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Journal of Natural Medicines

, Volume 71, Issue 2, pp 397–408 | Cite as

Koumine exhibits anxiolytic properties without inducing adverse neurological effects on functional observation battery, open-field and Vogel conflict tests in rodents

  • Chao-Jie Chen
  • Zhi-Feng Zhong
  • Zhi-Ming Xin
  • Long-Hui Hong
  • Yan-Ping Su
  • Chang-Xi YuEmail author
Original Paper

Abstract

Koumine, an active alkaloid of neurotoxic plant Gelsemium, has been focused on its therapeutic uses, especially in central nervous system. Nevertheless, less is known about the neurological effects of koumine, which hampers its potential therapeutic exploitation. Moreover, as the anxiolytic potential of Gelsemium has raised many critical issues, its active principles on the anxiolytic and other neurological effects need to be further investigated. Here, we used functional observation battery (FOB) of mice to systematically measure the neurological effects of koumine at the effective doses, and then further confirmed its anxiolytic properties in open-field test (OFT) of mice and Vogel conflict test (VCT) of rats. Koumine exhibited anxiolytic-like activities but did not affect other autonomic, neurological and physical functions in FOB. Furthermore, koumine released anxiolytic responses and anti-punishment action in a manner similar to diazepam in OFT and VCT, respectively. The results constitutes solid set of fundamental data further demonstrating anxiolytic properties of koumine at the therapeutic doses without inducing adverse neurological effects, which supports the perspectives for the development of safe and effective koumine medicine against pathological anxiety.

Keywords

Koumine Gelsemium Anxiety Functional observation battery Open field test Vogel conflict test 

Abbreviations

KM

Koumine

DZP

Diazepam

MP

Morphine

FOB

Functional observation battery

OFT

Open field test

VCT

Vogel conflict test

i.p.

Intraperitoneally

i.g.

Intragastrically

s.c.

Subcutaneously

i.v.

Intravenously

Notes

Acknowledgements

This work was supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (No. 81302756), the Research Fund for the Doctoral Program of Higher Education of China (No. 20133518110004), the Natural Science Foundation of Fujian Province of China (No. 2013J05118) and the Ph.D. Programs Foundation of Fujian Medicine University (No. 2011bs003). We would like to thank Ming Liu and Gui-Lin Jin for their assistance.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare no conflict of interest.

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Copyright information

© The Japanese Society of Pharmacognosy and Springer Japan 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  • Chao-Jie Chen
    • 1
  • Zhi-Feng Zhong
    • 2
  • Zhi-Ming Xin
    • 1
  • Long-Hui Hong
    • 1
  • Yan-Ping Su
    • 3
  • Chang-Xi Yu
    • 1
    • 2
    Email author
  1. 1.Fujian Center for Safety Evaluation of New DrugFujian Medical UniversityFuzhouPeople’s Republic of China
  2. 2.Department of Pharmacology, College of PharmacyFujian Medical UniversityFuzhouPeople’s Republic of China
  3. 3.Department of Pharmacochemistry, College of PharmacyFujian Medical UniversityFuzhouPeople’s Republic of China

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