Biological properties and chemical composition of Jatropha neopauciflora Pax
Background: Ethnopharmacological relevance. Jatropha neopauciflora (Pax) is an endemic species of the Tehuacan- Cuicatlan Valley, Mexico. This species has long been used as a remedy to alleviate illnesses of bacterial, fungal and viral origin. Aim of the study. Experimentally test the traditional use of Jatropha neopauciflora in Mexican traditional medicine.
Materials and methods. The methanol extract (MeOH1), of Jatropha neopauciflora (Euphorbiaceae) was obtained by maceration. Next, the methanol (MeOH2) and hexane (H) fractions were obtained. The essential oil was obtained by hydrodistillation. The extract, fractions and essential oil were analyzed by GC-MS. The antimicrobial activity was measured by the disc diffusion agar and radial inhibition growth methods.
Results: The extract and fractions showed antibacterial activity against eleven strains (five Gram-positive and six Gramnegative) and a bacteriostatic effect in the survival curves for Staphylococcus aureus and Vibrio cholerae. The extract and fractions were also shown to have antifungal activity, particularly against Trichophyton mentagrophytes (CF50 = MeOH1: 1.07 mg/mL, MeOH2: 1.32 mg/mL and H: 1.08 mg/mL). The antioxidant activity of MeOH1 (68.6 μg/mL) was higher than for MeOH2 (108.1 μg/mL). The main compounds of the essential oil were β-pinene, 1,3,8-p-menthatriene, ledene, m-menthane, linalyl acetate and 3-carene. The main compounds of MeOH1 were β-sitosterol, lupeol and pyrogallol; the main compounds of MeOH2 were β-sitosterol, spathulenol, coniferyl alcohol and lupeol; and the main compounds of H were β- sitostenone, γ-sitosterol and stigmasterol.
Conclusions: This study indicates that Jatropha neopauciflora is a potential antibacterial and antifungal agent.
Keywords: Euphorbiaceae; Jatropha; Medicinal plants; Antimicrobial activity