Biological activities and phytochemical screening of leaf extracts from Zanthoxylum caribaeum L. (Rutaceae)
The Brazilian flora is known for its vast biodiversity; however, many species have been still little studied regarding to their chemical composition and biological potential. Thus, this study aimed to determine the antimicrobial, antioxidant and acaricidal activity of the extracts of leaves of Zanthoxylum caribaeum L. In addition, phytochemical screening of these extracts was carried out to determine the main classes of secondary metabolites present in Z. caribaeum. Using the Z. caribaeum leaves, the aqueous extract and extracts were obtained in organic solvents (ethanol, methanol, hexane, acetone, dichloromethane and ethyl acetate). The antimicrobial activity of extracts was determined by broth microdilution method, and to detect antioxidant activity the method of capturing the free radical 2,2-diphenyl-1-picryl hydrazyl (DPPH) was used. The acaricidal activity of the extracts was tested on Dermanyssus gallinae (De Geer) (Acari: Dermanissidae). Ethanolic and methanolic extracts presented antimicrobial activity for most of the bacterial strains tested, as well as for yeast Candida albicans. The ethanolic extract presented high free radical sequestration potential (71.2%) and antioxidant capacity (the lowest IC50 value - 24.39 μg mL-1). The extracts obtained with methanol and acetone were the most promising. In general, phytochemical screening indicated the presence of steroids, flavanones, flavones, flavonols, saponins, tannins, triterpenoids and xanthones.
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