Anxiolytic and sedative effects of essential oil from Casimiroa pringlei on Wistar rats Article uri icon


  • The genus Casimiroa (Rutaceae) is native from Mexico and Central America, and Casimiroa pringlei (S. Watson) Engl. has been employed since prehispanic times in infusions and macerations to induce sleep and as an anxiolytic. Considering the folk use of C. pringlei, the purpose of the study was to evaluate the behavioral effects of essential oil from C. pringlei (EOCp) on an animal model. After EOCp extraction, two doses were orally administered to groups of Wistar rats, and their effects were compared with those produced by a conventional anxiolytic (bromazepam, 0.023 mg/kg) and by an anxiogenic compound (caffeine, 20 mg/kg). In the Irwin test, EOCp (795 mg/kg) induced similar behavioral, sensory and motor effects to those induced by bromazepam, and significantly different from the effects of caffeine administration. While in the elevated plus-maze EOCp increased exploration of the open arms without decreasing spontaneous activity in the open field, a higher dose (1000 mg/kg) significantly reduced open field activity. The hole-board test confirmed a significant anxiolytic effect of EOCp. These findings demonstrate the sedative and anxiolytic properties of C. pringlei in rats, and they represent the first evaluation of its traditional use as a medication. © 2009 Academic Journals.

publication date

  • 2009-01-01