JOURNAL ARTICLE

Memory enhancing activity of Glycyrrhiza glabra in mice

Dinesh Dhingra, Milind Parle, S K Kulkarni
Journal of Ethnopharmacology 2004, 91 (2): 361-5
15120462
In the traditional system of medicine, the roots and rhizomes of Glycyrrhiza glabra (family: Leguminosae) have been employed clinically for centuries for their anti-inflammatory, antiulcer, expectorant, antimicrobial and anxiolytic activities. The present study was undertaken to investigate the effects of Glycyrrhiza glabra (popularly known as liquorice) on learning and memory in mice. Elevated plus-maze and passive avoidance paradigm were employed to test learning and memory. Three doses (75, 150 and 300 mg/kg p.o.) of aqueous extract of Glycyrrhiza glabra were administered for 7 successive days in separate groups of animals. The dose of 150 mg/kg of the aqueous extract of liquorice significantly improved learning and memory of mice. Furthermore, this dose significantly reversed the amnesia induced by diazepam (1 mg/kg i.p.) and scopolamine (0.4 mg/kg i.p.). Anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties of liquorice may be contributing favorably to the memory enhancement effect. Since scopolamine-induced amnesia was reversed by liquorice, it is possible that the beneficial effect on learning and memory was due to facilitation of cholinergic-transmission in mouse brain. However, further studies are necessitated to identify the exact mechanism of action. In the present investigation, Glycyrrhiza glabra has shown promise as a memory enhancing agent in all the laboratory models employed.

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