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Effect of Boswellia serrata on Antioxidant Status in an Experimental Model of Colitis Rats Induced by Acetic Acid


Aim of the Study

To evaluate the antioxidant effect of an extract of the plant Boswellia serrata in an experimental model of acute ulcerative colitis induced by administration of acetic acid (AA) in rats.

Materials and Methods

The extract of B. serrata (34.2 mg/kg/day) was administered orally by gavage for 2 days before and after induction of colitis with AA diluted to 4 % and in a volume of 4 ml.


The anal sphincter pressure in the groups treated with B. serrata showed a significant increase compared to the colitis group (P < 0.001). Histological analysis of treated animals showed less edema with preservation of mucosal crypts. Lipid peroxidation showed a significant decrease in the treated groups compared to the colitis group (P < 0.001). The superoxide dismutase (SOD) enzyme activity showed a significant reduction in the treated groups compared to the colitis group (P < 0.001), the glutathione peroxidase (GPx) significantly increased in the treated groups compared to colitis group (P < 0.05), and the same was the result for enzyme activity glutathione (GSH; P < 0.05).


The extract of B. serrata has active antioxidant substances that exert protective effects in acute experimental colitis.

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Fig. 1
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One-way analysis of variance


Glutathione peroxidase




Inflammatory bowel disease


Inducible nitric oxide


Lipid peroxidation


Nitric oxide


Reactive oxygen species


Superoxide dismutase


Ulcerative colitis


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Supported by grants from the Brazilian agencies Coordenação de Aperfeiçoamento de Pessoal de Nível Superior (CAPES), Fundo de Incentivo à Pesquisa e Eventos (FIPE/ proj nº 110215) of the Hospital de Clínicas de Porto Alegre (HCPA), and Laboratório de Hepatologia e Gastroenterologia Experimental (HCPA/UFRGS) of the Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Sul (UFRGS).

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Correspondence to Norma Possa Marroni.

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Hartmann, R.M., Morgan Martins, M.I., Tieppo, J. et al. Effect of Boswellia serrata on Antioxidant Status in an Experimental Model of Colitis Rats Induced by Acetic Acid. Dig Dis Sci 57, 2038–2044 (2012).

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  • Antioxidant
  • Boswellia serrata
  • Inflammation
  • Oxidative stress
  • Radical scavenger
  • Ulcerative colitis