Bioavailable standardized extract of Ginkgo biloba leaves
Although the medicinal properties of Ginkgo biloba L. have been known in China since the most ancient times, a systematic pharmacological and clinical study of this plant only began in Europe in the last decades(1).
Often defined as a “living fossil”, the Ginkgo biloba tree is the only survivor of a genus originated 150 millions years ago. It derives its name from a wrong transcription of the Japanese Yin-Kwo, meaning “silver fruit”.
In an extensive review by DeFeudis(2) in 1991, the activity of Ginkgo biloba is describred as “polyvalent”, as its pharmacological action is due to the combined activity of several actives.
The major therapeutic indications for the standardized Ginkgo biloba leaves extract concern cerebral insufficiency and peripheral vascular disorders(1).
The term “cerebral insufficiency” indicates a collection of symptoms concerning the cerebral functions, such as impairment of short term memory, confusion, change in social behavior, lack of initiative, affective and somatic troubles. These symptoms may be associated with impaired cerebral circulation and ageing.
Considered as early signs of senile dementia both of degenerative type and vascular origin, the symptoms are treated with Ginkgo biloba extract (GBE) which is considered a drug of choice in the growing area of senile dementia.
A natural cognition enhancer
The cognition enhancing properties of the plant are attributed to the flavonoids fraction which are responsible for:
- enhancement of the release of catecholamines and other neurotransmitters
- inhibition of biogenic anime intake
- inhibition of catechol-O-methyl transferase and MAO
The unique terpenoids ginkgolides and bilobalide exert vaso- and tissue-protective activity as:
- relaxation of blood vessels in spastic conditions
- contraction increasing the tone of abnormally relaxed vessels
- protection against increase in capillary permeability
- inhibition of platelet aggregation
- anti-ischemic and anti-oedema properties
The content of GBE
≥ 24% of ginkgoflavonglucosides
≥ 6% of ginkgolides and bilobalide
≤ 5 ppm of ginkgoic acids
To further improve its bioavailability, GBE has been complexed with soy (non-GMO) phospholipids (1:2 w/w), thus obtaining Ginkgoselect® Phytosome®.
Pharmacokinetic data on human volunteers support the bioavailability improvement in Ginkgoselect® Phytosome®, while its activity is supported by clinical trials(3,4) with pharmacokinetic(5,6) and pharmacological data(1,8).
- Van Beek T.A., Bombardelli E., Morazzoni P., Peterlongo F., Fitoterapia LXIX (3) 193-244 (1998).
- DeFeudis F.V., “Ginkgo biloba extract: pharmacological activities and clinical applications”, Elsevier (1991).
- Muir A.H., Robb R., McLaren M., Daly F., Belch J., The use of Ginkgo biloba in Raynaud’s disease: a double-blind placebo-controlled trial, Vascular Medicine 7, 265-267 (2002).
- Arpaia G., Curri S.B., Bombardelli E., “Evaluation of the effects of the Ginkgo biloba Phytosome® on skin microcirculation in normal and pathological conditions”, Unpublished (1991).
- Mauri P., Simonetti P., Gardana C., Minoggio M., Morazzoni P., Bombardelli E., Pietta P., Liquid chromatography/atmospheric pressure chemical ionization mass spectrometry of terpene lactones in plasma of volunteers dosed with Ginkgo biloba L. extracts, Rapid Commun. Mass Spectrom. 15, 929-934 (2001).
- Indena – data on file.
- Carini M, Aldini G, Rossoni G, Morazzoni P, Facino RM., Complexation of Ginkgo biloba extract with phosphatidylcholine improves cardioprotective activity and increases the plasma antioxidant capacity in the rat, Planta Medica 67, 326-330 (2001).
- Naik SR, Pilgaonkar VW, Panda VS., Evaluation of antioxidant activity of Ginkgo biloba phytosomes in rat brain, Phytother Res. 2006 Nov;20(11):1013-6.