Send to

Choose Destination
Am J Chin Med. 2012;40(4):753-68. doi: 10.1142/S0192415X12500565.

Antidepressant-like effect of Tagetes lucida Cav. extract in rats: involvement of the serotonergic system.

Author information

Experimental Biology Posgrade, Department of Biology of Reproduction, D.C.B.S., Universidad Autónoma Metropolitana Iztapalapa, México, DF, México.


It has been demonstrated that the decoction of the aerial parts of Tagetes lucida Cav. produces an antidepressant effect during the forced swimming test (FST) in rats. The aim of this study was to evaluate the effect of different organic extracts and one aqueous extract of the aerial parts of T. lucida on the FST. In addition, the possible involvement of the serotonergic system in the antidepressant-like effect of T. lucida in the FST was evaluated, as was its potential toxicological effect. The different extracts of T. lucida (methanol, hexane, dichloromethane and aqueous, 10 and 50 mg/kg), as well as fluoxetine (FLX, 5 mg/kg), were administered per os (p.o.) to rats for 14 days. All animals were subjected to the FST. Only the aqueous extract of T. lucida at a dose of 50 mg/kg significantly reduced immobility behavior and increased swimming in the FST, similar to FLX. Later, the aqueous extract of T. lucida (50mg/kg) was administered for 1, 7 and 14 days. An antidepressant effect was observed after 7 days of treatment. To evaluate the participation of the serotoninergic system, the animals were pretreated with PCPA, an inhibitor of serotonin synthesis (100 mg/kg/day for 4 consecutive days). The animals were treated with the aqueous extract of T. lucida (50 mg/kg) and FLX (5 mg/kg) 24 h after the final injection and were then subjected to the FST. Pretreatment with PCPA inhibited the antidepressant effect of both T. lucida and FLX. Finally, T. lucida was administered p.o. and intraperitoneal route to evaluate its acute toxicological effect. The aqueous extract of T. lucida, administered p.o., did not produce lethality or any significant changes in behavior. In conclusion, the aqueous extract of T. lucida manifested an antidepressant-like effect in the FST mediated by the serotonergic system, with no adverse effects when administered p.o.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Atypon
Loading ...
Support Center