A Comparative Study on Aphrodisiac Activity of Some Ayurvedic Herbs in Male Albino Rats

Abstract

The roots of Asparagus racemosus, Chlorophytum borivilianum, and rhizomes of Curculigo orchioides are popular for their aphrodisiac and immunostimulatory properties. The herbs have been traditionally used as Vajikaran Rasayana herbs because of their putative positive influence on sexual performance in humans. Lyophilized aqueous extracts obtained from the roots of A. racemosus, C. borivilianum, and rhizomes of C. orchioides were studied for sexual behavior effects in male albino rats and compared with untreated control group animals (total N = 60). The rats were evaluated for effect of treatments on anabolic effect. Seven measures of sexual behavior were evaluated. Administration of 200 mg/kg body weight of the aqueous extracts had pronounced anabolic effect in treated animals as evidenced by weight gains in the body and reproductive organs. There was a significant variation in the sexual behavior of animals as reflected by reduction of mount latency, ejaculation latency, post ejaculatory latency, intromission latency, and an increase of mount frequency. Penile erection (indicated by Penile Erection Index) was also considerably enhanced. Reduced hesitation time (an indicator of attraction towards female in treated rats) also indicated an improvement in sexual behavior of extract treated animals. The observed effects appear to be attributable to the testosterone-like effects of the extracts. Nitric oxide based intervention may also be involved as observable from the improved penile erection. The present results, therefore, support the folklore claim for the usefulness of these herbs and provide a scientific basis for their purported traditional usage.

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Acknowledgments

The authors are thankful to Nandan Agro Farms (Pvt. Ltd.) Hyderabad, A.P. India for providing gift sample of Chlorophytum borivilianum. We would also like to thank University Grants Commission for funding as major research project. The first author would like to acknowledge Professor Werner Praznik and Dr. Renate Loeppert for their support in phytochemical analysis and OEAD, Austria for North South Dialogue Scholarship.

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Correspondence to Vinod K. Dixit.

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Thakur, M., Chauhan, N.S., Bhargava, S. et al. A Comparative Study on Aphrodisiac Activity of Some Ayurvedic Herbs in Male Albino Rats. Arch Sex Behav 38, 1009–1015 (2009). https://doi.org/10.1007/s10508-008-9444-8

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Keywords

  • Asparagus racemosus
  • Chlorophytum borivilianum
  • Curculigo orchioides
  • Sexual stimulant