Myrica nagi Hook. (Myricaceae), commonly known as box berry (English), possesses diverse pharmacological activities in animals, little is known about its mast cell stabilizing activity. The present study evaluated the mast cell stabilizing activity of ethyl acetate and aqueous extracts of bark of M. nagi using compound 48/80 and egg albumin induced allergy tests. Adult Wistar albino rats were subjected to compound 48/80 and egg albumin induced allergy tests. The effects of ethyl acetate and aqueous extract at 100 and 200 mg/kg showed slightly better protection of mast cell degranulation 45 and 62% respectively, than the standard drug prednisolone (65%) in egg albumin induced degranulation of mast cells in rats. These extracts also showed better mast cell stabilizing activity 70 and 78% respectively, than the standard drug (65%) when peritoneal mast cells are treated with compound 48/80. The phytochemical screening revealed the presence of flavonoids and steroids. The results of the study for the first time show that the plant possesses mast cell stabilizing activity, confirming the traditional claims. Future research should focus on the identification and the mast cell stabilizing activity of the constituents from this plant.
Key words: Mast cell stabilization, Myrica nagi, compound 48/80, egg albumin.
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