Chamomile tea: Source of a glucuronoxylan with antinociceptive, sedative and anxiolytic-like effects

Int J Biol Macromol. 2020 Dec 1:164:1675-1682. doi: 10.1016/j.ijbiomac.2020.08.039. Epub 2020 Aug 11.


Chamomile is one of the most ancient medicinal herbs known to mankind and among its traditional uses are the calming effects. However, few studies explored its effects on the central nervous system (CNS). In this study we further proceed with structural elucidation of polysaccharides from chamomile tea. A highly substituted 4-O-methyl-glucuronoxylan (fraction SN-50R) was purified and chemically characterized, presenting Xyl:GlcA ratio of 1.7:1, Mw of 500 kDa and total sugar content of 98%. Its bioactivity on pain and on CNS was explored. Animals treated with SN-50R presented antinociceptive effect and a dose-dependent decrease in the number of crossings in the activity chamber and in the open field test, as well as a significant reduction in the number of marbles buried when compared to control. These results suggest that SN-50R presented sedative and anxiolytic-like effects and may be contributing for the calming effects obtained by chamomile tea ingestion.

Keywords: Antinociceptive, sedative and anxiolytic-like effects; Chamomile tea; Glucuronoxylan.

MeSH terms

  • Analgesics / pharmacology*
  • Animals
  • Anti-Anxiety Agents / pharmacology*
  • Chamomile / chemistry*
  • Female
  • Hypnotics and Sedatives / pharmacology*
  • Male
  • Mice
  • Plant Extracts / pharmacology*
  • Plants, Medicinal / chemistry
  • Polysaccharides / pharmacology
  • Tea / chemistry*
  • Xylans / pharmacology*


  • Analgesics
  • Anti-Anxiety Agents
  • Hypnotics and Sedatives
  • Plant Extracts
  • Polysaccharides
  • Tea
  • Xylans
  • glucuronoxylan
  • 4-O-methyl glucuronoxylan