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Cytotoxicity of luteolin, a flavonoid compound isolated from <i>Anthemis palestina</i>

Yahia Z. Tabaza
Zuh-Kyung Seong
Young-Mi Kim
Walhan Alshaer
Talal A. Aburjai


Purpose: To determine the active principle responsible for the cytotoxic effect of Anthemis palestina (Reut. ex Kotschy) Reut. ex Boiss. (Asteraceae).

Methods: A bioassay-guided fractionation was used to isolate the active principle, luteolin, which structure was elucidated using 1H and   13C NMR. The cytotoxic effects of luteolin and doxorubicin (positive control) in the breast cancer cell lines MDA-MB-231 and MCF-7, and in normal fibroblasts, were determined using 3-(4,5-dimethylthiazol-2-yl)-2,5-diphenyl-2H-tetrazolium bromide (MTT) assay.

Results: Luteolin was isolated from the ethyl acetate extract of the aerial parts of Anthemis palestina. With an IC50 value of 14.91 ± 5.77  µM for MDA-MB-231 cells, luteolin was less active than doxorubicin. However, with respect to MCF-7 cells, there was no significant  difference in the cytotoxicity values of luteolin and doxorubicin, with IC50 value of 29.28 ± 11.85 µM for luteolin. However, with an IC50  value of 51.39 ± 18.51 µM against fibroblasts, luteolin was significantly safer than doxorubicin.

Conclusion: Luteolin might be responsible  for the cytotoxicity of Anthemis palestina. The high level of luteolin cytotoxicity indicates the potential benefits of Anthemis palestina, not  only in terms of its taste, but also for its likely positive therapeutic impact on cancer, especially breast cancer. 

Journal Identifiers

eISSN: 1596-9827
print ISSN: 1596-5996