Iranian Journal of Pharmaceutical Research (2004): Supplement 2:
2nd International Congress on Traditional Medicine and Materia Medica
Review on some Lamiaceae plants of Iranian traditional and folk medicines with anti-inflammatory activity
Ghannadi A., Hajhashemi V.
Department of Pharmacognosy, School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences, Isfahan University of Medical Sciences, Isfahan, Iran
It is estimated that 80% of people in developing countries are completely dependent on traditional and folk medicines for their health care. The contribution of medicinal plants and natural products as drugs or as sources of useful drugs in medicine is unquestionable. There are many reports of medicinal plants capable of interfering with the pathophysiological processes in inflammation. Plant extracts may be considered a potential candidate for investigation as either lead structure of anti-inflammatory drugs. A lot of Iranian medicinal plants, traditionally used for thousands of years, are presenting a group of herbal products proposed for their anti-inflammatory activities. Evaluation of the pharmacological effects of herbal extracts can still be used as a logical research strategy for searching of new drugs.
In this paper four Iranian Lamiaceae plants (Satureja hortensis L., Lavandula angustifolia Mill., Salvia hydrangea DC. ex Benth. and Stachys lavandulifolia Vahl.) are viewed for their historical, phytochemical and pharmacological aspects. These plants have been widely used in foods and in Iranian folk medicine as anti-inflammatory remedies. The plants described contain anti-inflammatory principles that can explain their use in Iranian traditional medicine in the past as well as the present. In order to identify the plants with anti-inflammatory activity, they have been examined. For their evaluations, hydroalcoholic extracts, polyphenolic fractions and essential oils of the herbs were prepared with standard pharmacopoeial methods and their anti-inflammatory activities were studied in rats using carrageenan-induced paw oedema test.
Most of the herbal fractions inhibited carrageenan-induced paw oedema in low doses.
Results confirm the traditional uses of most of the plants for treatment of inflammatory conditions and calls for further investigations to determine the active chemical constituents. Flavonoids and monoterpenes probably have important roles in these pharmacological effects.