Prosexual Effects of Lycium Barbarum

Sex of subjects

Reproductive stages

Species or experimental model

Effect of wolfberry component




Rats, hemicastrated

Shortened penis erection latency, mounts latency

Luo et al. 2006

Increased successful mount percentage


Promote penile erection

Sohn et al. 2008

Penile expression level of eNOS/nNOS increased

Rats, treated with high dose corticosterone

Increase CE and ejaculation frequency

Lau et al. 2012

Decrease ejaculation latency

Reverse suppressed neurogenesis in subventricular zone and hippocampus

Rats, hemicastrated

Improve CE of hemicastracted rats

Luo et al. 2006

Mouse testicular tissue
Prevent the structural damage of the seminiferous tubules

Prevent DNA damage caused by H2O2

Mouse seminiferous epithelium

Reduced structural damage of seminiferous epithelium

Wang et al. 2002

More motile spermatozoa

Rats, with BPA treatment

Prevent detrimental effect caused by BPA in terms of: increase the weight of testis and epididymis

Zhang et al. 2013

Prevent the decrease in the level of sex hormones

Decreased level of proapototic marker, e.g., Bax

Suppressed oxidative stress

Rats, treated with DOX

Prevents detrimental effect caused by DOX in terms of: preserved weight of the testis and epididymis—prevent degenerative changes (depletion of germ cells, irregular seminiferous tubules and scarcity of spermatogonia)

Xin et al. 2012

Prevent the decline of sperm quantity and quality

Attenuate the increased oxidative stress in testicular tissues

Rats, exposed to ionizing radiation

Prevents detrimental effect caused by ionizing radiation in terms of: repair the damage in testicular cells

Luo et al. 2011

Regulate the serum testosterone level and

Maintain histological integrity of testicular tissue

May have antiapoptotic effects against irradiation

Luo et al. 2014




Induce ovulation after injection of crude extract of wolfberry

Suzuki et al. 1972

Frozen porcine oocyte

Increase maturation rate

Huang et al. 2008

Human, single case

A woman with premature ovarian failure and secondary amenorrhea had ovulation returned and conceived after 3 months of therapy

Chao et al. 2003

Rats, offspring

Reduce the impairment in memory and learning deficiency of female offspring which were subjected to prenatal stress

Feng et al. 2010

Both sexes


Normal human

Drinking wolfberry juice showed

Amagase and Nance 2008, 2009

Subjective report of increased sexual ability and activity

Elevated level of in vivo antioxidant markers including SOD and GSH-Px in plasma

eNOS endothelial nitric oxide synthase, nNOS neuronal nitric oxide synthase, CE copulatory efficiency, DNA deoxyribonucleic acid, BPA bisphenol A, DOX doxorubicin, SOD superoxide dismutase, GSH-Px glutathione peroxidase


Apart from protecting the DNA and alleviating the reproductive tissue damage due to hypothermia, oxidative stress, and radiation, the fruit also protects testis from damage by environment pollutant like BPA. Female fertility is also restored by a herbal medicine containing wolfberry. The fruit also shows protective effect to the cognitive function of offspring with prenatal stress. Different pieces of evidence have shown that L. barbarum would be an all-round aphrodisiac agent that not only improves the sexual function of male individual and the fertility of female, but also the general health of both male and female. These beneficial effects imply L. barbarum would be a potent functional food. Nevertheless, the drug interaction between the fruit and common drugs, especially drugs for chronic diseases, still need to be clarified, in order to utilize wolfberry as an adjunctive therapy for sexual dysfunctions. Yet, further studies may be needed to determine the therapeutic dosage of wolfberry as the quality control of the fruit and the active components are still being elusive.

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Jun 28, 2017 | Posted by in PHARMACY | Comments Off on Prosexual Effects of Lycium Barbarum

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