Anti-inflammatory activity of Prinsepia utilis flower extract in Wistar rats


Vinay Thakur1, Rajender Guleria2, Ranjit Singh3

1Pacific University, Pacific Hills, Pratapnagar, Debari, Udaipur, Rajasthan, India

2Rajender Guleria, Govt. College of Pharmacy, Rohru Distt. Shimla, Himachal Pradesh

3Ranjit Singh, Adrash Vijendra Institute of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Shobit Univesity, Gangoh, Saharanpur, Uttar Pradesh, India

*Corresponding Author E-mail:



Objective: Evaluation of antiinflammatory activity of methanolic flower extracts of Prinsepis utlis in wistar rats.

Background: Prinsepis utilis belanging to family Rosaceae is commonly known as “Himalayan cherry” and widely distributed throughout the mid Himalayan range. The different parts of plant find folklore use for variety of conditions and ailments. The seeds have rubefacient property and used in rheumatism and pain. Roots have wound healing and antidote properties, leaves and fruits are used in tonsillitis, stone pain and allergic conditions.

Method: The extract was prepared by continuous hot soxhlet extraction with pet ether, chloroform and methanol in increasing order of polarity. Wistar rats of either sex were used for the Carrageenan induced rat pedal enema. Rats were divided into four groups (control 0.9%NaCl 5ml/kg body wt, indomethacin 10mg/kg body wt, extract 100 and 200mg/kg body wt) each having six rats. Results: The methanolic extracts of P. utilis exhibited significant anti-inflammatory activity at both doses of 100mg/kg body weight and 200mg/kg body weight. Extract 100mg/kg body weight produced 64.38% inhibition and 200mg/kg body weight exhibited 65.75% inhibition of paw edema at the end of three hours as compared to control. The inhibition of inflammation for both doses was comparable to indomethacin 69.86% (inhibitor of cyclooxygenase). Conclusion: on the basis of above findings, it may be concluded that P. utilis has anti-inflammatory properties which block the release of inflammatory mediators. The results justify the folklore uses of plant.


KEYWORDS: Prinsepia utilis, inflammation, edema, cyclooxygenase inhibitor.




Ayurveda, the science of life, has emerged out of the philosophies of ancient India[1]. It has been in practice in India and Sri Lanka as traditional medicine system since 6000BC[2]. Medicines employed for mitigation of a disease or conditions in ayurvedic system of medicine are mainly herbal/herbomineral formulations with specific principles[3].


The rural populations of developing world are dependent upon the medicinal herbs as primary source of healthcare remedies. These remedies consist of plant extracts/plant parts containing multiple phytoconstituents [4].


Inflammation is a disorder which involves increase in count of leucocytes and other complex inflammatory mediators in the injured tissue [5]. It is the immune systems response in higher organisms, which is intrinsically beneficial leading to elimination of offending substances and removal of damaged tissue with restoration of its structure and function. An inflammatory response lasting for few days is referred to Acute, while that of longer duration is called chronic inflammation [6]. Prostaglandins play a key role in the generation of inflammatory response. Biosynthesis of prostaglandins is significantly increased in injured tissue. This increased biosynthesis contributes to the development of cardinal signs of acute inflammation [7].


Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) are most commonly used drugs for inflammation disorders. Chemically most of these are carboxylic acid derivatives and are associated with side effects viz. gastrointestinal ulcers, mucosal irritation, bleeding etc., which is result of non-selective COX-1 and COX-2 inhibition [8]. In recent years there has been renewed interest towards traditional plant derived medication. Many plants have been used in the traditional systems for the alleviation of inflammation and promotion of healing [9]. Thus, it forms a fit case for logical strategy in the search of new plant derived COX inhibitors in management of inflammatory disorders [10].


Prinsepia utilis belonging to the family Rosaceae is popularly known as Himalayan cheery. It is locally called as Bhekhal and is distributed in India throughout the Himalayan range from west to east between altitude of 1600-3000 meters. In traditional system of medicine the different parts of plant find use for management of a number of ailments. The oil of seeds possess rubefacient properties and is used externally in rheumatism and muscular pains. The roots are used to heal wounds and as antidote to poison. Leaves and fruits are given in conditions of tonsillitis, stone pain and allergies. Not much of the scientific reports or data are available for verification of above activities. The present study accordingly aims pharmacological investigations on methanol extract of flowers of Prinsepia utilis on acute toxicity and anti-inflammatory experiment models.



Plant material: The flowers of Prinsepia utilis were collected locally from Shimla district of Himachal Pradesh, India. The plant specimens were sent to Dr. Y. S Parmar Horticulture University, Solan for authentic identification of plant material by senior scientists. The certificate of identification was provided by the university. Preparation of extract: The flowers were gently separated off the stems and dried under shade. A weighed quantity of the crumbled flowers were packed into thimbles and placed in soxhlet extractor and repeatedly extracted by the principle of continuous hot soxhlet extraction in a 1000ml round bottom flask with petroleum ether, chloroform and methanol in increasing order of polarity of solvents. The refluxing continued till the solvent coming down from siphon tube showed no spot on TLC plate in iodine chamber. The excess solvent in extracts was removed under reduced pressure and a semisolid extract was obtained.

Animals: studies were carried out on wistar albino rats of either sex weighing 180-220 g. the animals were grouped into polyacrylic cages (38 cm x 23 cm x 10 cm) with not more than six animals per cage and maintained under standard laboratory conditions (temperature 25±20C) with dark light circle (14/10h). They were allowed free access to standard dried pellet and water ad libitum. The animals were acclimatized for 10 days before commencement of experimentation. All procedures described were reviewed and approved by the university animal ethics committee.


Acute Toxicity Test: toxicity study conducted as per OCD-AOT 425 in Rats. Methanolic extract of Prinsepia utilis was suspended in normal saline and administered as single dose to rats in different concentration of 175, 550, 1750, 5000, 5000 and 5000 mg/kg body weight. The animals were observed for 72 hours post administration of dose. No mortality was observed. Toxic symptoms were seen at 5000mg/kg dose level. On the basis of dose range finding 100mg/kg (low dose) and 200mg/kg (high dose) were selected for efficacy study.


Anti inflammatory activity: rats were divided into four groups, with each group having six organisms. The different groups were treated with orally administered methanolic Prinsepia utilis extract (100mg/kg and 200mg/kg) of body weight, indomethacin (10mg/kg of body weight and vehicle control (5ml/mg) of body weight. The inflammation was induced in the right hind paw after one hour by subplantar injection of freshly prepared 1ml of 0.1% Carrageenan suspension in 0.9% NaCl. The paw volume was measured by mercury displacement method using Plethysmometer at 0, ½, 1, 2 and 3hour[11].


The anti inflammatory effect was calculated as % inhibition using equation mentioned below

% Inhibition = (1- Vt/Vc) x 100



Vt is paw volume in the drug treated group.

Vc is the paw volume in the vehicle control.



The changes in the hind paw volume at the end of study from (0-3hrs) by the methanolic extract of p. utilis at different doses (100 and 200mg/kg) are recorded into the table-1 below. Both alcoholic extracts produced significant anti-inflammatory activity which was comparable to standard drug indomethacin. The methanolic extracts of Prinsepia utilis exhibited 64.38% and 65.75% inhibitions at dose of 100mg/kg and 200mg/kg bodyweight respectively. Indomethacin at the end of third hour produced 69.36% inhibition of paw volume (figure-1).

Table-1: Effect of methanolic extract of P. utilis on rat paw edema induced by Carrageenan


Dose mg/kg

Time, mean paw volume ± SEM (% inhibition)

0 hr

1/2 hr

1 hr

2 hr

3 hr



0.25 ± 0.02

0.42 ± 0.01

0.56 ± 0.02

0.64 ± 0.04

0.73 ± 0.02



0.24 ± 0.03

0.34 ± 0.03 (19.05)

0.30 ± 0.01* (46.43)

0.27 ± 0.02*


0.22 ± 0.02*


Methanolic extract of P. utilis


0.23 ± 0.02

0.36 ± 0.02


0.41 ± 0.01*


0.32 ± 0.02*


0.26 ± 0.02*



0.25 ± 0.03

0.34 ± 0.03


0.36 ± 0.01*


0.28 ± 0.02*


0.25 ± 0.02*


* P<0.05 as compared to control



Figure-1: Inhibition of paw volume by P. utilis extracts, Indomethacin and control solution.



The results obtained above confirm the anti-inflammatory activity exhibited by the methanolic extracts of Prinsepia utilis in the experimental model. Carrageenan induced pedal oedema has been commonly used in various studies as an experimental model and is believed to involve three distinct phases. First early phase involves release of inflammatory mediators such as histamine, serotonin and bradykinin during 0-2hrs post Carrageenan injection, second phase involve release of kinins (after 3 hours) and prostaglandins are released in the third late phase after 4hours.[12]


The rat paw edema was significantly inhibited by both methanolic extracts of P. utilis during the first early phase of inflammation. This is suggestive of fact that the extracts have an inhibitory effect on the release of inflammatory mediators histamine and/or serotonin. The antiedematous effect was also significantly produced in the rats pre-treated with Indomethacin, which is a known cyclooxygenase inhibitor [13].



The results from this study strongly indicate the non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug like activity in the methanolic extracts at both doses and this corroborates with the folklore use of plant in pain and inflammation related conditions.





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Received on 04.06.2018          Modified on 28.06.2018

Accepted on 08.07.2018  ©AandV Publications All right reserved

Res. J. Pharmacognosy and Phytochem. 2018; 10(4): 282-284.

DOI: 10.5958/0975-4385.2018.00045.6