Neuroprotective and neurochemical properties of mint extracts

Phytother Res. 2010 Jun;24(6):869-74. doi: 10.1002/ptr.3037.


Mints are aromatic plants with a tradition as medicinal remedies and culinary herbs. With the aim of investigating potential central nervous system (CNS) activities of traditional medicinal plants, four species and one hybrid of the genus Mentha (M. aquatica, M. longifolia, M. pulegium, M. suaveolens and M. x piperita) were selected. Methanolic extracts of the plants were tested for protective effects against hydrogen-peroxide-induced toxicity in PC12 cells, antioxidant activity (by ABTS and X/XO methods) and neurochemical properties (MAO-A inhibition, AChE inhibition and affinity to the GABA(A) receptor). Mentha x piperita and Mentha aquatica produced significant (p < 0.05) protection of the PC12 cells against oxidative stress. All the plants exhibited antioxidant and MAO-A inhibitory activities, M. x piperita being the most active. M. aquatica showed the highest affinity to the GABA(A)-receptor assay. Results demonstrate that mints might have effect on the CNS.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Antioxidants / pharmacology*
  • Free Radical Scavengers / pharmacology
  • Hydrogen Peroxide / pharmacology
  • Mentha / chemistry*
  • Monoamine Oxidase Inhibitors / pharmacology
  • Neuroprotective Agents / pharmacology*
  • Oxidative Stress*
  • PC12 Cells
  • Plant Extracts / pharmacology*
  • Rats


  • Antioxidants
  • Free Radical Scavengers
  • Monoamine Oxidase Inhibitors
  • Neuroprotective Agents
  • Plant Extracts
  • Hydrogen Peroxide