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Revista Brasileira de Plantas Medicinais

Print version ISSN 1516-0572


ARAUJO R, O. et al. Biological evaluation of Foeniculum vulgare (Mill.) (Umbelliferae/Apiaceae). Rev. bras. plantas med. [online]. 2013, vol.15, n.2, pp.257-263. ISSN 1516-0572.

Foeniculum vulgare Mill. (Umbelliferae) is a herbaceous plant of the family Umbelliferae, native to the Mediterranean and Asia Minor region and widely distributed all over the Brazilian territory. It is commonly known as fennel or "erva-doce" and has been used in medicine as analgesic, digestive, carminative, diuretic, expectorant, lactigenous, anti-inflammatory, and antispasmodic agent. Crude ethanolic extract for the verification of biological activities was prepared from seeds bought in the market. For the phytochemical profile, analytical thin-layer chromatography was used; the antimicrobial activity was determined by the paper disc diffusion test and minimum inhibitory concentration (MIC); the antinociceptive activity was verified by the method of abdominal writhings in the animals. The tested microorganisms were multiresistant clinical isolates obtained from the Bacteriology Sector of the Clinical Hospital of Pernambuco. The phytochemical study identified the majority of secondary compounds present in the methanolic fraction of seeds, as follows: triterpenes, flavanoid glycosides, smaller terpenes (monoterpenoids, sesquiterpenoids and diterpenoids) and reducing sugars. The obtained results showed that the ethanolic extract had greater activity against Micrococcus spp. (MIC=250µg/mL). Results of the evaluation of the antinociceptive activity demonstrated that only the dosage of 298 mg/Kg, compared to the indomethacin pattern, led to a significant reduction in the number of abdominal writhings in the animals. Further studies will be carried out for the identification and isolation of some secondary compounds, as well as other analgesic protocols.

Keywords : fennel; antimicrobial activity; Foeniculum vulgare.

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