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J Pharm Pharmacol. 1998 Dec; 50(12): 1425-9.

Antinociceptive effect in mice of a hydroalcoholic extract of Neurolaena lobata (L.) R. Br. and its organic fractions.

Gracioso JS, Paulo MQ, Hiruma Lima CA, Souza Brito AR.

Departamento de Farmacologia, F. de Ciências, Médicas, Universidade de Estudial de Campinas, SP, Brazil.

An infusion of the aerial parts of Neurolaena lobata (L.) R. Br. (Compositae-Asteraceae) is used in Caribbean folk medicine to treat several kinds of pain. In this investigation we studied the acute oral toxicity of the hydroalcoholic extract of the plant and the antinociceptive effect of the extract and of its hexane- and chloroform-partitioned fractions, given orally, in nociception and inflammatory models in mice. No signs of toxicity were observed for oral doses up to 5000 mg kg(-1) in mice. Morphine hydrochloride (100 mg kg(-1)), dipyrone sodium (200 mg kg(-1)), the hydroalcoholic extract (1000 mg kg(-1)), and its chloroform- and hexane-partitioned fractions (100 mg kg(-1)) significantly inhibited acetic acid-induced abdominal constriction in mice (100, 95, 47, 62 and 60% inhibition, respectively when compared with the negative control). In the hot-plate test in mice, morphine hydrochloride, the chloroform- and hexane-partitioned fractions, but not the hydroalcoholic extract, resulted in a significant latency increase in all observation times. In the acetic acid-induced abdominal constriction in mice, pretreatment of the animals with naloxone significantly reversed the analgesic effect of morphine, but not that of the hydroalcoholic extract or of its hexane- and chloroform-partitioned fractions. Finally, administration of the hexane- and chloroform-partitioned fractions (100 mg kg(-1)) had a significant anti-oedematogenic effect on carrageenan-induced oedema in mice. These data show that the hydroalcoholic extract of N. lobata and, in particular, its partitioned fractions have significant analgesic properties when assessed through these pain models. Their antinociceptive effect might be the result of interference with the inflammatory process.

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