Planta Med 2019; 85(03): 239-248
DOI: 10.1055/a-0758-0188
Biological and Pharmacological Activity
Georg Thieme Verlag KG Stuttgart · New York

Essential Oils as Treatment Strategy for Alzheimerʼs Disease: Current and Future Perspectives

Anju Benny
Department of Pharmacology, Amrita School of Pharmacy, Amrita University, Amrita Vishwa Vidyapeetham, AIMS Health Sciences Campus, Kochi, India
Jaya Thomas
Department of Pharmacology, Amrita School of Pharmacy, Amrita University, Amrita Vishwa Vidyapeetham, AIMS Health Sciences Campus, Kochi, India
› Author Affiliations
Further Information

Publication History

received 28 May 2018
revised 29 September 2018

accepted 10 October 2018

Publication Date:
25 October 2018 (online)


Alzheimerʼs disease is a multifarious neurodegenerative disease that causes cognitive impairment and gradual memory loss. Several hypotheses have been put forward to postulate its pathophysiology. Currently, few drugs are available for the management of Alzheimerʼs disease and the treatment provides only symptomatic relief. Our aim is to review the relevant in vitro, in vivo, and clinical studies focused toward the potential uses of essential oils in the treatment of Alzheimerʼs disease. Scientific databases such as PubMed, ScienceDirect, Scopus, and Google Scholar from April 1998 to June 2018 were explored to collect data. We have conducted wide search on various essential oils used in different models of Alzheimerʼs disease. Out of 55 essential oils identified for Alzheimerʼs intervention, 28 have been included in the present review. A short description of in vivo studies of 13 essential oils together with clinical trial data of Salvia officinalis, Salvia lavandulifolia, Melissa officinalis, Lavandula angustifolia, and Rosmarinus officinalis have been highlighted. In vitro studies of remaining essential oils that possess antioxidant and anticholinesterase potential are also mentioned. Our literary survey revealed encouraging results regarding the various essential oils being studied in preclinical and clinical studies of Alzheimerʼs disease with significant effects in modulating the pathology through anti-amyloid, antioxidants, anticholinesterase, and memory-enhancement activity.

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