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Reggio Calabria, Italy

Menichini G.,University of Perugia | Alfano C.,University of Perugia | Marrelli M.,University of Calabria | Toniolo C.,University of Rome La Sapienza | And 5 more authors.
Cell Proliferation | Year: 2013

Objectives: Our interest continues in discovering phytocomplexes from medicinal plants with phototoxic activity against human melanoma cells; thus the aim of the present study was to assess antioxidant, anti-inflammatory and phototoxic activity of Hypericum perforatum L. subsp. perforatum, and relate these properties to the plant's chemical composition. Materials and methods: Components of H. perforatum subsp. perforatum were extracted by hydroalcoholic solution and chemical profiles of preparations (HyTE-3) performed by HPTLC. Linoleic acid peroxidation and DPPH tests were used to assess antioxidant activity, while MTT assay allowed evaluation of anti-proliferative activity with respect to A375 human melanoma cells after irradiation with UVA dose, 1.8 J/cm2. Inhibition of nitric oxide production of macrophages was also investigated. Results: HyTE-3 indicated better antioxidant activity with β-carotene bleaching test in comparison to DPPH assay (IC50 = 0.89 μg/ml); significant phototoxicity in A375 cells at 78 μg/ml concentration resulted in cell destruction of 50%. HyTE-3 caused significant dose-related inhibition of nitric oxide production in murine monocytic macrophage cell line RAW 264.7 with IC50 value of 342 μg/ml. Conclusions: The H. perforatum subsp. perforatum-derived product was able to suppress proliferation of human malignant melanoma A375 cells; extract together with UVA irradiation enhanced phototoxicity. This biological activity of antioxidant effects was combined with inhibition of nitric oxide production. © 2013 Blackwell Publishing Ltd. Source


Menichini G.,University of Perugia | Alfano C.,University of Perugia | Provenzano E.,Operative Unit of Dermatology | Marrelli M.,University of Calabria | And 3 more authors.
Cell Proliferation | Year: 2012

Objective: To date, plants belonging to the genus Cachrys have not been amply studied. In the present study, aerial components of Cachrys pungens Jan from Italy, were examined to assess their free radical-scavenging and antioxidant activity, and their phototoxicity on A375 melanoma cells. In view of potential pharmaceutical applications, a relationship between antioxidant, phototoxic activities and polyphenolic composition has also been investigated. Materials and methods: Content of sterols, terpenes, fatty acids and coumarins was assessed by gas chromatography-mass spectrometry and GC. Total phenolic content was also determined. Antioxidant activity of the methanol extract and fractions of C. pungens Jan was assessed using DPPH scavenging assay and β-carotene bleaching test. Plant phototoxicity was also investigated in this human tumour cell line (amelanotic melanoma). Results: Analysis of the chloroform extract was particularly interesting, as it led to identification of many coumarins, of which five were linear and one angular furanocoumarins. Methanol and ethyl acetate fractions exhibited substantial antioxidant activity. Moreover, chloroform extract and isolated coumarin fraction had strong phototoxic activity on UVA-induced A375 cells after irradiation at UVA dose of 1.08J/cm. Conclusions: Plant-derived natural compounds are an important source for development of cancer-fighting drugs. This study has demonstrated strong phototoxic activity of the coumarin fraction of C. pungens, a plant which, to our knowledge, has never been studied before. This investigation offers a new perspective for developing other formulations potentially useful in photodynamic therapy for treatment of non-melanoma skin cancers as well as melanomas. © 2011 Blackwell Publishing Ltd. Source


Conforti F.,University of Calabria | Menichini G.,University of Perugia | Zanfini L.,University of Calabria | Tundis R.,University of Calabria | And 5 more authors.
Cell Proliferation | Year: 2012

Objectives: To date, Ficus carica L. cultivar Dottato (F. carica) has not been studied from a phototoxic point of view. In the present work, aerial components of F. carica from Italy, were examined to assess their antioxidant and phototoxic activity on human melanoma cells. A relationship between antioxidant, phototoxic activities and chemical composition has also been investigated. Materials and methods: Coumarin and fatty acid content in F. carica leaves, bark and woody parts were examined and compared by capillary GC and GC/MS. Polyphenolic content was also determined. Linoleic acid peroxidation and DPPH test were used to assess antioxidant activities, and MTT assay was used to evaluate anti-proliferative activity, on C32 human melanoma cells, after irradiation with a UVA dose of 1.08 J/cm 2. Results: Leaves demonstrated the best antioxidant and anti-proliferative activity in comparison to bark and wood. In particular, leaves were shown to possess the highest anti-radical activity and inhibition of peroxidation, with IC 50 values of 64 and 1.48 μg/ml respectively. The leaves had highest anti-proliferative activity with IC 50 value of 3.92 μg/ml. The phytochemical investigation revealed different composition between the coumarins, psoralen and bergapten, fatty acids, polyphenols and flavonoid content among plant parts. Conclusions: Data obtained indicate that this type of fig tree may constitute an excellent source of bioactive compounds, such as phenolics, coumarins and fatty acids. This study offers a new perspective in developing others formulations potentially useful in photodynamic therapy for treatment of non-melanoma skin cancers. © 2012 Blackwell Publishing Ltd. Source


Bonesi M.,University of Calabria | Loizzo M.R.,University of Calabria | Provenzano E.,Operative Unit of Dermatology | Menichini F.,University of Calabria | Tundis R.,University of Calabria
Current Medicinal Chemistry | Year: 2016

Psoriasis is a chronic inflammatory immune-mediated skin disease. It affects most races, does not have any sexual predilections and can manifest at any age of life. Psoriasis is more frequent in certain racial groups and geographical areas. For these reasons, both genetic and environmental factors could be considered. In this review, we discuss promising natural compounds, their molecular targets and mechanisms, which may help the further design of new anti-psoriasis agents. Literature documents the widespread use of herbal remedies worldwide, and the presence of some phytochemicals supports the efficacy of some botanical treatments. The research on natural products has greatly contributed to the progress in the treatment of skin diseases such as psoriasis and many of these compounds are now being used. Understanding the mechanism of these molecules will contribute to the development of more specific preventive strategies for the treatment of psoriasis. © 2016 Bentham Science Publishers. Source


Menichini G.,University of Perugia | Alfano C.,University of Perugia | Provenzano E.,Operative Unit of Dermatology | Marrelli M.,University of Calabria | And 4 more authors.
Anti-Cancer Agents in Medicinal Chemistry | Year: 2012

Melanoma and nonmelanoma skin cancers are among the most prevalent cancers in the human population. In the present work latex of Ficus carica cultivar Dottato from Italy collected from fruits and leaves was examined to assess its free radical-scavenging activity with 1,1-diphenyl-2 picrylhydrazyl (DPPH) and its phototoxicity on A375 human melanoma cells. The latex obtained from the fruits of Ficus carica cv. Dottato showed the best antiradical activity with an IC50 value of 0.05 mg/ml while the latex obtained from the leaves showed the best antiproliferative activity with an IC50 value of 1.5 μg/ml on the human tumor cell line A375 (melanoma) after irradiation at a specific UVA dose (1.08 J/cm2). Control experiments with UVA light or drugs alone were carried out without significant cytotoxic effects. Polyphenolic content of the samples was also evaluated. This is the first study comparing F. carica latex of leaves and fruits. Plant derived natural products have long been and will continue to be an important source for anticancer drug development. © 2012 Bentham Science Publisher. Source

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