Zootherapeutic practices in the Amazon Region: chemical and pharmacological studies of Green-anaconda fat (<em>Eunectes murinus</em>) and alternatives for species conservation


  • Camila Ferreira Abrão Universidade Federal do Rio de Janeiro
  • Danilo Ribeiro de Oliveira Universidade Federal do Rio de Janeiro
  • Paulo Passos Universidade Federal do Rio de Janeiro
  • Carla Valéria Rodrigues Pereira Freitas Universidade Estadual de Feira de Santana
  • Amanda Ferreira Santana Universidade Estadual de Feira de Santana
  • Marilene Lopes da Rocha Universidade Estadual de Feira de Santana
  • Antonio Jorge Ribeiro da Silva Universidade Federal do Rio de Janeiro
  • Luzineide Wanderley Tinoco Universidade Federal do Rio de Janeiro https://orcid.org/0000-0002-1299-6242




Ethnopharmacology, Chromatography and mass spectrometry analysis, Oleic acid, Linoleic acid, Palmitic acid, Snakes


The treatment of diseases with animal resources or their derivatives is a traditional practice worldwide, representing a wide field of research for the elaboration of strategies of management and conservation of the fauna, and contributing to the search for sustainable therapy alternatives. This study presents the therapeutic applications of animal fats to the treatment of several diseases in Pimenteiras do Oeste, state of Rondônia, Brazil. Twelve animals including: mammals, fishes, reptiles and birds are reported as a source of medicinal lard for the treatment of respiratory illnesses (asthma, flu, bronchitis, cough), rheumatism, and earache and as a healing agent (dislocation and wounds). The ethnopharmacological focus of the study was on Green-anaconda fat (Eunectes murinus), which stands out for its frequent local use and the lack of previous chemical studies. The chemical composition of E. murinus fat was analyzed by gas and liquid chromatography, both coupled to mass spectrometry. The main fatty acids identified were oleic, linoleic and palmitic acids, which were also predominant in the composition of the triglycerides. Pharmacological analysis of Green-anaconda fat showed a significant anti-inflammatory effect, which is related to its use by traditional communities. Having confirmed the pharmacological potential of Green-anaconda fat, its fatty acid composition was used as a parameter in the search for vegetable oils from the Amazon Region with a similar composition. This comparative analysis can be of help by proposing therapeutic alternatives for the Amazonian population. The use of plant sources can contribute to the conservation of the aforementioned species.

Author Biographies

Camila Ferreira Abrão, Universidade Federal do Rio de Janeiro

Instituto de Pesquisas de Produtos Naturais, Centro de Ciências da Saúde, Universidade Federal do Rio de Janeiro, Av. Carlos Chagas Filho, 373, Bloco H, Rio de Janeiro, RJ, 21941-902, Brazil

Danilo Ribeiro de Oliveira, Universidade Federal do Rio de Janeiro

Faculdade de Farmácia, Centro de Ciências da Saúde, Universidade Federal do Rio de Janeiro, Av. Carlos Chagas Filho, 373, Bloco A, Rio de Janeiro, RJ, 21941-902, Brazil

Paulo Passos, Universidade Federal do Rio de Janeiro

Departamento de Vertebrados, Museu Nacional, Universidade Federal do Rio de Janeiro, Quinta da Boa Vista, São Cristóvão, Rio de Janeiro, RJ, 20940-040, Brazil

Carla Valéria Rodrigues Pereira Freitas, Universidade Estadual de Feira de Santana

Universidade Estadual de Feira de Santana, Avenida Transnordestina, s/n - Novo Horizonte, Caixa Postal 252 e 294, Módulo I - MA 14, Feira de Santana, Bahia, 44.036-900, Brazil

Amanda Ferreira Santana, Universidade Estadual de Feira de Santana

Universidade Estadual de Feira de Santana, Avenida Transnordestina, s/n - Novo Horizonte, Caixa Postal 252 e 294, Módulo I - MA 14, Feira de Santana, Bahia, 44.036-900, Brazil


Marilene Lopes da Rocha, Universidade Estadual de Feira de Santana

Universidade Estadual de Feira de Santana, Avenida Transnordestina, s/n - Novo Horizonte, Caixa Postal 252 e 294, Módulo I - MA 14, Feira de Santana, Bahia, 44.036-900, Brazil

Antonio Jorge Ribeiro da Silva, Universidade Federal do Rio de Janeiro

Instituto de Pesquisas de Produtos Naturais, Centro de Ciências da Saúde, Universidade Federal do Rio de Janeiro, Av. Carlos Chagas Filho, 373, Bloco H, Rio de Janeiro, RJ, 21941-902, Brazil

Luzineide Wanderley Tinoco, Universidade Federal do Rio de Janeiro

Instituto de Pesquisas de Produtos Naturais, Centro de Ciências da Saúde, Universidade Federal do Rio de Janeiro, Av. Carlos Chagas Filho, 373, Bloco H, Rio de Janeiro, RJ, 21941-902, Brazil


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02/19/2021 — Updated on 02/19/2021


How to Cite

Ferreira Abrão, C. ., Ribeiro de Oliveira, D. ., Passos, P. ., Rodrigues Pereira Freitas, C. V. ., Ferreira Santana, A. ., Lopes da Rocha, M. ., Ribeiro da Silva, A. J. ., & Tinoco, L. W. (2021). Zootherapeutic practices in the Amazon Region: chemical and pharmacological studies of Green-anaconda fat (<em>Eunectes murinus</em>) and alternatives for species conservation. Ethnobiology and Conservation, 10. https://doi.org/10.15451/ec2021-02-10.15-1-27



Original research article