Characterization of Pyrrolidine Alkaloids of Epipremnum aureum for Their Antitermite Activity Against Subterranean Termites with SEM Studies

  • Anju Meshram
  • Sameer S. Bhagyawant
  • Nidhi SrivastavaEmail author
Research Article


Epipremnum aureum (Linden and Andre) G.S. Bunting (E. aureum) is an ornamental foliage rich in phytoconstituents and serves as a potential source of bioactive compounds possessing beneficial biological activities. The present study was carried out to isolate the pyrrolidine alkaloids of leaves with in vitro antitermite and antirepellant efficacy on paper and soil by direct-choice and no-choice assay. Spectrometric analysis of alkaloid fractions via Ultraviolet–visible spectroscopy (UV–VIS), Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR) and gas chromatography mass spectrometry (GC–MS) helped in the characterization of pyrrolidine alkaloids. Superior antitermite activities were observed, associated with high levels of 5-Oxoproline as compare to Methyl 5-oxo-2-pyrrolidinecarboxylate. Presence of higher contents of 4-Morpholineethanol showed effective antitermite activity and even low levels of 3-Amino-4-Hydroxybutanoic acid and 1H-1,2,4-Triazol-3-amine, N-methyl- also exposed significant activities for repellence and mortality of termites. Repellence and percentage mortality of termites by these alkaloid fractions were similar in results when compared with the standard alkaloid Nicotine and chemical termiticide Monocrotophos. These findings were also supported by SEM studies. Pyrrolidine alkaloids present in E. aureum have exposed strong in vitro antitermite and antirepellant activities against subterranean termites Odontotermes obesus. These findings strongly support the use of E. aureum to bear potential termiticidal properties, however further details need to be carried out.


Epipremnum aureum Pyrrolidine alkaloids Gas chromatography mass spectroscopy Antirepellant Antitermite Scanning electron microscope 



The authors thank the University Authorities for providing necessary lab facilities. They thank Dr. Ajay Kumar, Advanced Instrumentation Research Facility, Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi, India for his kind help in characterization process. They are also grateful to the University Grants Commission for the funding support.

Compliance with Ethical Standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Supplementary material

40011_2017_893_MOESM1_ESM.docx (649 kb)
Supplementary material 1 (DOCX 649 kb)


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Copyright information

© The National Academy of Sciences, India 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  • Anju Meshram
    • 1
  • Sameer S. Bhagyawant
    • 2
  • Nidhi Srivastava
    • 1
    Email author
  1. 1.Department of Bioscience and BiotechnologyBanasthali UniversityBanasthaliIndia
  2. 2.SOS in BiotechnologyJiwaji UniversityGwaliorIndia

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