Back to Archived Journals » Research and Reports in Medicinal Chemistry » Volume 2

Antimicrobial and antiparasitic abietane diterpenoids from Cupressus sempervirens

Authors Zhang, Rahman, Jain, Jacob, Khan, Tekwani, Ilias M

Received 12 January 2012

Accepted for publication 3 February 2012

Published 12 April 2012 Volume 2012:2 Pages 1—6


Review by Single-blind

Peer reviewer comments 3

Jin Zhang1,2, Aziz A Rahman3, Surendra Jain1, Melissa R Jacob1, Shabana I Khan1,4, Babu L Tekwani1,5, Ilias Muhammad1
1National Center for Natural Products Research, 2Institute of Medicinal Plant Development, Chinese Academy of Medical Sciences, Peking Union Medical College, Beijing, People's Republic of China; 3Department of Pharmacy, University of Rajshahi, Rajshahi, Bangladesh; 4Department of Pharmacognosy, 5Department of Pharmacology, Research Institute of Pharmaceutical Sciences, School of Pharmacy, University of Mississippi, University, MS, USA

Abstract: Cupressus sempervirens L. (Cupressaceae) is a species of cypress native to the eastern Mediterranean region. The ethanol extract of the powdered cones (fruits) of this plant, collected from Oxford, Mississippi during the fall of 2010, exhibited potent antimicrobial and antiparasitic activities. Bioassay-guided fractionation using a centrifugal preparative thin-layer chromatography yielded two potent antileishmanial and antimicrobial diterpenes, 6-deoxytaxodione (11-hydroxy-7, 9(11), 13-abietatrien-12-one) (1) and taxodione (2), together with ferruginol (3) and sugiol (4). Compounds 1 and 2 displayed potent antileishmanial activity with half-maximal inhibitory concentration (IC50) values of 0.077 µg/mL and 0.025 µg/mL, respectively, against Leishmania donovani promastigotes, compared to those of the standard antileishmanial drugs, pentamidine (IC50 1.62 µg/mL) and amphotericin B (IC50 0.11 µg/mL). Compounds 1–3 were also evaluated against L. donovani amastigotes in THP1 macrophage cultures. In addition, both 1 and 2 showed potent antibacterial activities (IC50 0.80 and 0.85 µg/mL) against methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus. Compounds 1 and 2 had previously been isolated from Clerodendrum eriophyllum, where 2 showed potent cytotoxic activity. However, this is the first report of antimicrobial and antileishmanial activities of compound 1.

Keywords: Cupressus sempervirens, abietane diterpene, 6-deoxytaxodione, taxodione, antimicrobial, antiparasitic

Creative Commons License This work is published and licensed by Dove Medical Press Limited. The full terms of this license are available at and incorporate the Creative Commons Attribution - Non Commercial (unported, v3.0) License. By accessing the work you hereby accept the Terms. Non-commercial uses of the work are permitted without any further permission from Dove Medical Press Limited, provided the work is properly attributed. For permission for commercial use of this work, please see paragraphs 4.2 and 5 of our Terms.

Download Article [PDF]