Background: This study investigates the effect of the petroleum ether, chloroform, and ethyl acetate fractions of the total ethanolic extract of Convolvulus pluricaulis Choisy (Family: Convolvulaceae) on depression in mice.
Material/methods: The petroleum ether (25, 50 mg/kg), chloroform (25, 50, 100 mg/kg), and ethyl acetate (25, 50, 100 mg/kg) fractions were administered orally for 10 successive days to separate groups of Swiss young male albino mice. The effects of the extracts on the mice's immobility periods were assessed in the forced swim test (FST) and tail suspension test (TST). The effects of reserpine (2 mg/kg i.p.), sulpiride (50 mg/kg i.p.), prazosin (62.5 microg/kg i.p.), and p-chlorophenylalanine (100 mg/kg i.p.) on the extracts' antidepressant-like effect in TST was also studied. The extracts' antidepressant-like effect was compared with that of imipramine (15 mg/kg p.o.) and fluoxetine (20 mg/kg p.o.) administered for 10 successive days.
Results: Only the chloroform fraction in doses of 50 and 100 mg/kg significantly reduced the immobility time in both FST and TST. This fraction did not significant effect locomotor activity. Its efficacy was found to be comparable to that of imipramine and fluoxetine administered for 10 successive days. The chloroform fraction reversed reserpine-induced extension of immobility period in FST and TST. Prazosin, sulpiride, and p-chlorophenylalanine significantly attenuated the chloroform fraction-induced antidepressant-like effect in TST.
Conclusions: The chloroform fraction of the total ethanolic extract of Convolvulus pluricaulis elicited a significant antidepressant-like effect in mice by interaction with the adrenergic, dopaminergic, and serotonergic systems.