Inhibitory effects of sudanese medicinal plant extracts on hepatitis C virus (HCV) protease


Hussein G, Miyashiro H, Nakamura N, Hattori M, Kakiuchi N, Shimotohno K




Phytother Res


One hundred fifty-two methanol and water extracts of different parts of 71 plants commonly used in Sudanese traditional medicine were screened for their inhibitory effects on hepatitis C virus (HCV) protease (PR) using in vitro assay methods. Thirty-four extracts showed significant inhibitory activity (>/=60% inhibition at 100 microg/mL). Of these, eight extracts, methanol extracts of Acacia nilotica, Boswellia carterii, Embelia schimperi, Quercus infectoria, Trachyspermum ammi and water extracts of Piper cubeba, Q. infectoria and Syzygium aromaticum, were the most active (>/=90% inhibition at 100 microg/mL). From the E. schimperi extract, two benzoquinones, embelin (I) and 5-O-methylembelin (II), were isolated and found as potent HCV-PR inhibitors with IC(50) values of 21 and 46 microM, respectively. Inhibitory activities of derivatives of I against HCV-PR as well as their effects on other serine proteases were also investigated.