Nerolidol and its Pharmacological Application in Treating Neurodegenerative Diseases: A Review

Recent Pat Biotechnol. 2018;12(3):158-168. doi: 10.2174/1872208312666171206123805.


Background: Research on natural bioactive compounds has increased exponentially over the last decades. The discovery of new phytochemicals that possess pharmaceutical properties is useful in the development of therapeutic alternatives. The nerolidol (3,7,11-trimetil-1,6,10-dodecatrien-3-ol or 3,7,11-trimetildodeca-1,6,10-trien-3-ol) has been extensively studied for its therapeutic potential because of its pharmacological activities in the treatment of neurodegenerative diseases.

Method: All articles and patents regarding nerolidol and its pharmacological properties were revised, focusing mainly on the important properties in the treatment of neurodegenerative diseases. A thorough search in article databases (Science Direct, MEDLINE/PubMed, Scopus and Scielo) and patent database (WIPO, EPO, ESPTO, LATIPAT and INPI) was performed over the course of this study.

Results: Several studies stood out for their relevance regarding the treatment of neurodegenerative diseases. Nerolidol demonstrated anticholinesterasic, antioxidant, antinociceptive, anti-inflammatory and anxiolytic activities, thus classifying it as a promising phytochemical for the development of therapeutic drugs.

Conclusion: Analysis suggested that nerolidol is a promising target for new drugs and treatment of neurodegenerative diseases.

Keywords: Alzheimer`s; Nerolidol; epilepsy; neurodegenerative diseases; pharmacological application; sesquiterpene..

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Analgesics / chemistry
  • Analgesics / pharmacology
  • Analgesics / therapeutic use
  • Animals
  • Anti-Inflammatory Agents / chemistry
  • Anti-Inflammatory Agents / pharmacology
  • Anti-Inflammatory Agents / therapeutic use
  • Antioxidants / chemistry
  • Antioxidants / pharmacology
  • Antioxidants / therapeutic use
  • Cholinergic Antagonists / chemistry
  • Cholinergic Antagonists / pharmacology
  • Cholinergic Antagonists / therapeutic use
  • Humans
  • Molecular Structure
  • Neurodegenerative Diseases / drug therapy*
  • Neurodegenerative Diseases / pathology
  • Neurodegenerative Diseases / physiopathology
  • Patents as Topic
  • Phytochemicals / chemistry
  • Phytochemicals / pharmacology
  • Phytochemicals / therapeutic use
  • Sesquiterpenes / chemistry
  • Sesquiterpenes / isolation & purification
  • Sesquiterpenes / pharmacology*
  • Sesquiterpenes / therapeutic use*


  • Analgesics
  • Anti-Inflammatory Agents
  • Antioxidants
  • Cholinergic Antagonists
  • Phytochemicals
  • Sesquiterpenes
  • nerolidol