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J Intercult Ethnopharmacol. 2017 Jul 12;6(3):280-283. doi: 10.5455/jice.20170630092831. eCollection 2017 Jul-Sep.

Ultraviolet light assisted extraction of flavonoids and allantoin from aqueous and alcoholic extracts of Symphytum officinale.

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Department of Pharmacology, College of Medicine, Al-Mustansiriya University, Baghdad, Iraq.
Senior Lecturer in Medical Physics, Department of Physiology, College of Medicine, Al-Mustansiriya University.



Symphytum officinale (comfrey) is a medicinal plant commonly used in decoction and to treat ailments. It protects the skin against ultraviolet (UV)-irradiation. UV irradiation may induce variable effects on the constituents of herbal extracts and thereby may limit or improve the advantages of using these extracts as medicinal supplements. This study aimed to assess the effect of UV radiations including UV-A, UV-B, and UV-C on the constituents of S. officinale aqueous and alcoholic extracts.


Comfrey extracts (1% w/v) were prepared using distilled water, ethanol, and methanol. They were exposed to wavelengths of UV-A, UV-B, and UV-C for 10 min. The principal peak on the UV-spectroscopy scanning, the flavonoids, reducing power, and the allantoin levels were determined before and after irradiation.


UV irradiation reduces the magnitude of the principle peak at 355 nm wavelength of the aqueous infusion and methanol extracts. It improves the levels of flavonoids and reducing power of the aqueous extracts and increases the levels of allanotoin in aqueous and methanol extracts.


UV-radiation enhances the yields of active ingredient of comfrey extracted with methanol, whereas improves the flavonoids, reducing power, and allantoin levels of comfrey extracted by the aqueous infusion method. UV-radiation reduces the levels of flavonoids, reducing power and allantoin when the comfrey extracted by alcohols.


Allantoin; comfrey; flavonoids; reducing power; ultraviolet irradiation

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