is used for food flavoring and in folk medicine as an antispasmodic, analgesic, antirheumatic, diuretic, and antiepileptic agent. Few studies have shown the anti-inflammatory effects of rosemary essential oil (REO). This study evaluated the effects of REO on leukocyte migration through in vivo leukocyte migration and in vitro chemotaxis assay. REO was analyzed by using gas chromatography-mass spectometry, and the main components identified were camphor (27.59%), 1,8-cineole (15.74%), α-pinene (16.58%), and β-myrcene (10.02%). In rats, administration of REO reduced the number of leukocytes that rolled, adhered, and migrated to the scrotal chamber after carrageenan injection. All doses of REO tested significantly inhibited leukocyte chemotaxis induced by casein. The effects of REO on leukocyte migration highlight an important mechanism of the anti-inflammatory action of rosemary.

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