Asiaticoside derived from the plant Centella asiatica is known to possess good wound healing activity. Enhanced healing activity has been attributed to increased collagen formation and angiogenesis. Since antioxidants have been reported to play a significant role in the wound healing process we studied the effect of asiaticoside on the levels of certain antioxidants in the wound so as to explore the possible involvement of such a mechanism in the asiaticoside induced wound healing. Asiaticoside application (0.2%, topical) twice daily for 7 days to excision-type cutaneous wounds in rats led to increased enzymatic and non-enzymatic antioxidants, namely superoxide dismutase (35%), catalase (67%), glutathione peroxidase (49%), vitamin E (77%) and ascorbic acid (36%) in newly formed tissues. It also resulted in a several fold decrease in lipid peroxide levels (69%) as measured in terms of thiobarbituric acid reactive substance. However, continued application for 14 days showed no significant difference in these antioxidants compared with their values in vehicle treated wound tissue. It appears from the present study that asiaticosides enhanced induction of antioxidant levels at an initial stage of healing which may be an important contributory factor in the healing properties of this substance.