Inhibition of Acetylcholinesterase (AChE) is still considered as the main therapeutic strategy against Alzheimer's disease (AD). Many plant derived phytochemicals have shown AChE inhibitory activity in addition to the currently approved drugs for AD. In the present study, methanolic extracts of 20 plants used in Indian Ayurvedic system of medicine for improving cognitive function were screened for acetylcholinesterase inhibitory activity by Ellman's microplate colorimetric method. Out of 20 extracts, Emblica officinalis, Nardostachys jatamansi, Nelumbo nucifera, Punica granatum and Raulfia Serpentina showed IC50 values <100 µg/ml for acetylcholinesterase inhibitory activity. Antioxidant activities of these plants were assessed by DPPH scavenging assay. Among the extracts used, antioxidant activity was highest for Terminalia chebula and Emblica officinalis with IC50 values <10 µg/ml. Considering the complex multifactorial etiology of AD, these plant extracts will be safer and better candidates for the future disease modifying therapies against this devastating disease.
Mathew, M., & Subramanian, S. (2014). In vitro screening for anti-cholinesterase and antioxidant activity of methanolic extracts of ayurvedic medicinal plants used for cognitive disorders. PLoS ONE, 9(1). https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0086804