Antifungal effects of Ellagitannin isolated from leaves of Ocotea odorifera (Lauraceae)

Abstract

Ocotea odorifera is a medicinal plant that is popularly known in Brazil as “canela-sassafrás” and is used to treat dermatosis. This study investigated the antifungal properties of O. odorifera. The methanol extract of O. odorifera was submitted to successive chromatographic separation and yielded Tellimagrandin II (TEL). Candida parapsilosis strain ATCC 22019 was used to determine the minimum inhibitory (MIC) and fungicidal concentrations, and to study the synergistic action with nystatin (NYS), amphotericin (AMP), and fluconazole (FLU). After treatment, the morphology of the yeast was analysed by scanning electron microscopy. Cytotoxicity was assessed in Vero cells, and genotoxicity by the micronucleus test. The TEL structure was proposed based on NMR and comparison with literature data and ESI-MSMS analysis. The compound showed potent inhibitory activity against C. parapsilosis, with a MIC of 1.6 μM. TEL acted synergistically with NYS, AMP, and FLU, and caused morphological alterations in the yeast cells. The methanolic extract showed low cytotoxicity in vitro and in vivo, and was not mutagenic in mice (P < 0.05). The use of O. odorifera in traditional medicine seems to have a valid basis, in view of the antifungal activity of TEL demonstrated in this study, and may contribute to potential drug development.

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Acknowledgments

The authors thank Michael Murgu for his kind help with ESI-MSMS analysis. This study was supported through grants from the Conselho Nacional de Desenvolvimento Científico e Tecnológico (CNPq), Financiadora de Estudos e Projetos (FINEP), and PRONEX/Fundação Araucária.

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Correspondence to Celso Vataru Nakamura.

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Yamaguchi, M.U., Garcia, F.P., Cortez, D.A.G. et al. Antifungal effects of Ellagitannin isolated from leaves of Ocotea odorifera (Lauraceae). Antonie van Leeuwenhoek 99, 507–514 (2011). https://doi.org/10.1007/s10482-010-9516-3

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Keywords

  • Tellimagrandin II
  • Antifungal activity
  • Candida parapsilosis
  • Genotoxicity