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BioMed Research International
Volume 2018 (2018), Article ID 9634349, 5 pages
Research Article

Inhibition of Acetylcholinesterase and Butyrylcholinesterase by a Plant Secondary Metabolite Boldine

1Faculty of Chemical Technology, University of Pardubice, 532 10 Pardubice, Czech Republic
2Faculty of Military Health Sciences, University of Defence, 500 10 Hradec Kralove, Czech Republic

Correspondence should be addressed to Miroslav Pohanka; moc.liamg@aknahop.valsorim

Received 8 December 2017; Revised 13 February 2018; Accepted 27 February 2018; Published 5 April 2018

Academic Editor: Davor Zeljezic

Copyright © 2018 Adam Kostelnik and Miroslav Pohanka. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Acetylcholinesterase (AChE) and butyrylcholinesterase (BChE) are two enzymes sensitive to various chemical compounds having ability to bind to crucial parts of these enzymes. Boldine is a natural alkaloid and it was mentioned in some older works that it can inhibit some kinds of AChE. We reinvestigated this effect on AChE and also on BChE using acetyl (butyryl) thiocholine and Ellman’s reagents as standard substances for spectrophotometric assay. We found out IC50 of AChE equal to 372 μmol/l and a similar level to BChE, 321 μmol/l. We conclude our experiment by a finding that boldine is cholinesterase inhibitor; however we report significantly weaker inhibition than that suggested in literature. Likewise, we tried to investigate the mechanism of inhibition and completed it with in silico study. Potential toxic effect on cholinesterases in real conditions is also discussed.