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Biomedicine and pharmacotherapy
Volume 93
pages 383-390 (septembre 2017)
Doi : 10.1016/j.biopha.2017.06.064
Received : 4 May 2017 ;  accepted : 19 June 2017
Original Articles

Preclinical evidence of the anxiolytic and sedative-like activities of Tagetes erecta L. reinforces its ethnobotanical approach

Gimena Pérez-Ortega b , Guadalupe Esther Angeles-López a , Arturo Argueta-Villamar b , María Eva González-Trujano a,
a Laboratorio de Neurofarmacología de Productos Naturales, Dirección de Investigaciones en Neurociencias del Instituto Nacional de Psiquiatría Ramón de la Fuente. Calz. México-Xochimilco 101, Col. Sn Lorenzo Huipulco, 14370 Ciudad de México, Mexico 
b Centro Regional de Investigaciones Multidisciplinarias, Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México, Av. Universidad s/n, Circuito 2, C.P. 62210, Col. Chamilpa, Ciudad Universitaria de la Universidad Autónoma del Estado de Morelos, Cuernavaca, Morelos, Mexico 

Corresponding author at: Laboratorio de Neurofarmacología de Productos Naturales, Dirección de Investigaciones en Neurociencias, Instituto Nacional de Psiquiatría Ramón de la Fuente Muñíz, Calz. México-Xochimilco 101, Sn Lorenzo Huipulco, Tlalpan, 14370, México.Laboratorio de Neurofarmacología de Productos NaturalesDirección de Investigaciones en Neurociencias del Instituto Nacional de Psiquiatría Ramón de la FuenteCalz, México-Xochimilco 101Col. Sn Lorenzo HuipulcoCiudad de México14370Mexico

Morelos State is one of the regions of Mexico where several plant species are used in traditional medicine. Species from Tagetes genus (Asteraceae) are reported as useful in infusion to treat stomachache and intestinal diseases, but also as tranquilizers. In this study, medicinal uses of T. erecta including its depressant effect on the central nervous system (CNS) were explored by interviewing healers and merchants of local markets of Morelos State, and by investigation of the phytochemical and pharmacological tranquilizing properties. Specific anxiolytic and/or sedative-like responses of different doses of T. erecta (10, 30 and 100 or 300mg/kg, i.p.) were investigated using experimental models in mice such as: open-field, exploration cylinder, hole-board, and the barbituric-induced hypnosis potentiation. The possible anxiolytic mechanism of action was assessed in the presence of WAY100635 (0.32mg/kg, i.p.) and flumazenil (10mg/kg, i.p.), antagonists of 5-HT1A and GABA/BDZs receptors, respectively. Individual flavonoids reported in this species were also evaluated in these experimental models. As a result of this study, healers and merchants from ten local regions of Morelos State recommended T. erecta flowers as an infusion or as a tincture for several culture-bound syndromes associated with CNS, among others. Anxiolytic and sedative-like activities of the T. erecta aqueous and organic polar extracts were corroborated in these models associated to a participation of rutin, kaempferol, quercetin, kaempferitrin, and β-sitosterol constituents; where 5-HT1A , but not BDZs, receptors were involved as anxiolytic mechanism of action. These data support the anxiolytic and sedative-like properties of T. erecta in traditional medicine by involving mainly serotonergic neurotransmission because of the presence in part of flavonoids and the terpenoid β-sitosterol.

The full text of this article is available in PDF format.

Chemical compounds used in this study : Diazepam (PubChem CID: 3016), Flumazenil (PubChem CID: 3373), Sodium pentobarbital (PubChem CID: 23676152), WAY100635 maleate salt (PubChem CID: 11957721)

Keywords : Anxiolytic, Ethnobotany, Flavonoids, GABA, Pharmacology, Sedative, Serotonin, Tagetes erecta , Traditional medicine, Tranquilizers

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