Journal of Wood Science

, Volume 56, Issue 1, pp 77–81 | Cite as

Brazilin from Caesalpinia sappan wood as an antiacne agent



In screening experiments for antiacne activity, methanolic and 50% ethanolic extracts of Caesalpinia sappan wood showed the most potent activity out of 28 species of plants extracts. These extracts showed inhibition of Propionibacterium acnes growth, lipase inhibitory activity, and antioxidant activity. In order to isolate the active compound from C. sappan, separation of the extract components was performed by column chromatography and preparative high-performance liquid chromatography (HPLC). Brazilin, protosappanin A, and sappanone B were isolated from methanolic extracts. Brazilin showed better antibacterial activity [minimum inhibitory concentration (MIC) = minimum bactericidal concentration (MBC) = 0.50 mg/ml] than protosappanin A (MIC = MBC = 1.00 mg/ml) and sappanone B (MIC = MBC > 2.00 mg/ml). The 50% inhibitory concentration (IC50) for lipase inhibition was lowest for brazilin (6 μM), which showed strong inhibition compared with protosappanin A (100 μM) and chloramphenicol (677 μM, positive control). The antioxidant activity of brazilin (IC50 8.8 μM) was not significantly different from protosappanin A (9.1 μM) and (+)-catechin (10.2 μM). The antioxidant activity of brazilin and protosappanin A were higher than sappanone B (IC50 14.5 μM). Brazilin is considered to have suffi ciently potent activity for use as an antiacne agent.

Key words

Caesalpinia sappan Brazilin Protosappanin A Propionibacterium acnes Lipase inhibitor 


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Copyright information

© The Japan Wood Research Society 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  • Irmanida Batubara
    • 1
    • 2
  • Tohru Mitsunaga
    • 2
  • Hideo Ohashi
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of Chemistry, Faculty of Mathematics and Natural SciencesBogor Agricultural UniversityDarmaga-BogorIndonesia
  2. 2.Department of Applied Biological Science, Faculty of Applied Biological SciencesGifu UniversityGifuJapan

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