Planta Med 1981; 42(5): 62-68
DOI: 10.1055/s-2007-971547
Research Articles

© Hippokrates Verlag Stuttgart

Pharmacological Screening of Valerenal and some other Components of Essential Oil of Valeriana officinalis

H. Hendriks1 , R. Bos1 , D. P. Allersma1 , Th. M. Malingré1 , A. Sj. Koster2
  • 1Pharmacognosy Laboratory, Groningen, The Netherlands
  • 2Department of Pharmacology, Faculty of Pharmacy, Utrecht, The Netherlands
Further Information

Publication History

Publication Date:
30 March 2007 (online)


In order to clarify the pharmacological properties of some constituents of the essential oil of Valeriana officinalis L. s. l. four pure compounds (valerenal, valerenic acid, valeranone and isoeugenyl-isovalerate), a hydrocarbon fraction, an oxygen fraction and the essential oil itself were submitted to a screening test. This test is an elaboration of the screening test of CAMPBELL and RICHTER [11] to which several symptoms mentioned by IRWIN [12] and some other features have been added.

From the results of this so-called Syndrome test valerenal and valerenic acid, which show some structural correspondence with the valepotriates, are pharmacologically active at the lowest dose levels. Together with valeranone, both compounds are likely to play a significant role in the depressive action of the essential oil whereas the activity of isoeugenyl-isovalerate is of relatively minor importance.