Effects of a standardized Panax ginseng extract on the skeletal muscle of the rat: a comparative study in animals at rest and under exercise

Planta Med. 1999 Apr;65(3):239-44. doi: 10.1055/s-1999-14081.


The effect of standardized Panax ginseng extract G115 on enzymatic activities, myotypological composition, capillaries and mitochondrial content was studied in the skeletal muscle of male rats Wistar. Simultaneously to the G115 administration the rats performed exercise. The animals were divided into 4 groups. The dose of the ginseng extract G115 was 50 mg/kg. The length of the experimental period was 12 weeks. After 24 hours of inactivity the muscles of the hindlimb were extracted. With regard to the enzymatic activities of the citrate synthase (CS) and lactate dehydrogenase (LDH), CS increases with exercise, while the LDH undergoes no major variations, either due to the exercise or the treatment. Treatment with G115 increases the capillary density and the mitochondrial content of the red gastrocnemius muscle. The results suggest that prolonged treatment with G115 increases the capillary density and the oxidative capacity of the muscles with greater aerobic potential in a manner similar to the performance of physical exercise. When exercise and treatment are combined, the effects that are obtained separately are not potentiated.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Male
  • Microscopy, Electron
  • Muscle, Skeletal / blood supply
  • Muscle, Skeletal / enzymology
  • Muscle, Skeletal / metabolism*
  • Panax / chemistry*
  • Physical Conditioning, Animal*
  • Plant Extracts / pharmacology*
  • Plants, Medicinal*
  • Rats
  • Rats, Wistar


  • Plant Extracts