Journal of Food, Agriculture and Environment

Chemical composition, antinociceptive and anti-inflammatory effects of Artemisia herba-alba essential oil


Esam Y. Qnais 1, 2*, Ahmad Z. Alatshan 1, Yousra G. Bseiso 1

Recieved Date: 2016-01-24, Accepted Date: 2016-03-27


Artemisia herba-alba Asso. (Asteraceae) is widely used in Jordan folk medicine for the treatment of different health disorders such as colds, diabetes mellitus, coughing and intestinal disturbances. This study investigated the antinociceptive and anti-inflammatory effect of the essential oil of Artemisia herba-alba in various experimental models. The acute toxicity of Artemisia herba-alba essential oil was also evaluated. The median lethal dose (LD50) of essential oil of Artemisia herba-alba was estimated using the method of Lorke. The antinociceptive effect was assessed using chemical (formalin and acetic acid) and thermal (hot-plate) nociceptive tests in rats. The anti-inflammatory effect was evaluated using subcutaneous air-pouch model in rats. In all experiments, essential oil of Artemisia herba-alba was administered intraperitoneally at the doses of 10, 31.6, 100, 316 and 1000 mg/kg. In this study, fifteen volatile compounds, representing 90.1% of total oil, were identified by GC-MS analysis of the essential oil obtained from the plant’s aerial parts. β-Thujone (9.19%), camphor (9.12%), and caryophyllene acetate (10.75%) were found to be the major volatile constituents of the oil. Pretreatment with essential oil of Artemisia herba-alba (10, 31.6, 100, 316 and 1000 mg/kg) caused significant analgesic effect in the acetic acid-induced writhing test, late phase of formalin induced paw licking, and hot plate latency assay. These effects were altered by naloxone (5 mg/kg, i.p.), atropine (1 mg/kg, i.p.) or L-NAME (3 mg/kg, i.p.). Essential oil of Artemisia herba-alba inhibited the inflammatory process induced by subcutaneous carrageenan injection by reducing cell migration, exudates volume, protein concentration, and inflammatory mediators (IL-6, TNF, PGE2 and NO) produced in the pouch. In the acute toxicity test, the value of LD50 for essential oil of Artemisia herba-alba was greater than 4000 mg/kg. Our results indicate that the essential oil of Artemisia herba-alba exhibits antinociceptive effects likely by opioid and cholinergic receptors and anti-inflammatory activity through the inhibition of nitric oxide and PGE2 production. The antinociceptive and anti-inflammatory activity of Jordan Artemisia herba-alba essential oil is described here for the first time.


Artemisia herba-alba, antinociceptive activity, anti-inflammatory activity, essential oil, opioid and cholinergic receptors

Journal: Journal of Food, Agriculture and Environment
Year: 2016
Volume: 14
Issue: 2
Category: Food and Health
Pages: 20-27

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