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Ancient Science of Life, Vol No. XI No.1 & 2, July & October 1991, Pages 74 - 77
ANTI – DIARRHOEAL POTENTIAL OF MYRISTICA FRAGRANS SEED EXTRACTS
N. R. PILLAI AND L. LILLYKUTTY
C. D. R. S. Pharmacological Research Unit, Department of Pharmacology, Medical College,
Tiruvanathapuram – 695 011, Kerala, India.
Received: 23 August, 1990 Accepted: 17 January, 1991
ABSTRACT: Serial extracts of the seeds of M.fragrans were investigated for their anti-
diarrhoeal potential in three experimental models. Though all the three extracts exhibited
significant activity, the petroleum ether and ethanol extracts were found to be more effective
above 200 mg | kg dose levels.
Adult male Holtzman rats weighing 150 to
indigenously seen and its seeds or nutmegs
200g, maintained at room temperature at the
College animal house and fed on Hindlever
diarrhoea. It is also aromatic, stimulant,
feed, were used for the study. Animals were
carminative and in large doses, narcotic. It
housed separately and had free access to
water. More than 8 animals in each group
were used for each dose level. Good quality
and successively extracted with pet. Ether
diarrhoea in patients suffering from thyroid
(60 – 80o), chloroform and ethanol as per
carcinoma where the prostaglandin (PG) E2
and F2 levels are high2. Earlier attempts
diarrhoea with indomethacin, aspirin and
nutmeg. It has also been reported to be of
Antidiarrhoeal activity was assessed using
therapeutic value in diarrhoea associated
the following three experimental models:
with Crohn’s disease. This effect is due to a
fall in PGE1 levels3. Experimental studies
(a) Measurement of faecal output in
aqueous extracts of nutmeg showed a weak
antidiarrhoeal activity4. In view of these
Method of Bass et al
5 was followed and
reports it was thought worthwhile to screen
drug extracts were given in 100, 200 and
the serial extracts, pet. Ether, chloroform
500 mg| kg dose levels. Percentage of faecal
and ethanol for their antidiarrhoeal effects in
output in treated rats and the percentage
(b) Castor oil diarrhoea in rats:
(c) Enteropooling assay in rats:
In overnight-fasted male rats diarrhoea was
Drug extracts were given in overnight fasted
induced by oral administration of castor oil
rats and one hour later they all received the
(1 ml | rat)6. Test extracts were given orally
diarrhoeal agent Magnesium sulphate (10%
one hour prior to castor oil. Percentage of
soln.) 2 ml | rats orally. All of them were
animals not showing diarrhoeal droppings at
killed 30 minutes later and entire small
the end of 4th hour after castor oil was noted
intestine collected, weighed and compared7.
and compared. Pet. Ether extract in 100,
Pet. Ether and ethanol extracts in 100 and
200 and 500 mg | kg dose levels, chloroform
500 mg | kg and chloroform extract in 200
etc. in 200 mg | kg and ethanol extract in
mg | kg were used for the study. In all the
three test patterns loperamide hydrochloride
(10 mg | kg) was used as the standard drug
for comparison. Statistical evaluation was
carried out using the student’s ‘t’ test.
Effect of Nutmeg extracts on faecal output in male rats.
Dry weight of
% reduction in
stool / 100g
rat mean ± SE
P – values * < 0.001 n = no. of rats in the group.
loperamide – treated group (Table 1). In
enteropooling assay in rats, only the pet.
I). In castor oil induced diarrhoea, the
mg | kg) extracts significantly reduced (P
< 0.05) the weight of intestine (Table 3).
TABLE – 2
Nutmeg extracts on castor oil induced diarrhoea in albino rats
% of rats not
showing diarrhoea in
TABLE – 3
Effect of Nutmeg extracts on enteropooling in rats
Weight of small
intestine g / 100 g rat
(mean ± SE)
indicate that nutmeg extracts suppressed
earlier findings of Shidore et al
to the inhibition of PG – biosynthesis.
castor oil diarrhoea in rats. Our earlier
enteropooling in intestine was inhibited
partially by the extracts. However, these
significant antidiarrhoeal effect in all the
intestine (in vivo)
is activated by the
castor oil, which may well be associated
with increased PG – mediated diarrhoea
support and to the staff of CDRS unit for
Authors are thankful to the Director,
CCRAS, New Delhi for financial REFERENCES
1. Nadkarni, K. M. Indian Materia Medica,
Popular Prakashan Pvt. Ltd., Bombay, 831
2. William, E. D. Proc. Res. Soc. Med.
59 : 602 (1966).
3. Shafran, I; Meurer, N. and Thomas, F. D. New Engl. J. Med.
296 : 694 (1966).
4. Shidore, P. P; Mujumdar, S. M. ; Shrotri, D. S. and Mujumdar A. M. Indian J. Pharm.
47 : 188 (1985).
5. Bass, P.; Kennedy, J. A. ; and Wiley, J. N. Am. J. Dig. Dis.
17 : 925 (1972).
6. Niemegeers, C. J. E.; Lenarerts, F. M. and Janssen, PAJ. Arzneimettel Forsch.
7. Robert, A.; Nezamis, J. E. ; Lancaster, C.; Hanchar, A. J. and Klepper, M. S.
11 : 809 (1976).
8. Pillai, N. R. Unpublished data (1990).
9. Benett, A. and Gradidge, C. F. New Eng. J. Med.
290 : 110 (1974).
10. Miseiewicz, J. J and Walter S. L. Lancet.
1 : 648 (1968).
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