Anti-inflammatory effects of seeds of the tropical fruit camu-camu (Myrciaria dubia)

J Nutr Sci Vitaminol (Tokyo). 2011;57(1):104-7. doi: 10.3177/jnsv.57.104.


The methanolic extract of seeds of the tropical fruit camu-camu was screened for its anti-inflammatory activity in carrageenan-induced paw edema model mice. The extract significantly suppressed both the formation of edema in mice by oral administration and the release of nitric oxide from macrophage-derived RAW 264.7 cells in vitro. Based on the results of a spectroscopic analysis, the active compound was identified by in vivo bioassay-guided fractionation to be 3β-hydroxy-lup-20(29)-en-28-oic acid, betulinic acid, known as an anti-inflammatory triterpenoid. These findings suggest that camu-camu seed extract is a potentially useful material as a source of betulinic acid and as a functional food for prevention of immune-related diseases.

MeSH terms

  • Analysis of Variance
  • Animals
  • Anti-Inflammatory Agents / pharmacology*
  • Betulinic Acid
  • Carrageenan / metabolism
  • Cell Line
  • Edema / chemically induced
  • Edema / drug therapy*
  • Edema / prevention & control
  • Functional Food
  • Macrophages / metabolism
  • Male
  • Mice
  • Myrtaceae / chemistry*
  • Nitric Oxide / metabolism
  • Pentacyclic Triterpenes
  • Phytotherapy*
  • Plant Extracts / pharmacology
  • Seeds / chemistry*
  • Triterpenes / pharmacology*


  • Anti-Inflammatory Agents
  • Pentacyclic Triterpenes
  • Plant Extracts
  • Triterpenes
  • Nitric Oxide
  • Carrageenan
  • Betulinic Acid