Thymus mastichina: Chemical Constituents and their Anti-cancer Activity

Joana Gordo, P. Maximo, Eurico José da Silva Cabrita, Ana Maria Ferreira da Costa Lourenço, Abel Martin Oliva, Joana Almeida, Mariana Filipe, Pedro Cruz, Rita N Barcia, Miguel Santos

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34 Citations (Scopus)


The cytotoxicity-guided study of the dichloromethane and ethanol extracts of Thymus mastichina L. using the HCT colon cancer cell line allowed the identification of nine compounds, sakuranetin (1), sterubin (2), oleanolic acid (3), ursolic acid (4), lutein (5), β-sitosterol (6), rosmarinic acid (7), 6- hydroxyluteolin-7-O-β-glucopyranoside (8), and 6-hydroxyapigenin-7-O-β-glucopyranoside (9). All compounds were tested for their cytotoxicity against the HCT colon cancer cell line. Compound 4 showed cytotoxicity with GI50 value of 6.8 μg/mL. A fraction composed of a mixture (1:1) of triterpenoid acids 3 and 4 displayed improved cytotoxicity with a GI50 of 2.8 g/mL suggesting a synergistic behavior. This is the first report on the chemical constituents of Thymus mastichina L. based on structural assignments by spectroscopic analysis. The presence of these constituents identified by colon cancer cytotoxicity-guided activity indicates that extracts of T. mastichina L. may have a protective effect against colon cancers.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1491-1494
JournalNatural Product Communications
Issue number11
Publication statusPublished - 2012


  • Colon cancer
  • Flavanones
  • Flavone glycosides
  • Thymus mastichina L.
  • Triterpenes


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