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      Himatanthus drasticus: a chemical and pharmacological review of this medicinal species, commonly found in the Brazilian Northeastern region

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          Abstract

          ABSTRACT In order to compile the empirical use, as well as the chemical, pharmacological and biological aspects of Himatanthus drasticus (Mart.) Plumel, Apocynaceae, a review was carried out by searching PubMed, Google Scholar, Scientific Electronic Online Library, Web of Science, Science Direct, Scopus and Cochrane. For that, works in English, Spanish and Portuguese, preclinical studies and revisions, addressing chemical, pharmacological, biological properties and popular uses, from 1994 to 2017, were used. The therapeutic potential of the “milk-of-janaguba” (a mixture of the latex with water) became widely known for the treatment of neoplasias, mainly lung and lymphatic cancer types, in the 1970s. The available literature presents works related to the anti-inflammatory, antinociceptive, antitumor and gastroprotective properties of the latex from bark and leaves of H. drasticus. In addition, this review presents some of our own results with the triterpene-rich fraction from H. drasticus, attempting to clarify its action mechanisms at the molecular level. The antinociceptive and anti-inflammatory activities of H. drasticus are probably associated with inhibitions of inflammatory mediators, as TNF-alpha, iNOS, COX-2 and NF-kB. Most importantly, a triterpene-rich fraction also inhibited HDAC activity, and compounds with this activity have been considered as therapeutic agents with antitumor activity. In conclusion, although the literature shows several works on species of the Himatanthus genus, including H. drasticus, dealing with some bioactive compounds as triterpenes, translational studies focusing upon the clinical uses of this medicinal species are still in great need.

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          Most cited references 60

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          Medicinal plants and phytomedicines. Linking plant biochemistry and physiology to human health.

           D Briskin (2000)
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            Biological and pharmacological activities of iridoids: recent developments.

            Iridoids represent a large group of cyclopenta[c]pyran monoterpenoids that occur wide-spread in nature, mainly in dicotyledonous plant families like Apocynaceae, Scrophulariaceae, Diervillaceae, Lamiaceae, Loganiaceae and Rubiaceae. Recently, more extensive studies revealed that iridoids exhibit a wide range of bioactivity, such as neuroprotective, antinflammatory and immunomodulator, hepatoprotective and cardioprotective effects. Anticancer, antioxidant, antimicrobic, hypoglycaemic, hypolipidemic, choleretic, antispasmodic and purgative properties were also reported. The aim of the present review is to discuss the recent developments on biological and pharmacological activities of iridoids, supporting the new therapeutic possibilities for the use of these compounds.
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              Anti-inflammatory effects and possible mechanism of action of lupeol acetate isolated from Himatanthus drasticus (Mart.) Plumel

              Background The species Himatanthus drasticus is popularly known in Northeast Brazil as "janaguba" and belongs to the family Apocynaceae. The latex collected from its stem bark is used for several purposes including anti-inflammatory properties and presents among its bioactive constituents the pentacyclic triterpene lupeol. The objective of the present work was to study in vivo and in vitro the lupeol acetate (LA) isolated from the plant latex, in several models of inflammation. Methods Male Swiss mice (25-30 g, 6-24 animals per group) were administered with LA, 30 min before the test initiation. In the evaluation of analgesic activity the formalin test was used. The anti-inflammatory activity was evaluated by the following tests: paw edema induced by carrageenan and dextran, and the carrageenan-induced neutrophil migration into peritoneal cavities. Furthermore, the effect of LA on the myeloperoxidase release (MPO, an inflammation biomarker) from human neutrophils was also determined, as well as its antioxidant potential by the DPPH assay. Results In the formalin test, LA (10, 25 and 50 mg/kg, i.p.) inhibited both the 1st (neurogenic, 0-5 min) and mainly the 2nd (inflammatory, 20-25 min) phase. Naloxone completely reversed the LA effect, indicating the participation of the opioid system. LA also significantly inhibited carrageenan- and dextran-induced paw edemas, as well as the neutrophil migration to the peritoneal cavity evaluated by the carrageenan-induced pleurisia. In this model, the effect of a very low dose of LA (0.1 mg/kg) was potentiated by the same dose of pentoxifylline (PTX), a known TNF-alpha inhibitor. LA (25 and 50 μg/ml) was also very effective in inhibiting MPO released from stimulated human neutrophils, and significantly decreased the number of cells expressing iNOS activity in the paw of mice submitted to carrageenan-induced edema, suggesting a drug involvement with the NO system. Conclusions The anti-inflammatory effect of LA probably involves the opioid system, as indicated by the complete blockade of the opioid antagonist naloxone. Furthermore, the LA effect was potentiated by PTX (a TNF-alpha inhibitor). LA also decreased the number of iNOS cells, suggesting the participation of pro-inflammatory cytokines and the NO system in the drug action.
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                Author and article information

                Contributors
                Role: ND
                Role: ND
                Role: ND
                Role: ND
                Journal
                rbfar
                Revista Brasileira de Farmacognosia
                Rev. bras. farmacogn.
                Sociedade Brasileira de Farmacognosia (Curitiba, PR, Brazil )
                0102-695X
                1981-528X
                December 2017
                : 27
                : 6
                : 788-793
                Affiliations
                Fortaleza Ceará orgnameUniversidade Federal do Ceará orgdiv1Faculdade de Medicina Brazil
                Crato Ceará orgnameUniversidade Regional do Cariri Brazil
                Juazeiro do Norte CE orgnameFaculdade de Medicina Estácio de Juazeiro do Norte Brazil
                Article
                S0102-695X2017000600788
                10.1016/j.bjp.2017.10.002

                This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.

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                Figures: 0, Tables: 0, Equations: 0, References: 60, Pages: 6
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