Effects of beta-carboline alkaloids of Peganum harmala on induced rat ileum contractions

Amjad T. Shatarat, Sawsan Abuhamdah, Eman Alefishat, Mohamed K. Al-Essa, R. Rima Altaweel, Faisal Mohammed, Darwish Badran, Hanan Jafar

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


Peganum harmala L., Zygophyllaceae popularly known as Wild Syrian rue, a well-known plant in folk medicine for many pharmacological uses including antispasmodic activity. Chemical composition of the plant showed that the most important constituents of this plant are betacarboline alkaloids such as harmalol, harmaline, and harmine. In this work, we aimed to evaluate the effects of these three major harmala alkaloids on induced rat ileum contractions, induced by acetylcholine, BaCl2 and KCl. Of these three harmala alkaloids, harmalol and harmaline produced a concentration-dependent spasmolytic activity, which was found to be reversible (i.e. disappeared after tissue wash-up. Both alkaloids inhibited acetylcholine and KCl-induced ileum contractions but BaCl2 -induced contractions were only inhibited by harmalol but not harmaline. Harmine did not show any inhibitory activity.

Original languageBritish English
Pages (from-to)260-265
Number of pages6
JournalPharmacognosy Journal
Issue number2
StatePublished - 2020


  • Harmaline
  • Harmalol
  • Harmine
  • Ileum
  • Peganum Hermala L
  • Rat
  • Spasmolytic
  • β-Carbolines alkaloids


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