Passiflora caerulea L. fruit extract and its metabolites ameliorate epileptic seizure, cognitive deficit and oxidative stress in pilocarpine-induced epileptic mice

  • G. Smilin Bell Aseervatham
  • E. Abbirami
  • T. SivasudhaEmail author
  • K. RuckmaniEmail author
Original Article


The anticonvulsant potential of aqueous fruit extract of Passiflora caerulea (PCAE) was evaluated in swiss albino mice induced by pilocarpine. The antioxidant activities of PCAE were determined which showed strong antioxidant activity and the polyphenol compounds such as ginsenoside, naringenin, chrysoeriol 8-c-glucoside, luteolin-6-C-glucoside, apigenin-6,8-di-C-β-D-glucopyranoside were profiled through RP-HPLC and UPLC-ESI-MS/MS. Chronic effects of PCAE on pilocarpine (85 mg/kg; i.p)-induced convulsions were evaluated in Swiss adult male albino mice. PCAE at 100 and 200 mg/kg, (p.o.) and diazepam (5 mg/kg, i.p) were administered once daily for 15 days. In Y-maze test, percentage of correct entry by pilocarpine administered animals were significantly lower when compared to control, whereas PCAE at both doses improved the alteration score significantly. Administration of higher dose (200 mg/kg) of PCAE significantly delayed onset of convulsions and decreased duration of clonic convulsions. Association of ROS production during seizure period was further confirmed by histopathological studies revealing loss of normal neuronal cells in hippocampus region. The data obtained showed anticonvulsant activity and improved cognitive function; reduced the oxidative damage and significantly activated the cholinergic neurotransmission in a dose dependent manner similar to diazepam which is evident in the biochemical parameters and histopathological study, suggesting therapeutic potential for epilepsy and neurodegeneration.


Epilepsy Passiflora caerulea Antioxidant Hippocampus Y-maze 



2,2′-azino-bis (3-ethylbenzothiozoline-6-sulfonic acid)




Antiepileptic drugs


Butyled hydroxytoulene


Cornu ammonis






Central nervous system


2, 2-diphenyl-1-picrylhydrazyl


5,5′-dithiobis (2-nitrobenzoic acid)


Ethylenediaminetetraacetic acid


Gallic acid equivalents




Hydrogen peroxide


Lipid peroxidation




Sodium nitrite


N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor


Nitric oxide




Passiflora caerulea aqueous extract


Quercetin equivalents


Sodium dodecyl sulfate


Sodium nitroprusside


Superoxide dismutase


Thiobarbituric acid


Thiobarbituric acid-reactive species


Total flavonoid content


Total phenolic content



The authors are thankful to the Department of Environmental Biotechnology, Bharathidasan University and PG Research Department of Biotechnology and Bioinformatics, Holy Cross College (Autonomous) Tiruchirappalli, Tamilnadu for providing necessary facilities to carry out this research work. We also thank DST sponsored, National Facility for Drug Development (NFDD), Anna University, BIT Campus, Tiruchirappalli, Tamilnadu (VI/D&P/349/10-11/TDT/1). Authors are also grateful to thank sophisticated analytical instrumental facilities (SAIF), Central Drug Research Institute, Lucknow for helping us in analytical studies. Also we thank UGC - Non SAP and DST-FIST, Govt of India for providing instrumental facilities.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that there are no conflicts of interest.


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Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.National Facility for Drug Development for Academia, Pharmaceutical and Allied Industries, Centre for Excellence in Nanobio Translational REsearch (CENTRE)Anna UniversityTiruchirappalliIndia
  2. 2.PG and Research Department of Biotechnology & Bioinformatics, Holy Cross College (Autonomous)Bharathidasan UniversityTiruchirappalliIndia
  3. 3.Department of Environmental BiotechnologyBharathidasan UniversityTiruchirappalliIndia
  4. 4.Department of Pharmaceutical TechnologyAnna UniversityTiruchirappalliIndia

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