Phytochemical characterization and anti-inflammatory properties of Acacia mearnsii leaves

Jia Xiong, Mary H. Grace, Debora Esposito, Fei Wang, Mary Ann Lila

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This study was performed to investigate potential bioactive secondary metabolites from the leaves of Acacia mearnsii, a forest waste product in China. The polyphenol constituents and bioactivity of crude extract (L) and semi purified fractions (L1-L4) were examined. The L and L1-L4 showed qualitative and quantitative differences in their phenolic content, antioxidant activities and the activities against inflammation-related genes such as the inducible forms of COX-2, iNOS, and the pro-inflammatory IL in lipopolysaccharide (LPS)-stimulated mouse macrophage cell line RAW 264.7. All the fractions depressed reactive oxygen species (ROS) in LPS-stimulated RAW 264.7 macrophage cells, and (except L2) inhibited the release of nitric oxide (NO). Fractions L3 and L4 significantly inhibited the mRNA expression levels of the anti-inflammatory cytokine IL-1β, COX-2, iNOS, and IL-6. In addition, L4 (1.8 g obtained from 5 g crude leaves extract) which contained 646.6 mg/g gallic acid equivalent total phenolic content and consisted of primarily proanthocyanidins (12.6 mg/g as procyanidin B2 equivalent by the DMAC assay) showed the best activity in all the assays. Results indicate that A. mearnsii leaves, a forest waste product, could be a valuable natural source of anti-inflammatory and functional components related to human health.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)649-653
Number of pages5
JournalNatural Product Communications
Issue number5
StatePublished - May 2016
Externally publishedYes


  • Acacia mearnsii
  • Anti-inflammatory
  • Bioactive components
  • Polyphenols

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pharmacology
  • Plant Science
  • Drug Discovery
  • Complementary and alternative medicine


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