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Evid Based Complement Alternat Med. 2016;2016:6530364. doi: 10.1155/2016/6530364. Epub 2016 May 19.

Involvement of 5-HT1A Receptors in the Anxiolytic-Like Effects of Quercitrin and Evidence of the Involvement of the Monoaminergic System.

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1
School of Chinese Materia Medica, Beijing University of Chinese Medicine, Beijing 100102, China.
2
Key Laboratory of Mental Health, Institute of Psychology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100101, China.

Abstract

Quercitrin is a well-known flavonoid that is contained in Flos Albiziae, which has been used for the treatment of anxiety. The present study investigated the anxiolytic-like effects of quercitrin in experimental models of anxiety. Compared with the control group, repeated treatment with quercitrin (5.0 and 10.0 mg/kg/day, p.o.) for seven days significantly increased the percentage of entries into and time spent on the open arms of the elevated plus maze. In the light/dark box test, quercitrin exerted an anxiolytic-like effect at 5 and 10 mg/kg. In the marble-burying test, quercitrin (5.0 and 10.0 mg/kg) also exerted an anxiolytic-like effect. Furthermore, quercitrin did not affect spontaneous locomotor activity. The anxiolytic-like effects of quercitrin in the elevated plus maze and light/dark box test were blocked by the serotonin-1A (5-hydroxytryptamine-1A (5-HT1A)) receptor antagonist WAY-100635 (3.0 mg/kg, i.p.) but not by the γ-aminobutyric acid-A (GABAA) receptor antagonist flumazenil (0.5 mg/kg, i.p.). The levels of brain monoamines (5-HT and dopamine) and their metabolites (5-hydroxy-3-indoleacetic acid, 3,4-dihydroxyphenylacetic acid, and homovanillic acid) were decreased after quercitrin treatment. These data suggest that the anxiolytic-like effects of quercitrin might be mediated by 5-HT1A receptors but not by benzodiazepine site of GABAA receptors. The results of the neurochemical studies suggest that these effects are mediated by modulation of the levels of monoamine neurotransmitters.

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