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Pakistan Journal of Biological Sciences
Year: 2009  |  Volume: 12  |  Issue: 9  |  Page No.: 690 - 695

Effect of Ethanol Extract of Saffron (Crocus sativus L.) on the Inhibition of Experimental Autoimmune Encephalomyelitis in C57bl/6 Mice

A. Ghazavi, G. Mosayebi, H. Salehi and H. Abtahi    

Abstract: In this study, effect of ethanol extract of Saffron (Crocus sativus L.) in the treatment of Experimental Autoimmune Encephalomyelitis (EAE) in C57BL/6 mice was evaluated. EAE was induced by immunization of 8 week old mice with MOG35-55 with complete Freunds adjuvant. Therapy with saffron was started on day the immunization. Total Antioxidant Capacity (TAC) was assessed by Ferric Reducing-Antioxidant Power (FRAP) method. Nitric oxide (NO) production was also estimated by Griess reaction. For histological analysis, mice brain was harvested and sections were stained with Hematoxylin-Eosin. After daily oral dosage the saffron significantly reduced the clinical symptoms in C57BL/6 mice with EAE. Also, treated mice displayed a delayed disease onset compared with control mice. TAC production was significantly elevated in saffron treated mice. Effect of saffron on serum NO production was not significant. Typical spinal cord leukocyte infiltration was observed in control mice compared with saffron treated mice. These results suggest for the first time that saffron is effective in the prevention of symptomatic EAE by inhibition of oxidative stress and leukocyte infiltration to CNS and may be potentially useful for the treatment of Multiple Sclerosis (MS).

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