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Diversity 2011, 3(4), 547-580; doi:10.3390/d3040547
Article

Diversity of Pharmacological Properties in Chinese and European Medicinal Plants: Cytotoxicity, Antiviral and Antitrypanosomal Screening of 82 Herbal Drugs

1
, 2
, 2
, 1
, 3
, 4
, 2
, 5
 and 1,*
1 Institute of Pharmacy and Molecular Biotechnology, Heidelberg University, Heidelberg 69120, Germany 2 Laboratory of Experimental Hepatology and Drug Targeting (HEVEFARM), National Institute for the Study of Liver and Gastrointestinal Diseases (CIBERehd), University of Salamanca, Salamanca 37007, Spain 3 Department of Pharmacognosy, Faculty of Pharmacy, Ain Shams University, Abbassia, Cairo 11566, Egypt 4 Isostatic Products, RHI AG, Leoben 8700, Austria 5 Department of Pharmaceutical Biology, Institute of Pharmacy and Biochemistry, University of Mainz, Mainz 55128, Germany
* Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 29 July 2011 / Revised: 5 August 2011 / Accepted: 15 September 2011 / Published: 26 September 2011
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Abstract

In an extensive screening, the antiviral, antitrypanosomal and anticancer properties of extracts from 82 plants used in traditional Chinese medicine and European phytomedicine were determined. Several promising plants that were highly effective against hepatitis B virus (HBV), bovine viral diarrhoea virus (BVDV)—a flavivirus used here as a surrogate in vitro model of hepatitis C virus, trypanosomes (Trypanosoma brucei brucei) and several cancer cell lines were identified. Six aqueous extracts from Celosia cristata, Ophioglossum vulgatum, Houttuynia cordata, Selaginella tamariscina, Alpinia galanga and Alpinia oxyphylla showed significant antiviral effects against BVDV without toxic effects on host embryonic bovine trachea (EBTr) cells, while Evodia lepta, Hedyotis diffusa and Glycyrrhiza spp. demonstrated promising activities against the HBV without toxic effects on host human hepatoblastoma cells transfected with HBV-DNA (HepG2 2.2.15) cells. Seven organic extracts from Alpinia oxyphylla, Coptis chinensis, Kadsura longipedunculata, Arctium lappa, Panax ginseng, Panax notoginseng and Saposhnikovia divaricata inhibited T. b. brucei. Moreover, among fifteen water extracts that combined high antiproliferative activity (IC50 0.5–20 µg/mL) and low acute in vitro toxicity (0–10% reduction in cell viability at IC50), Coptis chinensis presented the best beneficial characteristics. In conclusion, traditional herbal medicine from Europe and China still has a potential for new therapeutic targets and therapeutic applications.
Keywords: anticancer drugs; gastrointestinal tumors; traditional Chinese medicine; cytotoxicity; hepatitis B; hepatitis C; HepG2 2.2.15; BVDV; Trypanosoma brucei brucei anticancer drugs; gastrointestinal tumors; traditional Chinese medicine; cytotoxicity; hepatitis B; hepatitis C; HepG2 2.2.15; BVDV; Trypanosoma brucei brucei
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

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Herrmann, F.; Romero, M.R.; Blazquez, A.G.; Kaufmann, D.; Ashour, M.L.; Kahl, S.; Marin, J.J.; Efferth, T.; Wink, M. Diversity of Pharmacological Properties in Chinese and European Medicinal Plants: Cytotoxicity, Antiviral and Antitrypanosomal Screening of 82 Herbal Drugs. Diversity 2011, 3, 547-580.

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