Supplementation of Crocin on Cognitive impairment and Oxidative Stress in Multiple Sclerosis patients: a double-blind randomized clinical trial

Document Type : Original Article


1 Department of Neurology, School of Medicine, Kashan University of Medical Sciences, Kashan, Iran.

2 Department of Addiction Studies, School of Medical and Clinical Research Development Unit-Matini/Kargarnejad Hospital, Kashan University of Medical Sciences, Kashan, Iran.

3 Infectious diseases Research Center, Kashan University of Medical Sciences, Kashan, Iran.

4 Department of Pharmacology, School of Medicine, Kashan University of Medical Sciences, Kashan, Iran.



Aims: Multiple sclerosis (MS) is a disorder that specifically targets the central nervous system by causing demyelination. Despite extensive research, specific treatment for cognitive disorders of these patients has not been introduced. Considering the antioxidant properties of saffron and its potential to prevent neuronal degeneration and enhancing cognition, we conducted a study to investigate the effects of crocin, a bioactive compound found in saffron, on oxidative stress biomarkers and cognitive factors in patients with MS.
Methods: This study is an interventional study. Patients with MS were randomized into two groups taking either 15 mg crocin tablets twice a day (n = 25; 30 mg/day) or placebo (n = 20) for 8 weeks. Minimal Assessment of Cognitive Function in Multiple Sclerosis (MACFIMS) questionnaires were recorded and blood samples were collected at baseline and week 8 following the intervention.
Results: The results showed no significant differences between crocin and placebo groups for all cognitive questionnaires and tests except the Persian Adult Reading Test (PART) and Nine Hole Peg Test (9HPT) for the right hand, based on the results of the analysis of covariance (ANCOVA) test (P<0.05). Biochemical analyses revealed that there was no significant difference between the two groups in terms of the effect on serum malondialdehyde (MDA), total glutathione (GSH), and Plasma total antioxidant capacity (TAC) after 8 weeks of intervention (both P ≥ 0.05).
Conclusion: Our findings suggest that crocin may not keep promise in Improving Cognitive Factors in 8 Weeks, althought evidence shown a few of Cognitive tasks Improved in patients with MS. However, supplementation for 8 weeks may not be sufficient to improve Oxidative Factors, and future clinical studies with higher sample sizes and various doses and durations are recommended.


Main Subjects

Articles in Press, Accepted Manuscript
Available Online from 26 February 2024
  • Receive Date: 25 October 2023
  • Revise Date: 15 February 2024
  • Accept Date: 17 February 2024