Aim: To test whether the ethanolic extract of Fumaria indica (FI) possesses anti-inflammatory and analgesic activities, and fumaric acid (FA) could be one of its bioactive constituent involved in such activities of the extract.
Methods: For anti-inflammatory activity, carrageenan induced edema and cotton pellet induced granuloma tests in rats and for analgesic activity rat tail flick test, and hot plate and acetic acid writhing tests in mice were used. All tests were performed after seven daily oral doses of the Fumaria indica extract (100, 200 and 400 mg/kg/day) and pure fumaric acid (1.25, 2.50 and 5.00 mg/kg/day).
Results: Anti-inflammatory activities of FI and FA were observed in carrageenan induced edema and cotton pallet granuloma even after their lowest tested doses. No analgesic activity of lowest tested dose of FA was observed in the acetic acid writhing test, but likewise all tested dose levels of FI, higher tested dose levels of FA were also possess significant analgesic activity in this test. Further, significant analgesic activities of both FI and FA in hot plate and tale flick tests were observed after all their tested doses.
Conclusions: These observations are in agreement with our working hypothesis on the connection of FA in mode(s) of action(s) of FI, and reaffirm the conviction that FI could be an herbal alternative against fibromyalgia and other pathologies often associate with, or caused by, inflammatory processes.
Key words: Fumaria indica, Fumaric acid, Analgesic, anti-inflammatory, Central sensitivity syndrome; CNS function.