Emblica officinalis exerts wound healing action through up-regulation of collagen and extracellular signal-regulated kinases (ERK1/2)

Wound Repair Regen. 2009 Jan-Feb;17(1):99-107. doi: 10.1111/j.1524-475X.2008.00446.x.


During wound healing, the wound site is rich in oxidants, such as hydrogen peroxide, mostly contributed by neutrophils and macrophages. Ascorbic acid and tannins of low molecular weight, namely emblicanin A (2,3-di-O-galloyl-4,6-(S)-hexahydroxydiphenoyl-2-keto-glucono-delta-lactone) and emblicanin B (2,3,4,6-bis-(S)-hexahydroxydiphenoyl-2-keto-glucono-delta-lactone) present in Emblica officinalis (emblica), have been shown to exhibit a very strong antioxidant action. We proposed that addition of these antioxidants to the wound microenvironment would support the repair process. The present investigation was undertaken to determine the efficacy of emblica on dermal wound healing in vivo. Full-thickness excision wounds were made on the back of the rat and topical application of emblica accelerated wound contraction and closure. Emblica increased cellular proliferation and cross-linking of collagen at the wound site, as evidenced by an increase in the activity of extracellular signal-regulated kinase 1/2, along with an increase in DNA, type III collagen, acid-soluble collagen, aldehyde content, shrinkage temperature and tensile strength. Higher levels of tissue ascorbic acid, alpha-tocopherol, reduced glutathione, superoxide dismutase, catalase, and glutathione peroxidase support the fact that emblica application promotes antioxidant activity at the wound site. In summary, this study provides firm evidence to support that topical application of emblica represents a feasible and productive approach to support dermal wound healing.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Analysis of Variance
  • Animals
  • Blotting, Western
  • Collagen / metabolism*
  • Extracellular Signal-Regulated MAP Kinases / metabolism*
  • Male
  • Phyllanthus emblica / metabolism*
  • Phytotherapy / methods*
  • Plant Preparations / pharmacology*
  • Rats
  • Rats, Wistar
  • Tensile Strength
  • Up-Regulation
  • Wound Healing / drug effects*
  • Wound Healing / physiology*


  • Plant Preparations
  • Collagen
  • Extracellular Signal-Regulated MAP Kinases