In the Indian traditional system of medicine Withania somnifera Dun. is widely regarded as the Indian Ginseng. A new withanolide-free hydrosoluble fraction was isolated from the roots of Withania somnifera Dun. and was evaluated for putative antistress activity against a battery of tests to delineate the activity of this fraction. The latter fraction exhibited significant antistress activity in a dose-related manner (Singh et al., 2001) and was further studied against chemical and physical induced stress in rats and mice. The extract of Withania somnifera root (a commercial preparation available locally) was also used to compare the results. A preliminary acute toxicity study in mice showed a good margin of safety with a high therapeutic index.
Copyright 2003 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.