Chemical Components

Flavonoids (including apigenin, quercetin and kaempferol), maltol, coumarin derivatives, indole alkaloids (mainly harman, harmaline, harmine), phytosterols (stigmasterol), sugars and small amounts of essential oil. HARMAN

Numerous in vitro and in vivo trials have been conducted on the constituent known as harman. Some of these studies have suggested:

• mild monoamine oxidase A inhibition (Adell et al 1996)

• inhibition of HIV replication (Ishida et al 2001)

• vasorelaxant activity (Shi et al 2000)

• effects on GABA release (Dolzhenko & Komissarov 1984).

Harman is not considered to be one of the main active constituents in the herb and is not present in biologically active concentrations in the dosage range used for passionflower. As such, results obtained using isolated harman in vitro and in vivo cannot necessarily be extrapolated to the use of passionflower in humans.

Harman has also been Identified in beer, and to a lesser extent in wine, both of which contain levels far in excess of those found in passionflower at therapeutic

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