The red sap obtained by slashing the bark of Croton urucurana Baill. (Euphorbiaceae), also known as dragon's blood, was screened for a possible antidiarrhoeal activity on castor oil-induced diarrhoea in rats, cholera toxin-induced intestinal secretion in mice and on small intestinal transit in mice. Dragon's blood at an oral dose of 600 mg/kg caused in marked inhibition of the diarrhoeal response following castor oil administration as well as the intestinal fluid accumulation promoted by cholera toxin. At a similar dose the red sap significantly inhibited the small intestinal transit which was, however, found to be independent of the opioid mechanism. These results suggest a potential usefulness of the red sap from Croton urucurana Baill. in the control of secretory diarrhoea associated pathologies.
Copyright 2001 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.