In Vitro Cytotoxicity of Two Subspecies of Juniperus excelsa on Cancer Cells


1 Department of Pharmaceutical Chemistry, School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences and Isfahan Pharmaceutical Sciences Research Center, Isfahan University of Medical Sciences, Isfahan, Iran

2 Department of Pharmacognosy, School of Pharmacy, Mashhad University of Medical Sciences, Mashhad, Iran

3 Isfahan Pharmaceutical Sciences Research Center, Isfahan University of Medical Sciences, Isfahan, Iran


The cytotoxic effects of crude ethanol extracts of some previously tested Iranian conifers  on tumor cell lines have motivated us to screen different parts of two subspecies in these genus.
Materials and Methods
Terminal branchlets and berries of Juniperus excelsa subsp. excelsa and J. excelsa subsp. polycarpos were collected, dried and extracted with ethanol/H2O (80/20 v/v) via percolation procedure. Extracts were dried, reconstituted in ethanol and cytotoxic effects of different concentrations were determined on cancer cells by ELISA, using MTT assay. MDA-MB-468, Hela and KB cells were used in this study.
The extracts of the branchlets of male and female of J. excelsa subsp. polycarpos as well as berries extract of J. excelsa subsp. excelsa showed inhibitory activities against KB cells. Extracts of female branchlets and berries of J. excelsa subsp. polycarpos were cytotoxic against all 3 cell lines.
In conclusion, obtained extracts from J. excelsa subsp. polycarpos showed cytotoxic effects against most tested cell lines which was comparable to doxorubicin; whereas, berries extracts ofJ. excelsa subsp. excelsa showed inhibitory effects only against KB cells.


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