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Extract from soursop leaves can prevent the symptoms of fibromyalgia

Scientists from the University of Seville indicate that it can lessen the chronic pain, anxiety and depression that accompany this disease

University of Seville

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IMAGE: Soursop leaves. view more 

Credit: University of Seville

Researchers from the Department of Pharmacology at the University of Seville have recently published a study in which they state that diets supplemented with aqueous extract of Annona muricata L. leaves can prevent the symptoms associated with fibromyalgia, so improving the lives of these patients.

Leaves of the species Annona muricata L. come from a tree of between 4 and 6 metres in height, from the botanical family Annonaceae. They are simple leaves, oblong and egg-like or oblong and elliptical in shape and between 5 and 15 cm in length. This species is native to the tropical areas of the Americas and is especially abundant in the Amazon region. It is usually cultivated for its medicinal use. The leaves have different ethnomedical uses according to their country of origin. The most important uses in traditional medicine, scientifically validated in pre-clinical tests, are for inflammation, pain, infections, diabetes and cancer.

"The consumption of extract of Annona muricata L. leaves in pharmaceutical form and in the correct dosage can reduce the chronic pain, anxiety and depression that accompany this disease. This extract comes from the traditional preparation using decoction", informs the expert Ana María Quilez from the Medicinal Plants research group at the University of Seville.

This study was carried out over one month using 60 five-week old female rats in the laboratories of the Faculty of Pharmacy. The animals were divided into six groups that were fed a standard diet supplement with different quantities of this plant.

After the results obtained by the researchers, the next step will be to carry out clinical tests with patients, to corroborate the extract's activity and establish the safe and effective dose in humans.

This study was made available online in June 2018 ahead of final publication in print in October 2018.

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