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      Randomized controlled trial of standardized Bacopa monniera extract in age-associated memory impairment


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          Brahmi ( Bacopa monniera) is a traditional Indian medicinal plant which causes multiple effects on the central nervous system. The standardized extract of this plant has shown enhanced behavioural learning in preclinical studies and enhanced information processing in healthy volunteers.


          To study the efficacy of standardized Bacopa monniera extract (SBME) in subjects with age-associated memory impairment (AAMI) without any evidence of dementia or psychiatric disorder.


          A double-blind, placebo-controlled randomized study design was employed. The subjects received either 125 mg of SBME or placebo twice a day for a period of 12 weeks followed by a placebo period of another 4 weeks (total duration of the trial 16 weeks). Each subject was evaluated for cognition on a battery of tests comprising mental control, logical memory, digit forward, digit backward, visual reproduction and paired associate learning.


          SBME produced significant improvement on mental control, logical memory and paired associated learning during the 12-week drug therapy.


          SBME is efficacious in subjects with age-associated memory impairment.

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          Most cited references19

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          The relation between antioxidants and memory performance in the old and very old.

          Aging processes, and among them brain aging, are thought to be associated with free radical action. It is hypothesized that plasma antioxidant vitamin levels correlate with cognitive performance in healthy older subjects. Longitudinal and cross-sectional comparisons. The city of Basle, considered representative of the older urban population in Switzerland. A total of 442 subjects aged 65 to 94 years (mean: 75 years; 312 male, 132 female) was selected from a random sample. In 1993, participants were tested for memory, and plasma vitamin levels were measured for the three antioxidants alpha-tocopherol, ascorbic acid, and beta-carotene. These vitamin parameters, measured previously in 1971 in the same sample, were integrated in our analyses. In addition, plasma cholesterol, ferritin, and systolic blood pressure were taken into account. Memory variables were priming, working-memory, free recall, recognition and the WAIS-R vocabulary test (semantic memory). Correlations showed significant stability of the plasma antioxidants over the time lag of 22 years (alpha-tocopherol: r = .47, P < or = .001; beta-carotene: r = .43, P < .001; ascorbic acid: r = .22, P < .001). Free recall, recognition, and vocabulary (but not priming and working-memory) correlated significantly with ascorbic acid and beta-carotene in the cross-sectional 1993 data as well as in the longitudinal 1971-1993 analysis. These two antioxidants remained significant predictors, especially of semantic memory, after controlling for possible confounding variables like age, education, and gender using multiple regression analyses and ANOVAs. Among people aged 65 and older, higher ascorbic acid and beta-carotene plasma level are associated with better memory performance. These results indicate the important role played by antioxidants in brain aging and may have implications for prevention of progressive cognitive impairments.
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            The chronic effects of an extract of Bacopa monniera (Brahmi) on cognitive function in healthy human subjects.

            Extracts of Bacopa monniera have been reported to exert cognitive enhancing effects in animals. However, the effects on human cognition are inconclusive. The current study examined the chronic effects of an extract of B. monniera (Keenmind) on cognitive function in healthy human subjects. The study was a double-blind placebo-controlled independent-group design in which subjects were randomly allocated to one of two treatment conditions, B. monniera (300 mg) or placebo. Neuropsychological testing was conducted pre-(baseline) and at 5 and 12 weeks post drug administration. B. monniera significantly improved speed of visual information processing measured by the IT task, learning rate and memory consolidation measured by the AVLT (P<0.05), and state anxiety (P<0.001) compared to placebo, with maximal effects evident after 12 weeks. These findings suggest that B. monniera may improve higher order cognitive processes that are critically dependent on the input of information from our environment such as learning and memory.
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              Antioxidant activity of Bacopa monniera in rat frontal cortex, striatum and hippocampus.

              The effect of a standardized extract of Bacopa monniera Linn. was assessed on rat brain frontal cortical, striatal and hippocampal superoxide dismutase (SOD), catalase (CAT) and glutathione peroxidase (GPX) activities, following administration for 7, 14 or 21 days. The effects induced by this extract (bacoside A content 82% +/- 0.5%), administered in doses of 5 and 10 mg/kg, orally, were compared with the effects induced by (-) deprenyl (2 mg/kg, p. o.) administered for the same time periods. Bacopa monniera (BM) induced a dose-related increase in SOD, CAT and GPX activities, in all the brain regions investigated, after 14 and 21 days of drug administration. On the contrary, deprenyl induced an increase in SOD, CAT and GPX activities in the frontal cortex and striatum, but not in the hippocampus, after treatment for 14 or 21 days. The results suggest that BM, like deprenyl, exhibits a significant antioxidant effect after subchronic administration which, unlike the latter, extends to the hippocampus as well. The results suggest that the increase in oxidative free radical scavenging activity by BM may explain, at least in part, the cognition- facilitating action of BM, recorded in Ayurvedic texts, and demonstrated experimentally and clinically. Copyright 2000 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

                Author and article information

                Indian J Psychiatry
                Indian Journal of Psychiatry
                Medknow Publications (India )
                Oct-Dec 2006
                : 48
                : 4
                : 238-242
                [* ]Senior Medical Officer, Peninsula Community Mental Health Service, Frankston Hospital, Frankston, Victoria, Australia
                [** ]Professor, Department of Psychiatry, KGMU Lucknow, Uttar Pradesh
                [*** ]Professor, Department of Psychiatry, KGMU Lucknow, Uttar Pradesh
                [**** ]Scientist F, Division of Clinical and Experimental Medicine, Central Drug Research Insitute, Lucknow
                [***** ]Head, Division of Clinical and Experimental Medicine, Central Drug Research Insitute, Lucknow
                Author notes
                Correspondence to: Professor Harjeet Singh, Department of Psychiatry, KG Medical University, Lucknow, Uttar Pradesh
                © Indian Journal of Psychiatry

                This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

                Original Research Paper

                Clinical Psychology & Psychiatry
                aami,memory,brahmi,cognition,bacopa monniera
                Clinical Psychology & Psychiatry
                aami, memory, brahmi, cognition, bacopa monniera


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