, Volume 111, Issue 1, pp 257-262
Date: 27 Jan 2012

Evaluation of the schistosomicidal activity of the steroidal alkaloids from Solanum lycocarpum fruits

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Solanum lycocarpum (Solanaceae), a Brazilian medicinal plant known as “wolf fruit,” contains about 1.5% of glycoalkaloids in its dried fruits, consisting mainly of solamargine and solasonine. The present work reports the obtainment of the alkaloidic extract of the S. lycocarpum fruit by acid–base extraction and the isolation of the major alkaloid heterosides by chromatographic means, as well as the evaluation of their in vitro schistosomicidal activities. The in vitro schistosomicidal activities of the alkaloidic extract of S. lycocarpum fruits and its isolated steroidal alkaloids were undertaken against adult worms of Schistosoma mansoni. The alkaloidic extract (20, 32, and 50 μg mL−1), solasonine (50 μM), solamargine (32 and 50 μM), and equimolar mixture of glycoalkaloids (20, 32, and 50 μM) lead to the separation of all couple worms and extensive disruption on their teguments, such as sloughing, as well as their deaths within 24 h of incubation. In addition, the alkaloidic extract (10 and 15 μg mL−1), solasonine (50 μM), solamargine (10, 15, and 20 μM), and equimolar mixtures of glycoalkaloids (10 and 15 μM) reduced the development of eggs produced by the adult worms. Solamargine, containing the sugar chain moiety chacotriose, was more active than the solasonine, which contains solatriose sugar chain moiety. A synergistic effect was also observed for a mixture of solamargine and solasonine. Therefore, the alkaloidic extract of S. lycocarpum, and its major components, solamargine and solasonine, showed promising schistosomicidal activity.