The isolation of antiprotozoal compounds from Libyan propolis

Weam Siheri, John O. Igoli, Alexander I. Gray, Ticiano G. Nasciemento, Tong Zhang, James Fearnley, Carol J. Clements, Katharine C. Carter, John Carruthers, RuAngelie Edrada-Ebel, David G. Watson

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Propolis is increasingly being explored as a source of biologically active compounds. Until now, there has been no study of Libyan propolis. Two samples were collected in North East Libya and tested for their activity against Trypanosoma brucei. Extracts from both samples had quite high activity. One of the samples was fractionated and yielded a number of active fractions. Three of the active fractions contained single compounds, which were found to be 13-epitorulosal, acetyl-13-epi-cupressic acid and 13-epi-cupressic acid, which have been described before in Mediterranean propolis. Two of the compounds had a minimum inhibitory concentration value of 1.56 µg/mL against T. brucei. The active fractions were also tested against macrophages infected with Leishmania donovani, and again moderate to strong activity was observed with the compounds having IC50 values in the range 5.1-21.9 µg/mL.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1756–1760
Number of pages5
JournalPhytotherapy Research
Issue number12
Early online date9 Jul 2014
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2014


  • Libyan propolis
  • labdane diterpenes
  • Leishmania donovani

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