Abstract: The objective of this study was to evaluate antiproliferative activity, antioxidant capacity and tannin content in plants from semi-arid northeastern Brazil (Caatinga). For this study, we selected 14 species and we assayed the methanol extracts for antiproliferative activity against the HEp-2 (laryngeal cancer) and NCI-H292 (lung cancer) cell lines using the (3-[4,5-dimethylthiazol-2-yl]-2,5-diphenyltetrazole) (MTT) method. In addition, the antioxidant activity was evaluated with the DPPH (2,2-diphenyl-2-picrylhydrazyl) assay, and the tannin content was determined by the radial diffusion method. Plants with better antioxidant activity (expressed in a dose able to decrease the initial DPPH concentration by 50%, or IC50) and with higher levels of tannins were: Poincianella pyramidalis (42.95 ± 1.77 µg/mL IC50 and 8.17 ± 0.64 tannin content), Jatropha mollissima (54.09 ± 4.36µg/mL IC50 and 2.35 ± 0.08 tannin content) and Anadenanthera colubrina (73.24 ± 1.47 µg/mL IC50 and 4.41 ± 0.47 tannin content). Plants with enhanced antiproliferative activity (% living cells) were Annona muricata (24.94 ± 0.74 in NCI-H292), Lantana camara (25.8 ± 0.19 in NCI-H292), Handroanthus impetiginosus (41.8 ± 0.47 in NCI-H292) and Mentzelia aspera (45.61 ± 1.94 in HEp-2). For species with better antioxidant and antiproliferative activities, we suggest future in vitro and in vivo comparative studies with other pharmacological models, and to start a process of purification and identification of the possible molecule(s) responsible for the observed pharmacological activity. We believe that the flora of Brazilian semi-arid areas can be a valuable source of plants rich in tannins, cytotoxic compounds and antioxidant agents.
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Gomes de Melo, J.; De Sousa Araújo, T.A.; Thijan Nobre de Almeida e Castro, V.; Lyra de Vasconcelos Cabral, D.; Do Desterro Rodrigues, M.; Carneiro do Nascimento, S.; Cavalcanti de Amorim, E.L.; De Albuquerque, U.P. Antiproliferative Activity, Antioxidant Capacity and Tannin Content in Plants of Semi-Arid Northeastern Brazil . Molecules 2010, 15, 8534-8542.
Gomes de Melo J, De Sousa Araújo TA, Thijan Nobre de Almeida e Castro V, Lyra de Vasconcelos Cabral D, Do Desterro Rodrigues M, Carneiro do Nascimento S, Cavalcanti de Amorim EL, De Albuquerque UP. Antiproliferative Activity, Antioxidant Capacity and Tannin Content in Plants of Semi-Arid Northeastern Brazil . Molecules. 2010; 15(12):8534-8542.
Gomes de Melo, Joabe; De Sousa Araújo, Thiago Antônio; Thijan Nobre de Almeida e Castro, Valérium; Lyra de Vasconcelos Cabral, Daniela; Do Desterro Rodrigues, Maria; Carneiro do Nascimento, Silene; Cavalcanti de Amorim, Elba Lúcia; De Albuquerque, Ulysses Paulino. 2010. "Antiproliferative Activity, Antioxidant Capacity and Tannin Content in Plants of Semi-Arid Northeastern Brazil ." Molecules 15, no. 12: 8534-8542.