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Aphrodisiacs from plant and animal sources—A review of current scientific literature

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Abstract

The use of aphrodisiacs dates back thousands of years in Chinese, Indian, Egyptian, Roman, and Greek cultures. Although the scientific basis of these substances was not understood, aphrodisiacs were valued for their ability to enhance the sexual experience. Their use allowed for human procreation and the ability to obtain a sexually fulfilling relationship. Aphrodisiacs used historically include ambrein, Bufo toad, Spanish fly, yohimbine, Tribulus terrestris, horny goat weed, muira puama, MACA root, Panax ginseng, nutmeg, saffron, and cacao. Previous studies on these substances have shown potential aphrodisiac properties using animal models and in human clinical trials. Aphrodisiacs were shown to relax corpus cavernosum smooth muscle tissue in animals, improve erection quality in humans and animals, or increase sexual behavior and satisfaction in humans and animals. Although most studies showed positive effects of aphrodisiacs on sexual enhancement, more studies are needed to understand their mechanism of action. The need for clinical trials using larger populations is also evident to prove the effectiveness of aphrodisiacs for human use. This paper will review recent scientific studies conducted on these commonly used aphrodisiacs, and determine whether the results support or refute their use for human sexual enhancement.

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... Moreover, the roots of coriander have been used in Asian cuisine for intense flavor [9]. Moreover, in some regions of India, the plant has been used traditionally for its "antiinflammatory" principals; besides, the fruits are used to treat spermatorrhea, leucorrhea, and rheumatic fever [16,78]. ...
... In the United States, coriander has recently been studied for its cholesterol-lowering effects [16]. Moreover, in some parts of Europe, coriander has traditionally been referred to as an "antidiabetic" plant [16,78]. In Pakistan, the whole plant part is used for the treatment of flatulence, dysentery, diarrhea, cough, stomach complaints, jaundice, and vomiting. ...
... In Turkey, it is noted that the fruit infusions are useful in indigestion and as an appetizer [9]. However, in history, it is mentioned that coriander has an aphrodisiac effect as many other spices [78]. ...
... Some of these plants or animal products were investigated for their aphrodisiac activity. The potential aphrodisiac properties were examined using in vitro assays, different animal models or clinical trials [11][12][13][14]. Although most studies demonstrated positive aphrodisiac activities, further studies are needed to reveal their mechanism of activity. ...
... Tribulus terrestris, also known as "ghokhru" and its extracts have been used as medicine traditionally in both Asia and India and also in Turkey to treat urinary, cardiovascular and gastrointestinal disorders. It is also, used by humankind to stimulate sexual desires due to its steroidal saponin protodioscin [11][12][13][14][15][16][17][18][19]. T. terrestris has been shown to increase erection quality in animals by observing an increased intracavernous pressure, while yohimbine, ginseng, and saffron increased erection quality in humans [11][12][13][14][15][16][17][18][19][20]. ...
... It is also, used by humankind to stimulate sexual desires due to its steroidal saponin protodioscin [11][12][13][14][15][16][17][18][19]. T. terrestris has been shown to increase erection quality in animals by observing an increased intracavernous pressure, while yohimbine, ginseng, and saffron increased erection quality in humans [11][12][13][14][15][16][17][18][19][20]. Saffron is one of the most expensive and highly valued spices in the world. ...
Article
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Several plants have been used as aphrodisiac to treat sexual problems for centuries. Nowadays, despite the synthesis of chemicals, herbal medicines continue to maintain their importance. Turkey has a great tradition of folk medicine due to its rich flora and many plants have been used for the treatment of several disorders. This work presents aphrodisiac plants traditionally used in Turkey, with their local names, used parts, usage and administration route.
... Usaha untuk mengatasi permasalahan fungsi seksual telah banyak dilakukan baik secara modern maupun tradisional dengan menggunakan bahanbahan alam yang dikenal sebagai afrodisiak. Istilah afrodisiak berasal dari kata Aphrodite yang merupakan Dewi cinta dan kecantikan dalam mitologi Yunani sementara kata 'aphrodisia' sendiri memiliki arti kenikmatan seksual (Melnyk & Marcone, 2011). Secara umum definisi modern aphrodisiak adalah susbtansi yang dapat meningkatkan hasrat seksual (libido) dan/atau kenikmatan seksual yang diperluas hingga subtansisubstansi yang dapat meningkatkan kinerja seksual atau memperbaiki fungsi seksual organ seks pria dan wanita (Melnyk & Marcone, 2011;Sandroni, 2001;Shamloul, 2010). ...
... Istilah afrodisiak berasal dari kata Aphrodite yang merupakan Dewi cinta dan kecantikan dalam mitologi Yunani sementara kata 'aphrodisia' sendiri memiliki arti kenikmatan seksual (Melnyk & Marcone, 2011). Secara umum definisi modern aphrodisiak adalah susbtansi yang dapat meningkatkan hasrat seksual (libido) dan/atau kenikmatan seksual yang diperluas hingga subtansisubstansi yang dapat meningkatkan kinerja seksual atau memperbaiki fungsi seksual organ seks pria dan wanita (Melnyk & Marcone, 2011;Sandroni, 2001;Shamloul, 2010). Tidak hanya untuk memenuhi kepuasan seksual, afrodisiak juga diharapkan dapat bermanfaat untuk membantu memperoleh keturunan. ...
Article
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Sexual function has an important role that determines human life quality and well-being. Various substances derived from animals and plants have often been used in traditional medicine in many cultures as an aphrodisiac particularly for enhancing energy, vitality, improve sexual function and performance. Aphrodisiacs derived from plant sources have been studied extensively particularly for medicines development to treat sexual dysfunction. Compare to plant sources, not many publications confirm the efficacy of aphrodisiac substances derived from animal sources even though the advantages are believed by many cultures and traditional therapy. The practices using these beliefs possibly might overcome the sexual problem, however without problem however without scientific confirmation may well harm human health. Therefore to understand more about the effectiveness of several popular aphrodisiac substances derived from animal, this article will elucidate some of researches that have been done through in vitro or in vivo methods.
... Viagra, Cialis) and the intensified search for natural alternatives with fewer side effects and lower costs (Sandroni, 2001;Patel et al., 2011), medicinal plants with aphrodisiac properties and their mechanisms of action are generally well documented. Ethnobotanists have published extensively on plants used in the field of andrology in Africa ( Noumi et al., 1998Noumi et al., , 2011Kamatenesi-Mugisha and Oryem-Origa, 2005;van Wyk, 2008), Latin America (Duke, 2008), the Caribbean ( Lans, 2007;Mitchell, 2011), and Asia (Hopkins, 2006;Melnyk and Marcone, 2011;Thakur et al., 2011). Most of these traditional remedies are drunk as slightly fermented or strongly alcoholic plant mixtures, which are claimed to work as aphrodisiacs, but also double as general strengtheners, tonics, blood purifiers, diuretics, laxatives and remedies for impotence, infertility, urinary tract infections (including STIs) and kidney problems ( Volpato and Godínez, 2004;Vandebroek et al., 2010;van Andel et al., 2012). ...
... P. johimbe and L. meyenii extracts are also commonly used in western countries to treat oligospermia and oligozoospermia (Rowland and Tai, 2003). More clinical studies are needed to understand mechanisms and drug interactions, and to establish safe doses ( Melnyk and Marcone, 2011). ...
Chapter
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Large numbers of medicinal plants are used for reproductive health, especially by people whose health largely depends on traditional medicine. In this chapter we will focus on medicinal plants used for salient issues in the context of gynaecology, andrology and urology in Latin America, the Caribbean, Sub-Sahara Africa and South and South-East Asia. We highlight plant use for menstrual disorders, postpartum use, vaginal applications, infertility, aphrodisiacs, urinary tract infections, sexually transmitted infections, general urinary and bladder infections, and urinary schistosomiasis. Plant use in this context is not limited to reproductive health issues that biomedicine practitioners would treat with antibiotics. Cultural-bound health concepts on fertility motivate people to cleanse their body from impurities with medicinal plants that act as laxatives, diuretics and uterus contractors. The challenge for ethnopharmacologists is not only to discover new phytochemical properties of tropical plants, but also to study the potential risks and benefits of herbal medicine use by people with limited access to biomedical health care.
... In all the historic literature of Indian, Chinese, Egyptian, Roman, and Greek cultures, there was a mention of many plant-based substances for the purpose of improving the sexual capability [1], the word aphrodisiac came from the Greek God Aphrodite, goddess of love and beauty [2]. ...
... From many plants, numerous number of compounds scientifically proved for its Aphrodisiac activity, such as Yohimbine hydrochloride from the Yohimbe (Pausinystalia johimbe) trees of West Africa, protodioscin from Tribulus terrestris, Icariin from Horny goat weed (Epimedii herba) from China, HV430 from Muira Puama (Ptychopetalum olacoides) a Brazilian plant, MACA ethanolic extract of MACA (Lepidium meyenii) from Andes, extracts of Ginseng (Panax ginseng) a plant from Korea, ethanolic extract of Nutmeg (Myristica fragrans) native to India, Indonesia, and Sri Lanka, crocin and safranal from Saffron (Crocus sativus) native to the Middle East, phenylethylamine and N-acylethanolamine from cocoa Theobroma cacao native to tropical regions in South America and Africa and many animal origin compounds such as the triterpene alcohol ambrein form whale (Physeter catodon), cantharidin from Spanish fly (Lytta vesicatoria), bufotenine and its O-methylated derivative 5 methoxy-M,N-dimethyltryptamine from Bufo Toad (Bufo alvarius) [2] Yohimbine is an indole alkaloid derived from the bark of the P. johimbe [5] tree in Central Africa were also confirmed for their aphrodisiac activity. ...
Article
Full-text available
Objectives: We aimed to assess the effects of O. dioica Roxb. leaf and bark extract and its isolated constituent benzeneethanol, 4-hydroxy-on aphrodisiac activity in rats using different standard aphrodisiac parameters. Methods: To determine the aphrodisiac activity several parameters were observed. These include measuring and observing the mount frequency (MF), mount latency (ML), intromission frequency (IF), intromission latency (IL), anogenital sniffing (AS), and genital grooming (GG). Results: The aphrodisiac activity of O. dioica Roxb. leaf and bark extracts and its pure compound were studied on Wistar albino rats at different dosages. The parameters observed during the study were MF, ML, IF, IL, AS, and GG. The results revealed that the crude extracts showed dose-dependent activity in all the concentration, in that, ethanolic leaf extract showed excellent activity compared to ethanolic bark extract and pure compound benzene ethanol 4-hydroxy. Conclusion: Results showed the excellent aphrodisiac activity of O. dioica Roxb. leaf and bark ethanolic extracts. However, the major compound benzeneethanol, 4-hydroxy-was not responsible for the aphrodisiac activity, may be the minor compounds even though in minor concentration in the extract influence the sexual activity in tested animals.
... Bibliografía: [247,274,[291][292][293][294][295][296][297][298] EFEDRINA Es uno de los cuatro componentes activos de la Ephedra distachya, una planta comúnmente conocida como Ma Huang, usada en la medicina tradicional china. La efedrina es capaz de inducir la quema de grasas mediante el aumento de grasa disponible para usar como energía y mediante el aumento de la tasa metabólica. ...
... Bibliografía: [238,247,293,294,[299][300][301][302][303][304] Tópicos en nutrición y suplementación deportiva -Dr. Heber E. Andrada pág. ...
Book
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This book is intended for anyone passionate about nutrition and sports supplementation. It aims to introduce readers to what regards the subject, combining areas such as nutrition, biological chemistry, the physiology of the exercise, food science and pharmacology. It is by no means intended to replace a good book on each of these areas, just try to give a general snapshot of each of the substances that are currently being used in the world of supplementation sports, its functions, applications, benefits and doses that are usually used. Heber E. Andrada October 5, 2020
... The aphrodisiac effects of ginseng are mostly related to the bioactive compounds, such as ginsenosides, and these have been well studied in various animal models. 88,89 Ginsenosides increased the hormone secretion by the central nervous system, which leads to a higher production of nitric oxide and the activation of gonadal tissue. [88][89][90][91] Irrespective of type, the origin and concentration of ginseng improves the aphrodisiac effect by activating the pituitary gland and secreting hormones mediated by nitric oxide. ...
... 88,89 Ginsenosides increased the hormone secretion by the central nervous system, which leads to a higher production of nitric oxide and the activation of gonadal tissue. [88][89][90][91] Irrespective of type, the origin and concentration of ginseng improves the aphrodisiac effect by activating the pituitary gland and secreting hormones mediated by nitric oxide. Animal studies in rats and rabbits have shown a higher positive effect on penile erection by treating with an oral dose of ginsenosides. ...
Article
Full-text available
Ginseng medicine is popular around the world due to its medicinal properties including its anticancer, antidiabetic, and immunomodulatory effects as well as its contribution to stress relief. From ancient to modern times, medicinal ginseng has been proven to enhance immune function and cognition, and the bioactive compounds in ginseng, including ginsenosides, saponins, flavonoids, polyphenols and volatile oils, greatly contribute to its health benefits. Several in vitro studies have found that ginsenosides such as Rg3, Rb1, Rh1, Rh2, and Ro as well as polyphenols have a relatively high anticancer and immune response activity. However, bioavailability of these bioactive compounds was slightly lower due to modifications in the gastro-intestinal environment. It is important to improve the bioavailability of these compounds, and this can be achieved by using nanotechnology to develop carrier delivery techniques for the bioactive compounds. The bioactive compounds in ginseng can be structurally modified in the nanometer regime to improve the bioactivity, including the anticancer, immunomodulatory, antidiabetic effects in addition to the activity against neurological disorders. Nano-sized ginseng particles are a very effective treatment against various diseases because they have a higher bioavailability, improved systemic circulation and lower toxicity. Therefore, the use of nano ginseng is expected to be effective against various types of disease in the future. This study thus focuses on recent progress and prospects on nano sizing crude ginseng extracts or pure bioactive compounds and various nano carrier delivery techniques for ginsenosides, including their bioavailability for treatment against various diseases.
... In all the historic literature of Indian, Chinese, Egyptian, Roman, and Greek cultures, there was a mention of many plant-based substances for the purpose of improving the sexual capability [1], the word aphrodisiac came from the Greek God Aphrodite, goddess of love and beauty [2]. ...
... From many plants, numerous number of compounds scientifically proved for its Aphrodisiac activity, such as Yohimbine hydrochloride from the Yohimbe (Pausinystalia johimbe) trees of West Africa, protodioscin from Tribulus terrestris, Icariin from Horny goat weed (Epimedii herba) from China, HV430 from Muira Puama (Ptychopetalum olacoides) a Brazilian plant, MACA ethanolic extract of MACA (Lepidium meyenii) from Andes, extracts of Ginseng (Panax ginseng) a plant from Korea, ethanolic extract of Nutmeg (Myristica fragrans) native to India, Indonesia, and Sri Lanka, crocin and safranal from Saffron (Crocus sativus) native to the Middle East, phenylethylamine and N-acylethanolamine from cocoa Theobroma cacao native to tropical regions in South America and Africa and many animal origin compounds such as the triterpene alcohol ambrein form whale (Physeter catodon), cantharidin from Spanish fly (Lytta vesicatoria), bufotenine and its O-methylated derivative 5 methoxy-M,N-dimethyltryptamine from Bufo Toad (Bufo alvarius) [2] Yohimbine is an indole alkaloid derived from the bark of the P. johimbe [5] tree in Central Africa were also confirmed for their aphrodisiac activity. ...
Article
Full-text available
Objectives: We aimed to assess the effects of O. dioica Roxb. leaf and bark extract and its isolated constituent benzeneethanol, 4-hydroxy- on aphrodisiac activity in rats using different standard aphrodisiac parameters.Methods: To determine the aphrodisiac activity several parameters were observed. These include measuring and observing the mount frequency (MF), mount latency (ML), intromission frequency (IF), intromission latency (IL), anogenital sniffing (AS), and genital grooming (GG).Results: The aphrodisiac activity of O. dioica Roxb. leaf and bark extracts and its pure compound were studied on Wistar albino rats at different dosages. The parameters observed during the study were MF, ML, IF, IL, AS, and GG. The results revealed that the crude extracts showed dose-dependent activity in all the concentration, in that, ethanolic leaf extract showed excellent activity compared to ethanolic bark extract and pure compound benzene ethanol 4-hydroxy.Conclusion: Results showed the excellent aphrodisiac activity of O. dioica Roxb. leaf and bark ethanolic extracts. However, the major compound benzeneethanol, 4-hydroxy- was not responsible for the aphrodisiac activity, may be the minor compounds even though in minor concentration in the extract influence the sexual activity in tested animals.
... Artemisia capillaris has been used for treating liver cirrhosis, liver cancer, jaundice, and cholecystit in Asian countries. Scoparone (6, 7-dimethoxycoumarin), the active component in A. capillaries, is used as antipyretic, diuretic, choleric agent, anti-inflammatory and for treatment of hepatitis and bilious disorders [36] . Artemisia capillaris has a significant relaxing effect on penile corpus cavernosum smooth muscle and increased sildenafil citrate-induced relaxation induced by phosphodiesterase type 5 inhibitors in the pre-contracted rabbit. ...
... There are approximately 52 Epimedium species of herbaceous flowering plants, also known as rowdy lamb herb, bishop's hat or horny goat weed, that have been used to treat ED for over 2000 years [36,68] . It relaxes the smooth muscle in the corpus cavernosum as icariin is able to inhibit PDE5 and PDE4 in vitro. ...
Article
Full-text available
Erectile dysfunction (ED) or male impotence is described as an inability to maintain penile erection primarily endothelial and neuronal dysfunction which is partly characterized by decreased production of nitric oxide (NO). Male impotence can be caused by androgen deficiency in aging men, atherosclerosis, diabetes mellitus, spinal cord injury, high level of cholesterol, hypertension, prostate surgery, prostate and heart disease, penis anatomical deformity, social and psychological conditions as unhappy marital relationship, depression, and stress. Aphrodisiac is a drink or food that arouse sexuality. It can be categorized into three groups according to their action mode as follows: increase sexual pleasure substances, increase libido substances (arousal, sexual desire), and increase sexual potency (erection effectiveness). Various extracts of medicinal plants and orally active drugs such as vardenafil, sildenafil, and tadalafil are used to increase arterial blood flow for treating (ED) in southwest Asia. Hence, this paper review focuses on medicinal plants used as aphrodisiacs for scientific validation and management of erectile dysfunction (ED).
... Chocolate was claimed to improve women's sexual desire over those who don't use chocolate [21]. ...
... These herbs have been used as tonic, palliative, astringent, stomachic, antihypertensive, diuretic, and urinary disinfectant, as well as male sexual stimulant and an alternative treatment for sexual dysfunctions [5,6]. Tribulus terrestris is the most common species among them and has been used as traditional medicine for thousands of years [7]. Considering its various phytochemical components, majorly present are furostanol glycosides or saponins, such as protodioscin and protogracillin, of which protodioscin is commonly the most abundant [8]. ...
Article
The dried extract of Tribulus terrestris has been widely applied in traditional medicine as alternative treatment for many ailments. Its main active components are steroidal saponins, which are thought to induce the reduction of testosterone into the potent dihydrotestosterone, thus possibly enhancing steroid hormone-related characteristics. In fact, these herbs are still used to treat some sexual dysfunctions and as male sexual stimulant. It is well-known that many individuals attempt to gain muscle mass by the intake of natural or synthetic anabolic products, including dietary supplements containing Tribulus. In this light, pharmaceutical advances have promoted a conspicuous increase in the commercialization of such products with alleged androgenic properties. Several studies with T. terrestris supplementation involving domestic and laboratory animals, as well as human subjects, have shown conflicting data with regard to increase in male sex hormone levels, sperm quality and physical strength, among other attributes. The aim of this review was to investigate the existing evidence on the impact of T. terrestris supplementation on lean body mass, and to address its reliability. Different database sources and sets of key words were used to search the related literature. Considering a set of predetermined inclusion criteria, the contents of three studies were explored. In these studies there were no significant differences in body composition parameters, such as lean mass and body fat, between control (placebo) and experimental groups. However, the main reason for caution in these reports was the overall reduced sample size, which precludes a firm conclusion from the obtained results. Further investigation by conducting robust randomized controlled trials is still warranted.
... The modern definition of aphrodisiac can vary, but it is generally regarded as a substance that increases sexual desire (i.e. libido) and/or sexual pleasure (Melnyk & Marcone 2011) and it include those substances which aid in the proper functioning of the male and female sex organs (Sandroni 2001;Shamloul 2010). The substances can vary from foods, beverages, vitamins, minerals to other natural or synthetic chemicals (Krychman et al. 2007). ...
Article
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This study aim to examine the aphrodisiac activity of ethanol extract from the tail meat of porcupine (Hystrix javanica F. Cuvier, 1823) that is traditionally believed by people in Java (Indonesia) could enhance male vitality and sexual performance. Twenty sexually inexperienced male mice were randomly divided into four groups and paired with artificially estrus female mice after one hour of drug an extract administration. Two doses of ethanol extract; 150 and 750 mg/kg were administered (p.o) to male mice. Sildenafil citrate was used as the positive control while 5% Tween 80 solution used as the negative control. Sexual behavior parameters such as mounting and intromission were observed for three hours of mating. Male mice treated with ethanol extract of porcupine tail meat at the dose 750 mg/kg BW showed higher mounting and intromission frequency compared to the group of ethanol extract dose 150 mg/kg. After 2 hours of administration showed the highest frequency compared to all groups. However, the ethanol extract could not reduce the mounting and intromission latency as low as sildenafil citrated treated group. Present findings provide preliminary evidence of aphrodisiac properties from the ethanol extract of porcupine tail meat.
... A collection of dietary supplements (n = 25) containing ingredients asso- ciated with sexual enhancement20,[29][30][31][32][33]were obtained for use as matrix blanks to determine if these ingredients interfere with the assay. Thedietary supplements were purchased from 8 sources participating in a good manufacturing practice audit program managed by NSF Interna- tional or dietary supplement verification program by USP. ...
Article
Full-text available
Products marketed as dietary supplements for sexual enhancement are frequently adulterated with phosphodiesterase-5 (PDE5) inhibitors, which are erectile dysfunction drugs or their analogs that can cause adverse health effects. Due to widespread adulteration, a rapid screening assay was developed to detect PDE5 inhibitors in adulterated products. The assay employs fluorescence detection and is based upon measuring inhibition of PDE5 activity, which is the pharmacological mechanism shared among the adulterants. Initially, the assay reaction scheme was established and characterized, followed by analysis of nine representative PDE5 inhibitors (IC50, 0.4–4.0 ng mL–1), demonstrating sensitive detection in matrix-free solutions. Next, dietary supplements serving as matrix blanks (n = 25) were analyzed to determine matrix interference and establish a threshold value; there were no false positives. Finally, matrix blanks were spiked with nine individual PDE5 inhibitors, along with several mixtures. All nine adulterants were successfully detected (≤ 5 % false negative rate; n = 20) at a concentration of 1.00 mg g–1, which is over five times lower than concentrations commonly encountered in adulterated products. A major distinction of the PDE5 inhibition assay is the ability to detect adulterants without prior knowledge of their chemical structures, demonstrating a broad-based detection capability that can address a continuously evolving threat of new adulterants. The PDE5 inhibition assay can analyze over 40 samples simultaneously within 15 min, involves a single incubation step and simple data analysis, all of which are advantageous for combating the widespread adulteration of sex enhancement products.
... Yohimbine is an alkaloid which are found naturally in Pausinystalia yohimbe, a classical aphrodisiac which has been recently revalued for its pro-sexual properties and extensively commercialized without control in some countries (Saini et al., 2010, Melnyk et al., 2011 . However, there is little evidence on its efficacy in the treatment of ED and it is, therefore, not currently recommended (Albersen et al., 2010). ...
... The search for aphrodisiac substances that can fix sexual deficiency dates back to millennia (Melnyk and Marcone, 2011). Folk medicine of Malaysia has alluded to the use of numerous of plant species as sexual enhancer including S. myosotiflora. ...
Article
Full-text available
Smilax myosotiflora has been claimed in Malay traditional medicine to improve sexual functions in men. As this claim is not scientifically tested and proven, the present study aimed to investigate the effects of methanolic extract of S. myosotiflora tubers upon the expression on fertility and sexual behavior parameters in Sprague Dawley male rats. Forty eight sexually experienced male rats were divided into four groups (A-D). Rats in group A were administered with 0.4 ml of distilled water (vehicle) while groups B, C and D received 200, 400 and 800 mg/kg of the extract in 0.4 ml of the vehicle. After 30 days of treatment, fertility test was evaluated by pairing the male rats with 2 untreated females, 3 hours daily for a maximum of 2 weeks. Subsequently, sexual behavior was monitored and recorded by caging male rat with receptive female in estrus phase for 30 minutes. Results showed that S. myosotiflora extract significantly (p<0.05) improved fertility index. All doses of S. myosotiflora tested significantly (p<0.05) reduced mount and intromission latency and improved copulatory rate. The rats on 400 mg/kg showed a marked improvement (p<0.05) in the number of intromissions. Further, male rats that were treated with 800 mg/kg of the extract were found to significantly (p<0.05) reduced ejaculation latency and inter-intromission interval, and pronounced significant (p<0.05) increase in ejaculation frequency. In conclusion, oral administration of S. myosotiflora extract enhanced fertility and stimulated sexual behavior parameters in male rats. KEYWORDS: Smilax myosotiflora; Sexual functions; Fertility test; Sexual behavior.
... Similar to yohimbine horney goat weed, MACA root, Tribulus terrestris, and saffron are all ancient herbal medicines that have been used for thousands of years in Chinese, Indian, ancient Egyptian, Roman, and Greek cultures to help treat all forms of ejaculatory and erectile dysfunction. The use of these particular medications have been tested in animal models and some in humans which has shown evidence towards decreased ejaculatory latency periods [127]. ...
Chapter
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Ejaculation is a complex event that involves the autonomic, somatic, and central nervous systems working together with physiologic coordination of muscular contractions. With such a complex array of intricate processes, many things can go awry. Delayed ejaculation (DE) is overall a very poorly understood ejaculatory disorder with low quality data in terms of incidence, pathology, diagnosis, and treatment. In this chapter, we summarize the proper assessment of DE patients and highlight not only the medical conditions contributing to the disorder but also the psychologic ailments. Treatment is outlined based on pathology and an algorithm will be presented for treatment of ejaculatory disorders. With appropriate treatment many of those afflicted will be able to find relief. Nonetheless, ongoing DE research is still needed.
... Physiologically, these drugs enhance erection through hormonal changes, increased blood flow, and relaxation of corpus cavernosum smooth muscle tissue. Historically, aphrodisiacs are derived from Bufo toad, Tribulus terrestris, horny goat weed, MACA root, Panax ginseng, nutmeg, saffron, cacao, and ambrein (41). ...
Article
The stigma of Crocus sativus, known as saffron, is one of the most expensive spices in the world. The bioactive components in saffron, picrocrocin, crocin, and safranal, have demonstrated a wide range of uses and capabilities in the medical field. This review is focused on the potential therapeutic applications of saffron on diabetes mellitus (DM), antitumor, anticancer, antidepressant, Alzheimer’s disease (AD), cardiovascular disease (CVD), erectile dysfunction and antibacterial effects.
... Horny goat weed (Epimedium grandiflorum), maca root (Lepidium meyenii), saffron, and Tribulus terrestris have been tested in animals and demonstrated decreased latency for ejaculation. 74 Testosterone was recently tested in a multicenter, double-blinded, randomized, placebo-controlled trial for 66 men with ejaculatory dysfunction. No difference was found in any of the outcomes measured between the testosterone and placebo groups, including a variable for delay in ejaculation recorded in the sexual activity log. ...
Article
Introduction: Delayed ejaculation (DE) is a poorly defined disorder that entails the delay or absence of orgasm that results in personal distress. Numerous causes of DE exist, and management must be tailored to the specific etiology to maximize treatment success. Management strategies include psychological and sexual therapy, pharmacotherapy, and penile vibratory stimulation. Aim: This article intends to review the pathophysiology and treatment options for DE discussed in the literature to date. Methods: A review of the literature was performed to identify and evaluate the existing data on treatment success for the various forms of DE management. Main outcome measures: Each treatment option was evaluated for method of administration, data supporting its success for DE, and potential risks or side effects. Results: Different psychosexual therapy strategies have been described for DE but with limited data to describe efficacy. There is no medication for DE approved by the United States Food and Drug Administration. The quality of evidence supporting the off-label use of medications for DE is low. However, there are numerous medications reported in the literature suggested to treat the condition. Cabergoline and bupropion are the two most commonly used. In addition, penile vibratory stimulation has been described as an adjunct treatment option for DE. Conclusion: There are different treatment options reported for DE, all with limited evidence supporting their efficacy. Identifying the etiology of the DE is important to appropriately target therapy. A multimodal approach combining psychosexual therapy with medications and/or penile vibratory stimulation will likely provide the best outcomes.
... Tribulus terrestris (TT) is a famous traditional Chinese medicine that has been widely used in many countries for thousands of years. 1 TT revealed many compounds including steroidal saponins, flavonoids, alkaloids, and amino acids. TT saponins are considered the most important active components that possess a broad range of biological effects such as relieving sexual dysfunction and improving erectile function in rabbits and males, 2 protecting myocardium against ischemia/ reperfusion injury and treating hypertension and coronary heart disease. ...
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Purpose: To investigate the effects of Tribulus terrestris (TT) extracts on muscle mass, muscle damage, and anaerobic performances of trained male boxers and its mechanisms: roles of plasma androgen, insulin growth factor 1 (IGF-1), and IGF-1 binding protein-3 (IGFBP-3). Methods: Fifteen male boxers were divided into exercise group (E, n = 7) and exercise plus TT group (E + TT, n = 8). The 2 groups both undertook 3-week high-intensity and 3-week high-volume trainings separated by a 4-week rest. TT extracts (1250 mg/day) were orally administered by boxers in E + TT group. TT extract compositions were detected by UHPLC–Q-TOF/MS. Before and at the end of the 2 trainings, muscle mass, anaerobic performance, and blood indicators were explored. Results: Compared with E group, decreases of plasma CK (1591.5 ± 909.6 U/L vs. 2719.9 ± 832.5 U/L) and IGFBP-3 (3075.5 ± 1072.5 ng/mL vs. 3950.8 ± 479.3 ng/mL) as well as increases of mean power (MP, 459.4 ± 122.3 W vs. 434.6 ± 69.5 W) and MP/body weight (MP/BW, 7.5 ± 0.9 W/kg vs. 7.1 ± 1.1 W/kg) were detected in E + TT group after a high-intensity training. For high-volume training, reduction of IGFBP-3 (2946.4 ± 974.1 ng/mL vs. 3632.7 ± 470.1 ng/mL) and increases of MP (508.7 ± 103.2 W vs. 477.8 ± 49.9 W) and MP/BW (8.2 ± 0.3 W/kg vs. 7.5 ± 0.9 W/kg) were detected in E + TT group, compared with E group. Muscle mass, blood levels of testosterone, dihydrotestosterone (DHT), and IGF-1 were not signifiantly changed between the 2 groups. Conclusion: Taking 1250 mg capsules containing TT extracts did not change muscle mass and plasma levels of testosterone, DHT, and IGF-1 but significantly alleviated muscle damage and promoted anaerobic performance of trained male boxers, which may be related to the decrease of plasma IGFBP-3 rather than androgen in plasma.
... Moreover, a special attention was dedicated to perfume ingredients with aphrodisiac potential, because they could play a key role in the fragrance choice and buying decision process. It is a wellknown fact that aphrodisiacs may influence your mood, increase your sexual desire and attract the opposite sex [6]. The aim of the present study was to analyse the composition of some of the best-selling perfumes of recent years, focusing on the quantitative assessment by gas chromatography-mass spectrometry of potential aphrodisiac compounds, such as vanillin, ethylvanillin, trans-and cis-methyl dihydrojasmonate, muskolactone and muscone, being frequently used as perfume ingredients for base and middle notes in perfumery such as jasmine, vanilla and musk [7,8]. ...
Article
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In the present study the composition of some of the best-selling perfumes of recent years has been evaluated, focusing on the quantitative assessment of potential aphrodisiac ingredients of these fragrances, such as vanillin, ethylvanillin, trans- and cismethyl dihydrojasmonate, muskolactone and muscone. Seven samples of different brands (three women’s and four men’s fragrances) were analysed by gas chromatography-mass spectrometry. All the other major and minor constituents were assigned based on MS spectra library (Wiley) matching, followed by pattern analysis using chemometric data-mining (PCA). Trans-methyl dihydrojasmonate was found in all analyzed fragrances, with the highest concentration found in a perfume for women. Based on the obtained data, it seems that a common pattern of “most wanted recipe” among both men and women consumers is to be observed, based on some of the classical scents of vanilla, jasmine and musk. © 2015, Romanian Society for Pharmaceutical Sciences. All rights reserved.
... There are varieties of foods and drinks in diverse cultures that were claimed could improve men stamina, libido and sexual function. Aphrodisiac or libido enhancing substances found widely in various plant and animal sources that even though were not yet scientifically confirmed, the observed sexual enhancing properties popularized their use [2]. Nowadays studies that discover aphrodisiac potency from plants are more developed. ...
Conference Paper
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This study aimed to examine meat nutritional components from the tail of porcupine (Hystrix javanica F. Cuvier, 1823) that is believed by several people in Java could enhance men sexual performance. The content of protein was measured by Kjeldahl method. Fat was extracted using soxhlet and the content was measured by gravimetric. Total cholesterol was determined based on the method of Jordan and Knockblock. Amino acid composition was measured using high pressure liquid chromatography. Zinc content was measured using atomic absorption spectroscopy. The meat nutritional components of porcupine’s tail were then compared with porcupine carcass, cattle, sheep and horse to identify components that could be related with aphrodisiac effect caused by meat consumption. The result showed that the content of protein and fat of the tail was higher than that of porcupine carcass, cattle, sheep and horse. Meanwhile, the amino acid components of tail meat were higher than the porcupine carcass but lower than cattle meat. The content of cholesterol in tail meat was lower than in the porcupine carcass, cattle, sheep and horse. Zinc content was also low compared to oyster and several tested plants that are known could increase sexual function. Considering of how protein, fat and amino acid influence male sexual function and the different content of these nutrient compare to other meat including porcupine carcass, it could be concluded that the aphrodisiac effect of porcupine tail meat was possibly generated from these nutrient composition. These findings shed some light on difference effect caused by porcupine meat consumption. However more investigations are still needed to further understanding the aphrodisiac efficacy of porcupine tail meat.
... Horny goat weed (Epimedium grandiflorum), maca root (Lepidium meyenii), saffron, and Tribulus terrestris have been tested in animals and demonstrated decreased latency for ejaculation. 74 Testosterone was recently tested in a multicenter, double-blinded, randomized, placebo-controlled trial for 66 men with ejaculatory dysfunction. No difference was found in any of the outcomes measured between the testosterone and placebo groups, including a variable for delay in ejaculation recorded in the sexual activity log. ...
Article
Delayed ejaculation (DE) is a challenging disorder to treat. Many clinicians are not comfortable dealing with DE due to a lack of treatment approaches supported by evidence-based medicine. In this review, we discuss the most common treatments and the latest studies that support each DE treatment. The goal of our review is to help clinicians identify and treat patients who present with this disorder. An integrative approach using medications, penile vibratory stimulation, and sexual counseling is important for successful treatment of DE. We propose an algorithm for DE treatment to help guide clinicians. However, an individualized treatment plan should be developed for each unique case due to the multifactorial etiology of DE.
... Several substances are commonly known as aphrodisiacs. However, scientific evidence for such effects is rare [4,5]. It is additionally discussed, why aphrodisiacs may influence libido or sexual behavior. ...
Conference Paper
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It is a centuries-old issue whether and how various substances can have an aphrodisiacal effect. In scientific research, a lot of studies evidence that pre-knowledge and expectancies can explain aphrodisiacal effects more than actual ingredients. In this vein, we tested whether information regarding an aphrodisiacal vs. anti-aphrodisiacal effect of a common aphrodisiac (i.e., strawberry) would have differential effects on arousal ratings for different pictures including erotic, neutral person, object and fruit pictures. There were no differences between the aphrodisiacal vs. anti-aphrodisiacal information group for erotic, neutral, and object pictures. However, for strawberries, participants who were informed that strawberries have an aphrodisiacal effect (i.e., aphrodisiacal group) gave higher arousal ratings than participants who were informed that strawberries have an anti-aphrodisiacal effect (i.e., anti-aphrodisiacal grou). No group difference in arousal ratings were found for other fruits. As perceptual effects, familiarity, general priming, specific ingredients in strawberries, and higher arousal due to information contrary to common beliefs cannot explain the results, the effect is interpreted as a cognitive switch for one specific object and the respective information.
... Saffron and crocin are able to improve sexual diseases by increasing libido, erectile function and semen quality (Melnyk and Marcone, 2011;Wright, 2014). Investigating saffron effect on fluoxetine-induced sexual dysfunction in two randomized double-blind placebo-controlled trials has shown that saffron can remarkably improve intercourse satisfaction domains and erectile function in men (Kashani et al., 2013), and total female sexual function index (FSFI), lubrication, and arousal in women. ...
Article
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Crocus L. is a genus of perennial plants in the family Iridaceae. Numerous research regarding healing effects of Crocus spp. on human diseases are being published worldwide. Crocus sativus L. is the most studied species of this taxa, however, other Crocus species are also being used traditionally in different countries. The most commonly used plant part of C. sativus is the stigma, known as saffron. Traditional practitioners were using saffron for treating depression, inflammations and gastrointestinal, liver, respiratory, urogenital, eye and skin diseases. In modern studies, saffron and its constituents have been used for treating cancer, liver fibrosis, fatty liver, metabolic diseases, retinal damage, asthma, depression, inflammation and neurodegeneration. Inflammation and oxidative damage are crucial factors in the pathogenesis of these diseases and Crocus spp. has been used for treating inflammatory diseases in both traditional and modern research. This may result from the presence of anthocyanins and flavonoids as anti-oxidant components and safranal (monoterpenoid), crocin and crocetin (carotenoid) as anti-inflammatory components. These compounds can be considered as potential drug candidates for treating different respiratory, retinal, metabolic and neural ailments. In this review, general information regarding botany, ethnobotany, chemical profile, and pharmacological effects of different Crocus species and their constituents have been summarized.
... The search for aphrodisiac substances that can fix sexual deficiency dates back to millennia (Melnyk and Marcone, 2011). Folk medicine of Malaysia has alluded to the use of numerous of plant species as sexual enhancer including S. myosotiflora. ...
Article
Smilax myosotiflora has been claimed in Malay traditional medicine to improve sexual functions in men. As this claim is not scientifically tested and proven, the present study aimed to investigate the effects of methanolic extract of S. myosotiflora tubers upon the expression on fertility and sexual behavior parameters in Sprague Dawley male rats. Forty eight sexually experienced male rats were divided into four groups (A-D). Rats in group A were administered with 0.4 ml of distilled water (vehicle) while groups B, C and D received 200, 400 and 800 mg/kg of the extract in 0.4 ml of the vehicle. After 30 days of treatment, fertility test was evaluated by pairing the male rats with 2 untreated females, 3 hours daily for a maximum of 2 weeks. Subsequently, sexual behavior was monitored and recorded by caging male rat with receptive female in estrus phase for 30 minutes. Results showed that S. myosotiflora extract significantly (p<0.05) improved fertility index. All doses of S. myosotiflora tested significantly (p<0.05) reduced mount and intromission latency and improved copulatory rate. The rats on 400 mg/kg showed a marked improvement (p<0.05) in the number of intromissions. Further, male rats that were treated with 800 mg/kg of the extract were found to significantly (p<0.05) reduced ejaculation latency and inter-intromission interval, and pronounced significant (p<0.05) increase in ejaculation frequency. In conclusion, oral administration of S. myosotiflora extract enhanced fertility and stimulated sexual behavior parameters in male rats.
... Lobsters parts were used, among other remedies, as laxative, kidney stone treatment, strengthener of the body's immune system and as a treatment for poisoning (Voultsiadou 2010). During ancient Greece and Rome, as well as in the Middle Ages, lobsters were highly appreciated aphrodisiacs (Melnyk andMarcone 2011, Pajovic et al. 2012, and references therein). ...
... It is well known in traditional Chinese medicine and has been broadly used in many countries for thousands of years (Melnyk, Marcone, 2011). ...
... In modern medicine it has become a recent practice to use nanosized compounds extracted from plant derivatives as it easily cross the blood brain barrier to control the insulin signaling (Niu et al., 2018). Experimental result suggest the enhancing role of nano ginseng in secretion of testicular hormones and improved sperm production along with lesser damage of DNA (Kim et al., 1998;Melnyk and Marcone, 2011;Achike and Kwan, 2003;Tambi et al., 2012). This outcome has a very positive impact on developing nanoparticles of bioactive compounds to facilitate alternative and more effective therapeutic approach for management of hormonal disorders. ...
... Male sexual excitement is identified by the rise of sexual desire in the brain and the subsequent transmission of relevant signals to the periphery, followed with the penile tumescence necessary for sexual intercourse [4]. Many types of synthetic agents are available for improving sexual function, such as sildenafil, vardenafil, tadalafil, avanafil and udenafil [5][6][7]. However, long-term use of these drugs can produce negative side effects, such as headache [5,8], muscle pain [8], blurred vision [8], and impairment of renal or hepatic function [9]. ...
Article
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Background Sexual problems are widespread and adversely affect the interpersonal relationships and the quality of life. Currently, synthetic drugs improving sexual function are available, but expenditures for such agents are extremely high. To discover relatively inexpensive, widely available and effective natural drugs, we identified a combined extracts from Lepidium meyenii (maca) root and Allium tuberosum Rottl. (Chinese chive) seed, assessed the effects of this combined extracts on erectile dysfunction, and explored its potential mechanisms. Methods The extracts were obtained via supercritical fluid extraction. Male BALB/c mice received doses of extract from single plant or the combined extracts (200 mg/kg) by gastric gavage for 14 d, and Viagra was used as the positive control drug. Sexual behaviour was observed, and concentrations of serum testosterone, nitric oxide (NO), and cyclic guanosine monophosphate (cGMP) in serum as well as in penis were measured. In addition, weights of genital organs were also measured. Results The combined extracts of maca root and Chinese chive seed (1:1, w/w) had a 45-fold increase in macamide content compared with maca extract. It also led to significantly higher ejaculation frequency (P < 0.05) than single extract from maca root or Chinese chive seed, with no corresponding effect on genital indices. In addition, the NO level in serum (P < 0.01) and penis (P < 0.05) increased notably, as well as the level of cGMP in penis (P < 0.05). Conclusions The results indicated that the combined extracts produced better synergistic effects on male sexual function than maca extract or Chinese chive extract alone. These positive effects may involve the upregulation of NO and cGMP concentrations in penis.
... There are several experimental, animal, and clinical evidences indicating the efficacy of saffron and its bioactive pigment, crocin in improving sexual behaviors. Increase of libido, enhancement of erectile function, and amelioration of semen quality are among the most important positive effects of saffron in this regard [101,102]. ...
Chapter
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Saffron, as one of the most expensive spices in the world, is obtained from the stigma of Crocus sativus. Crocus sativus L. belongs to the Iridaceae family, and has been widely used as an herbal medicine, spice, food coloring, and a flavoring agent since ancient times. Saffron is one of the most famous plants cultivated in Iran, and this country now accounts for approximately 90% of the world production of saffron. Saffron has a long history in Islamic Traditional Medicine (ITM). It has been used for the treatment of several diseases such as urogenital, ocular, and respiratory disorders. Moreover, it has oxytocic, anti-depressant, aphrodisiac, cardioprotective, anticarcinogenic, and anti-inflammatory properties. There are several studies on pharmacological activities of saffron in vitro, in vivo, and clinical trials which not only confirm the application of saffron in traditional medicine, but also introduce some new medicinal aspects. In this chapter, we aim to present a comprehensive review on traditional and ethnomedicinal uses of saffron in different systems of traditional medicine, especially ITM. Then, we will discuss pharmacological activities reported for saffron in modern medicine as in vitro, in vivo, and clinical trial studies. Finally, we will compare the properties reported for saffron in traditional medicine with the activities in modern medicine to reveal the potential of this valuable herb for treatment of various diseases.
... Succinum can be used topically for promoting tissue regeneration (Dharmananda, 2020;Chatterji et al., 2010). Although the scientific basis of these substances was not understood, Aphrodisiacs were valued for their ability to enhance the sexual experience and have been dated back thousands of years in Chinese, Indian, Egyptian, Roman, and Greek cultures many substances used include ambergris and according to Arabic traditional medicine amber can be used as an aphrodisia (Melnyk et al., 2011;Rodrigues, 2000). The mode of action of aphrodisiac is to increase libido, potency or sexual pleasure. ...
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Ambergris is the pathological (the only source) secretion of the intestine sperm whale Physeter macrocephalus syn. Physeter catodon belonging to the family Physeteridae. Ambergris has been found only rarely for centuries, as jetsam on beaches all over the world known as Baltic amber. Ambrein is the major constituent of ambergris and responsible for its various pharmacological activities like breakdown of the relatively scentless ambrein through oxidation produces ambroxan and ambrinol, the main odor components of ambergris. Other amber originated from pine plants resin known as sucinum; other amber known as compressed amber, made of small pieces and small stones that melted together under high pressure.
... It derives from the dried stigmas of Crocus sativus L. Since ancient times, Persians used it as an aphrodisiac and Egyptians, Indians, Arabs, Greeks and Romans used it as ingredients in perfumes. 1 Still today, in Oriental countries, saffron is given as a present to wish a long and happy life. The precious spice was originally cultivated in the areas that nowadays include Iran, Turkey and Greece but now also Spain, Italy, France, Switzerland, Morocco, Egypt, Azerbaijan, Pakistan, India, New Zealand, Australia and Japan are producers of saffron. 2 The compounds that mainly contribute to saffron peculiar characteristics are safranal, a volatile oil responsable of its aroma, 3 picrocin, which gives the spice its bitter taste, 3,4 and crocins (water soluble crocetins esters) which are responsible of saffron characteristic colour. ...
Article
Seventy‐six samples of saffron were analysed through inductively coupled plasma ‐ mass spectrometry and stable isotope ratio analysis. The dataset was formed by 67 samples harvested in different areas of Italy, Morocco and Iran and 9 samples purchased in the Italian market. For the first time, 42 elements and five stable isotopes (δ¹³C, δ¹⁵N, δ³⁴S, δ²H and δ¹⁸O) were considered to carry out the discrimination of the samples on the basis of their geographical origin. Combined ICP‐MS and isotopic composition data turned out to be a useful tool for the geographical discrimination of saffron among predefined cultivation sites. K, Cr, Mn, Ni, Zn, Rb, Sr, Mo, Cs, Nd, Eu, Pb, δ¹³C, δ¹⁵N, δ³⁴S, and δ²H were identified as the significant variables in geographical discrimination. Moreover, the class models generated for saffron cultivated in two specific areas of Central Italy exhibited 100 % specificity for Moroccan, Iranian and commercial samples and a high specificity (83‐84%) for the saffron samples cultivated in other although close Italian sites.
Article
Ethnopharmacological relevance: Selected Peruvian Amazon plants are macerated into sugar cane distillates to prepare alcoholic beverages used to improve male sexual performance. The tree bark from Campsiandra angustifolia Spruce ex Benth (Fabaceae), Swartzia polyphylla DC (Fabaceae), Minquartia guianensis Aubl. (Olacaceae) and Thynantus panurensis (Bureau) Sandwith (Bignoniaceae) usually are used as crude drugs in mixtures of several ingredients. Aim of study: Describe the chemical composition of the most traded traditional male enhancer beverages, namely "Levántate Lazaro" and "Siete veces sin sacarla", and their single crude drug constituents, as well as their inhibitory activity towards the enzyme phosphodiesterase-5. The presence of pro-sexual drugs such as Sildenafil® and derivatives was assessed in the samples. Materials and methods: Single plant constituents and the preparation mixtures were purchased in the Mercado Belen (Iquitos, Peru). Chemical profiling was carried out by HPLC-DAD-ESI-MS/MS. The extracts were assessed for phosphodiesterase-5 inhibition. The occurrence of pro-sexual drugs was determined by HPLC-DAD-ESI-MS/MS. Results: Chemical profiling allowed the identification of condensed tannins as the main constituents of C. angustifolia and S. polyphylla, hydrolysable tannins for M. guianensis, and C-glycosides for T. panurensis. The traditional preparations showed similar composition compared to the crude drugs. At 200 µg/mL, the traditional preparation "Levántate Lázaro" and "Siete veces sin sacarla" inhibited the phosphodiesterase-5 by 49.88% and 27.90%, respectively. No adulterations with pro-sexual drugs were found in the samples. From the crude drugs, low effect was found for the extracts of S. polyphylla and T. panurensis and high activity for C. angustifolia which inhibited the enzyme by 89.37% and 81.32% at 200 and 100 µg/mL, respectively. Conclusion: The traditional preparations used to improve sexual performance in the Peruvian Amazon showed activity as phosphodiesterase-5 inhibitors. The most active ingredient of the traditional preparations was C. angustifolia, with some contribution from T. panurensis. These results encourage additional studies, including animal models to confirm the male enhancer effect of the preparations.
Article
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The separation capabilities of a core-shell C 8 short (3x50mm) 2.6µm column's have been tested on protodioscin and a new method for its determination in plant extracts with UV detection is proposed. The higher efficiency of the core-shell column allows reduction of the separation time down to 10-15 min in isocratic mode (including column conditioning time), when SPE pre-cleaning of samples from stronger retained plant extract matrix components is applied. The sensitivity achieved was enhanced as well: LOD for protodioscin with UV detection reached to 2 ng injected amount, and 2 µg injected amount with ELSD detection. The application of gradient elution is more complicated because it requires very high purity solvents as mobile phase constituents. The column tested needs more than 20 min for conditioning and this hampers the significant reduction of the separation time in gradient elution. The application of the column for analysis of plant extracts/preparations is effective when isocratic elution of protodioscin with 24 – 26 % acetonitrile/water mobile phase, modified with 1.3-1.6 % propanol for peak symmetry improvement , is exploited in combination with polymer-based RP SPE clean-up. Keywords: protodioscin, Kinetex C8 2.6 µm column, HPLC/UV/ELSD.
Chapter
Over the past decades, along with progressive economic development, significant changes in environment, society and people’s lifestyles have been observed. A marked shift in the dietary pattern worldwide together with the physical inactivity due to the urbanization and sedentary nature of many forms of work, resulted in an increasing prevalence of chronic metabolic diseases. Overweight and obesity are the major causes of co-morbidities, including type II diabetes, cardiovascular diseases, various cancers and other health problems. Psychosocial stress, anxiety and depression were associated not only with weight gain but also with sexual dysfunction, a serious medical and social symptom that occurs both in men and women. This chapter focuses on natural remedies, herbs and dietary supplements used in weight management (slimming products) and sexual enhancement (natural aphrodisiacs). Due to the higher interest of consumers in a holistic approach of traditional medicines, the popularity of natural products registered a significant increase and the global market of herbal food supplements has grown and diversified spectacularly. Besides the description of botanical species most frequently used as active ingredients in herbal formulations, the main results of human trials have been reviewed. The efficacy of natural products and their mechanism of action, as well as an adverse reaction, side effect or drug-herb interactions, were discussed. Special attention was paid to adulteration with pharmaceutically active substances of those products marketed as natural which is associated with potential health risks for consumers.
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Ambergris, a sperm whale metabolite, has long been used as a fragrance and traditional medication, but it is now rarely available. The odor components of ambergris result from the photooxidative degradation of the major component, ambrein. The pharmacological activities of ambergris have also been attributed to ambrein. However, efficient production of ambrein and odor compounds has not been achieved. Here, we constructed a system for the synthesis of ambrein and odor components. First, we created a new triterpene synthase, “ambrein synthase,” for mass production of ambrein by redesigning a bacterial enzyme. The ambrein yields were approximately 20 times greater than those reported previously. Next, an efficient photooxidative conversion system from ambrein to a range of volatiles of ambergris was established. The yield of volatiles was 8–15%. Finally, two biological activities, promotion of osteoclast differentiation and prevention of amyloid β-induced apoptosis, were discovered using the synthesized ambrein.
Article
Introduction: Many different animal models of sexual medicine have been developed, demonstrating the complexity of studying the many interactions that influence sexual responses. A great deal of effort has been invested in measuring sexual motivation using different behavioral models mainly because human behavior is more complex than any model can reproduce. Aim: To compare different animal models of male and female behaviors that measure sexual motivation as a key element in sexual medicine and focus on models that use a combination of molecular techniques and behavioral measurements. Methods: We review the literature to describe models that evaluate different aspects of sexual motivation. Main outcome measures: No single test is sufficient to evaluate sexual motivation. The best approach is to evaluate animals in different behavioral tests to measure the motivational state of the subject. Results: Different motivated behaviors such as aggression, singing in the case of birds, and sexual behavior, which are crucial for reproduction, are associated with changes in mRNA levels of different receptors in brain areas that are important in the control of reproduction. Conclusion: Research in animal models is crucial to understand the complexity of sexual behavior and all the mechanisms that influence such an important aspect of human well-being to decrease the physiologic and psychological impact of sexual dysfunctions. In other cases, research in different models is necessary to understand and recognize, not cure, the variability of sexuality, such as asexuality, which is another form of sexual orientation.
Chapter
Ejaculation is a highly integrated process that involves both the sympathetic and parasympathetic neural pathways. Numerous studies reveal that ejaculatory dysfunction is a common disorder and the source of significant bother for many of those affected. Ejaculatory dysfunction comprises several different, more specific abnormalities including: premature ejaculation, inhibited ejaculation (consisting of delayed and absent ejaculation), and painful ejaculation. The evaluation of affected patients should include a comprehensive medical history, physical examination, and laboratory testing. Numerous therapeutic options are available to treat ejaculatory disorders, with many of these leading to marked improvement in patients’ symptoms and associated bother.
Article
This essay addresses the means by which the male genital organs register—that is, effectively become present, meaningful, and functional (or dysfunctional)—in early medieval culture by examining sexual riddles from the Exeter Book and aphrodisiac remedies from the Medicina de Quadrupedibus. Both function within a very particular material-discursive network governing the understanding and experience of genitals during this period. Reading these texts together suggests that gender is at this time not understood as a system existing in relation to biological sex, in which genitals are understood as relatively inert signifiers of a physical difference that is coterminous with the human body itself. In fact, both the riddles and aphrodisiac remedies suggest that the penis becomes most completely itself—or becomes restored most completely to itself and capable of fremmanne or donne, performing or doing its sexual, reproductive function—only when in an assemblage with animal and sometimes plant matter. The male sexual organ is thus far from being a discretely bounded entity lending ontological weight to sexual difference, but is in fact an entity which comes into being only in a form distributed across the human and non-human spectrum.
Article
Cassia auriculata is a commonly found plant in Asia, widely used in Ayurveda and Siddha medicines as a tonic, astringent and in general for diabetes. Herbal tea made from this plant has been marketed as a product for restoring sexual vitality, to increase sperm count and counteract ejaculatory disorders. However, the scientific evidences are scarce to prove this concept. Here, we examined the effect of hydro‐alcoholic extract obtained from C. auriculata flower upon the expression of male Wistar albino rat’s sexual behaviour. Sildenafil was used as a positive control. Penile erection index (PEI), mount latency (ML), intromission latency (IL), ejaculation latency (EL), mounting frequency (MF), intromission frequency (IF), ejaculation frequency (EF) and post‐ejaculatory interval (PEjI) were recorded for days 0, 7, 14 and 28 and also after the withdrawal of the treatment on days 7 and 15. Significant reduction in ML, IL and PEjI, and increment in EL, PEI, MF, IF and EF were observed (p < 0.05, <0.01). However, neither extract nor sildenafil sustains the effect after withdrawal of the treatment. The present finding demonstrates the aphrodisiac potential of hydro‐alcoholic extract of C. auriculata flower in vivo and lends support to the traditional utilisation as a sexual stimulating agent.
Article
Aphrodisiacs, libido or erection-enhancing supplements are widely available on the internet. The beneficial effects are controversial. Forensic toxicologists should be aware of the potential toxicities of these products because they could be given in cases of drug-facilitated sexual assault. This article presents a case report in which the defendant claimed to have administered an aphrodisiac to several women who showed strong symptoms of intoxication after consumption in an alcoholic drink. A literature research was carried out for potential substances sold in these aphrodisiac products. Synthetic substances as well as products of herbal or animal origin can be the ingredients. The main products that could cause intensive side effects and intoxication are phosphodiesterase V inhibitors (declared or undeclared on packaging), yohimbine, steroid hormones, flibanserin, gamma-hydroxybutyric acid, Tribulus terrestris, Bufo Toad, Spanish fly or Horny Goat Weed. All other products used as aphrodisiacs and described herein show less potential side effects or no studies on side effects in humans were carried out.
Chapter
Many cultures throughout history have passed down knowledge rumored to enhance sexual performance of both men and women including sexual techniques, foods, and nutritional supplements. Sexual techniques can take the form of stimulating certain aspects of the female anatomy and sexual positions such as stimulation of the Grafenberg “G” spot. Other techniques focus on the psychological aspects of sex including synchronization of orgasms and ejaculation prolongation. Cultures around the world have imbued foods as aphrodisiacs, in addition to herbs, plants, and other dietary supplements, collectively known as nutraceuticals. Among the more common ones are pomegranates, antioxidant rich foods, omega-3, basil, cardamom, garlic, watermelon, oysters, l-arginine, caffeine, and dehydroepiandrosterone (DHEA). Herbs such as Chlorophytum borivilianum of the Indian subcontinent to Lepidium meyenii of the South American Andes have long been reported to have aphrodisiac qualities. Many of these products are rich in components that promote cardiovascular health, produce anti-inflammatory activity, cause vasodilatation and increase androgen levels—all important factors in sexual performance. This chapter reviews the various sexual enhancement techniques, foods, and nutraceuticals and the evidence to support their use.
Chapter
This chapter analyzes why societies put so much emphasis on virginity. In many cultures virginity has historically been tied to purity and morality, especially for women. In the early 1900s, however, this view began to change. Though virginity was still seen as valuable to women, more young women were more willing to have sex outside of marriage—especially within the context of a relationship that was heading toward marriage. The 1990s were an interesting time for views on virginity. In modern history, society has had some pretty conflicting views on virginity. These views impact how individuals feel about their own first time. The chapter highlights that young people should be educated about sexuality and first sexual experiences before they have them. It further talks about the simultaneous orgasm myth, gender, rough sex, masturbation and aphrodisiacs.
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What has gone wrong with nature conservation and how do we bring about transformative change to create a more sustainable future? Which types of knowledge, ethics, principles and actions are needed to reverse the decline of biodiversity? And given the urgency to act, how can we harness them to sustain a just and diverse future for life on Earth? These are the questions underlying Seeds of Change – provocations for a new research agenda, a compilation of expert reviews and essays generated by the Biodiversity Revisited initiative, led by the Luc Hoffmann Institute in collaboration with WWF, Future Earth, ETH Zürich Department of Environmental Systems Science, University of Cambridge Conservation Research Institute, and the Centre for Biodiversity and Environment Research at University College London. The 30 essays and 6 reviews offer diverse, innovative insights and perspectives on biodiversity conservation from around the world covering six themes: concepts, narratives, science, governance, systems and futures. The Biodiversity Revisited initiative aims to raise new awareness about biodiversity and how to conserve it, and will culminate in a five-year research and action agenda. https://www.biodiversity-revisited.earth/
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A study is carried out in the Tena Valley and Biescas Area (Huesca, Spain) on traditional animal healing practices. 31 interviews were carried out with 30 informants. The research presents scientific and vernacular names of plants, therapeutic indication, animal for which the remedy is used, and forms of preparation. There are 78 different plant taxa belonging to 47 botanical families, 17 plant remedies, 1 fungus, 13 animal remedies, 8 mineral remedies, 2 chemical remedies and 9 remedies of origin other than those mentioned above. In total, the study identifies 92 ingredients used for medicinal, reproductive or animal production purposes. These traditional practices are of great interest in organic farming as alternatives to synthetic medicines and as unconventional food sources. They also contribute to the maintenance of this traditional knowledge whose dissemination from generation to generation has been mostly oral and has been falling into disuse in recent times.
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Spices are considered as sexual invigorators in the Unani System of Medicine. In order to explore the sexual function improving effect of Myristica fragrans Houtt. (nutmeg) and Syzygium aromaticum (L) Merr. & Perry. (clove) an experimental study was conducted in normal male mice. The extracts (50% ethanolic) of nutmeg and clove were administered (500 mg/kg; p.o.) to different groups of male Swiss mice. Mounting behaviour, mating performance, and general short term toxicity of the test drugs were determined and compared with the standard drug Penegra (Sildenafil citrate). The extracts of the nutmeg and clove were found to stimulate the mounting behaviour of male mice, and also to significantly increase their mating performance. The drugs were devoid of any conspicuous general short term toxicity. The extracts (50% ethanolic) of nutmeg and clove enhanced the sexual behaviour of male mice.
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Several drugs were selected for sexual and open field behavioral testing, according to the following criteria: they are known synergists or antagonists of presumptive neurotransmitters; they modify behaviors thought to be related to sexual behavior; or they enjoy a popular reputation as aphrodisiacs in man. The drugs chosen were scopolamine, physostigmine, methamphetamine, cocaine, tranylcypromine, diazepam, cantharidin, and oxytocin. Scopolamine and diazepam disrupted sexual behavior, despite having differential effects on open field locomotion; locomotion was increased by scopolamine and unchanged by diazepam. Cocaine and methamphetamine increased locomotion, and in low doses were the only drugs to accelerate sexual performance. High doses of cocaine also increased locomotion, but had predominantly inhibitory actions on sexual performance. The other drugs were without significant effects on either behavior. The results are interpreted as indicating that activation of adrenergic pathways facilitates the sexual performance of male rats, and that alterations of cholinergic balance are disruptive. Open field activity modifications are not correlated with changes in sexual behavior.
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Maca (Lepidium meyenii) is an Andean plant of the brassica (mustard) family. Preparations from maca root have been reported to improve sexual function. The aim of this review was to assess the clinical evidence for or against the effectiveness of the maca plant as a treatment for sexual dysfunction. We searched 17 databases from their inception to April 2010 and included all randomised clinical trials (RCTs) of any type of maca compared to a placebo for the treatment of healthy people or human patients with sexual dysfunction. The risk of bias for each study was assessed using Cochrane criteria, and statistical pooling of data was performed where possible. The selection of studies, data extraction, and validations were performed independently by two authors. Discrepancies were resolved through discussion by the two authors. Four RCTs met all the inclusion criteria. Two RCTs suggested a significant positive effect of maca on sexual dysfunction or sexual desire in healthy menopausal women or healthy adult men, respectively, while the other RCT failed to show any effects in healthy cyclists. The further RCT assessed the effects of maca in patients with erectile dysfunction using the International Index of Erectile Dysfunction-5 and showed significant effects. The results of our systematic review provide limited evidence for the effectiveness of maca in improving sexual function. However, the total number of trials, the total sample size, and the average methodological quality of the primary studies were too limited to draw firm conclusions. More rigorous studies are warranted.
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The mechanism by which yohimbine relaxes the human corpus cavernosum remains unclear. Using the human corpus cavernosum strips immersed in isometric baths containing Krebs-Henseleit solution, this study investigates the effect of yohimbine on the relaxation of the human corpus cavernosum through nitrergic pathways involving the activation of ATP-dependent potassium channels (K(ATP)). The maximal relaxation induced by yohimbine in the human corpus cavernosum strips pre-contracted with phenylephrine was 100+/-0% and only 30.5+/-5.0% when they were pre-contracted with 60-mM potassium (K(+)) solution. The maximal relaxation induced by yohimbine in phenylephrine pre-contracted tissues was significantly inhibited by tetrodotoxin, 1H-[1,2,4] oxadiazolo[4,3-a]quinoxalin-1-one (ODQ) or 7-nitroindazole (43.6, 36.1 and 42.6%, respectively). Neither the combination charybdotoxin-apamin nor tetraethylammonium altered the response of the human corpora cavernosa strips to yohimbine. Nevertheless, glibenclamide decreased the maximum relaxant response to yohimbine by 29.8% (P<0.05; n=12). The results suggest that yohimbine relaxes the human corpus cavernosum by a non-adrenergic, non-cholinergic mechanism, probably activating the nitrergic-soluble guanylate cyclase (NO-sGc) pathway and K(ATP).
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This double-blind, placebo-controlled clinical trial of yohimbine hydrochloride included 86 patients with erectile dysfunction and without clearly detectable organic or psychologic causes. The patient group fulfilled all entry criteria; 85 of these could be considered for the Safety-respectively 83 for the Intention-to-treat (ITT)-analysis. Yohimbine was administered orally in a dosage of 30 mg a day (two 5 mg tablets three times daily) for eight weeks. Patients were seen for follow-up after four weeks' treatment, and for a final visit after eight weeks. Efficacy evaluation was based on both subjective and objective criteria. Subjective criteria included improvement in sexual desire, sexual satisfaction, frequency of sexual contacts, and quality of erection (penile rigidity) during sexual contact/intercourse. Objective criteria of outcome were based on improvement in penile rigidity determined by use of polysomnography in the sleep laboratory. Overall Yohimbine was found significantly more effective than placebo in terms of response rate: 71 vs 45%. Yohimbine was well-tolerated: Only 7% of patients rated tolerability fair or poor, and most adverse experiences were mild. There was no serious adverse event.
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Cocoa and chocolate have been acclaimed for several years for their possible medicinal and heart benefits. It is only recently, however, that some of these claims have been more clearly identified and studied. Recent epidemiological and clinical studies, for example, have shown that dietary supplementation With flavonoid-rich cocoa and chocolate may exert a protective effect on low-density lipoprotein (LDL) oxidation, which has been associated with a reduced risk of developing atherosclerosis. Some of the identified benefits of flavonoid-rich cocoa and chocolate include antioxidant properties, reduced blood pressure via the induction of nitric-oxide (NO)-dependent vasodilation in men, improved endothelial function, increased insulin sensitivity, decreased platelet activation and function, as well as modulated immune function and inflammation. Furthermore, chocolate has been reported to release phenylethylamine and serotonin into the human system, producing some aphrodisiac and mood-lifting effects. Since these claims could have implications for the consumption levels of cocoa and chocolate products on the global market, understanding the critical factors involved and their potential benefits are currently thought to be of great importance to consumers.
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Aim: To evaluate the aphrodisiac potential of Terminalia catappa Linn. seeds using a suspension of its kernel (SS) in 1% methyl cellulose in rats. Methods: Male rats were orally treated with 1500 mg/kg or 3000 mg/kg SS or vehicle, and their sexual behaviour was monitored 3 h later using a receptive female. Another group of rats was orally treated with either 3000 mg/kg SS or vehicle for 7 consecutive days. Their sexual behaviour and fertility were evaluated on days 1, 4 and 7 of treatment and day 7 post-treatment by pairing overnight with a pro-oestrous female. Results: The 1500 mg/kg dose, had a marked aphrodisiac action (prolongation of ejaculation latency) but no effect on libido (% mounting, % intromission and % ejaculation), sexual vigour (mounting-and-intromission frequency), or sexual performance (intercopulatory interval). In contrast, the higher dose (3000 mg/kg) reversibly inhibited all the parameters of sexual behaviour other than mounting-and-intromission frequency and copulatory efficiency. The effects of high dose SS were not due to general toxicity, liver toxicity, haemotoxicity, stress, muscle deficiency, muscle incoordination, analgesia, hypoglycaemia or reduction in blood testosterone level. They were due to marked sedation. Conclusion: The kernel of T. catappa seeds has aphrodisiac activity and may be useful in the treatment of certain forms of sexual inadequacies, such as premature ejaculation.
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The purpose of this investigation was to determine if the tea plant Turnera diffusa, more commonly known as damiana, had a measurable effect on sexual behaviors in mice. Injections of damiana suspended in peanut oil (for test groups), or peanut oil alone (for control groups), were given to male and female mice. After two weeks, male mice were introduced to female mice following induction of estrus. Five sex-ual behaviors (number of mounts, intromissions, ejaculations, latency period, and lordosis) were monitored independently by two investigators in real time or using videotape. The results showed that the number of mounts and intromissions for the test mice were significantly higher than that of the control mice. Results from ejac-ulations, latency period, and lordosis were not statistically conclusive. No litters were obtained from test or control copulated females, suggesting that the peanut oil may have altered fertility. Accordingly, damiana does appear to exhibit some aphro-disiac properties in mice. Further studies may be done to determine the differential effects of damiana on male versus female mice.
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A survey of materials reputed to be aphrodisiacs. Keywords (Audience): General Public
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Introduction: Historically chocolate has been reported to exert several effects on human sexuality, mainly acting as an effective aphrodisiac, increasing sexual desire, and improving sexual pleasure. Aim: The aim of our study was to assess whether there is an association between daily chocolate intake and sexual function in a convenience sample of Northern Italian women. Methods: A convenience sample of 163 women (mean +/- SD age: 35.3 +/- 9.2 years; body mass index [BMI]: 22.5 +/- 3.5 kg/m2), recruited through advertising, completed an anonymous semistructured interview on recreational habits and questionnaires to assess sexual function (Female Sexual Function Index [FSFI]), sexual distress (Female Sexual Distress Scale), and depression (Beck Depression Inventory and Center for Epidemiological Survey Depression Scale). Results: Complete data were available for 153/163 (93.8%) women. Participants who reported daily chocolate intake (Group 1: 120 women) were significantly younger than those (Group 2: 33 women) who did not report to eat chocolate (33.9 +/- 0.8 years vs. 40.4 +/- 1.6 years, respectively) (P = 0.0003), despite a similar BMI. Participants in Group 1 had significantly higher total (P = 0.002) and desire domain (P = 0.01) FSFI scores than participants in Group 2. No differences between the two groups were observed concerning sexual arousal and satisfaction, sexual distress and depression. Our data also confirm that aging has a high statistically significant impact on women's sexual function. Conclusions: It is alluring to hypothesize that chocolate can have either a psychological or a biological positive impact on women's sexuality. In our sample women reporting chocolate consumption have higher FSFI scores than women who do not eat chocolate. However, when data are adjusted for age FSFI scores are similar, regardless of chocolate consumption.
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Throughout the ages, humans have searched for new ways of enhancing sexuality and sexual performance. We review some of the more popular products, such as herbs, botanicals, combination products, and topical formulations that have been heralded as sexual enhancers or have mythological roots suggesting they can be used for the treatment of sexual dysfunction. Lastly, we discuss sexual touch (Tantra), aroma, nutrition, and exercise as modalities that have been used to improve or enhance sexual function.
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Saffron (Crocus sativus, L.) is traditionally used as a coloring or flavoring agent, but recent research has shown its potential to promote health. The constituents of interest include crocin, crocetin, picrocrocin, and safranal which have all demonstrated health promoting properties. Previous studies have found that biological activity of saffron constituents alleviate or prevent such health problems as gastric disorders, cardiovascular disease, insulin resistance, depression, premenstrual syndrome, insomnia, and anxiety. Saffron also shows promise in the prevention and maintenance of cancer due to its antioxidant properties. The present review article highlights the constituents that are important in the treatment of each disorder as well as the mechanisms. Many of the studies were conducted using purified forms of the constituents or completed on animal subjects. The need for human subjects using saffron in its natural form is evident to determine the possible health benefits of dietary saffron.
Article
Lepidium meyenii Walpers (Maca) is traditionally employed in the Andean region for its supposed properties to improve energy and fertility. The aim of this study was to evaluate the effect of acute and chronic Maca pulverised root oral administration on rat sexual behaviour. Sixty male sexually experienced rats (20 group) were daily treated for 15 days with Maca 15 mg kg−1, Maca 75 mg kg−1 or saline 0.5 ml kg−1. The following sexual performance parameters were evaluated at first and last day of treatment: 1st mount (ML), 1st intromission (IL), ejaculation (EL) and postejaculatory (PEL) latencies, intercopulatory interval (ICI) and copulatory efficacy (CE). An activity cage test was carried out to evaluate if Maca-induced locomotion changes could indirectly improve rat sexual performances. It was observed that both lower and higher Maca doses acutely decreased ML, IL and ICI in a significant way (P<0.05), while only the 75 mg kg−1 dose decreased the PEL (T=29, P<0.05). This effect seems to be the only one dose-dependent. After 15 days of treatment, both doses are able to significantly decrease ML, IL, EL and PEL, while the 75 mg kg−1 dose decreased the ICI (T=40, P<0.05) too. IL, EL and PEL variations seem to be dose-related after chronic treatment. Moreover, chronic Maca treatment induced an apparently not dose-related increase in rat locomotion, during the second 10-min period of observation in the activity cage. The late in Maca-induced locomotion modification excludes that improvement of tested sexual performance parameters is related to an increase in rat aspecific activity. Thus, it was concluded that both acute and chronic Maca oral administration significantly improve sexual performance parameters in male rats.
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Cantharidin, the active ingredient of “Spanish Fly”, is contained in a number of insects collectively called blister beetles and is a well known toxin and vesicant. We report on a case of ingestion of Mylabris dicincta (“Blister beetle”) in Zimbabwe by a 4 year old girl. The ingested beetles were probably mistaken for the edible Eulepida mashona. She presented with many of the classic signs and symptoms of cantharidin poisoning including haematuria and abdominal pains. This was recognised only after consultation with the drug information centre. She was managed conservatively, recovered and was discharged after 9 days. A overview of the clinical effects of cantharidin toxicity and its treatment is presented.
Article
The pharmacological effects of ambrein (isolated from ambergris) on the contractile responses induced by some agonists in smooth muscle preparations were investigated. Ambrein in the concentration range of 10, 50 and 250 microg/ml decreased the spontaneous contraction of the isolated rabbit jejunum, rat uterus and guinea-pig vas deferens. Ambrein-induced antagonism to acetylcholine (Ach) in the guinea-pig ileum was abolished when the concentration of calcium chloride in the Tyrode's solution was increased to 5 mM/l. Furthermore, ambrein did not antagonise nicotine-induced contractions in the isolated rabbit jejunum or serotonin-induced contractions in the isolated guinea-pig ileum and vas deferens or the rat uterus. However, ambrein in the concentration range of 10, 50 and 250 microg/ml antagonised prostaglandins (PGs) E2, D2, F2alpha, and oxytocin-induced contractions in the rat uterus in vitro. Ambrein also antagonised (+/-) noradrenaline and (-) adrenaline-induced contractions in the isolated guinea-pig vas deferens. It is concluded that ambrein-induced non-selective dose-dependent antagonism to the effects of some agonists (Ach, adrenaline, noradrenaline, PGs and oxytocin) in some smooth muscles may be due to the ability of this compound to interfere with the mobilisation of extracellular Ca2+ required for muscular contractions induced by these agonists.
Article
Saffron (Crocus sativus Linn.) have been perceived by the public as a strong aphrodisiac herbal product. However, studies addressing the potential beneficial effects of saffron on erectile function (EF) in men with ED are lacking. Our aim was to evaluate the efficacy and safety of saffron administration on EF in men with ED. After a 4-week baseline assessment, 346 men with ED (mean age 46.6+/-8.4 years) were randomized to receive on-demand sildenafil for 12 weeks followed by 30 mg saffron twice daily for another 12 weeks or vice versa, separated by a 2-week washout period. To determine the type of ED, penile color duplex Doppler ultrasonography before and after intracavernosal injection with 20 microg prostaglandin E(1), pudendal nerve conduction tests and impaired sensory-evoked potential studies were performed. Subjects were assessed with an International Index of Erectile Function (IIEF) questionnaire, Sexual Encounter Profile (SEP) diary questions, patient and partner versions of the Erectile Dysfunction Inventory of Treatment Satisfaction (EDITS) questionnaire and the Global Efficacy Question (GEQ) 'Has the medication you have been taking improved your erections?' No significant improvements were observed with regard to the IIEF sexual function domains, SEP questions and EDITS scores with saffron administration. The mean changes from baseline values in IIEF-EF domain were +87.6% and +9.8% in sildenafil and placebo groups, respectively (P=0.08). We did not observe any improvement in 15 individual IIEF questions in patients while taking saffron. Treatment satisfaction as assessed by partner versions of EDITS was found to be very low in saffron patients (72.4 vs 25.4, P=0.001). Mean per patient 'yes' responses to GEQ was 91.2 and 4.2% for sildenafil and saffron, respectively (P=0.0001). These findings do not support a beneficial effect of saffron administration in men with ED.
Article
Epimedium species (aka horny goat weed) have been utilized for the treatment of erectile dysfunction in Traditional Chinese Medicine for many years. Icariin (ICA) is the active moiety of Epimedium species. To evaluate the penile hemodynamic and tissue effects of ICA in cavernous nerve injured rats. We also studied the in vitro effects of ICA on cultured pelvic ganglia. Rats were subjected to cavernous nerve injury and subsequently treated for 4 weeks with daily gavage feedings of a placebo solution of normal saline and Dimethyl sulfoxide (DMSO) vs. ICA dissolved in DMSO at doses of 1, 5, and 10 mg/kg. A separate group underwent a single dose of ICA 10 mg/kg 2 hours prior to functional testing. Functional testing with cavernous nerve stimulation and real-time assessment of intracavernous pressure (ICP) was performed at 4 weeks. After functional testing, penile tissue was procured for immunohistochemistry and molecular studies. In separate experiments, pelvic ganglia were excised from healthy rats and cultured in the presence of ICA, sildenafil, or placebo culture media. Ratio of ICP and area under the curve (AUC) to mean arterial pressure (MAP) during cavernous nerve stimulation of subject rodents. We also assayed tissue expression of neuronal nitric oxide synthase (nNOS), eNOS: endothelial nitric oxide synthase (eNOS), calponin, and apoptosis via immunohistochemistry and Western blot. Serum testosterone and luteinizing hormone (LH) were assayed using enzyme-linked immunosorbant assay (ELISA). Differential length of neurite outgrowth was assessed in cultured pelvic ganglia. Rats treated with low-dose ICA demonstrated significantly higher ICP/MAP and AUC/MAP ratios compared with control and single-dose ICA animals. Immunohistochemistry and Western blot were revealing of significantly greater positivity for nNOS and calponin in penile tissues of all rats treated with ICA. ICA led to significantly greater neurite length in cultured specimens of pelvic ganglia. ICA may have neurotrophic effects in addition to known phosphodiesterase type 5 inhibiting effects.
Article
Many menopausal women experience climacteric symptoms including impairment of sexual function. Recent reports have suggested that Korean red ginseng (KRG) has a relaxing effect on the clitoral cavernosal muscle and vaginal smooth muscle in rats. We assessed whether KRG extracts would improve sexual function in menopausal women. Thirty-two menopausal women participated in a placebo-controlled, double-blind, crossover clinical study with administration of either three capsules of ginseng (1 g per capsule) or placebo daily. After completing the KRG or placebo arm, the participants were crossed over to the other arm after a 2-week washout period. The efficacy and safety of the KRG extracts were measured by using questionnaires. Female Sexual Function Index (FSFI) and Global Assessment Questionnaire (GAQ). Twenty-eight women completed the study. They were, on average, 51.2 + or - 4.1 years old, and their mean menopausal state was for a duration of 37.4 + or - 2.9 months. Few carryover effects were noted in either study arm. The ginseng extract significantly improved scores on the FSFI from 3.10 + or - 0.87 to 3.50 + or - 0.72 in the sexual arousal domain (P = 0.006). The GAQ was more significantly affected by ginseng extracts than by placebo (P = 0.046). There were no severe adverse events in the KRG group, although two cases of vaginal bleeding occurred during KRG treatment. Oral administration of KRG extracts improved sexual arousal in menopausal women. Red ginseng extracts might be used as an alternative medicine in menopausal women to improve their sexual life.
Article
Amphibian skin secretions are considered a rich source of biologically active compounds and are known to be rich in bufadienolides, peptides and alkaloids. Bufadienolides are cardioactive steroids derived from animals and plants as well. The current study was conducted to investigate the influence of skin secretions of the Egyptian green toad Bufo viridis (SSBV) on the cardiac electrical activity. Isolated toad's heart was used to reveal the mechanism of action. Application of SSBV (40microg/ml) into isolated toad's heart significantly decreased the heart rate (HR) accompanied by an elongation in the conduction time (P-R interval). A pronounced increase of the ventricular contraction (R-wave amplitude) was observed after SSBV application. Marked electrocardiographic changes were induced within minutes (5-20min) of SSBV perfusion of the isolated hearts; such as sinus arrhythmias, junctional ectopic beats, negative QRS deflection, ventricular tachycardia and heart block. The mechanism of action of SSBV was studied by direct application of different autonomic and ion channels antagonists (atropine sulphate, propranolol and verapamil) to isolated toad's heart. Neither atropine nor verapamil could attenuate the noticed negative chronotropic and positive inotropic effects. Meanwhile, post-treatment with propranolol decreased R-wave amplitude. Taken together, it can be concluded that: (i) SSBV has a negative chronotropic, dromotropic and positive inotropic effects on isolated toad's heart; (ii) the reported effects of SSBV could be due to inhibition of Na(+)-K(+) ATPase and through ss-adrenergic receptors.
Article
The search for a remedy or a prescription that can enhance sexual function and/or treat male erectile dysfunction has been an obsession throughout known history. Whether it was an Eastern civilization or a Western one, religious or atheist, man's aspiration for a better or best "manhood" has been a history-time goal. This review will discuss the current research done on the most popular natural aphrodisiacs and examine the weight of evidence to support or discourage the use of any of these substances to enhance sexual desire and/or function. Review of the current evidence on the use of natural substances as aphrodisiacs. Efficacy of natural aphrodisiacs in enhancing sexual function in men and women. There is little evidence from literature to recommend the usage of natural aphrodisiacs for the enhancement of sexual desire and/or performance. Data on yohimbine's efficacy does not support the wide use of the drug, which has only mild effects in the treatment of psychogenic ED. Although there's a positive trend towards recommending ginseng as an effective aphrodisiac, however, more in depth studies involving large number of subjects and its mechanism of action are needed before definite conclusions could be reached. Data on the use of natural aphrodisiacs in women is limited. The current body of objective evidence does not support the use of any natural aphrodisiac as an effective treatment for male or female sexual dysfunctions. Potent men and men with ED will continue the search for natural aphrodisiacs despite the current disappointing data on their effectiveness. Care should be taken regarding the fraud addition of sildenafil analogues to natural aphrodisiacs.
Article
Maca (Lepidium meyenii Walp) is consumed both as a sports supplement by strength and endurance athletes, and as a natural stimulant to enhance sexual drive. However, whether or not the postulated benefits of maca consumption are of scientific merit is not yet known. The aim of the study was therefore to investigate the effect of 14 days maca supplementation on endurance performance and sexual desire in trained male cyclists. Eight participants each completed a 40 km cycling time trial before and after 14 days supplementation with both maca extract (ME) and placebo, in a randomised cross-over design. Subjects also completed a sexual desire inventory during each visit. ME administration significantly improved 40 km cycling time performance compared to the baseline test (P=0.01), but not compared to the placebo trial after supplementation (P>0.05). ME administration significantly improved the self-rated sexual desire score compared to the baseline test (P=0.01), and compared to the placebo trial after supplementation (P=0.03). 14 days ME supplementation improved 40 km cycling time trial performance and sexual desire in trained male cyclists. These promising results encourage long-term clinical studies involving more volunteers, to further evaluate the efficacy of ME in athletes and normal individuals and also to explore its possible mechanisms of action.
Article
Introduction. Alcohol consumption is a contentious social topic and is often assumed to have deleterious effects on sexual performance. There is a lack of consensus on whether alcohol consumption may in fact be beneficial to erectile function. Aim. We examined the data from a population-based cross-sectional study of men's health to assess the association between usual alcohol consumption and erectile dysfunction (ED). Method. Reply-paid questionnaires were posted to a randomly selected age-stratified male population sample obtained from the Western Australian (WA) Electoral Roll. Main Outcome Measures. The survey questionnaire included sociodemographic details, self-reported clinical information, and drinking habits. The 5-item International Index of Erectile Function (IIEF-5) was used to assess erectile function. Results. Most (87%) participants were current alcohol drinkers, with binge drinking, as defined by the Australian National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC), reported by 20% of drinkers. Compared with never-drinkers, the age-adjusted odds of ED were lower among current, weekend, and binge drinkers and higher among ex-drinkers. Among current drinkers, the odds were lowest for consumption within the NHMRC guidelines of between 1 and 20 standard drinks a week. On further adjustment for cardiovascular disease (CVD) or for cigarette smoking, age-adjusted odds of ED were reduced by 25-30% among alcohol drinkers. Conclusions. Our findings suggest a modest negative association between alcohol consumption and ED and confounding of the association by CVD and cigarette smoking. The Western Australia Men's Health Study certainly provides no justification for advising men with ED whose drinking habits are consistent with NHMRC guidelines that they should cease or reduce their consumption of alcohol.
Article
According to Indian Systems of Medicine, Mucuna pruriens Linn., belonging to the leguminous family (Papilionaceae), were used for treating male sexual disorders since ancient times. In this study, the effects of ethanolic extracts of the Mucuna pruriens Linn. seed on general mating behaviour, libido and potency of normal male Wister albino rats were investigated and also compared with the standard reference drug, Sildenafil citrate. Animals were divided into one control group (Group I--received saline) and four experimental groups (Groups II-V). Experimental groups were divided on the basis of the dosage of extract to the animals as follows: 150 mg/kg body weight (Group I), 200mg/kg body weight (Group II) and 250 mg/kg body weight (Group IV) while Group V received Sildenafil citrate (5mg/kg body weight). Animals were fed PO with saline or extract or standard drug once in a day for 45 days. To analyse the mating behaviour, female rats with oestrus phase were used. The extract administered PO significantly increased the mounting frequency, intromission frequency and ejaculation latency, and decreased the mounting latency, intromission latency, post-ejaculatory interval and inter-intromission interval. The potency test significantly increased erections, quick flips, long flips and total reflex. Therefore, the results indicated that the ethanolic extracts of Mucuna pruriens Linn. seed produced a significant and sustained increase in the sexual activity of normal male rats at a particular dose (200mg/kg). When compared to control, all the drug-treated groups have shown drug-induced effects for a few parameters. However in Group II, there was an obvious enhancement in all parameters, without affecting the normal behaviour. When compared with the standard drug, the net effect of extract is even less than that in Group II. Therefore, the resulting aphrodisiac activity of the extract lends support to the claim that it has traditionally been used for the treatment of sexual disorders.
Article
In this study, the effect of Crocus sativus (saffron) was studied on male erectile dysfunction (ED). Twenty male patients with ED were followed for ten days in which each morning they took a tablet containing 200mg of saffron. Patients underwent the nocturnal penile tumescence (NPT) test and the international index of erectile function questionnaire (IIEF-15) at the start of the treatment and at the end of the ten days. After the ten days of taking saffron there was a statistically significant improvement in tip rigidity and tip tumescence as well as base rigidity and base tumescence. ILEF-15 total scores were significantly higher in patients after saffron treatment (before treatment 22.15+/-1.44; after treatment 39.20+/-1.90, p<0.001). Saffron showed a positive effect on sexual function with increased number and duration of erectile events seen in patients with ED even only after taking it for ten days.
Article
Lepidium meyenii (Maca) is a cultivated root belonging to the brassica family used in the Andean region for its supposed aphrodisiac properties. We carried out a double-blind clinical trial on 50 Caucasian men affected by mild erectile dysfunction (ED), randomised to treatment with Maca dry extract, 2400 mg, or placebo. The treatment effect on ED and subjective well-being was tested administrating before and after 12 weeks the International Index of Erectile Function (IIEF-5) and the Satisfaction Profile (SAT-P). After 12 weeks of treatment, both Maca- and placebo-treated patients experienced a significant increase in IIEF-5 score (P < 0.05 for both). However, patients taking Maca experienced a more significant increase than those taking placebo (1.6 +/- 1.1 versus 0.5 +/- 0.6, P < 0.001). Both Maca- and placebo-treated subjects experienced a significant improvement in psychological performance-related SAT-P score, but the Maca group higher than that of placebo group (+9 +/- 6 versus +6 +/- 5, P < 0.05). However, only Maca-treated patients experienced a significant improvement in physical and social performance-related SAT-P score compared with the baseline (+7 +/- 6 and +7 +/- 6, both P < 0.05). In conclusion, our data support a small but significant effect of Maca supplementation on subjective perception of general and sexual well-being in adult patients with mild ED.
Article
Microdesmis keayana (Pandaceae) is an African tropical plant whose roots are used in traditional medicine for erection impairment but the compounds responsible for its action are unknown. Two major alkaloids recently isolated from the roots of M. keayana, keayanidine B and keayanine, were tested for vasorelaxing properties using isolated rat aortic rings precontracted by phenylephrine to confirm its traditional use. Influence of the alkaloids on the endothelial production of endothelial nitric oxide synthase (eNOS) was measured by quantitative polymerase chain reaction (QPCR) analysis. Scavenging activities were assessed versus 1,1-diphenyl-2-picrylhydrazyle (DPPH) and reactive oxygen species (ROS) such as superoxide anion (O−) and hydrogen peroxide (H2O2) in cell-free and cellular systems. The results showed that keayanidine B and keayanine had significant vasorelaxing properties. This effect could be due to their strong antioxidant activity versus O− and H2O2 and to their stimulation of eNOS mRNA expression. Therefore these alkaloids could indirectly stimulate NO production in the vascular bed and would explain the traditional use of M. keayana in erectile dysfunction. Copyright
Article
We sought to determine whether maca, a Peruvian plant, is effective for selective-serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI)-induced sexual dysfunction. We conducted a double-blind, randomized, parallel group dose-finding pilot study comparing a low-dose (1.5 g/day) to a high-dose (3.0 g/day) maca regimen in 20 remitted depressed outpatients (mean age 36+/-13 years; 17 women) with SSRI-induced sexual dysfunction. The Arizona Sexual Experience Scale (ASEX) and the Massachusetts General Hospital Sexual Function Questionnaire (MGH-SFQ) were used to measure sexual dysfunction. Ten subjects completed the study, and 16 subjects (9 on 3.0 g/day; 7 on 1.5 g/day) were eligible for intent-to-treat (ITT) analyses on the basis of having had at least one postbaseline visit. ITT subjects on 3.0 g/day maca had a significant improvement in ASEX (from 22.8+/-3.8 to 16.9+/-6.2; z=-2.20, P=0.028) and in MGH-SFQ scores (from 24.1+/-1.9 to 17.0+/-5.7; z=-2.39, P=0.017), but subjects on 1.5 g/day maca did not. Libido improved significantly (P<0.05) for the ITT and completer groups based on ASEX item #1, but not by dosing groups. Maca was well tolerated. Maca root may alleviate SSRI-induced sexual dysfunction, and there may be a dose-related effect. Maca may also have a beneficial effect on libido.
Article
To examine the estrogenic and androgenic activity of Lepidium meyenii (Maca) and its effect on the hormonal profile and symptoms in postmenopausal women. Fourteen postmenopausal women completed a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled, crossover trial. They received 3.5 g/day of powered Maca for 6 weeks and matching placebo for 6 weeks, in either order, over a total of 12 weeks. At baseline and weeks 6 and 12 blood samples were collected for the measurement of estradiol, follicle-stimulating hormone, luteinizing hormone, and sex hormone-binding globulin, and the women completed the Greene Climacteric Scale to assess the severity of menopausal symptoms. In addition, aqueous and methanolic Maca extracts were tested for androgenic and estrogenic activity using a yeast-based hormone-dependent reporter assay. No differences were seen in serum concentrations of estradiol, follicle-stimulating hormone, luteinizing hormone, and sex hormone-binding globulin between baseline, Maca treatment, and placebo (P > 0.05). The Greene Climacteric Scale revealed a significant reduction in scores in the areas of psychological symptoms, including the subscales for anxiety and depression and sexual dysfunction after Maca consumption compared with both baseline and placebo (P < 0.05). These findings did not correlate with androgenic or alpha-estrogenic activity present in the Maca as no physiologically significant activity was observed in yeast-based assays employing up to 4 mg/mL Maca extract (equivalent to 200 mg/mL Maca). Preliminary findings show that Lepidium meyenii (Maca) (3.5 g/d) reduces psychological symptoms, including anxiety and depression, and lowers measures of sexual dysfunction in postmenopausal women independent of estrogenic and androgenic activity.
Article
Korean red ginseng (unskinned Panax ginseng before it is steamed or otherwise heated and subsequently dried) is one of the most widely used herbal remedies. This systematic review evaluates the current evidence for the effectiveness of red ginseng for treating erectile dysfunction. Systematic searches were conducted on 20 electronic databases without language restrictions. Hand-searches included conference proceedings and our files. All randomized clinical studies (RCT) of red ginseng as a treatment of erectile dysfunction were considered for inclusion. Methodological quality was assessed using the Jadad score. Seven RCTs met all the inclusion criteria. Their methodological quality was low on average. Six of the included RCTs compared the therapeutic efficacy of red ginseng with placebo. The meta-analysis of these data showed a significant effect (n = 349, risk ratio, 2.40; 95% CI of 1.65, 3.51, p < 0.00001, heterogeneity: tau(2) = 0.05, chi(2) = 6.42, p = 0.27, I(2) = 22%). Subgroup analyses also showed beneficial effects of red ginseng in psychogenic erectile dysfunction (n = 135, risk ratio, 2.05; 95% CI of 1.33, 3.16, p = 0.001, heterogeneity: chi(2) = 0.08, p = 0.96, I(2) = 0%). Collectively these RCTs provide suggestive evidence for the effectiveness of red ginseng in the treatment of erectile dysfunction. However, the total number of RCTs included in the analysis, the total sample size and the methodological quality of the primary studies were too low to draw definitive conclusions. Thus more rigorous studies are necessary.
Article
The effect of an ethanolic extract of Salvia haematodes roots was studied on the sexual behaviour of male rats. In the initial experiments, male sexual responses were assessed by recording penile erection, licking and grooming of genitals and copulatory movement in absence of females. In the second set, copulatory behaviour was observed by caging males with a receptive female brought into estrus with s.c. injection of estradiol benzoate and progesterone. The frequencies of mounting and intromission and latency of the ejaculation were recorded. The results show that the extract (500 mg/kg, orally) produced a significant increase in episodes of penile erection. The drug was found to enhance the orientation of males towards the female by increased anogenital investigatory behaviour and enhanced licking and grooming of the genitals. The extract also increased the ejaculation latency. These findings support the folk use of this plant as aphrodisiac and for the treatment of premature ejaculation.
Article
48 subjects meeting strict diagnostic criteria for psychogenic impotence took part in a 10 week placebo-controlled, double-blind, partial crossover trial of yohimbine (18 mg a day) for restoring erectile function. At the end of the first arm of the trial 62% of the yohimbine group and 16% of the placebo group reported some improvement in sexual function (chi 2 = 10.41, df = 2, p less than 0.05). 21% of the originally placebo-treated group noticed some improvement over pre-treatment levels when they were put on yohimbine in the second arm of the trial. Overall 46% of those who received yohimbine reported a positive response to the drug, a response rate very similar to that observed in a previous study of patients with organic impotence. Response to yohimbine thus seems to be unrelated to current groupings of the cause of impotence. Yohimbine is a safe treatment for psychogenic impotence that seems to be as effective as sex and marital therapy for restoring satisfactory sexual functioning.
Article
Yohimbine is an alpha-adrenoceptor blocker that has been used in the treatment of erectile dysfunction. Adequate trials of this substance in a clearly defined organically impotent population are not available. We conducted a randomized, controlled study with partial cross-over of yohimbine versus placebo in 100 organically impotent men. The first phase of the study showed a positive response in 42.6 per cent of the patients receiving yohimbine versus 27.6 per cent in the placebo group. Although favorable to the test medication these values did not reach statistical significance (p equals 0.42). A similar pattern was noted in the second phase of the study. The over-all response rate of 43.5 per cent was consistent with a previous noncontrolled trial but it was much lower than previous studies. The response rate of organically impotent patients to yohimbine is at best marginal. Owing to its ease of administration, safety and modest effect it still is used in those patients who do not accept more invasive methods. Adrenoceptors are involved in the erectile process, although other neurotransmitter systems also are putative modulators of penile erection, including cholinergic, dopaminergic and vasoactive intestinal polypeptide pathways. It is beyond reasonable expectation that a single agent be of value for all cases of organic impotence. However, yohimbine has shown modest effectiveness at the doses used in this trial (18 mg. per day). Higher doses or a different route of administration may produce different effects.
Article
The aim of this study was to determine the effectiveness and safety of yohimbine and trazodone used together for the treatment of pure psychogenic impotence. Sixty-three patients who had psychogenic impotence diagnosed on the basis of sexual history, results of physical examination, laboratory analysis, polysomnographic recording of nocturnal erections, and dynamic color Doppler sonography of the cavernosal arteries were entered into a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled, partial crossover study comparing placebo with yohimbine (15 mg per day orally) and trazodone (50 mg per day orally) used together. Treatment consisted of two 8-week courses. Patients who initially received placebo for 8 weeks were then switched to the 2-drug combination for 8 weeks. Erectile function, ejaculation, interest in sex, and sexual thoughts were investigated at the end of drug treatment and at 3- and 6-month follow-up. For statistical analysis chi-square, McNemar, and Student's t test for unpaired data were used. Fifty-five patients (87%) completed the whole treatment schedule. Positive clinical results (complete and partial responses) were obtained in 39 (71%) patients at the end of the drug treatment phase. These results were significantly better than those obtained with placebo (p < 0.01). Positive results were maintained in 32 (58%) and 31 (56%) patients at 3- and 6-month follow-up, respectively. Minor drug-related adverse effects occurred in 6 (11%) of the patients in the yohimbine-trazodone group and in 2 (4%) in the placebo group. The combination of yohimbine and trazodone is a safe and effective first-line treatment for psychogenic impotence.
Article
The effect of ambrein, a major constituent of ambergris, was studied on the sexual behavior of male rats. The rats were administered ambrein in doses of 100 and 300 mg/kg body weight. Male sexual activities were assessed by recording the erectile responses (penile erection) and homosexual mountings in the absence of female. The copulatory studies were carried out by caging males with receptive females brought into estrus with subcutaneous injections of estradiol benzoate and progesterone. The copulatory pattern of treated male rats (mountings, intromissions, ejaculations and refractory period), the pendiculations (yawns/stretches) and orientation activities towards females, the environment and themselves, were recorded. Ambrein produced recurrent episodes of penile erection, a dose-dependent, vigorous and repetitive increase in intromissions and an increased anogenital investigatory behavior, identifying the drug used in the present study as a sexual stimulant. It is conceivable from the present results that the ambrein-modified masculine sexual behavior in male rats supports the folk use of this drug as an aphrodisiac.
Article
The therapeutic effect of the alpha 2-antagonist yohimbine in erectile dysfunction was studied in a double-blind placebo-controlled design. Thirty-one male patients underwent extensive clinical, urological, and psychiatric diagnosis and were dichotomically classified into an organic and a nonorganic subgroup. Following a 1-week placebo run-in period, patients were randomly assigned to a placebo or a verum group (yohimbine 15 mg daily) for a treatment period of 7 weeks. The Clinical Global Impression (CGI) scale was used as the primary efficacy parameter. Additionally, nocturnal penile tumescence and rigidity (NPTR) were measured. Global assessment of erectile function applying the CGI scale revealed, beyond a placebo effect in both organic and nonorganic patients, a therapeutic effect in the subgroup of nonorganic patients, with a significantly greater improvement in the yohimbine group compared to the placebo group. No superiority of yohimbine compared to placebo was found in the organic patients. These findings on the subjective level had no correlate in the NPTR recordings. The NPTR parameters were unchanged under yohimbine treatment in both the nonorganic and organic subgroup. No interrelation was found between subjective improvement and NPTR alterations. Polysomnographic control of the NPTR registrations ensured that the duration of REM sleep under treatment was not influenced.
Article
Cantharidin, known popularly as Spanish fly, has been used for millennia as a sexual stimulant. The chemical is derived from blister beetles and is notable for its vesicant properties. While most commonly available preparations of Spanish fly contain cantharidin in negligible amounts, if at all, the chemical is available illicitly in concentrations capable of causing severe toxicity. Symptoms of cantharidin poisoning include burning of the mouth, dysphagia, nausea, hematemesis, gross hematuria, and dysuria. Mucosal erosion and hemorrhage is seen in the upper gastrointestinal (GI) tract. Renal dysfunction is common and related to acute tubular necrosis and glomerular destruction. Priapism, seizures, and cardiac abnormalities are less commonly seen. We report four cases of cantharidin poisoning presenting to our emergency department with complaints of dysuria and dark urine. Three patients had abdominal pain, one had flank pain, and the one woman had vaginal bleeding. Three had hematuria and two had occult rectal bleeding. Low-grade disseminated intravascular coagulation, not previously associated with cantharidin poisoning, was noted in two patients. Management of cantharidin poisoning is supportive. Given the widespread availability of Spanish fly, its reputation as an aphrodisiac, and the fact that ingestion is frequently unwitting, cantharidin poisoning may be a more common cause of morbidity than is generally recognized. Cantharidin poisoning should be suspected in any patient presenting with unexplained hematuria or with GI hemorrhage associated with diffuse injury of the upper GI tract.