Cytotoxic Activity of Two Cembranoid Diterpenes from Nicotiana Sylvestris Against Three Human Cancer Cell Lines

Amir Reza Jassbi1, *, Marzieh Vafapour2, Ardeshir Shokrollahi2, Omidreza Firuzi1, Mehdi Zare1, Jima N. Chandran3, Bernd Schneider3, Ian T. Baldwin4
1 Medicinal and Natural Products Chemistry Research Center, Shiraz University of Medical Sciences, Shiraz, Iran
2 Department of Phytochemistry, Yasouj university, Yasouj 75914-353, Iran
3 Research group Biosynthesis/NMR, Max Planck Institute for Chemical Ecology, Jena, Germany
4 Department of Molecular Ecology, Max Planck Institute for Chemical Ecology, Hans-Knöll-Strasse 8, D-07745 Jena, Germany

© 2017 Jassbi et al.

open-access license: This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International Public License (CC-BY 4.0), a copy of which is available at: This license permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.

* Address correspondence>to this author at the Medicinal and Natural Products Chemistry Research Center, Shahid Abaeiyan Ave, Zip: 71348-53734, Shiraz, Iran, Tel: +98-071-32303872, Fax: +98-071-32332225; E-mails:,



Two cembranoid diterpenes, [(1S, 2E, 4R, 6R, 7E, 11E)-2, 7, 11-cembratriene-4, 6-diol] (1) and its epimer [(1S, 2E, 4S, 6R,7E,11E)-2, 7, 11-cembratriene-4, 6-diol] (2) were isolated from surface dichloromethane washings and chloroform extract of Nicotiana sylvestris leaves.


The compounds were purified using silica gel column- thin layer- and flash column chromatography methods. The structures of the isolated compounds were elucidated using spectroscopic analysis and their 1H and 13C NMR spectroscopic data were compared with those of authentic samples reported in the literature. The cytotoxic activity of 1 and 2 against three human cancer cell lines, including LS180 (human colon adenocarcinoma), MCF-7 (human breast adenocarcinoma) and MOLT-4 (human lymphoblastic leukemia) were evaluated using 3-(4,5-dimethylthiazol-2-yl)-2,5-diphenyltetrazolium bromide (MTT) colorimetric bioassay.


The IC50 values of compounds 1 and 2 were calculated to be between (28.4±3.7 up to 44.0±6.4 µM) (mean±S.E.M.) for the above mentioned cell lines.

Keywords: Nicotiana sylvestris, Solanaceae, Cembranoid diterpenoids, Anticancer agents, Acyclic diterpenoids, Sesquiterpenoids.