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Open access

Mohsen Safaei, Mojtaba Taran, Razieh Rezaei, Kamran Mansouri, Hamid Reza Mozaffari, Mohammad Moslem Imani and Roohollah Sharifi

Abstract

Given the increase in global mortality rate due to various types of cancer, the present study aimed to develop optimal conditions for the synthesis of cellulose-magnesium oxide nanocomposite with favorable anticancer activity. For this purpose, the Taguchi method was used to design nine experiments with varied ratios of cellulose biopolymer, magnesium oxide nanoparticles and different stirring times. The scanning electron microscopy (SEM) images confirmed the formation of cellulose-magnesium oxide nanocomposite. The anticancer activity level of nine nanocomposites studied was evaluated using MTT assay on Michigan Cancer Foundation-7 (MCF-7) cell line. The nanocomposite synthesized in experiment 9 (8 mg/ml of magnesium oxide, 2 mg/ml of cellulose and stirring time of 60 min) showed the highest growth inhibitory activity on the cancer cells. Based on the attained results,e cellulose-magnesium oxide nanocomposite synthesized in optimal conditions can be used as an eligible anticancer agent.

Open access

Małgorzata Kikowska, Agata Włodarczyk, Anna Stochmal, Jerzy Żuchowski and Barbara Thiem

Summary

Introduction: Callus and cell suspension cultures are widely applied in investigation of production of high-value secondary metabolites, which may be used as cosmeceuticals, nutraceuticals and pharmaceuticals. Plant cell cultures are promising alternative to intact plant sources for the production of plant-derived drugs of industrial importance.

Objective: The aim of the study was to (i) initiate the cell suspension culture of Chaenomeles japonica from homogenous and uniform callus, (ii) stabilize the selected line and (iii) verify its ability to produce the desired groups of secondary metabolites – pentacyclic triterpenoids and polyphenols.

Methods: To establish a cell suspension culture, stabilized and homogeneous callus was selected. Cell cultures were systematically passaged every 2 weeks to fresh liquid medium with the same composition. Biomass from cultures at the growth phase and stationary phase was designated for phytochemical research. UHPLC-DAD-MS analyzes were performed. At the same time, their macroscopic and microscopic observations were carried out.

Results: Cells of suspension culture line A2 were characterized by the intense divisions. Cell culture extracts (both from the growth phase and stationary phase) contained pentacyclic triterpenoids. In addition, phe-nolic compounds (chlorogenic acid and proanthocyanidins type B) and in a small amount also epicatechin are present in the extract of the cells harvested from the growth phase. In the present studies, three pentacyclic triterpenoids were detected and quantified in the extracts of cell suspensions and callus line A2. Ursolic and oleanolic acids were the main triterpenoids in the studied extracts. The cell suspension culture from the growth phase exhibited the highest content of ursolic, oleanolic, and betulinic acid (separately and together).

Conclusion: The cell suspension culture of Chaenomeles japonica is a promising source of pentacyclic triterpenoids.

Open access

Md. Rajdoula Rafe, Syeda Naureen Ahmed and Zebunnesa Ahmed

Abstract

Chikungunya virus is an Alphavirus that possesses characteristics similar to that of an arthropod-borne virus. Chikungunya virus has been one of the major concerns for the last few decades due to its nature of explosive spreading throughout the world. This article is intended to give detailed information about Chikungunya virus, and includes its pathogenesis, origins, diagnosis, treatment and prevention. Although, recent researches suggests various approaches to treating Chikungunya virus, extensive literature search on Chikungunya virus has revealed that, currently, there is no effective treatment available and the virus is greatly dependent on its vectors. Patients affected by Chikungunya virus mainly show symptoms of fever, arthralgia, joint pain and skin rash. Since there is no effective treatment available, public awareness is the most significant factor for potential prevention against Chikungunya virus.

Open access

Krzysztof Przygoński and Elżbieta Wojtowicz

Summary

Introduction: Powder extracts from white mulberry leaves (Morus alba L.) are desirable due to their simplicity of use. Powders intended for use in food and dietary supplements can be obtained by various methods, including water extraction and spray drying.

Objective: The aim of the work was to optimize the aqueous process of extraction of white mulberry leaves and characterization of bioactive properties of the obtained extract powder.

Methods: The DNJ and flavonoids (quercetin, kaempferol) contents and were analysed by high performance liquid chromatography (HPLC). Total phenolic contents were determined using the Folin-Ciocalteu phenol reagent and antioxidant activity by ABTS and DPPH assays.

Results: The mulberry leaf extraction process has been optimized. The obtained powdered mulberry leaf extract proved to be a good source of bioactive compounds. Characteristic phenolic compounds detected in mulberry leaves and their powder extract were quercetin and kaempferol. The sum of polyphenols was 10.9 mg GAE/g dry matter in the raw material, whereas in the powder extract 42.6 mg GAE/g dry matter. In addition, it was found that the obtained powdered extract is characterized by a five-fold higher, in comparison to the raw material, the content of antioxidant activity measured by ABTS and DPPH tests. The content of 1-deoxynojirimycin (DNJ) in the powder extract was nearly four times higher than in dry mulberry leaves.

Conclusion: The optimized process of water extraction of white mulberry leaves allows to keep valuable bioactive components and to obtain their high concentration.

Open access

Elżbieta Nowak, Zbigniew Marczyński, Beata Skibska, Michał Jakub Nachajski, Jerzy Jambor and Marian Mikołaj Zgoda

Summary

Introduction: Common ivy (Hedera helix) is a plant used successfully in the treatment of various ailments. This is possible owing to the unique set of substances contained in it such as large amount of saponins, flavonoids, phenolic acids and phytosterols as well as polyacetylenes and coumarins. All these substances have been used in the production of cosmetic and medicinal preparations. Clinical trials on the efficacy and safety of dry ivy leaf extract have shown its high efficacy, comparable to synthetic medications, and better tolerance of herbal drugs.

Objective: Investigations were performed on model ivy leaf (Hedera helix) extracts which were created using a medium of diversified polarity ( εM). Measurements of viscosity and surface activity on phase boundary were performed. During preformulation studies attention was drawn to the possibility of micellar solubilization of cholesterol and selected structures of nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) – ketoprofen.

Methods: Viscosity measurements of Extractum Hederae helicis e folium aqueous solutions and in 0.1 mol HCl were performed according to the Polish Standard with Ubbelohde dilution viscometer. The surface tension of aqueous solutions -Δγsol25 of Hederae helicis e folium extracts was determined according to the Polish Standard with stalagmometric method. Critical micellar concentration (cmc) was calculated. This enabled to evaluate the dependence ΔGm0=2.303 RT×log cmc of the thermodynamic potential of micelle formation (ΔGm0 ). Results: It has been confirmed in the conducted comparative studies that aqueous solutions of Extr. Hederae helicis e folium created with maltodextrin as well as with SiO2 – maltodextrin result in micellar solubilization. The increase of granulometric size of cholesterol particle to Ø 1.60 mm decreased the amount of solubilized cholesterol but solubility preferences of the extracts were maintained.

Conclusions: Model extracts produced from Hederae helicis e folium with diversified polarity of the extraction medium (water – ethanol) are characterized by appropriate solubility of the components which results not only from the presence of chlorophyll and its derivatives in the extract but also from the technique used for spray drying of the extract.

Open access

Elina G. Manzhalii, Valentyna O. Moyseyenko, Tetyana M. Falalyeyeva, Olena I. Tsyryuk, Vitaliy E. Kondratiuk and Taras D. Nykula

Abstract

This paper presents the results of a study of patients with nonalcoholic steatohepatitis, alcoholic steatohepatitis, and drug-induced liver injury with concomitant colitis and the development of biliary insufficiency that manifests as a significant decrease in the volume of bile acids and bile. In patients with liver injury and concomitant colitis, changes in intestinal microflora were marked. After a combination therapy of this pathology with phosphatidylcholine and glycyrrhizic acid, an improvement of biochemical, clinical indicators was observed, as well as a decrease in fatty degeneration and reduction of elastographic indicators of liver fibrosis. The introduction of the drug formulations phosphatidylcholine and glycyrrhizic acid in the complex of conservative treatment of liver injury with concomitant colitis helps to prevent hepatic and intestinal complications and to increase the treatment efficacy of these diseases.

Open access

Marcin Ożarowski, Radosław Kujawski, Przemysław Ł. Mikołajczak, Karolina Wielgus, Andrzej Klejewski, Hubert Wolski and Agnieszka Seremak-Mrozikiewicz

Summary

Flavonoids and their conjugates are the most important group of natural chemical compounds in drug discovery and development. The search for pharmacological activity and new mechanisms of activity of these chemical compounds, which may inhibit mediators of inflammation and influence the structure and function of endothelial cells, can be an interesting pharmacological strategy for the prevention and adjunctive treatments of hypertension, especially induced by pregnancy. Because cardiovascular diseases have multi-factorial pathogenesis these natural chemical compounds with wide spectrum of biological activities are the most interesting source of new drugs. Extracts from one of the most popular plant used in Traditional Chinese Medicine, Scutellaria baicalensis Georgi could be a very interesting source of flavonoids because of its exact content in quercetin, apigenin, chrysin and scutellarin as well as in baicalin. These flavonoids exert vasoprotective properties and many activities such as: anti-oxidative via several pathways, anti-in-flammatory, anti-ischaemic, cardioprotective and anti-hypertensive. However, there is lack of summaries of results of studies in context of potential and future application of flavonoids with determined composition and activity. Our review aims to provide a literature survey of in vitro, in vivo and ex vivo pharmacological studies of selected flavonoids (apigenin, chrysin and scutellarin, baicalin) in various models of hypertension carried out in 2008–2018.

Open access

Marta Bukowska, Anna Bogacz, Marlena Wolek, Przemysław Ł. Mikołajczak, Piotr Olbromski, Adam Kamiński and Bogusław Czerny

Summary

Introduction: Blood brain barrier and multidrug resistance phenomenon are subjects of many investigations. Mainly, because of their functions in protecting the central nervous system (CNS) by blocking the delivery of toxic substances to the brain. This special function has some disadvantages, like drug delivery to the brain in neurodegenerative diseases

Objective: The aim of this study was to examine how natural and synthetic substances affect the expression levels of genes (Mdr1a, Mdr1b, Mrp1, Mrp2, Oatp1a4, Oatp1a5 and Oatp1c1) that encode transporters in the blood-brain barrier.

Methods: cDNA was synthesized from total RNA isolated from rat hippocampus. The expression level of genes was determined using real-time PCR (RT-PCR) method.

Results: Our findings showed that verapamil, as a synthetic substance, caused the greatest reduction of mRNA level of genes studied. The standardized extract of Curcuma longa reduced the expression level for Mrp1 and Mrp2, whereas the increase of mRNA level was observed for Mdr1b, Oatp1a5 and Oatp1c1.

Conclusions: These results suggests that herbal extracts may play an important role in overcoming the blood brain barrier during pharmacotherapy.

Open access

Pawel Borzecki, Agnieszka Borzecka, Patrycja Chylinska-Wrzos, Marta Lis-Sochocka, Ewelina Wawryk-Gawda and Barbara Jodlowska-Jedrych

Abstract

Patulin is a mycotoxin produced by many species of the fungi. The toxic action of patulin mainly affects the gastrointestinal tract and the immune system. The aim of our work was to assess the toxic effect of patulin, based on the analysis of interleukin IL-6 concentrations in the liver of test animals loaded with different doses of this mycotoxin. The research was conducted on mice which were assigned to 6 groups receiving different doses of active substances. After decapitation, their livers were taken for laboratory testing.

Our studies have shown that chronic intoxication with patulin at 0.1 LD50 leads to a statistically significant increase in IL-6 concentration in the liver of the animals. We also found that the loading of experimental animals with a single dose of patulin in the amount of 0.5 LD50 and 0.2 LD50 also leads to a statistically significant increase in this interleukin in the examined organ. There was no difference in its concentration compared to the control group only after the single dose of the lowest concentration of patulin, while the highest average IL-6 concentration was recorded in the liver of animals loaded with the highest single dose of patulin. After applying, one-time doses of this mycotoxin in the amount of 0.2 LD50 and 0.1 LD50, the mean concentrations of IL-6 in the liver in animals from these groups were statistically significantly lower.

In conclusion, the analysis of the obtained results confirms the fact of the hepatotoxic effect of patulin.