Research: KOPPULA and CHOI,

Listed in Issue 202


KOPPULA and CHOI, Department of Biotechnology, College of Biomedical and Health Sciences, Konkuk University, Chungju, Republic of Korea.  studies and quantifies memory-enhancing, anti-stress and antioxidant properties of cumin.


Cuminum cyminum Linn. (Apiaceae), cumin, is a popular spice with a long history of medicinal use to treat various symptoms such as diarrhoea, flatulence, gynaecological, and respiratory diseases. To date, no scientific investigation was reported regarding memory-enhancing and anti-stress activity of cumin fruits. The present study deals with the memory-enhancing and anti-stress activities and further the antioxidant status via lipid peroxidation inhibition.


Anti-stress activity was evaluated by inducing stress via forced swimming and the urinary vanillylmandelic acid (VMA) and ascorbic acid were estimated as biomarkers. Memory-enhancing activity was studied by conditioned avoidance response using Cook's pole climbing apparatus in normal and scopolamine-induced amnesic rats. Thiobarbituric acid reactive substances (TBARS) assay was used to evaluate the lipid peroxidation.


Daily administration of cumin at doses of 100, 200, and 300 mg/kg body weight 1 h prior to induction of stress inhibited the stress-induced urinary biochemical changes in a dose-dependent manner without altering the levels in normal control groups. The cognition, as determined by the acquisition, retention, and recovery in rats, was observed to be dose-dependent. The extract also produced significant lipid peroxidation inhibition in comparison with known antioxidant ascorbic acid in both rat liver and brain.


This study provides scientific support for the anti-stress, antioxidant, and memory-enhancing activities of cumin extract and substantiates that its traditional use as a culinary spice in foods is beneficial and scientific in combating stress and related disorders.


Koppula S and Choi DK. Cuminum cyminum extract attenuates scopolamine-induced memory loss and stress-induced urinary biochemical changes in rats: a noninvasive biochemical approach. Pharmaceutical Biology. 49(7): 702-8. Jul 2011

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