Advertisment ACS-IndiaSymposium
Journal of Pharmaceutical Negative Results
  Print this page Email this page Small font sizeDefault font sizeIncrease font size 
Search Article 
Advanced search 
 Home | About us | Editorial board | Search | Ahead of print | Current issue | Archives | Submit article | Instructions | Subscribe | Contacts  

  Table of Contents  
Year : 2012  |  Volume : 3  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 46-48  

No evidence of antiprotozoal property of asteracid weeds Sphaeranthus indicus Linn

Department of Zoology, Moolji Jaitha College, Jalgaon, Maharashtra, India

Date of Web Publication11-Aug-2012

Correspondence Address:
Namrata V Nemade
Department of Zoology, Moolji Jaitha College, Jalgaon - 425 002, Maharashtra
Login to access the Email id

Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/0976-9234.99666

Rights and Permissions

Introduction: Sphaeranthus indicus Linn, an asteracid weed, has been studied by various researchers. The flower of S. indicus possesses biological activities like Nematicidal, Larvicidal, Piscicidal and others, for example, agricultural. Objective: The present investigation for the antiprotozoal activitiy of a methanolic extract (MeOHx) and the alkaloidal fraction (SAF) of the flowers of Sphaeranthus indicus Linn. has been undertaken. Materials and Methods: The study was carried out in seven groups of the Paramecium sp. by using the hemocytometer technique. Different concentrations of MeOHx (50 and 100 μg / ml) and SAF (20 and 40 μg / ml) were applied. The percent mortality was calculated and the results were expressed by using the probit analysis. Results: There was no significant activity against the tested protozoa. Conclusion: Thus, the results of the present investigation suggest that MeOHx and SAF are not responsible for the antiprotozoal property of S. indicus.

Keywords: Paramecium sp. , alkaloid, antiprotozoal, Sphaeranthus indicus Linn

How to cite this article:
Nemade NV, Chopda MZ, Mahajan RT. No evidence of antiprotozoal property of asteracid weeds Sphaeranthus indicus Linn. J Pharm Negative Results 2012;3:46-8

How to cite this URL:
Nemade NV, Chopda MZ, Mahajan RT. No evidence of antiprotozoal property of asteracid weeds Sphaeranthus indicus Linn. J Pharm Negative Results [serial online] 2012 [cited 2020 Jul 8];3:46-8. Available from:

   Introduction Top

Many herbal remedies have been employed in various medical systems for the treatment and management of different diseases. The weed herb Sphaeranthus indicus Linn has been used in different systems of traditional medication for the treatment of diseases and ailments of human beings. It possesses anti-inflammatory, analgesic, antipyretic, antimicrobial, wound healing, antioxidant, and antihelminthic activities. Its other applied applications are an anti-feedant, piscicidal, hemolytic, ovicidal, and larvicidal. [1] There are also reports available for the traditional use of this plant. The antiprotozoal activity of this plant is maintained in literature by Naqvi. [2] To prove its validity experimentally, it has been evaluated for antiprotozoal activity in our laboratory against the Paramecium sp. The organism is aquatic in habitat. Metronidazole is an antiprotozoal drug and it has been reported to increase the wound healing activity. [3] In recent times, a lot of attention has been paid to the extract derivatives from plants used in traditional medicines. [4] The antiprotozoal potential of plants, as sources in the development of new antiprotozoal drugs, is proven by examples such as Emetine, Quinine, and Artemisinin, isolated from the species of higher plants. [5] On the other hand, Metronidazole, a first line drug for the treatment of intestinal infections caused by Entamoeba histolytica or Giardia lamblia is reported to have unpleasant side effects like a metallic taste, headache, and dry mouth, and to a lesser extent nausea, glossitis, urticaria, pruritis, and dark colored urine. In addition, carcinogenic, teratogenic, and embryogenic properties have been documented. [6] Thus, the search for new antiprotozoal compounds with high activity, low toxicity, which are cheaper, and more effective, is still a necessary goal. The common asteracid weed, Sphaeranthus indicus Linn, is extensively studied for its various biological activities. [7] To overcome the said problem, the antiprotozoal activity of S. indicus is tested in the present study.

   Materials and Methods Top

The plant material was collected (January 2008 -2010) from North Maharashtra Region, Maharashtra State, India. The flowers were separated and shade dried. After complete drying, the material was pulverized to form a coarse powder. Next, the dried flower powder was exhaustively extracted in the Soxhlet apparatus with methanol. The solvent extract so obtained was then filtered to remove any suspended impurities under vacuum. The extract was separately concentrated under reduced pressure and controlled temperature (55 0 C to 60 0 C). This methanolic extract (MeOHx) of the flower was preserved in a dry, cool condition, in a desiccator. As reported by earlier researchers, it was confirmed for presence of secondary metabolites in the extract by a qualitative chemical tests. [8] It proceed for fractionation to isolate the active ingredient especially alkaloid. This fraction and MeOHx were screened for its antiprotozoal activity.

Antiprotozoal assay

A culture medium of the Paramecium was prepared in a beaker. For this purpose some hay was boiled with 15 - 20 wheat grains in 500 ml Distilled Water for about 10 minutes. After cooling, the beaker was covered with a glass plate for about four-to-five days till it became turbid due to the growth of microorganisms. In another jar, a little water that was rich in living and decayed vegetation, along with a culture rich in Paramecium was collected. The jar was covered with a glass plate and left to rot for one-to-two days. This culture was added to the culture medium. The jar was partially covered with a glass plate leaving enough space for air to pass in. It was kept it in a place having moderate light (temperature 25 0 C). The Paramecium feeds on microorganisms and thus grows rapidly. After there was a sufficient population of Paramecium culture, the antiprotozoal activity was assessed. One milliliter of culture water was pipetted out and put on a Hemocytometer dropwise, and the number of Paramecium was counted under a binocular microscope. An average was taken after counting about 10 times.

The study was undertaken in seven groups. Each Petri plate was filled with water suspension containing 10 Paramecia. After 15 minutes, different concentrations of MeOHx (50 and 100 μg / ml) and SAF (20 and 40 μg / ml) were applied separately. After one hour, the number of motile Paramecium was counted from each plate. The per cent mortality was calculated by using the following formula. [9] The results were expressed by using the probit analysis.

Group 1 - Control - without extracts

Group 2 - 20 μg / ml Metronidazole as a standard

Group 3 - Vehicle - with Tween-80

Groups 4 and 5 - 50 and 100 μg / ml MeOHx, respectively

Groups 6 and 7 - 20 and 40 μg / ml SAF respectively

   Results Top

MeOHx at 50 and 100 μg / ml concentration exhibited 20 and 25% mortality, respectively. At 20 and 40 μg / ml of SAF, the mortality was 15 and 20%, respectively. No mortality was recorded in the control throughout the experimentation [Table 1]. These results conclude that about 50% activity in MeOHx and SAF could be seen against the protozoan Paramecium sp. as compared to Metronidazole (53.33%) [Figure 1].
Figure 1: Effect of MeOHx and SAF of the S. indicus on the mortality percent of Paramecium sp.

Click here to view
Table 1: In vitro antiprotozoal activity of MeOHx and SAF of S. indicus against Paramecium sp.

Click here to view

   Discussion Top

In agreement with the previously published reports, [2] using a bioassay, Naqvi studied the antiprotozoal activity by using 50% ethanolic extract of S. indicus against various protozoans, namely, E. histolytica, T. svansi, T. cruzi, P. berghei, and B. rhodaini. Out of these only E. histolytica was sensitive to the ethanolic extract. [2] In the present study, MeOHx and SAF demonstrated 25% antiprotozoal activity against Paramecium sp. Even the S. indicus MeOHx showed low toxicity toward Gambusia sp.[1] This could indicates that the compound present in MeOHx, which was responsible for the toxicity, might not be responsible for the antiprotozoal activity in the tested organism. However, SAF was devoid of the piscicidal activity [1] as well as antiprotozoal activity. On the basis of the results obtained, the test plant was not potent as far as later activity was concerned. No increase in mortality was observed against Paramecium even after raising the dose four times.

   Conclusion Top

In traditional system of medicine, S. indicus was used to alleviate the number of diseases. Some of them were experimentally proved. The methanolic extract and alkaloidal fraction of the flower of S. indicus was unable to exhibit mortality against Paramecium sp. Hence, it could be concluded that MeOHx and SAF did not contain a potent antiprotozoal principle(s).

   Acknowledgment Top

The authors are thankful to Principal A.G. Rao for providing the necessary facilities to carry out the experiment. Thanks are also to the Head of the Department for providing the laboratory facility to complete the experimental study.

   References Top

1.Nemade NV. Biological activities of asteracid weed Sphaeranthus indicus Linn in different animals. Ph D thesis, North Maharashtra University, Jalgaon, Maharashatra. 2011.  Back to cited text no. 1
2.Naqvi SB. Studies on antibacterial activity of compounds of plants origin and isolation of active components from Sphaeranthus indicus Linn. Ph D thesis, University of Karachi, Karachi, Pakistan. 1997.  Back to cited text no. 2
3.Rao CM, Ghosh A. Does metronidazole reduce lipid peroxidation in burn injuries? Indian J Pharmacol 1997;29:29-32.  Back to cited text no. 3
4.Gardner TB, Hill DR. Treament of giardiasis. Clin Microbiol Rev 2001;14:114-28.  Back to cited text no. 4
5.Upcroft P, Upcroft J. Drugs targets mechanisms of resistance in the anaerobic protozoa. Clin Microbiol Rev 2001;14:150-64.  Back to cited text no. 5
6.Calzada F, Yepez-Mulia L, Aguilar A. In vitro susceptibility of Entamoeba histolyticaI and Giardia lamblia to plants used in Mexican traditional medicine for the treatment of gastrointestinal disorders. J Ethnopharmacol 2006;108:367-70.  Back to cited text no. 6
7.Nemade NV, Chopda MZ, Mahajan RT. Biological activities of Sphaeranthus indicus Linn - A review. J Chem Biosph 2010;1:107-16.  Back to cited text no. 7
8.Harborne JB. Phytochemical methods. London: Chapmann and Hall; 1998. p. 124, 168.  Back to cited text no. 8
9.Chopda MZ. Studies on the wound healing agents of plant origin. Ph D thesis, North Maharashtra University, Jalgaon, Maharashatra, 2009.  Back to cited text no. 9


  [Figure 1]

  [Table 1]

This article has been cited by
1 A novel herbal product based on Piper betle and Sphaeranthus indicus essential oils: Toxicity, repellent activity and impact on detoxifying enzymes GST and CYP450 of Aedes aegypti Liston (Diptera: Culicidae)
Prabhakaran Vasantha-Srinivasan,Muthiah Chellappandian,Sengottayan Senthil-Nathan,Athirstam Ponsankar,Annamalai Thanigaivel,Sengodan Karthi,Edward-Sam Edwin,Selvaraj Selin-Rani,Kandaswamy Kalaivani,Filippo Maggi,Giovanni Benelli
Journal of Asia-Pacific Entomology. 2018;
[Pubmed] | [DOI]
2 Toxicological effects of Sphaeranthus indicus Linn. (Asteraceae) leaf essential oil against human disease vectors, Culex quinquefasciatus Say and Aedes aegypti Linn., and impacts on a beneficial mosquito predator
Muthiah Chellappandian,Annamalai Thanigaivel,Prabhakaran Vasantha-Srinivasan,Edward-Sam Edwin,Athirstam Ponsankar,Selvaraj Selin-Rani,Kandaswamy Kalaivani,Sengottayan Senthil-Nathan,Giovanni Benelli
Environmental Science and Pollution Research. 2017;
[Pubmed] | [DOI]


    Similar in PUBMED
   Search Pubmed for
   Search in Google Scholar for
 Related articles
    Access Statistics
    Email Alert *
    Add to My List *
* Registration required (free)  

  In this article
    Materials and Me...
    Article Figures
    Article Tables

 Article Access Statistics
    PDF Downloaded372    
    Comments [Add]    
    Cited by others 2    

Recommend this journal