Medicinal Plants as a Source of Anti-Pyretic Agents – A Review

By Biren N. Shah and Avinash K. Seth




Abstract

Fever is a complex physiologic response triggered by infectious or aseptic stimuli. Elevations in body temperature occur when concentrations of prostaglandin E2 (PGE2) increase within certain areas of the brain. These elevations alter the firing rate of neurons that control thermoregulation in the hypothalamus. Although fever benefits the nonspecific immune response to invading microorganisms, it is also viewed as a source of discomfort and is commonly suppressed with antipyretic medication. Antipyretics such as aspirin have been widely used since the late 19th century, but the mechanisms by which they relieve fever have only been characterized in the last few decades. It is now clear that most antipyretics work by inhibiting the enzyme cyclooxygenase and reducing the levels of PGE2 within the hypothalamus. Various medicinal plants are used as an antipyretic agent from the ancient time. In this review we have enlisted around 50 medicinal plants which are used as an antipyretic agent which can be one of the good alternatives for the traditional allopathic antipyretic agents.

 

Key words: Antipyretic, Fever, Cyclooxygenase, Medicinal plants.

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