Ethnobotanical Leaflets 12: 490-493.
Locomotor Activity of Leaf extracts of Pithecellobium
Sugumaran1 , T.Vetrichelvan1, S. Darline Quine2
College of Pharmacy,
Melmaruvathur �603319, TN, India
2Department of Chemistry, SASTRA
University, Thanjavur-147002, TN,
study Locomotor activity of aqueous and alcoholic extracts of leaves of Pithecellobium dulce Benth. Materials
and methods: CNS depressant activity of leaf extracts of P. dulce was evaluated using
actophotometer in albino mice. The potency of alcoholic and aqueous extracts
of leaf was compared with that of chlorpromazine at a dose of 100mg / kg. The
acute toxicity was determined using albino mice. Results: Both extracts
caused significant CNS depression action in albino mice. The activity of
alcoholic extract was more, when compared to chlorpromazine. Conclusion: CNS depression action of extracts may be due to
increase in the concentration of GABA in brain.
Key Words: Pithecellobium dulce, Locomotor activity, Chlorpromazine, GABA.
Pithecellobium dulce Benth.
(Leguminosae) is a small to medium sized, evergreen, spiny tree up to 18 m
height, native of tropical America
and cultivated throughout the plains of India
and in the Andamans. It is known as Vilayati babul in Hindi and Kodukkapuli
in Tamil. The bark of the plant is reported to be used as astringent in
dysentery, febrifuge and it is also useful in dermatitis and eye inflammation.
The leaves have been reported to possess astringent, emollient,
abortifiacient and antidiabetic properties. A steroid� saponin, lipids, phospholipids, glycosides,
glycolipids and polysaccharides have been reported from the seeds[2-5]. The
bark contains 37% of tannins of catechol type. Quericitin, kaempferol,
dulcitol and afezilin have� been
reported from the leaves[6,7]. Roots have been reported to possess estrogenic
activity . Studies on alkylated resins from seed oil have been reported
����������� The present investigation was
undertaken to study the CNS depressant
activity of aqueous and alcoholic extracts of this plant in mice by using
actophotometer and compared with that of chlorpromazine, a standard
Pithecellobium dulce fresh leaves were collected
from Sembulam Village
at� kancheepuram Dist.( Tamilnadu state
, India)� in the month of� January 2005.� The plant was identified by local people of
that village and authenticated by Dr. P. Jayaraman, Director, plant anatomy
research centre (PARC), chennai.� A
herbarium specimen of the plant was preserved (APCP-3/2005) in the Department
of pharmacognosy of our Institute for further reference.
�Adult swiss albino mice (25-30g)
of either sex maintained under standard condition (temperature: 23� � 2�C,
relative humidity:�� 55 �
10% and 12 hr light and dark place) was used for the experiment comprising of
six mice in each group. The animals were allowed standard laboratory feed and
water ad libitium. Ethical
clearance for performing the experiments on animals was obtained (Reg.
No.409/ 2001/CPCSEA, India)
from the Institutional Animal Ethics Committee (IAEC), adhiparasakthi college
of pharmacy, Melmaruvathur.��
of Aqueous and Alcoholic Extracts
leaves of P. dulce were washed with
water, air- dried at room temperature and then reduced to coarse powder. The
powdered mass of leaf was defatted with petroleum ether (60-80 c) followed by
extraction with alcohol (95% v/v) and water. The extracts were filtered and
the filtrates were concentrated under reduced pressure to obtain the extracts
as solid residues. The freshly prepared extracts were chemically tested for
the presence of different constituents using standard methods .
�Gross Behavioural and Toxicity Studies
Screening of CNS Depressant Activity
The CNS depressant activity  of
the extracts was evaluated by studying locomotor activity of mice using a
actophotometer. In this method, Swiss albino mice of either sex (25 - 30 gm)
were randomly distributed into�� four
groups of six animals each. Animals of the first group were placed individually
in the activity cage for 10 min and the activity was monitored. Then the
animals were given chlorpromazine 3mg/kg, intraperitoneally and were tested
again for activity 30 min after administration. The animals of the second and
third group were treated with ethanol and water extract, respectively at a
dose of 100 mg/kg, intraperitoneally and tested similarly. Percent decrease
in activities were calculated for each animal using the formula, percent
decrease in activity=(1-Wa/Wb)X100, where Wa
and Wb are average activity scores after and before drug
administra�tion, respectively and average decrease in activity was calculated
for all groups.
The data were analysed  using student's 't' test (paired), where
readings of the animals before drug administration served as control and the
level of significance was set at P<0.05.
Results and Discussion
�The fresh aqueous and alcoholic
extract of P. dulce gave positive
chemical reactions for glycosides, saponins, proteins, amino acids and flavonoids
etc. No toxic symptoms were observed for the drug up to of 2000mg/kg body
weight. So the dose of 100mg/kg was arbitrarily selected based on this
toxicity study. It was found that, both extracts significantly depressed (
Table 1)� the locomotor activity at the
tested dose level in mice. The activity was found to be maximum for alcoholic
extract and minimum for aqueous extract. Further the activity of alcoholic
extract was more when compared with chlorpromazine, a standard CNS
Table 1. Locomotor activity of leaf extracts of Pithecellobium dulce
��������� (10 min)
%� decrease in Activity
34 � 5.8
458 � 123.2
63.3 � 8.2*
43.3 � 10.4
Values are expressed as a mean �SEM ; P*<0.05 vs control; n=6
extracts produced reduction in spontaneous motor activity, and this effect
may be attributed to central nervous system depression, as depression of
locomotor activity is common to most neuroleptics. The better CNS depressant activity of the
alcoholic extract of P. dulce may
be due to increase in the concentration of GABA in brain .Further studies
on the exact chemical constituent responsible for CNS depressant activity is under
investigation in our lab.
authors are thankful to Arulthiru Bangaru Adigalar, President and Thirumathi
V. Lakshmi bangaru Adigalar, Vice president, Adhiparasakthi College of
Pharmacy, Melmaruvathur for providing necessary lab facilities to carry out
this research work.
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