1Department of Traditional Pharmacy, Faculty of Traditional Medicine, Tehran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran
2Department of Drug and Food Control, Faculty of Pharmacy, Tehran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran
3Faculty of Traditional Medicine, Tehran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran
4Shahid Beheshti University of Medical sciences, Neuroscience Research Center
5NeuroBiology Research Center, Shahid Beheshti University of Medical Sciences
6Tehran University of Medical Sciences, Faculty of Traditional Medicine, Traditional Pharmacy
7Department of Pharmacology and Toxicology, Faculty of Pharmacy, and Pharmaceutical Sciences Research Center, Tehran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran
“VARD” formula consisting of Rosa damascena Mill. (Rosaceae) petal, and rhizomes of Glycyrrhiza glabra L. (Papilionaceae) and Nardostachys jatamansi DC. (Valerianaceae), has been proposed for gastric ulcer in Iranian traditional medicine. We investigated the antiulcer activity of each plant separately and in combination. The biochemical and molecular function of extracts was also evaluated. Each plant hydroalcoholic extract was standardized via determination of total phenolic and flavonoid, also phenolic compounds determination and specially glycyrrhizic acid in G. glabra by using HPLC. Rats received orally extracts of the plants (20, 40, and 80 mg/kg) and “VARD” (45 mg/kg) 1 h before ethanol administration. Two hours after receiving ethanol, animals were sacrificed; the stomach was removed for macroscopic and microscopic assessment. Also heme-oxygenase-1, glutathione, and catalase were measured in the gastric tissue of the rats pretreated by “VARD” and dose of 20 mg/kg of extracts. Among three extracts, R. damascena and G. glabra contained more total phenolic and flavonoid content respectively. Gallic acid was prominent compound in R. damascena. The extracts of R. damascena, G. glabra, and N. jatamansi significantly decreased ulcer index. ED50 values were 8.2, 31.86 and 25.08 mg/kg respectively. “VARD” significantly decreased ulcer index compared to 20 mg/kg of G. glabra (p < 0.0001) and N. jatamansi (p < 0.001). Pretreatment with “VARD” and each plant extracts (20 mg/kg) increased glutathione, catalse and heme-oxygenase-1 significantly (p < 0.05) in comparison with control group. Our findings indicate that “VARD” partly via antioxidant activity can be considered as an effective antiulcer formula.