Journal Article

<i>In vitro</i> antiplasmodial activity of prenylated chalcone derivatives of hops (<i>Humulus lupulus</i>) and their interaction with haemin

Sonja Frölich, Carola Schubert, Ulrich Bienzle and Kristina Jenett-Siems

in Journal of Antimicrobial Chemotherapy

Published on behalf of British Society for Antimicrobial Chemotherapy

Volume 55, issue 6, pages 883-887
Published in print June 2005 | ISSN: 0305-7453
Published online April 2005 | e-ISSN: 1460-2091 | DOI:
In vitro antiplasmodial activity of prenylated chalcone derivatives of hops (Humulus lupulus) and their interaction with haemin

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  • Medical Oncology
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Objectives: There is an urgent need to discover new antimalarials, due to the spread of chloroquine resistance and the limited number of available drugs. Chalcones are one of the classes of natural products that are known to possess antiplasmodial properties. Therefore, the in vitro antiplasmodial activity of the main hop chalcone xanthohumol and seven derivatives was evaluated. In addition, the influence of the compounds on glutathione (GSH)-dependent haemin degradation was analysed to determine its contribution to the antimalarial effect of chalcones.

Methods: In vitro antiplasmodial activity was evaluated against the chloroquine-sensitive strain poW and the multiresistant clone Dd2 using a [3H]hypoxanthine-incorporation assay. Inhibition of GSH-dependent haemin degradation was analysed by a multiwell plate assay at 11 μM.

Results: Of the eight compounds tested, four possessed activity with IC50 values<25 μM against at least one of the two strains of Plasmodium falciparum. The main hop chalcone, xanthohumol, was most active with IC50 values of 8.2±0.3 (poW) and 24.0 ± 0.8 μM (Dd2). Three of these compounds were additionally active in the haemin-degradation assay.

Conclusions: The results demonstrate for the first time the ability of chalcone derivatives to interfere with the haemin-degradation process of P. falciparum. This effect might contribute to their antiplasmodial activity. Nevertheless, as one compound showed inhibition of P. falciparum without being able to interact with GSH-dependent haemin degradation, other modes of action must add to the observed antiparasitic activity of hop chalcones.

Keywords: Plasmodium falciparum; xanthohumol; chalcones; GSH-dependent haemin degradation

Journal Article.  2411 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Medical Oncology ; Critical Care

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