Anticholinesterase and pediculicidal activities of monoterpenoids

Picollo MI, Toloza AC, Mougabure Cueto G, Zygadlo J, Zerba E
Fitoterapia, 2008


The repetitive and inadequate application of pediculicidal products frequently results in the development of resistance to these compounds. Essential oils are a promising alternative to synthetic insecticides, although their mode of action remains to be explored. It has been proposed that one possible target of the essential oils is the inhibition of acetylcholinesterase (AChE). The role of monoterpenoids as possible AChE inhibitors and their relationship with the toxicity was investigated both in vitro and in vivo. Inhibition of electric eel AChE activity showed that the most effective inhibitor was 1,8-cineole with IC(50) 6 x 10(-3) M. The inhibition of AChE activity of head louse homogenate by 1,8-cineole showed IC(50) 7.7 x 10(-2) M. The intoxication symptoms of head lice exposed to vapors of 1,8-cineole was recorded before the in vivo head louse AChE inhibition assay. No correlation was found between neurotoxic symptoms and inhibition of AChE activity.


Picollo MI, Toloza AC, Mougabure Cueto G, Et Al. Anticholinesterase and pediculicidal activities of monoterpenoids. Fitoterapia. 2008;79(4):271-278.

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