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Neurobehavioral and genotoxic evaluation of (−)-linalool in mice


(−)-Linalool is a monoterpene compound commonly found as a major component of the essential oil of several aromatic species. It has been shown to exert several actions in the central nervous system (CNS) and is able to inhibit glutamate receptors. This study investigated the effect of (−)-linalool in depression and genotoxicity models. Mice were given (−)-linalool (10, 50, 100 or 200 mg/kg i.p.) and were evaluated using the tail suspension test (TST). Genotoxic and antigenotoxic effects in blood and brain were investigated using the alkaline comet assay. In the TST, the animals that received doses of 100 and 200 mg/kg presented a decrease in immobility times. No increase in DNA damage was observed in either tissue, and resistance to DNA oxidative damage induced by hydrogen peroxide did not increase. (−)-Linalool showed an antidepressant-like activity in the TST and was unable to cause damage/protection to DNA in brain tissue and peripheral blood. This investigation provides evidence of an important effect of (−)-linalool on the CNS; however, more studies are necessary to support its possible clinical uses.

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This work was supported by CNPq (Conselho Nacional de Desenvolvimento Científico e Tecnológico) and FAPERGS (Fundação de Amparo à Pesquisa do Estado do Rio Grande do Sul), Brazil.

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Correspondence to Patrícia Pereira.

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Coelho, V., Mazzardo-Martins, L., Martins, D.F. et al. Neurobehavioral and genotoxic evaluation of (−)-linalool in mice. J Nat Med 67, 876–880 (2013).

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  • Comet assay
  • Depression
  • Genotoxicity
  • (−)-Linalool
  • Tail suspension test