Analgesic activity of the ethanol extract of Curcuma longa rhizome and its mechanism of action

G F Ibironke, I O Owemidu


This study examined the antinociceptive activity and mechanism of action of the ethanol extract of  Curcuma longa  rhizome using animal models of thermal (tail flick and hot plate) and chemical (acetic acid writhing and formalin) tests of  nociception.  The mechanism of action was investigated using adrenergic and opioid receptor blockers. The extract (50-150 mg/kg) given intraperitoneally (i.p)  30 minutes to the test produced a dose dependent inhibition of both the acetic acid induced writhing and formalin licking  in the chemical tests. In the thermal tests, the extract produced a prolongation of both the hot plate  and tail withdrawal latencies.  Prior administration of both the adrenergic receptor antagonists (prazosin and propranolol) and  opioid receptor blocker (naloxone)  did not produce any significant changes in these observations. These result showed that the antinociceptive activity of  Curcuma longa  is non-adrenergic and non-opioid dependent.

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