Phytochemical investigation of Arctostaphylos columbiana Piper and Arctostaphylos patula Greene Public Deposited

http://ir.library.oregonstate.edu/concern/graduate_thesis_or_dissertations/n009w533z

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  • There are numerous references in the literature concerning the use of various Arctostaphylos species as medicinal plants. One of the species, A. uva-ursi, was listed in the United States official compendia from 1820 until 1946 as a urinary antiseptic. Many species indigenous to the Pacific Northwest were employed by the Indians for a variety of uses, ranging from consuming the ripe fruits as a food to utilizing the leaves in urinary tract and other infections. Early settlers in the West consequently used the plants for the same purposes. Phytochemical investigations of the genus Arctostaphylos have not been extensive although several members of the family, Ericaceae, yield compounds restricted only to the family. A thorough review of the literature revealed that there has been little phytochemical investigation of species other than Arctostaphylos uva-ursi. Therefore, the purpose of this study was to thoroughly investigate two other Arctostaphylos species, viz., A. Columbiana and A. patula, for organic components. The development of newer methods of extraction, isolation and identification, as well as, a screening of both plants for possible biological activity was also pursued. A new extraction solvent mixture was utilized in order to extract all of the components of interest in one extraction procedure. The residue from the extraction was then separated into two fractions; one containing sterol and triterpenoid compounds; and the other, phenolic components. The sterol and triterpene fraction of A. patula yielded the following isolated compounds; β-amyrin, β-sitosterol, ursolic acid, uvaol, and nonacosane. Only ursolic acid and uvaol were previously shown to exist in the genus. The identical fraction of A. columbiana was screened chromatographically for the same components and all except nonacosane were identified in this manner. Nonacosane was also isolated from A. columbiana. A separation of the components of the phenolic fraction was attempted using several standard methods. However, the method utilized for the identification of these compounds consisted of thin-layer chromatography and ultra-violet analysis. A relatively crude mixture was chromatographed along with a standard, both spots were eluted from the plate, scanned on a spectrophotometer, and co-spotted in three different solvent systems. This procedure proved the presence of the following compounds in both species; arbutin, ellagic acid, gallic acid, hydroquinone, hyperin and quercetin. The presence of o-pyrocatechuic acid, found in other members of the genus and family, could not be confirmed in these species. A screening for antibacterial and antifungal properties was conducted on crude plant extracts as well as the compounds found to be present in both plants. Some extracts of both plants demonstrated more antibacterial and antifungal activity than did any of the pure compounds. Further investigation is warranted in this area. Generally, the results obtained demonstrated the applicability of the new extraction scheme devised for the screening of hitherto uninvestigated plants. Eleven compounds were identified in both species, three of which had not been demonstrated in the genus previously. Another compound, assumed to be widespread in the family, was found to be absent in A. columbiana and A. patula.
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