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Behavioural and Neurochemical Evaluation of Perment an Herbal Formulation in Chronic Unpredictable Mild Stress Induced Depressive Model

Ramanathan M, Balaji B, Justin A. Behavioural and neurochemical evaluation of Perment an herbal formulation in chronic unpredictable mild stress induced depressive model. 1. Indian J Exp Biol. 2011 Apr;49(4):269-75.

Perment, a polyherbal Ayurvedic formulation that contains equal parts of Clitoria ternatea Linn., Withania somnifera Dun., asparagus racemosus Linn., Bacopa monniera Linn., is used clinically as mood elevators. The aim of the present study was to explore the behavioural effects and to understand possible mode of action of Perment in stress induced depressive model. Chronic unpredictable mild stress (CUMS) was used to induce depression in rats. Open field exploratory behaviour, elevated plus maze, social interaction and behavioural despair tests were used to assess behaviour. Using standard protocols plasma noradrenaline, serotonin, corticosterone and brain/adrenal corticosterone levels were measured to support the behavioural effects of Perment. Exposure to CUMS for 21 days caused anxiety and depression in rats, as indicated by significant decrease in locomotor activity in the open field exploratory behaviour test and increased immobility period in the behavioural despair test. Perment predominantly exhibited antidepressant action than anxiolytic activity. Further Perment increased the plasma noradrenaline and serotonin levels in stressed rats. No significant alteration in the brain corticosterone level in stressed rats was observed with Perment treatment. However the adrenal corticosterone level is decreased with Perment. It can be concluded that the Perment formulation exhibited synergistic activity, has a significant antidepressant and anxiolytic activity, which may be mediated through adrenergic and serotonergic system activation. Currently the formulation is clinically used as anxiolytic but the present results suggest that the formulation can also be indicated in patients affected with depression.