UBC Faculty Research and Publications

Seven New Tetrahydroanthraquinones from the Root of Prismatomeris connata and Their Cytotoxicity against Lung Tumor Cell Growth Wang, Chunxiang; Ding, Xiao; Feng, Shi-Xiu; Guan, Qiunong; Zhang, Xiao-Ping; Du, Caigan; Di, Ying-Tong; Chen, Tao


The root of Prismatomeris connata has been used in China for centuries as the medicinal herb “Huang Gen” (HG), but its phytochemicals or active ingredients are not well understood. In this study, we performed chemical analysis of the ethyl acetate fraction of a HG ethanol extract. We thus isolated seven new tetrahydroanthraquinones, prisconnatanones C–I (compounds 1–7) from the root of P. connata and identified their structures using spectroscopic analyses. Their absolute configurations were established by both modified Mosher’s and Mo₂OAc₄ methods, and ORD techniques. Their cytotoxicity was tested in a panel of human lung tumor cells (H1229, HTB179, A549 and H520 cell lines). Prisconnatanone I (7) showed the highest activity, with an IC50 value ranging from 2.7 µM to 3.9 µM in the suppression of tumor cell growth, and the others with chelated phenolic hydroxyls exhibited relatively lower activity (IC₅₀: 8–20 µM). In conclusion, these data suggest that some of the natural tetrahydroanthraquinones in HG are bioactive, and hydroxylation at C-1 significantly increases the cytotoxicity of these compounds against lung tumor cell growth.

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