Study shows that Indian frankincense helps maintain cognitive health in multiple sclerosis patients

Boswellia serrata, the plant from which Indian frankincense is derived, has powerful anti-inflammatory properties. In a double-blind, randomized, placebo-controlled study published in the Journal of Herbal Medicine, researchers found that the plant can also help attenuate certain aspects of cognitive decline in individuals with multiple sclerosis (MS).

  • The study involved 60 participants whom the researchers divided into two groups. One group received 450 mg of B. serrata (BS) and the other group received placebo capsules which they needed to take twice a day. All participants had MS and subjective cognitive complaints related to the condition.
  • At the beginning and two months after the treatment, the participants were required to take a series of minimum assessment of cognitive function in MS (MACFIMS) tests. The test results were analyzed and recorded.
  • Those in the BS group scored significantly higher than those in the placebo group in the brief visuospatial memory test (BVMT) and the California verbal learning test (CVLT).
  • However, the differences in scores in the paced auditory serial addition test, symbol digit modalities test, controlled oral word association test, judgment of line orientation test, and Delis-Kaplan executive function system were negligible.

The researchers concluded that BS could help patients with MS improve their marks in CVLT and BVMT.

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Journal Reference:

Majdinasab N, Siahpush A, Mousavinejad SK, Malayeri A, Sajedi SA, Bizhanzadeh P. EFFECT OF BOSWELLIA SERRATA ON COGNITIVE IMPAIRMENT IN MULTIPLE SCLEROSIS PATIENTS. Journal of Herbal Medicine. September 2016;6(3):119–127. DOI: 10.1016/j.hermed.2016.05.003

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