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Keywords:

  • Bixa orellana;
  • hypolipemic;
  • fructose;
  • Triton;
  • ethanol

Bixa orellana L., urucum, or urucu, a native tropical tree of Central and South American rain forests is used to treat various diseases in popular medicine. In Ceará, Northeast of Brazil, the seeds of urucum have been used for the treatment of high lipid blood levels. The present study investigated the effects of the aqueous extract from Bixa orellana seeds (AEBO) in mice with hyperlipidemia induced by tyloxapol, fructose and ethanol. In hyperlipidemia induced by Triton WR1339, 400 and 800 mg/kg AEBO reduced triglycerides (TG) serum levels at 24 h and 48 h. In the study of hypertriglyceridemia induced by fructose, AEBO in doses of 400 mg/kg and 800 mg/kg reduced TG levels by 48.2% and 48.7%, respectively. Finally, the ethanol experimental model with 400 mg/kg AEBO promoted a reduction of 33.6% of TG levels, while the 800 mg/kg concentration reduced hypertriglyceridemia in 62.2%. In conclusion, the aqueous extract of the seeds of Bixa orellana was capable of reversing the hypertriglyceridemia induced by Triton, fructose and ethanol, demonstrating a hypolipidemic effect. However, further studies are necessary to discover the precise mechanism of action. Copyright © 2012 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.