Phytochemical and pharmacological study of four aromatic plants growing in northeast of Algeria

M. Sebti, M. Lahouel, A. Zellagui


Abstract: Calamintha baborensis, (Lamiaceae) is used in folk medicine as a stomachic and antidiarrhetic, however, Lavandula stoechas (Lamiaceae) is used as an expectorant, carminative and against flu and asthma. Myrtus communis (Myrtaceae) and Pistacia lentiscus (Anacardiaceae) both are used as stomachic. Comparison of the chemical composition and evaluation of the antioxidant capacity of the plants essential oils, and their acute toxicity were carried out in this study. The essential oils were analyzed by GC-MS and the free radical scavenging activity of essential oils was evaluated using DPPH test. In vivo pharmacological oxidative stress assays were carried out on male albino Swiss mice. The lipid peroxidation was assessed as the generation of thiobarbituric acid-reactive substances (TBARS) followed by glutathione (GSH) measurement. The main constituents of C. baborensis oil were isomenthone (67.44%), pulegone (15.07%) and piperitone oxide (6.53%). In L. stoechas oil, the main constituents were L- fenchone (47.05%), eucalyptol (13.23%), camphor (11%), 3-carene (3.57%) and α-pinene (3.29%). M. communis has as major compounds 1,8-cineole (27.85%), α-pinene (15.42%), D-limonene (12.87%) and benzene,1-methyl-2-(1-methylethyl)- (9.63%) and 1,6-octadien-ol, 3,7 -dimethyl-,acetate, (Z)- (3.26%). P. lentiscus has O-cymene (22.94%), Menthone (12.09%), β-pinene (10.35%), α-pinene (9.41%), α-Farnesene (9.22%), β-myrcene (7.69%), Trans-pinocarveol (6.86%), Limonene (6.34%) and Pulegone (5.29%) as major constituents. The screening of possible in vitro antioxidant activity of essential oils by DPPH free radical-scavenging test showed a reduction in scavenging activity of essential oils of C. baborensis (50.35-88.93%), L. stoechas (55.37-86.77%), M. communis (42.14-54.54%) and P. lentiscus by (53.71-76.03%). Furthermore, essential oils have caused an increase in MDA and reduced glutathione in the liver as well as in the lungs of treated animals compared to controls. The results showed that essential oils of C. baborensis, and L. stoechas, P. lentiscus and M. communis belonging to the chemotypes isomenthone, fenchone, O-cymene and 1,8-cineole, respectively, are powerful antioxidant but could be prooxidant at high doses. 

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