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Keywords:

  • Ptychopetalum olacoides;
  • Marapuama;
  • Muirapuma;
  • anxiogenic;
  • hole-board;
  • rota-rod

Abstract

Alcohol infusions of roots of Ptychopetalum olacoides Benth. (PO), known as Marapuama or Muirapuama, are used in the Brazilian Amazon as a ‘nerve tonic’. Over the years PO has been found increasingly in phytoformulations and regarded as a stimulant, claimed to enhance physical and mental performances. This study determined that a P. olacoides ethanol extract (30, 100 and 300mg/kg) decreased exploratory behaviour in the hole-board test, without interfering with locomotion or motor coordination (rota-rod test). The data are comparable to that obtained with pentylenetetrazol (40 mg/kg), suggesting an anxiogenic effect of P. olacoides. Copyright © 2002 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.