Document Type : Research articles


Department of Biology, Izeh Branch, Islamic Azad University, Izeh, Iran


Background: One of the most important herbal remedies in Iran is Echium amoenum L. It has been used in traditional Iranian pharmaceutical formulations and has provided an interesting area of research for various drug activities.
Objectives: The present study aimed to investigate the antidepressant and antianxiolytic effects of hydroalcoholic extract of Echium amoenum L. in a socially isolated model of male mice.
Methods: In this experimental study, 50 male Balb/c mice weighing 25 to 30 g were divided into five groups of 10 mice. The control group received normal saline. The treatment groups received the Echium amoenum L. hydroalcoholic extract for five days at doses of 50, 75, and 100 mg/kg via i.p injection and the negative control group received social isolation and normal saline.
Results: Echium amoenum L. hydroalcoholic extract at doses of 50, 75, and 100 mg/kg significantly reduced immobility in the forced swimming test in mice exposed to social isolation stress. Echium amoenum L. extract at doses of 75 and 100 mg/kg significantly increased the number of crossings in the center of the open-field box. The time of staying in the open arms increased significantly in groups receiving the extract at 50, 75, and 100 mg/kg. Treatment with Echium amoenum L. extract reduced the serum and brain tissue levels of nitric oxide and malondialdehyde in mice exposed to social isolation stress and enhanced the total antioxidant capacity of serum and brain tissue.
Conclusions: Modulating the nitric oxide system and reducing oxidative stress may be essential mechanisms of Echium amoenum L. extract in reducing depression and anxiety in mice.


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