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U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

FDA Poisonous Plant Database

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AUTHOR(S): Truitt, E. B. Jr; Duritz, G.; Ebersberger, E. M.
TITLE: Evidence of monoamine oxidase inhibition by myristicin and nutmeg.
YEAR: 1963 CITATION: Proc Soc Exp Biol Med, 112(), 647-650 [English]
FDA #: F20089
ABSTRACT: Nutmeg and its active component, myristicin, show evidence of central monoamine oxidase (MAO) inhibition by their ability to lower the convulsive dose of intravenous tryptamine in mice and to increase rat brain 5-hydroxytryptamine concentrations. They also show some ability to antagonize reserpine-induced ptosis of the eyelids. Myristicin is chemically unique as a nitrogen-free MAC inhibitor. Although its potency in this respect is not comparable to some of the more potent inhibitors such as tranylcypromine and iproniazid, it seems quite adequate when compared to its low toxicity. Other volatile components of nutmeg such as borneol, geraniol and safrole, do not show tryptamine potentiation, although some appear to cause C.N.S. stimulation in high doses. Further study is recommended for more direct evidence of nutmeg and myristicin as enzyme inhibitors and for their utility as anti-depressant drugs.
GRIN #: 24855 Exit Disclaimer
LATIN NAMEMyristica fragrans
STANDARD PLANT NAMEMyristica fragrans Houtt.