Intraplantar injection of bergamot essential oil into the mouse hindpaw: effects on capsaicin-induced nociceptive behaviors

Sakurada T, Kuwahata H, Katsuyama S, Komatsu T, Morrone LA, Corasaniti MT, Bagetta G, Sakurada S
International Review of Neurobiology, 2009


Despite the increasing use of aromatherapy oils, there have not been many studies exploring the biological activities of bergamot (Citrus bergamia, Risso) essential oil (BEO). Recently, we have investigated the effects of BEO injected into the plantar surface of the hindpaw in the capsaicin test in mice. The intraplantar injection of capsaicin produced an intense and short-lived licking/biting response toward the injected hindpaw. The capsaicin-induced nociceptive response was reduced significantly by intraplantar injection of BEO. The essential oils of Clary Sage (Salvia sclarea), Thyme ct. linalool (linalool chemotype of Thymus vulgaris), Lavender Reydovan (Lavandula hybrida reydovan), and True Lavender (Lavandula angustifolia), had similar antinociceptive effects on the capsaicin-induced nociceptive response, while Orange Sweet (Citrus sinensis) essential oil was without effect. In contrast to a small number of pharmacological studies of BEO, there is ample evidence regarding isolated components of BEO which are also found in other essential oils. The most abundant compounds found in the volatile fraction are the monoterpene hydrocarbons, such as limonene, gamma-terpinene, beta-pinene, and oxygenated derivatives, linalool and linalyl acetate. Of these monoterpenes, the pharmacological activities of linalool have been examined. Following intraperitoneal (i.p.) administration in mice, linalool produces antinociceptive and antihyperalgesic effects in different animal models in addition to anti-inflammatory properties. Linalool also possesses anticonvulsant activity in experimental models of epilepsy. We address the importance of linalool or linalyl acetate in BEO-or the other essential oil-induced antinociception.


Sakurada T, Kuwahata H, Katsuyama S. Intraplantar injection of bergamot essential oil into the mouse hindpaw: effects on capsaicin-induced nociceptive behaviors. Int Rev Neurobiol. 2009;85:237-248.

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