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Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine
Volume 2011 (2011), Article ID 748283, 8 pages
Original Article

Aqueous Extract of Brazilian Green Propolis: Primary Components, Evaluation of Inflammation and Wound Healing by Using Subcutaneous Implanted Sponges

1Department of General Pathology, Institute of Biological Sciences, Federal University of Minas Gerais-UFMG, Belo Horizonte, Brazil
2CEBRID—Department of Psychobiology, UNIFESP, R. Botucatu, 862, Biomedical Sciences, Brazil
3Department of Botany, Biosciences Institute, University of São Paulo, R. do Matão 277, São Paulo, Brazil
4Department of Physiology, Institute of Biological Sciences, Federal University of Minas Gerais-UFMG, Avenida Antônio Carlos, 6627, Pampulha, CEP 31.270-901, Belo Horizonte, Minas Gerais, Brazil

Received 4 December 2008; Accepted 17 July 2009

Copyright © 2011 Sandra Aparecida Lima de Moura et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Propolis is a chemically complex resinous bee product which has gained worldwide popularity as a means to improve health condition and prevent diseases. The main constituents of an aqueous extract of a sample of green propolis from Southeast Brazil were shown by high performance liquid chromatography/mass spectroscopy/mass spectroscopy to be mono- and di-O-caffeoylquinic acids; phenylpropanoids known as important constituents of alcohol extracts of green propolis, such as artepillin C and drupanin were also detected in low amounts in the aqueous extract. The anti-inflammatory activity of this extract was evaluated by determination of wound healing parameters. Female Swiss mice were implanted subcutaneously with polyesther-polyurethane sponge discs to induce wound healing responses, and administered orally with green propolis (500 mg kg−1). At 4, 7 and 14 days post-implantation, the fibrovascular stroma and deposition of extracellular matrix were evaluated by histopathologic and morphometric analyses. In the propolis-treated group at Days 4 and 7 the inflammatory process in the sponge was reduced in comparison with control. A progressive increase in cell influx and collagen deposition was observed in control and propolis-treated groups during the whole period. However, these effects were attenuated in the propolis-treated group at Days 4 and 7, indicating that key factors of the wound healing process are modulated by propolis constituents.