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Raspberry leaf contains a number of active constituents and their therapeutic actions have been reviewed (Patel et al 2004). Currently, evidence of activity comes from in vitro and in vivo studies. UTERINE EFFECTS

Raspberry leaf has demonstrated a variable effect on uterine muscle tone. It contains a smooth muscle stimulant, an anticholinesterase and an antispasmodic. The results of animal studies indicate that raspberry can either reduce or initiate uterine contractions (Bamford et al 1970). It appears to inhibit uterine contractions in samples from pregnant test animals, but has no effect in non-pregnant ones. Samples from human pregnant uteri respond with contraction effects; however, no effect was seen on non-pregnant uteri samples. Overall, it appeared that raspberry leaf extract Raspberry leaf 988

promoted more regular contractions that generally became less frequent (Newell et al © 2007 Elsevier Australia

1996). A more recent preliminary study produced similar results with fractions of raspberry leaf extract, both stimulating and relaxing uterine muscle in pregnant rats (Briggs & Briggs 1997). There is evidence of at least two components of raspberry leaf extract that exhibit relaxant activity in an in vitro guinea pig ileum preparation (Rojas-Vera etal 2002).

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