Spread the love

Original Article

Neurological assessment of antidepressant effect of seeds of Anethum graveolens on
albino mice

Aslam Pathan

Department of Pharmacology, College of Medicine, Shaqra University, Shaqra-11961, Saudi Arabia.


Ethnopharmacological relevance:

seeds of Anethum graveolens have been used in the Indian traditional medicine to relieve
stress and other neurological disease conditions.

Aim of the study:

The present study was under taken to evaluate the antidepressant effects of seeds of Anethum graveolens
Ethanolic Extract (AGEE) in mice.

Materials and methods:

seeds of Anethum graveolens Ethanolic extract was screened for antidepressant effect by using forced swim test at doses of 100 and 200 mg/kg. Distilled water and Imipramine were employed as negative and positive control groups, respectively.


antidepressant effect assessment of seeds of Anethum graveolens Ethanolic Extract (AGEE) 200 mg/kg shows
significantly decrease in immobility time (24.44 %) as compared to standard (46.67 %) treatment group.


The results of this study established a support for the traditional usage of seeds of Anethum graveolens as
antidepressant medicinal plant.


Anethum graveolens L. is a member of umbelliferae family.
Many properties of dill such as antibacterial, [1]
antioxidant, [2] antihypercholesterolemic, [3] and cancer
chemo-preventive effects, [4] have been reported. In folk
medicine, it is commonly used to improve gastric
irritation, indigestion, stomachache, insomnia, and colic.[5]
Dill decreases sexual potency and spermatogenesis in
males. [6-8] Depression and anxiety are the most frequent
mental disorders. More than 20% of the adult populations
suffer from these conditions at some time during their life.
The World Health Organization predicts that depression
will become the second leading cause of premature death
or disability worldwide by the year 2020. Approximately
two- thirds of the anxious or depressed patients respond
to the currently available treatments but the magnitude of
improvement is still disappointing. Then, the medical need
for newer, better-tolerated and more efficacious
treatments remains high. [9] present study was conducted
to eavaluate traditional claim of plants as used in


Experimental Animals

Swiss albino mice of male sex weighing 22–28 g were used.
Animals were maintained under standard conditions in an
animal house approved by Committee for the Purpose of
Control and Supervision of Experiments on Animals
(CPCSEA). Institutional Animal Ethics Committee approved
the experimental protocol. The animals were given
standard diet. The animals had free access of standard diet
and water and housed in a spacious cage for one week.
Mice were housed in cages of 5 at 22 ± 1◦C in a 12- h
light/dark cycle. Tap water and food pellets were available
as libitum. Groups of 6–11mice were randomly assigned to
different treatment groups and were tested in a counter
balancing order. Animals were naive to experiment
conditions. All experiments were carried out during night
cycle of light and the experiments were carried out
according to the National Research Council Guide for the
Care and Use of Laboratory Animals [10]
. All experiments
were conducted in accordance with international
standards of animal welfare recommended by the Society
for Neuroscience [11]. The experimental protocol was
approved by the Bioethical Committee on Animal
Research. The minimum number of animals and duration
of observations required to obtain consistent data were

Drugs and Chemicals

The positive controls were: Imipramine (Depsonil Tablet,
Nicholas Piramal, India) was used as standard drug for antidepressant effect and purchased from respective
source. Ethanol (Hi Media, India) propylene glycol (Hi
Media, India) was purchased from the respective sources
and was of analytical grade.


The ethanol extract of Anethum graveolens was freshly
dissolved in distilled water to be acutely administered to
the rats. Doses of the extract and the time intervals were
determined in preliminary tests. Imipramine (10 mg/kg)
was dissolved in distilled water. Negative control groups
received only distilled water. All administrations were
performed intraperitoneally (i.p.) in a dose volume of 1
ml/kg body weight. Thirty minutes after i.p. treatment, the
animals were submitted to a battery of behavioral tests.

Source of dill Seeds

seeds of Anethum graveolens (dill) were collected from
farm house. The identity of the seed was confirmed by the
Institutional Botanist. A voucher specimen was kept in
laboratory for future reference.

Preparation of Aqueous Extract

Dried dill seeds were homogenized to a fine powder.
Hundred grams of powdered coriander was Infused in 500
ml cold ethanol for 24 h, brought to the boil, then removed
from the heat source and allowed to infuse for 15 min. The
extract was filtered, concentrated over the water bath and
brought to dryness under vacuum. The yield of the extract
was 8.7% (w/w).

Acute toxicity study

Acute toxicity study was performed using the limit test
dose of 2000 mg/kg as described by Organization for
Economic Cooperation and Development guideline and
Interagency Research Animal Committee recommendation
[11]. Six female mice were dosed sequentially and followed
for any signs of toxicity and/ or death within 24 h and then
for 14 days thereafter.

Forced Swim Test

The FST is the most widely used pharmacological model
for assessing antidepressant activity [12]. The studies were
carried out on mice according to the method proposed by
[13]. The apparatus consisted of a glass cylinder (25 cm high
× 12 cm diameter) filled with water (24 ±1 ̊C) up to 15 cm.
Each animal was subjected to a pre-test session (15min) in
the vessel 24 h before the swimming test which lasted 5
min. all test sessions were videotaped, and analyzed after
the experiment; the immobility time (seconds) for each
animal was registered. Mice were considered as immobile when they made no further attempts to escape, excepting
the movements necessary to keep their heads above water.
A decrease in the duration of immobility time in the test
group compared to the control group indicates an
antidepressant effect of the substance tested. Each
experimental group consisted of 10–12 animals.[14]


Acute toxicity test

At a single oral dose of 2000 mg/kg, seeds of Anethum
graveolens Ethanol Extract showed no signs of toxicity or
death in mice within the first 24 h and during the 14 days
observation period.

Forced swim test

The effects of AGEE on immobility time are shown in table
1 and figure 1. AGEE 200 mg/kg elicited significant
reduction in immobility time as compared to the control. antidepressant activity assessment of seeds of Anethum
graveolens Ethanolic Extract (AGEE) 200 mg/kg by using
forced swim test model shows significantly decrease in
immobility time (24.44 %) as compared to standard (46.67
%) treatment group. The effect of treatment with AGEE on
the immobility time was dependent of the dose.


Antidepressant disorders comprise a major public health
problem are the most prevalent psychiatric disorders
worldwide. Because of the fact that the synthetic drugs are
endowed with a plethora of problems; these arch for
therapeutic alternatives has been conducted largely by
means of the study of medicinal plants. In this context,
there has been a resurgence of interesting medicine from
natural sources with the hope that drugs of plant origin
will have significantly lesser side effects than that
observed with synthetic drugs while having comparable
efficacy. In the present study, the antidepressant effects of
seeds of Anethum graveolens Ethanolic extract were
evaluated using forced swim test on mice models, in which
AGEE 200 mg/kg elicited significant reduction in
immobility time as compared to the control.


The present study investigated the putative behavioral
effects of the seeds of Anethum graveolens Ethanolic
extract. Thus, doses of 200 mg/kg of the extract produced
a significant decrease in immobility time. The results of
this study established a support for the traditional usage of
seeds of Anethum graveolens as antidepressant medicinal


1. Delaquis PJ, Stanich K, Girard B, Mazza G.
Antimicrobial activity of individual and mixed
fractions of dill, cilantro, coriander and eucalyptus
essential oils. Int J Food Microbiol. 2002;74(1-

2. Satyanarayana S, Sushruta K, Sarma GS, Srinivas N,
Subba Raju GV. Antioxidant activity of the aqueous
extracts of spicy food additives–evaluation and
comparison with ascorbic acid in in-vitro
systems. J Herb Pharmacother. 2004;4(2):1–10.

3. Yazdanparast R, Alavi M. Antihyperlipidaemic and
antihypercholesterolaemic effects of Anethum
graveolens leaves after theremoval of
furocoumarins. Cytobios. 2001;105(410):185–91.

4. Zheng GQ, Kenney PM, Lam LK. Anethofuran,
carvone, and limonene: potential cancer
chemopreventive agents from dill weed oil and
caraway oil. Planta Med. 1992;58(4):338–41.

5. Hosseinzadeh H, Karimi GR, Ameri M. Effects of
Anethum graveolens L. seed extracts on
experimental gastric irritation models in
mice. BMC Pharmacol. 2002;2:21.

6. Duke JA. Handbook of medicinal herbs. 2nd ed.
London: CRC Press; 2002.

7. Weiss RF. Weiss’s herbal medicine. New York:
Thieme; 2001.

8. Monsefi M, Ghasemi A, Alaee S, Aliabadi E. Effects
of Anethum graveolens L. (dill) on Oocyte and
Fertility of Adult Female Rats. Journal of
Reproduction & Infertility. 2015;16(1):10-17.

9. Aslam Pathan. et al. Neurological Assessment of
Seeds of Coriandrum sativum by Using
Antidepressant and Anxiolytic like Activity on
Albino Mice. Inventi Impact: Ethnopharmacology,
2015(3):102-105, 2015.

10. Handbook for the Use of Animals in Neuroscience
Research, 1997 (updated 18-July-97).

11. Organization of Economic Co-operation and
Development (OECD). The OECD Guidelines for
Testing of Chemical: 423 Acute Oral Toxicity,
France, 2001.

12. Cryan, J.F., Markou, A., Lucki, I. Assessing
antidepressant activity in rodents: recent
developments and future need. Trends in
Pharmacological Sciences 23: 238–245, 2002.

13. Porsolt, R.D., Bertin, A., Jalfre, M., 1977.
Behavioural despair in mice: a primary screening
test for antidepressants. Archives internationals
de Pharmacodyna- mie et de Therapie 229: 327–
336, 1977.

14. Herrera-Ruiz, M.,Garcia-Beltran, Y.,Mora,S., DıazVeliz, G.,Viana,G. S., Tortoriello, J., Ramirez, G.
Antidepressant and anxiolytic effects of
hydroalcoholic extract from Salvia elegans. Journal
of Ethnopharmacology 107: 53–58, 2006.


© 2016 NeuroPharmac J. This is an open access
journal, and articles are distributed under the terms
of the Creative Commons AttributionNonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 License.

(Visited 19 times, 1 visits today)