Ethanolic extract Ocimum sanctum. Enhances cognitive ability from young adulthood to middle aged mediated by increasing choline acetyl transferase activity in rat model

Res Vet Sci. 2018 Jun;118:431-438. doi: 10.1016/j.rvsc.2018.04.005. Epub 2018 Apr 16.


Patients with dementia are increasing steadily, cognitive impairment by dementia not only exclusively suffers by old people but also young to middle aged individuals. However, the mechanism of cognitive impairment occurs in young people is not understood. Further, current medication to impairment did not provide satisfactory results. Therefore, we investigated the potential role of Ocimum sanctum ethanolic extract to enhance cognitive ability in the rat in vivo model. Young to middle aged rats were divided into 3 groups (3, 6, 9 months old) were treated with (0, 50 and 100 mg/kg b.w.) O. sanctum for 45 days. We employed a behavioral assay to assess cognitive ability. Further, Nissl staining was performed to analyze hippocampus formation in dentate gyrus (DG), cornu ammonis 1 (CA1), cornu ammonis 3 (CA3). The expression and activity of ChAT in brain was analyzed by RT-PCR and ELISA. Our results showed that treatment of O. sanctum with a dosage of 100 mg/kg b.w. for 45 days induced the cognitive ability in nine months old rats. Further, we observed a significant increase in density of granular and pyramidal cells in DG, CA1, and CA3. These results were corroborated by an increase in the ChAT activity and gene expression in the rat model as well as HEK 293 cell culture model. Taken together, the administration of 100 mg/kg b.w. O.sanctum induced the expression of ChAT. The increased ChAT expression and activity may enhance the cognitive ability in 9 months old rats mimicking young and middle aged condition in humans.

Keywords: Choline acetyltransferase; Cognitive; Ocimum sanctum.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Choline
  • Choline O-Acetyltransferase / metabolism*
  • Cognition / drug effects*
  • Disease Models, Animal*
  • HEK293 Cells
  • Humans
  • Ocimum sanctum / chemistry*
  • Plant Extracts / pharmacology*
  • Rats


  • Plant Extracts
  • Choline O-Acetyltransferase
  • Choline