Evaluation of anxiolytic properties of Gotukola--(Centella asiatica) extracts and asiaticoside in rat behavioral models

Phytomedicine. 2006 Nov;13(9-10):668-76. doi: 10.1016/j.phymed.2006.01.011. Epub 2006 Feb 20.


The ayurvedic medicinal plant Gotukola (Centella asiatica) was evaluated for its anxiolytic properties. Specifically, this study assessed the effects of: Gotukola plant materials of different genotypic origin; hexane, ethyl acetate and methanol extracts of Gotukola; and asiaticoside, a triterpenic compound isolated from Gotukola. Various paradigms were used to assess the anxiolytic activity, including the elevated plus maze (EPM), open field, social interaction, locomotor activity, punished drinking (Vogel) and novel cage tests. The EPM test revealed that Gotukola, its methanol and ethyl acetate extracts as well as the pure asiaticoside, imparted anxiolytic activity. Furthermore, the asiaticoside did not affect locomotor activity, suggesting these compounds do not have sedative effects in rodents.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Anti-Anxiety Agents / analysis
  • Anti-Anxiety Agents / pharmacology*
  • Behavior, Animal / drug effects*
  • Centella / chemistry*
  • Male
  • Motor Activity / drug effects
  • Plant Extracts / pharmacology
  • Rats
  • Rats, Sprague-Dawley
  • Social Behavior
  • Triterpenes / pharmacology*


  • Anti-Anxiety Agents
  • Plant Extracts
  • Triterpenes
  • asiaticoside