A review on pharmacological activities of Cinnamomum cassia Blume

Varsha J. Bansode


The plant Cinnamon cassia Blume is commonly known as Chinese cinnamon. Mostly its bark and leaves are used in medicine. C. cassia is safe when used in small amounts as in foods and medicinal doses. The whole plant is medicinally important in Indian traditional system of medicine, particularly in Ayurveda. In this review, the reported pharmacological activities of C. cassia Blume to cure or prevent several diseases are summarised. Different pharmacological activities like anti‑inflammatory, antioxidant, hepatoprotective activities of C. cassia Blume are discussed in this review.
Key words: Antibacterial, anti‑diabetic, Cinnamomum cassia Blume, pharmacological activities

Full Text:



Dhiman RK, Chawla YK. Herbal medicines for liver diseases. Dig

Dis Sci 2005;10:1807‑12.

De Smet PA. The role of plant‑derived drugs and herbal medicines

in healthcare. Drugs 1997;54:801‑40.

Trease GE, Evans WC. Trease & Evans’ Pharmacognosy. 13th ed.

London: Bailliére Tindall; 1989.

Lee HS, Kim BS, Kim MK. Suppression effect of Cinnamomum

cassia bark‑derived component on nitric oxide synthase. J Agric

Food Chem 2002;50:7700‑3.

Hong CH, Hur SK, Oh OJ, Kim SS, Nam KA, Lee SK. Evaluation

of natural products on inhibition of inducible cyclooxygenase

(COX‑2) and nitric oxide synthase (iNOS) in cultured mouse

macrophage cells. J Ethnopharmacol 2002;83:153‑9.

Lee SH, Lee SY, Son DJ, Lee H, Yoo HS, Song S, et al. Inhibitory

effect of 2′‑hydroxycinnamaldehyde on nitric oxide production

through inhibition of NF‑kappa B activation in RAW 264.7 cells.

Biochem Pharmacol 2005;69:791‑9.

Murcia MA, Egea I, Romojaro F, Parras P, Jiménez AM,

Martínez‑Tomé M. Antioxidant evaluation in dessert spices

compared with common food additives. Influence of irradiation

procedure. J Agric Food Chem 2004;52:1872‑81.

Wang HF, Wang YK, Yih KH. DPPH free‑radical scavenging

ability, total phenolic content, and chemical composition analysis

of forty‑five kinds of essential oils. J Cosmet Sci 2008;59:509‑22.

Kanuri G, Weber S, Volynets V, Spruss A, Bischoff SC, Bergheim I.

Cinnamon extract protects against acute alcohol‑induced liver

steatosis in mice. J Nutr 2009;139:482‑7.

Lim CS, Kim EY, Lee HS, Soh Y, Sohn Y, Kim SY, et al. Protective

effects of Cinnamomum cassia Blume in the fibrogenesis of

activated HSC‑T6 cells and dimethylnitrosamine‑induced

acute liver injury in SD rats. Biosci Biotechnol Biochem 2010;


Kanari M, Tomoda M, Gonda R, Shimizu N, Kimura M,

Kawaguchi M, et al. A reticuloendothelial system‑activating

arabinoxylan from the bark of Cinnamomum cassia. Chem Pharm

Bull (Tokyo) 1989;37:3191‑4.

Moselhy SS, Ali HK. Hepatoprotective effect of cinnamon extracts

against carbon tetrachloride induced oxidative stress and liver

injury in rats. Biol Res 2009;42:93‑8.

Akira T, Tanaka S, Tabata M. Pharmacological studies on the

antiulcerogenic activity of Chinese cinnamon. Planta Med


Tanaka S, Yoon YH, Fukui H, Tabata M, Akira T, Okano K, et al.

Antiulcerogenic compounds isolated from Chinese cinnamon.

Planta Med 1989;55:245‑8.

Tabak M, Armon R, Neeman I. Cinnamon extracts’ inhibitory effect

on Helicobacter pylori. J Ethnopharmacol 1999;67:269‑77.

Zhang Z, Su C, Chen D. Comparison of bacteriostatic ability of

oleum of Perilla frutescens (L.) Britt., Cinnamomum cassia Presl and

Nipagin A. Zhongguo Zhong Yao Za Zhi 1990;15:95‑7, 126‑7.

Lee HS, Ahn YJ. Growth‑inhibiting effects of Cinnamomum cassia

bark‑derived materials on human intestinal bacteria. J Agric Food

Chem 1998;46:8‑12.

Alzoreky NS, Nakahara K. Antibacterial activity of extracts from

some edible plants commonly consumed in Asia. Int J Food

Microbiol 2003;80:223‑30.

Sharma A, Chandraker S, Patel VK, Ramteke P. Antibacterial

activity of medicinal plants against pathogens causing complicated

urinary tract infections. Indian J Pharm Sci 2009;71:136‑9.

Luo H, Lin S, Ren F, Wu L, Chen L, Sun Y. Antioxidant and

antibacterial capacity of Chinese medicinal herb extracts in raw

sheep meat. J Food Prot 2007;70:1440‑5.

Oussalah M, Caillet S, Lacroix M. Mechanism of action of Spanish

oregano, Chinese cinnamon, and savory essential oils against cell

membranes and walls of Escherichia coli O157:H7 and Listeria

monocytogenes. J Food Prot 2006;69:1046‑55.

Ooi LS, Li Y, Kam SL, Wang H, Wong EY, Ooi VE. Antibacterial

activities of cinnamon oil and cinnamaldehyde from the Chinese

medicinal herb Cinnamomum cassia Blume. Am J Chin Med


Giordani R, Regli P, Kaloustian J, Portugal H. Potentiation

of antifungal activity of amphotericin B by essential oil from

Cinnamomum cassia. Phytother Res 2006;20:58‑61.

Park IK, Lee HS, Lee SG, Park JD, Ahn YJ. Insecticidal and fumigant

activities of Cinnamomum cassia bark‑derived materials against

Mechoris ursulus (Coleoptera: Attelabidae). J Agric Food Chem


Kim SI, Kim HK, Koh YY, Clark JM, Ahn YJ. Toxicity of spray and

fumigant products containing cassia oil to Dermatophagoides

farinae and Dermatophagoides pteronyssinus (Acari:

Pyroglyphidae). Pest Manag Sci 2006;62:768‑74.

Kim HK, Yun YK, Ahn YJ. Fumigant toxicity of cassia bark and

cassia and cinnamon oil compounds to Dermatophagoides farinae

and Dermatophagoides pteronyssinus (Acari: Pyroglyphidae). Exp

Appl Acarol 2008;44:1‑9.

Sharma N, Trikha P, Athar M, Raisuddin S. Inhibition of benzo[a]

pyrene‑ and cyclophoshamide‑induced mutagenicity by

Cinnamomum cassia. Mutat Res 2001;480‑1:179‑88.

Ka H, Park HJ, Jung HJ, Choi JW, Cho KS, Ha J, et al. Cinnamaldehyde

induces apoptosis by ROS‑mediated mitochondrial permeability

transition in human promyelocytic leukemia HL‑60 cells. Cancer

Lett 2003;196:143‑52.

Nishida S, Kikuichi S, Yoshioka S, Tsubaki M, Fujii Y, Matsuda H,

et al. Induction of apoptosis in HL‑60 cells treated with medicinal

herbs. Am J Chin Med 2003;31:551‑62.

Koppikar SJ, Choudhari AS, Suryavanshi SA, Kumari S,

Chattopadhyay S, Kaul‑Ghanekar R, et al. Aqueous cinnamon

extract (ACE‑c) from the bark of Cinnamomum cassia causes

apoptosis in human cervical cancer cell line (SiHa) through loss

of mitochondrial membrane potential. BMC Cancer 2010;10:210.

Kwon HK, Hwang JS, So JS, Lee CG, Sahoo A, Ryu JH, et al.

Cinnamon extract induces tumor cell death through inhibition of

NFkappaB and AP1. BMC Cancer 2010;10:392.

Premanathan M, Rajendran S, Ramanathan T, Kathiresan K,

Nakashima H, Yamamoto N. A survey of some Indian medicinal

plants for anti‑human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) activity.

Indian J Med Res 2000;112:73‑7.

Fink RC, Roschek B Jr, Alberte RS. HIV type‑1 entry inhibitors with

a new mode of action. Antivir Chem Chemother 2009;19:243‑55.

Verspohl EJ, Bauer K, Neddermann E. Antidiabetic effect of

Cinnamomum cassia and Cinnamomum zeylanicum in vivo and

in vitro. Phytother Res 2005;19:203‑6.

Cao H, Polansky MM, Anderson RA. Cinnamon extract and

polyphenols affect the expression of tristetraprolin, insulin

receptor, and glucose transporter 4 in mouse 3T3‑L1 adipocytes.

Arch Biochem Biophys 2007;459:214‑22.

Kim W, Khil LY, Clark R, Bok SH, Kim EE, Lee S, et al.

Naphthalenemethyl ester derivative of dihydroxyhydrocinnamic

acid, a component of cinnamon, increases glucose disposal by

enhancing translocation of glucose transporter 4. Diabetologia


Kim SH, Hyun SH, Choung SY. Anti‑diabetic effect of cinnamon

extract on blood glucose in db/db mice. J Ethnopharmacol

;104:119‑23. Epub 2005 Oct 5.

Yu HS, Lee SY, Jang CG. Involvement of 5‑HT1A and GABAA

receptors in the anxiolytic‑like effects of Cinnamomum cassia in

mice. Pharmacol Biochem Behav 2007;87:164‑70.

Shimada Y, Goto H, Kogure T, Kohta K, Shintani T, Itoh T, et al.

Extract prepared from the bark of Cinnamomum cassia Blume

prevents glutamate‑induced neuronal death in cultured cerebellar

granule cells. Phytother Res 2000;14:466‑8.

Nagai H, Shimazawa T, Matsuura N, Koda A. Immunopharmacological

studies of the aqueous extract of Cinnamomum cassia (CCAq). I.

Anti‑allergic action. Jpn J Pharmacol 1982;32:813‑22.

Kong LD, Cai Y, Huang WW, Cheng CH, Tan RX. Inhibition of

xanthine oxidase by some Chinese medicinal plants used to treat

gout. J Ethnopharmacol 2000;73:199‑207.

Zhao X, Zhu JX, Mo SF, Pan Y, Kong LD. Effects of cassia oil on

serum and hepatic uric acid levels in oxonate‑induced mice and

xanthine dehydrogenase and xanthine oxidase activities in mouse

liver. J Ethnopharmacol 2006;103:357‑65.

Zee‑Cheng RK. A potent Chinese biological response modifier

in cancer immunotherapy, potentiation and detoxification

of anticancer drugs. Methods Find Exp Clin Pharmacol


Kong JO, Lee SM, Moon YS, Lee SG, Ahn YJ. Nematicidal

activity of cassia and cinnamon oil compounds and related

compounds toward bursaphelenchus xylophilus (Nematoda:

Parasitaphelenchidae). J Nematol 2007;39:31‑6.

Kong YH, Jo YO, Cho CW, Son D, Park S, Rho J, et al. Inhibitory

effects of cinnamic acid on melanin biosynthesis in skin. Biol Pharm

Bull 2008;31:946‑8.

Taguchi Y, Takizawa T, Ishibashi H, Sagawa T, Arai R, Inoue S,

et al. Therapeutic effects on murine oral candidiasis by oral

administration of cassia (Cinnamomum cassia) preparation. Nihon

Ishinkin Gakkai Zasshi 2010;51:13‑21

DOI: https://doi.org/10.22377/ijgp.v6i2.245


  • There are currently no refbacks.