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Scientific Name:
Harpagophytum procumbens, H. zeyheri
Family Name:
Pedaliaceae
Common Name:
devil's claw, grapple plant, wood spider
Evidence of Activity
Animal Studies
Devil's claw (Harpagophytum spp.) ameliorated anxiety and motor in-coordination, reduced oxidative stress, and suppressed gliosis and nuclear pyknosis of the brain cells in female rats subjected to arsenic-induced neurotoxicity. Peruru 2020
H. procumbens (HP) ameliorated the decrease in locomotor function and increased sensitivity to mechanical stimuli in a rodent model of spinal cord injury. HP suppressed oxidative/nitrosative stress and inflammatory responses in concurrent in vitro studies with cultured murine BV-2 microglial cells. Ungerer 2020
Chronic administration of harpaogside (from H. procumbens) restored both spatial learning/memory and fear memory impairments in chronic cerebral hypoprofusion (CCH) rats, a model of vascular dementia. Chen 2018
Oral administration of harpagoside, an iridoid glycoside isolated from the radix of Harpagophytum procumbens, restored the OVX-induced destruction of trabecular bone in female mice. The bone mineral density of the femur was also increased significantly. Chung 2017
Treatment with Reumaherb, a composition d of Echinacea purpurea, H. procumbens and Filipendula ulmaria (0.6 mg or 1.2 mg daily dose) resulted in a significant reduction of newly formed blood vessels in mice grafted with lavage cells collected from patients with sarcoidosis. Radomska-Leśniewska 2016
An ethyl acetate fraction of H. procumbens inhibited fluphenazine-induced vacuous chewing movements in rats, however, it did not improve the decrease in locomotion and exploratory activity. It also reduced fluphenazine-induced oxidative damage in the cortex and striatum of the rat brain. Schaffer 2016
Oral administration of harpagide, an iridoid glucoside in the root of H. procumbens var. sublobatum, showed anti-osteoporotic activity in ovariectomy-induced bone loss mouse model via regulating the stimulation of osteoblast differentiation and the suppression of osteoclast formation. Chung 2016
Pretreatment with the enzyme heme oxygenase inhibitor ZnPP IX significantly decreased the antihyperalgesic effect produced by H. procumbens (800 mg/kg, i.p.) in carrageenan-injected rats. Parenti 2015
Consistent with in vitro results, harpagoside (HAR) blocked lipopolysaccharide (LPS)-induced bone loss in an inflammatory osteoporosis mouse model. However, HAR did not prevent ovariectomy-mediated bone erosion in a postmenopausal osteoporosis mouse model. Kim 2015
MDA, NO & 8-OH/Gua levels and IL-1β & TNF-α gene expression were significantly lower in rats with formalin-induced knee joint damage treated with a new glucosamine combination containing H. procumbens compared to control. Evidence suggests this new combo could prevent damage to the cartilage joint. Ucuncu 2015
A significant anorexigenic effect was observed in male C57BL/6 mice following peripheral administration of H. procumbens extract. Torres-Fuentes 2014
After 21 days of continuous treatment with H. procumbens extracts at 300 mg/kg, SD rats showed significantly alleviated spared nerve injury-induced hypersensitivity responses by mechanical withdrawal threshold, compared with the control group. The number of ultrasonic vocalizations was also reduced. Lim 2014
Study on micro-morphometrical assessment of the effect of Harpagophytum procumbens extract out on articular cartilage in rabbits with experimental osteoarthritis using magnetic resonance imaging was carried. Wachsmuth 2011
Successive oral administration (50 mg/kg) of a 50% ethanolic extract (HP-ext) of devil's claw, the secondary root of Harpagophytum procumbens, showed a significant anti-inflammatory effect in the rat adjuvant-induced chronic arthritis model. Inaba 2010
Harpagophytum procumbens secondary root aqueous extract produces anticonvulsant activity by enhancing GABAergic neurotransmission and/or facilitating GABAergic action in the brain of mice. Mahomed 2006
A study carried out to evaluate whether the anti-inflammatory response in rats to the whole extract of Harpagophytum procumbens is a consequence of adrenal corticosteroid release showed that it does not depend on the release of adrenal corticosteroids. Catelan 2006
Topical application of extracts of Sutherlandia frutescens (Cancer bush) and Harpagophytum procumbens DC. inhibited 12-O-tetradecanoyl phorbol-13-acetate-induced cyclooxygenase-2 expression in mouse skin. Kundu 2005
The methanol extracts of 4 edible African plants including Harpagophytum procumbens inhibited, to a different extent, 12-O-tetradecanoylphorbol-13-acetate-induced COX-2 expression in human breast epithelial cells and in mouse skin in vivo. Na 2004
Harpagophytum procumbens extract increased the rats 'latency of paws' withdrawal, indicating a protective effect against the pain induced by the thermal stimulus, both in acute and chronic treatments. Andersen 2004
The experimental animal study using mice and rats indicate that Harpagophytum procumbens root aqueous extract possesses analgesic, antiinflammatory and hypoglycaemic properties. Mahomed 2004
The first case of lodgement of a devil's claw (Harpagophytum procumbens) fruit in, and its extraction from, the cavum preputiale of a 3-year-old Brahman bull has been reported. Isa 2001
Intraperitoneal pretreatment with an aqueous extract of Harpagophytum procumbens significantly reduced the carrageenan-induced edema at 400 and 800 mg/kg 4 h after carrageenan injection (45 and 65% inhibition, respectively) in rats. Soulimani 1994
The dried aqueous extract of Harpagophytum procumbens exerted significant and dose-dependent anti-inflammatory and analgesic effects, in mice and rats from the dose 100 mg of dried secondary roots/kg. Lanhers 1992
[Electrophysiological and haemodynamic effects of some active principles of Harpagophytum procumbens DC. in the dog.] Occhiuto 1990
Both in experiments on intact rats and on isolated rabbit heart, the Harpagophytum procumbens extract also demonstrated a protective action with regard to arrhythmias induced by aconitine, and particularly to those provoked by calcium chloride and epinephrine--chloroform. Circosta 1984
[Investigations of Harpagophytum procumbens (Devil's Claw) in the treatment of experimental inflammation and arthritis in the rat [proceedings].] McLeod 1979
[Antiphlogistic, analgesic and spasmolytic effect of harpagoside, a glycoside from the root of Harpagophytum procumbens DC]. [Article in German] Eichler 1970
[Antiarthritis effect of the Harpagophytum root; preliminary report.] [Article in German] Zorn1958
History of Record
ORIGINAL RESEARCH BY: J. Mohanasundaram, MD, PhD
June 2006
MAJOR REVISION BY: Eli Scheinman, MES
January 2018
LATEST UPDATES BY: Oren Rabinowitz, MSc
October 2021