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Schule, C.; Baghai, Thomas C.; Sauer, N.; Laakmann, G. (2004): Endocrinological effects of high-dose Hypericum perforatum extract WS 5570 in healthy subjects. In: Neuropsychobiology, No. 2: pp. 58-63




In this single-blind study, the effects of acute oral administration of high-dose Hypericum perforatum extract WS 5570 on the cortisol ( COR), adrenocorticotropic hormone ( ACTH), growth hormone (GH), and prolactin (PRL) secretions were examined in 12 healthy male volunteers. In a randomized order, the subjects received placebo or WS 5570 at several dosages (600, 900, and 1,200 mg) at 08.00 h on 4 different days. After insertion of an intravenous catheter, blood samples were drawn 1 h prior to administration of placebo or WS 5570 ( 600, 900, or 1,200 mg), at the time of administration, and during 5 h thereafter at intervals of 30 min. The serum concentrations of COR, GH, and PRL as well as the plasma levels of ACTH were determined in each blood sample by means of double antibody radioimmunoassay, fluoroimmunoassay, and chemiluminescence immunometric assay methods. The area under the curve value was used as parameter for COR, ACTH, GH, and PRL responses. Repeated-measures Anova revealed a significant stimulatory effect of WS 5570 on the ACTH secretion, whereas COR and PRL secretions were not significantly influenced. Moreover, there was a stimulatory peak of GH release 240 min after challenge with WS 5570 in some but not all volunteers, without reaching statistical significance in comparison with placebo. Mean arterial blood pressure and heart rate remained unchanged after administration of WS 5570. Apparently, WS 5570 at the dosages given in this study inconsistently causes endocrinological effects in healthy subjects by influencing central neurotransmitters. Copyright (C) 2004 S. Karger AG, Basel.