Planta Med 2020; 86(15): 1125-1132
DOI: 10.1055/a-1211-6325
Biological and Pharmacological Activity
Original Papers

Clary Sage Essential Oil and Its Effect on Human Mood and Pulse Rate: An in vivo Pilot Study[ # ]

Milena Mitic
1  Department of Pharmaceutical Chemistry, University of Vienna, Austria
Adrijana Zrnić
1  Department of Pharmaceutical Chemistry, University of Vienna, Austria
Jürgen Wanner
2  Kurt Kitzing GmbH, Wallerstein, Germany
Iris Stappen
1  Department of Pharmaceutical Chemistry, University of Vienna, Austria
3  Austrian Society of Scientific Aromatherapy and Aroma Care, Vienna, Austria
› Author Affiliations


Clary sage (Salvia sclarea) is a xerophytic biennial plant typical for the Mediterranean region. It is cultivated for its essential oil, which is widely used in the flavor and fragrance industry as well as in aromatherapy for its relaxing and immunomodulatory effect. In this pilot investigation, clary sage essential oil was analyzed by GC-MS as well as GC-FID and examined regarding its effects on pulse, blood pressure and mood in healthy human female and male subjects. Analysis of the used CSEO identified linalylacetat (61.3%) and linalool (22.1%) as main compounds. Sclareol was found at 0.3%. In the first experiment with 30 participants (with 15 female), CSEO, diluted in peanut oil, was administered to the left forearm, leading to an increase in pulse rate in women (peanut oil served as control). In men, pulse rate deceased over time (p = 0.013). In the second experiment (32 participants; 16 females) the oil was inhaled for 30 min (pure water as control). The observed decrease of pulse rate was significantly stronger in women than in men (p = 0.026). To evaluate the influence of the mode of application, a comparison of both experiments was performed showing a significant difference between sexes for the parameter of pulse rate (p = 0.034). Overall, the effects elicited by CSEO may depend on application method (inhaled/dermal) and sex (male/female).

# Dedicated with best wishes to emer. Prof. Dr. W. Kubelka on the occasion of his 85th birthday.

Publication History

Received: 24 January 2020

Accepted after revision: 01 July 2020

Publication Date:
20 July 2020 (online)

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