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Pharm Biol. 2017 Dec;55(1):1569-1576. doi: 10.1080/13880209.2017.1310908.

Pharmacological evaluation of the anxiolytic-like effects of Lippia graveolens and bioactive compounds.

Author information

1
a Laboratorio de Neurofarmacología de Productos Naturales, Dirección de Investigaciones en Neurociencias , Instituto Nacional de Psiquiatría Ramón de la Fuente Muñiz , Mexico City , Mexico.
2
b Laboratorio de Fitoquímica, Departamento de Ecología y Recursos Naturales. Facultad de Ciencias , Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México, Ciudad Universitaria Coyoacán , Mexico city , Mexico.
3
c Centro Conjunto de Investigación en Química Sustentable, Toluca, Estado de México, México. Instituto de Química, Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México.

Abstract

CONTEXT:

Lippia species (Verbenaceae) are widely used in Latin America and Africa as folk medicine for their tranquilizing properties.

OBJECTIVE:

To evaluate the anxiolytic-like effects and safety of Lippia graveolens Kunth. by exploring its aqueous and organic leaf extracts and identifying the responsible chemical constituents.

MATERIAL AND METHODS:

Aqueous and organic extracts (hexane, ethyl acetate and methanol) were pharmacologically evaluated at several doses. Chemical constituents were identified using MS, NMR and GC-MS analysis. The isolated compounds (3 mg/kg, i.p.), extracts (1, 3, 10 and 30 mg/kg, i.p.), and the reference drug diazepam (0.1 mg/kg, i.p.) were assessed in CD-1 mice using experimental behavioural models: open-field, cylinder, hole-board, plus-maze and sodium pentobarbital-induced hypnosis, as well as their acute toxicity (LD50).

RESULTS:

After administration of the extracts and bioactive compounds, a significant anxiolytic-like response from 1 mg/kg, i.p. was observed, resembling the effect of diazepam. Major presence of thymol (33.40%) was observed in the hexane extract; whereas for the first time in this species a p-cymene + thymol mixture (9.78%), naringenin (0.18%) and cirsimaritin (1.16%) were obtained as bioactive constituents of the ethyl acetate crude extract. Acute toxicity was calculated to be LD50 = 1000 mg/kg for the crude hexane extract, lower in comparison to the other extracts analyzed (LD50 > 2000 mg/kg).

DISCUSSION AND CONCLUSION:

Our results suggest that L. graveolens exerts anxiolytic-like activity involving many kinds of constituents, mainly of the terpenoid and flavonoid nature. These results reinforce the potential use of this species in the therapy of anxiety.

KEYWORDS:

Anxiety; Mexican traditional medicine; cirsimaritin; naringenin; terpenoid; verbenaceae

PMID:
28385098
PMCID:
PMC6130579
DOI:
10.1080/13880209.2017.1310908
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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