Iranian Journal of Medical Sciences

Document Type: Original Article(s)


1 Department of Biology, Izeh Branch, Islamic Azad University, Izeh, Iran

2 Department of Physiology, Faculty of Medicine, Ilam University of Medical Sciences, Ilam, Iran


Background: Due to the unfavorable side effects of some commonly used chemical drugs, the trend in the public has shifted towards using herbal medicines to treat central nervous system disorders like depression. The present experimental study was designed to evaluate the effect of Marze (Satureja bachtiarica Bunge) essential oil on reserpine-induced depression in rats. Methods: In total, 48 male Wistar rats were randomly divided into 6 groups: 1) control, 2) reserpine, 3-5) reserpine with 50, 75 and 100 mg/kg of Marze essential oil, respectively, and 6) reserpine and fluoxetine. The forced swimming test was used to evaluate the antidepressant activity of the essential oil. Total antioxidant capacity (TAC) and MDA levels of serum and brain were also determined.Results: Reserpine induced a significant increase in the immobility time of rats in the forced swimming test (P=0.02) and treatment with Marze essential oil (50, 100 mg/kg) ameliorated the reserpine induced changes (P=0.04, P=0.03, respectively). Reserpine-induced reduction in brain TCA was improved using Marze essential oil at a dose of 100 mg/kg (P=0.04). Marze essential oil at 100 mg/kg dose significantly decreased the MDA level in the brain tissues of reserpine-treated rats (P=0.04). Conclusion: Marze (Satureja bachtiarica Bunge) essential oil has the ability to prevent depression induced by reserpine probably via its antioxidant activity.