Planta Med 2004; 70(1): 3-7
DOI: 10.1055/s-2004-815446
Original Paper
Clinical Study
© Georg Thieme Verlag Stuttgart · New York

Evaluation of the Effects of East Indian Sandalwood Oil and α-Santalol on Humans after Transdermal Absorption

T. Hongratanaworakit1 , E. Heuberger2 , G. Buchbauer2
  • 1Department of Pharmaceutical Chemistry, Faculty of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Srinakharinwirot University, Nakorn-nayok, Thailand
  • 2Department of Pharmaceutical Chemistry, Center of Pharmacy, University of Vienna, Vienna, Austria
Further Information

Publication History

Received: June 12, 2003

Accepted: August 2, 2003

Publication Date:
06 February 2004 (online)


The aim of the study was to investigate the effects of East Indian sandalwood oil (Santalum album, Santalaceae) and α-santalol on physiological parameters as well as on mental and emotional conditions in healthy human subjects after transdermal absorption. In order to exclude any olfactory stimulation, the inhalation of the fragrances was prevented by breathing masks. Eight physiological parameters, i. e., blood oxygen saturation, blood pressure, breathing rate, eye-blink rate, pulse rate, skin conductance, skin temperature, and surface electromyogram were recorded. Subjective mental and emotional condition was assessed by means of rating scales. While α-santalol caused significant physiological changes which are interpreted in terms of a relaxing/sedative effect, sandalwood oil provoked physiological deactivation but behavioral activation. These findings are likely to represent an uncoupling of physiological and behavioral arousal processes by sandalwood oil.


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Dr. Tapanee Hongratanaworakit

Department of Pharmaceutical Chemistry

Faculty of Pharmaceutical Sciences

Srinakharinwirot University

Nakorn-nayok 26120


Fax: +66-37-395096