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20 medicinal plants of Paraguay and 3 medicinal plants of Thailand were examined on nerve growth factor (NGF) potentiating activities in PC12D cells. The trail results demonstrated that the methanol extracts of four plants, Verbena littoralis, Scoparia dulcis, Artemisia absinthium and Garcinia xanthochymus, markedly enhanced the neurite outgrowthinduced by NGF from PC12D cells. Furthermore, utilizing the bioactivity-guided separation we successfully isolated 32, 4 and 5 constituents from V. littoralis, S. dulcis and G. xanthochymus, respectively, including nine iridoid and iridoid glucosides (1-9), two dihydrochalcone dimers (10 and 11), two flavonoids and three flavonoid glycosides (12-16), two sterols (17 and 18), ten triterpenoids (19-28), five xanthones (29-33), one naphthoquinone (34), one ben-zenepropanamide (35), four phenylethanoid glycosides (36-39) and two other compounds (40 and 41). Among which, 15 compounds (1-4, 10-11, 14-18, 29-31 and 34) were new natural products. The results of pharmacologi cal trails verified that littoralisone (1), gelsemiol (5), 7a-hydroxysemperoside aglucone (6), verbenachalcone (10), littorachalcone (11), stigmast-5-ene 3β,7α,22α-triol (18), ursolic acid (19), 3β-hydroxyurs-ll-en-28,13β-olide (24), oleanolic acid (25), 2α,3β-dihydroxyolean-12-en-28-oicacid (26), l,4,5,6-tetrahydroxy-7,8-di(3-methylbut-2-enyl)xan thone (29), l,2,6-trihydroxy-5-methoxy-7-(3-methylbut-2-enyl)xanthone (30), l,3,5,6-tetrahydroxy-4,7,8-tri(3-methyl-2-butenyl) xanthone (31), 12b-hydroxy-des-D-garcigerrin A (32), garciniaxanthone E (33) and (4R)-4,9-di-hydroxy-8-methoxy-a-lapachone (34) elicited marked enhancement of NGF-mediated neurite outgrowth in PC12D cells. These substances may contribute to the basic study and the medicinal development for the neurodegenerative disorder.