Wiener Medizinische Wochenschrift

, Volume 163, Issue 3–4, pp 89–94 | Cite as

Characterization of anxiolytic and neuropharmacological activities of Silexan

  • Vikas KumarEmail author
main topic


Silexan is an essential oil produced from Lavandula angustifolia flowers with proven clinical efficacy for the treatment of anxiety disorders. The present study was conducted to assess its anxiolytic activity and to screen for neuropharmacological properties in rats and mice of either sex. Silexan (3, 10, and 30 mg/kg, intraperitoneally), lorazepam (5®mg/kg, p.o.), or diazepam (3®mg/kg, p.o.) were administered once daily for 7 consecutive days. Experiments were conducted 1 h after the last drug or vehicle administration. All the three doses of Silexan showed significant and dose-dependent anxiolytic activity in the used pharmacological models (open-field test, elevated plus-maze test, elevated zero-maze test, social interaction test, and novelty-induced suppressed feeding latency test), which was comparable to that of the standard anxiolytic agent lorazepam. In addition, Silexan amplified pentobarbital-induced sleeping time, but in contrast to diazepam was found to be devoid of any significant effect on locomotor activity and muscle-grip performance.


Lavandula angustifolia Lavender oil Anxiety disorders Pharmacology 

Charakterisierung anxiolytischer und neuropharmakologischer Aktivitäten von Silexan


Silexan ist ein ätherisches Öl aus Blüten von Lavandula angustifolia mit bewährter klinischer Wirksamkeit bei der Behandlung von Angststörungen. Ziel der vorliegenden Studie war es, die anxiolytische Aktivität und die neuropharmakologischen Eigenschaften von Silexan an Ratten und Mäusen beiderlei Geschlechts näher zu charakterisieren. Silexan (3, 10 und 30 mg/kg i.p.), Lorazepam (5 mg/kg p.o.) oder Diazepam (3 mg/kg p.o.) wurden einmal täglich für 7 aufeinanderfolgende Tage verabreicht. Die Experimente wurden 1 h nach der letzten Verabreichung der Medikamente bzw. des Vehikels durchgeführt. Alle drei Dosen von Silexan bewirkten eine signifikante und dosisabhängige anxiolytische Aktivität in den verwendeten pharmakologischen Modellen (Open-Field-Test, Elevated-Plus-Maze-Test, Elevated-Zero-Maze-Test, sozialer Interaktionstest, Neuheit-induzierte Hypophagie), die vergleichbar war mit der des Standardanxiolytikums Lorazepam. Silexan verstärkte außerdem die Pentobarbital-induzierte Schlafzeit, hatte im Gegensatz zu Diazepam aber keinen signifikanten Effekt auf die Bewegungsaktivität und die muskuläre Koordination.


Lavandula angustifolia Lavendelöl Angststörungen Pharmakologie 


Conflict of interest

The investigations were financially supported by Dr. Willmar Schwabe GmbH & Co. KG, Karlsruhe (Germany).


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Wien 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Neuropharmacology Laboratory, Department of Pharmaceutics, Indian Institute of TechnologyBanaras Hindu UniversityVaranasiIndia

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