Evaluation of antianxiety effect of cinnamaldehyde in swiss albino mice

Ritesh Churihar, Sapna A. More, Pooja S. Mishra, Savita Vyas, Hemant Tanwani


Background: Cinnamon is one of the best known spices used as an herbal medicine. Cinnamaldehyde (CNM) the volatile oil, which was present in the essential oil of the bark, is the important constituents of cinnamon. Cinnamon has been investigated for its various effects like peptic ulcer protection, antioxidant property, inhibition of tau aggregation, anti-inflammatory activity, effect on cardiovascular system, anti-nociceptive activity, hepato-protective effects, hypolipidemic and antidiabetic activites. The present study was aimed to evaluate the anxiolytic effect of CNM per se and its interaction with diazepam in swiss albino mice.

Methods: Anxiolytic activity was evaluated by elevated plus maze method. A group of 36 healthy mice of either sex weighing 20-30 grams were divided at random into six groups (n=6). CNM and diazepam were dissolved in tween twenty 20% to maintain uniformity of the solvent and given orally. Group I was given twenty 20% (10 ml/kg, p.o.), group II diazepam (0.5 mg/kg, p.o.), group III diazepam (1 mg/kg, p.o.), group IV cinnamaldehyde (100 mg/kg, p.o.), group V cinnamaldehyde (200 mg/kg, p.o.), group VI cinnamaldehyde and diazepam (100 mg/kg and 0.5 mg/kg, p.o.).

Results: Cinnamaldehyde per se showed no anxiolytic effect at any dose (p<0.05). The standard drug diazepam has shown significant anxiolytic activity on elevated plus maze. Whereas combination of diazepam 0.5 mg/kg and cinnamaldehyde 100 mg/kg showed significant increase in the time spent in open arms as compared to all groups (p<0.05).

Conclusions: CNM per se did not show any effect on anxiety but enhanced the action of diazepam when co-administered.


Cinnamaldehyde, Diazepam, Elevated plus maze

Full Text:



Sharma HL, Sharma KK. Principles of Pharmacology, 1st edition: Nature and sources of drugs, New Delhi, Paras publishing; 2007: 977.

Sharma HL, Sharma KK. Principles of Pharmacology, 1st edition: Nature and sources of drugs, Paras publishing; 2007: 176-179.

Tapsell LC, Hemphill I, Cobiac L et al. Health benefits of herbs and spices: the past, the present, the future. Med J Aust. 2006;185(4):4-24.

Ram A, Lauria P, Gupta R, Kumar P, Sharma VN. Hypocholesterolaemic effects of Terminalia arjuna tree bark. J Ethnopharmacol. 1997;55:165-9.

Jarvill-Taylor KJ, Anderson RA, Graves DJ. A hydroxychalcone derived from cinnamon functions as a mimetic for insulin in 3T3-L1 adipocytes. J Am Coll Nutr. 2001;20:327-36.

Newman DJ, Cragg GM, Snader KM. Natural products as sources of new drugs over the period 1981-2002. J Nat Prod. 2003;66:1022-37.

Guidelines for the regulation of herbal medicines in the South-East Asia Region World Health Organization Regional Office for South-East Asia. Available at: Reports_TradMed82.pdf. Accessed on 2 August 2019.

Available at: php/Medicinal_plants_of_India. Accessed on 2 August 2019.

Lai PK, Roy J. Antimicrobial and chemopreventive properties of herbs and spices. Curr Med Chem. 2004;(11):1451-60.

Fabricant DS, Farnsworth NR. The value of plants used in traditional medicine for drug discovery. Environ. Health Perspect. 2001;109(1):69-75.

Cox PA. Ciba Foundation Symposium 154, Chichester: John Wiley Sons; 1990: 40.

Cox P, Balick M. The ethnobotanical approach to drug discovery. J Sci Am. 1994:270(6):82-87.

Moura JC de, Noroes MM, Rachetti Vde P, Soares BL, Preti D, Nassini R, et al. The blockade of transient receptor potential ankirin 1 (TRPA1) signalling mediates antidepressant- and anxiolytic-like actions in mice. Br J Pharmacol. 2014;171:4289-99.

Pellow S, Johnstan AL, File SE. Selective agonists and antagonists for 5-hydroxytryptamine receptor subtypes, and interaction with yohimbine and FG 7142 using the elevated plus-maze test in the rat. J Pharm Pharmacol. 1987;39:917-28.

Sharma AC, Kulkarni SK. Evaluation of learning and memory mechanisms employing elevated plus-maze in rats and mice. Pro Neuro-Psychopharmacol Biol-Psychiat. 1992;16:117-25.

Lister RG. The use of a plus-maze to measure anxiety in the mouse. Psychopharmacol. 1987;92:180-5

Rao PV, Gan SH. Cinnamon: A Multifaceted Medicinal Plant. Hindawi Publishing Corporation Evidence-Based Complementary Alternative Medicine. 2014;642942:12.

Sangal A. Role of cinnamon as beneficial antidiabetic food adjunct: a review. Adv Appl Sci Res. 2011;2(4):440-50.