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Journal of ethnopharmacology

Anticonvulsant, anxiolytic and sedative activities of the aqueous root extract of Securidaca longepedunculata Fresen.


PMID 20435127

Abstract

The objective of this study is to investigate the anticonvulsant, anxiolytic and sedative activities of the aqueous root extract of Securidaca longepedunculata. The anticonvulsant effect of the aqueous root extract (100, 200 and 400 mg/kg) was evaluated in mice using the strychnine- and picrotoxin-induced seizure models. Its anxiolytic activity was evaluated using the elevated plus maze (EPM) and the Y maze (YM) methods (Hogg, 1996; Yemitan and Adeyemi, 2003) while the hexobarbitone induced sleep and the hole board models were used to evaluate the sedative and exploratory activities in mice respectively. The acute toxicity studies and phytochemical analysis of the extract were also carried out. The extract (100-400 mg/kg) produced a significant (P<0.01) dose dependent increase in onset of convulsion compared to the control for strychnine- and picrotoxin-induced seizures. It also produced a significant (P<0.01) dose dependent prolongation of the cumulative time spent in the open arms of the elevated plus maze and Y maze compared with the control. The extract (100-400 mg/kg) produced significant (P<0.01) reduction in the time of onset of sleep induced by hexobarbitone. The prolongation of hexobarbitone sleeping time by the extract (200 mg/kg) was comparable to that produced by diazepam (3 mg/kg). At doses of 100-400 mg/kg, the extract produced a dose dependent decrease in exploratory activity of the mice. The reduction in exploratory activity produced by the extract (400 mg/kg) was greater than that of chlorpromazine (1 mg/kg). The results obtained from the experiments indicate that the extract has central nervous system depressant and anxiolytic activities. The LD(50) obtained for the acute toxicity studies using both oral and intraperitoneal routes of administration were 1.74 g/kg and 19.95 mg/kg respectively. These findings justify the use of Securidaca longepedunculata in traditional medicine for the management of convulsion and psychosis.

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