Chemical Composition and Biological Activity of Plant Natural Compounds

A special issue of Plants (ISSN 2223-7747). This special issue belongs to the section "Phytochemistry".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (29 February 2024) | Viewed by 2526

Special Issue Editor

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Natural products are small molecules produced naturally by any organism, including primary and secondary metabolites. As they may only be isolable in small quantities, they have interesting biological activity and chemical structures. In recent years, natural products, which originate from plants and animals, have been intensively explored and studied for their therapeutic potential. The composition of natural products is rich and complex and consists of compounds belonging to various chemical classes, including low molecular weight volatile and semi-volatile compounds and polar molecules that can modulate the biological action. Each bioactive component can show several biological activities, including antibacterial, bactericidal and cytotoxic activities. The biological activity of natural products depends on their chemical composition and the quantity of each individual compound. In this context it is crucial to carry out a suitable chemical characterization in order to characterize and identify the possibly responsible molecules behind the possible effects.

This Special Issue wishes to gather scientific papers on natural product biological activities and chemical compositions. To this aim, we seek papers dealing with biological assays used to test the potential activities and investigation techniques to characterize the chemical profile of natural products.

Dr. Stefania Garzoli
Guest Editor

Manuscript Submission Information

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Keywords

  • chemical analyses
  • GC-MS
  • HPLC-MS
  • NMR
  • secondary metabolite
  • antibacterial activity
  • anticancer activity
  • antimicrobial activity

Published Papers (2 papers)

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Research

13 pages, 502 KiB  
Article
Macaronesian Plants as Promising Biopesticides against the Crop Pest Ceratitis capitata
by Wilson R. Tavares, Ignacio A. Jiménez, Luísa Oliveira, Maria Kuhtinskaja, Merike Vaher, José S. Rosa, Ana M. L. Seca, Isabel L. Bazzocchi and Maria do Carmo Barreto
Plants 2023, 12(24), 4122; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants12244122 - 10 Dec 2023
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Abstract
Ceratitis capitata is responsible for significant economic losses in the fruit production industry, and the market lacks biopesticides that are effective but also cheaper and less contaminating, with fewer negative impacts on the environment. In this regard, the present study suggests as potential [...] Read more.
Ceratitis capitata is responsible for significant economic losses in the fruit production industry, and the market lacks biopesticides that are effective but also cheaper and less contaminating, with fewer negative impacts on the environment. In this regard, the present study suggests as potential options ethanolic extracts from several Macaronesian plants, which inhibit the oviposition and are toxic to C. capitata, and whose preparation involve a non-toxic solvent (i.e., ethanol), low energy expenditure and cheap apparatus (i.e., maceration at room temperature). Among the evaluated species, the extracts of Hedychium gardnerianum, Cistus symphytifolius and Salvia canariensis are the most active (50 mg/mL), revealing an increase in C. capitata adults’ mortality from 21.15% to 27.41% after 72 h, a value statistically identical to azadirachtin (25.93%) at the recommended concentration (0.88 mg/mL). Considering the quantity and biomass available to prepare a biopesticide in the future, and the level of activity, the ethanolic extract of H. gardnerianum was fractionated and each fraction tested. The water fraction at 50 mg/mL proved to be more effective than the original extract, both in terms of mortality (57.69%), with LT50 = 72.5 h, and oviposition deterrence (83.43%), values statistically higher than those obtained by azadirachtin at 0.88 mg/mL. Analysis of this fraction by HPLC-MS/MS showed that it is mainly composed of glycosylated derivatives of quercetin and myricetin in addition to some triterpenes. These findings highlight some Macaronesian species, and in particular, the more polar fraction of H. gardnerianum ethanolic extract, as promising and ecological alternatives to conventional insecticides, for use in the integrated management of the C. capitata pest. Full article
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24 pages, 4949 KiB  
Article
Salvia officinalis L. and Salvia sclarea Essential Oils: Chemical Composition, Biological Activities and Preservative Effects against Listeria monocytogenes Inoculated into Minced Beef Meat
by Boutheina Ben Akacha, Anis Ben Hsouna, Ivana Generalić Mekinić, Améni Ben Belgacem, Rania Ben Saad, Wissem Mnif, Miroslava Kačániová and Stefania Garzoli
Plants 2023, 12(19), 3385; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants12193385 - 25 Sep 2023
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 1344
Abstract
In this study, Salvia officinalis L. and Salvia sclarea essential oils (EOs) were investigated using gas chromatography-mass spectrometry (GC-MS) to describe their chemical composition. The obtained results show, for both EOs, a profile rich in terpene metabolites, with monoterpenes predominating sesquiterpenes but with [...] Read more.
In this study, Salvia officinalis L. and Salvia sclarea essential oils (EOs) were investigated using gas chromatography-mass spectrometry (GC-MS) to describe their chemical composition. The obtained results show, for both EOs, a profile rich in terpene metabolites, with monoterpenes predominating sesquiterpenes but with significant qualitative and quantitative differences. The main compound found in the Salvia officinalis EO (SOEO) was camphor (19.0%), while in Salvia sclarea EO (SCEO), it was linalyl acetate (59.3%). Subsequently, the in vitro antimicrobial activity of the EOs against eight pathogenic strains was evaluated. The disc diffusion method showed a significant lysis zone against Gram-positive bacteria. The minimum inhibitory concentrations (MICs) ranged from 3.7 mg/mL to 11.2 mg/mL, indicating that each EO has specific antimicrobial activity. Both EOs also showed significant antiradical activity against DPPH radicals and total antioxidant activity. In addition, the preservative effect of SOEO (9.2%) and SCEO (9.2%), alone or in combination, was tested in ground beef, and the inhibitory effect against Listeria monocytogenes inoculated into the raw ground beef during cold storage was evaluated. Although the effect of each individual EO improved the biochemical, microbiological, and sensory parameters of the samples, their combination was more effective and showed complete inhibition of L. monocytogenes after 7 days of storage at 4 °C. The results show that both EOs could be used as safe and natural preservatives in various food and/or pharmaceutical products. Full article
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