We evaluated the anti-depressive activity of ethanolic extracts of Gardenia jasminoides Ellis. (GJ EtOH), Gardenia jasminoides Ellis. var. grandiflora Nakai. (GJG EtOH) and geniposide with mouse forced swimming test (FST) and tail suspension test (TST). In addition, we investigated the possible mechanisms of action of anti-depressive effect of geniposide (GPO). The results showed that GJEtOH (0.1, 1.0 g/kg, p.o.) and GJG EtOH (0.1, 1.0 g/kg, p.o.) significantly reduced the immobility time of mice in both FST and TST, but they did not affect the locomotor activity of mice. Geniposide (10 mg/kg, i.p.) augmented the anti-depressive effect of desipramine (5 mg/kg, i.p.) and fluoxetine (5 mg/kg, i.p.) in the FST, but it did not affect the anti-depressive effect of clorgyline and maprotiline. Geniposide (10 mg/kg, i.p.) increased the levels of serotonin and 5-HIAA in striatum and serotonin in hippocampus. These results suggested that anti-depressive mechanism of GPO may be related to the increasing serotonin level in striatum and hippocampus in mice.
Key words: Gardenia jasminoides Ellis., Gardenia jasminoides Ellis. var. grandiflora Nakai., geniposide, forced swimming test, anti-depressive effect, monoamines.
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