Promnesic effects of Ptychopetalum olacoides in aversive and non-aversive learning paradigms

J Ethnopharmacol. 2007 Feb 12;109(3):449-57. doi: 10.1016/j.jep.2006.08.022. Epub 2006 Aug 30.


Homemade remedies with Ptychopetalum olacoides (PO) roots are used by Amazonian peoples for treating various age-related conditions. We previously reported that Ptychopetalum olacoides ethanol extract significantly improved step-down inhibitory avoidance long-term memory in adult and reversed memory deficits in aging mice. Adding to previous data, this study shows that a single i.p. administration of Ptychopetalum olacoides ethanol extract (POEE 50 and 100 mg/kg) improved step-down inhibitory avoidance short-term memory (STM) 3 h after training in adult (2.5 month) mice; comparable results were obtained with POEE given p.o. at 800 mg/kg. Moreover, memory improvement was also observed in aging (14 months) mice presenting memory deficit as compared to adult mice. Furthermore, POEE (100 mg/kg) improved non-aversive memory systems in adult mice in an object recognition paradigm. Consistently with its traditional use this study add to previously reported data and reinforces that POEE facilitates memory processes. Although the acetylcholinesterase inhibitory properties described for this extract may be of relevance for improving memory processes, the molecular mechanism(s) underlying the memory improvement here reported needs further scrutiny.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Aging / physiology
  • Animals
  • Avoidance Learning / drug effects
  • Male
  • Memory, Short-Term / drug effects*
  • Mice
  • Olacaceae / chemistry*
  • Plant Extracts / pharmacology
  • Plant Roots / chemistry


  • Plant Extracts