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Prunella vulgaris L., an Edible and Medicinal Plant, Attenuates Scopolamine-Induced Memory Impairment in Rats

Qu, Zhuo, Zhang, Jingze, Yang, Honggai, Gao, Jing, Chen, Hong, Liu, Changxiao, Gao, Wenyuan
Journal of agricultural and food chemistry 2017 v.65 no.2 pp. 291-300
Prunella vulgaris, acetylcholinesterase, beverages, brain, diarrhea, dietary supplements, ethyl acetate, herbal tea, males, medicinal plants, memory, mouth, rats, scopolamine, superoxide dismutase, transcription factor NF-kappa B
Prunella vulgaris L. is as a major plant in the Chinese traditional functional beverage Guangdong herbal tea for the treatment of fevers, diarrhea, and sore mouth. In this study, ethyl acetate parts of aqueous extracts from P. vulgaris L. (EtOAc-APV) were found to demonstrate potent acetylcholinesterase (AChE) inhibition in vitro. Therefore, this study was designed to further investigate the effects of EtOAc-APV on scopolamine (SCOP)-induced aging rats. Male Wistar rats were randomly divided into four groups (n = 12) and given orally by gavage EtOAc-APV (100 mg/kg) for 3 weeks. SCOP (1 mg/kg, ip) was administered to rats 30 min before starting behavioral tests consecutively for 3 days. EtOAc-APV could attenuate SCOP-induced brain senescence in rats by improving behavioral performance and decreasing brain cell damage, which was associated with a notable reduction in AChE activity and MDA level, as well as an increase in SOD and GPx activities. Additionally, EtOAc-APV administration could reduce the expression of NF-κB and GFAP, which showed an anti-neuroinflammatory effect on the SCOP-treated rat. Overall, the current study highlights P. vulgaris L. as an antidementia dietary supplement.