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Phytochemistry. 2013 Jun;90:95-105. doi: 10.1016/j.phytochem.2013.02.003. Epub 2013 Mar 13.

Cytotoxic triterpenoid saponins from husks of Aesculus californica (Spach) Nutt.

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National Center for Pharmaceutical Crops, Arthur Temple College of Forestry and Agriculture, Stephen F. Austin State University, Nacogdoches, TX 75962-6109, USA.


Fifteen polyhydroxyoleanene saponins, aesculiosides C1-C15 (1-15), were isolated from husks of Aesculus californica. Their structures were established by extensive spectroscopic and chemical analyses. The triterpenoid saponins from A. californica have greater structural diversity than those from any other investigated species thus far in the genus Aesculus. The chemotaxonomic characteristic of aesculiosides C1-C15 is that the unit attached to the C-3 of the aglycone is a glucopyranosyl moiety, instead of a glucuronopyranosyl group in the saponins that have been isolated from other Aesculus species. The saponins isolated from A. californica then provide important evolutionary and chemotaxonomic knowledge of the Aesculus genus, a well-known intercontinental disjunct genus in the Northern hemisphere. Aesculiosides C1-C15 (1-15) showed cytotoxicity to human non-small cell lung tumor (A549) with GI50 ranged from 3.76 to >25μM.

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