The CNS effects of Ginkgo biloba extracts and ginkgolide B

Prog Neurobiol. 2002 Jun;67(3):235-57. doi: 10.1016/s0301-0082(02)00015-1.


Ginkgo biloba extracts such as EGb-761 have been suggested to have a multitude of beneficial effects on CNS function, from enhancing cognitive function in dementia to facilitating recovery from acute forms of neural damage such as hypoxia/ischemia. Ginkgolide B, one of the major components of EGb-761, is a potent platelet-activating factor (PAF) receptor antagonist, which is also regarded as having neuroprotective effects in the CNS. The aim of this review is to summarise and to critically evaluate the current evidence on the CNS effects of EGb-761 and ginkgolide B, with particular emphasis on the data relating to their neuroprotective effects.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Brain / drug effects*
  • Brain Diseases / drug therapy*
  • Diterpenes*
  • Free Radical Scavengers / therapeutic use*
  • Ginkgo biloba
  • Ginkgolides
  • Lactones*
  • Neuroprotective Agents / therapeutic use*
  • Plant Extracts / therapeutic use*


  • Diterpenes
  • Free Radical Scavengers
  • Ginkgolides
  • Lactones
  • Neuroprotective Agents
  • Plant Extracts
  • Ginkgo biloba extract
  • ginkgolide B