Patchouli alcohol: in vitro direct anti-influenza virus sesquiterpene in Pogostemon cablin Benth.
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During the screening of anti-influenza virus substances from traditional herbal medicines, the methanol extract from the leaves of Pogostemon cablin Benth. showed potent in vitro antiviral activity (99.8% inhibition at a concentration of 10 μg/mL) against influenza virus A/PR/8/34 (H1N1). The anti-influenza virus principle was isolated from the hexane-soluble fraction, through solvent fractionation, repeated silica gel column chromatography, and reversed-phase HPLC. The major active principle was a volatile substance that was identified as a sesquiterpene, patchouli alcohol (1), on the basis of its spectral analyses. When anti-influenza virus activity against A/PR/8/34 was evaluated by the plaque forming assay, patchouli alcohol reduced the number of plaques by 75% at 2 μg/mL and 89% at 10 μg/mL. Patchouli alcohol showed dose-dependent anti-influenza virus activity, and its IC50 value was estimated to be 2.635 μM. Although 11 different sesquiterpenes were tested for antiviral activity against influenza virus A/PR/8/34, no or negligible activity was observed except for patchouli alcohol. Patchouli alcohol did not show anti-influenza virus activity against A/Guizhou/54/89 (H3N2), but showed weak activity against B/Ibaraki/2/85 (IC50 = 40.82 μM). Patchouli alcohol did not show inhibitory activity against influenza virus neuraminidase.
KeywordsPogostemon cablin Benth. Lamiaceae (Labiatae) Patchouli alcohol Influenza virus
The authors thank the Takasago International Corporation (Tokyo, Japan) for kind gifts of standard sesquiterpenes. A part of the present work was supported by The 21st Century COE Program, Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology of Japan.
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