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October 2021

J Ethnopharmacol. 1997 Jun; 57(1): 35-56.

Evaluation of some Samoan and Peruvian medicinal plants by prostaglandin biosynthesis and rat ear oedema assays.

Dunstan CA, Noreen Y, Serrano G, Cox PA, Perera P, Bohlin L.

Department of Pharmacy, Uppsala University, Sweden.

In our ongoing program to find new anti-inflammatory compounds, 58 extracts from 46 different medicinal plant species, used in treatment of inflammatory disorders-38 plants from the traditional medicine of Western Samoa and eight originating from the indigenous medicine of the Shipibo-Conibo tribe of Peruvian Amazonia-ere evaluated. The ability of all extracts to inhibit cyclooxygenase-1 catalysed prostaglandin biosynthesis in vitro was examined. Of the plant species tested 14 showed moderate to strong inhibition; including 11 Samoan and three Peruvian species. Further, 12 Samoan and all eight Peruvian species were investigated on their inhibitory activity of ethyl phenylpropiolate induced rat ear oedema in vivo. Significant activity was shown by 10 of the Samoan and by all eight Peruvian species. An additional evaluation of the most active species was provided through a compilation of existing literature documenting traditional medicinal uses, pharmacological activity and chemical constituents. Several known cyclooxygenase-1 inhibitors were reported to which the observed pharmacological activity can be attributed at least partly. The combination of chemical and pharmacological literature data and our experimental data may help to explain the anti-inflammatory use of these species in indigenous medicine.

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