Anti-malarial investigation of Acorus calamus, Dichapetalum gelonioides, and Leucas aspera on Plasmodium falciparum strains
Keywords:Plasmodium, in vitro, anti-malarial resistance, 50% inhibitory concentration (IC50)
Introduction: Malaria is a significant global health concern and adversely affects people in developing countries including Bangladesh. The causative agent Plasmodium falciparum is resistant to several currently available anti-malarial drugs, such as mefloquine, chloroquine, and artemisinin-based combination therapy (ACT), and this has been a major global challenge towards the control of the disease. There is urgent need for novel anti-malarial chemotherapeutic agents.
Methodology: The present study aimed to evaluate antimalarial activity of methanolic extracts of three Bangladeshi medicinal plants- Acorus calamus, Dichapetalum gelonioides and Leucas aspera - against both chloroquine sensitive (3D7) and resistant (Dd2) strains of P. falciparum. Histidine-rich protein 2 (HRP2) based ELISA was used to evaluate the in vitro inhibitory activity of the extracts.
Results: D. gelonioides extract showed moderate (IC50 = 19.15 µg/mL) and promising activity (IC50 = 10.43 µg/mL) against 3D7 and Dd2 strains respectively. A. calamus remained inactive against both 3D7 (IC50 = 72.29 µg/mL) and Dd2 strain (IC50 = 67.81 µg/mL). L. aspera initially remained inactive against 3D7 strain (IC50 = 60.51 µg/mL), but displayed promising activity (IC50 = 7.693) against Dd2 strain.
Conclusions: This is the first time these plant materials have been assessed for their in vitro antimalarial properties. It is pivotal to conduct further phytochemical analysis of D. gelonioides and L. aspera to evaluate the presence of potential novel antimalarial drug compounds.
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