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Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine
Volume 2014, Article ID 136203, 11 pages
Research Article

Antioxidant Capacity and Proanthocyanidin Composition of the Bark of Metasequoia glyptostroboides

Institute of Materia Medica, Zhejiang Academy of Medical Sciences, Tianmushan Road 182, Hangzhou, Zhejiang 310013, China

Received 29 October 2013; Accepted 15 February 2014; Published 17 March 2014

Academic Editor: Wen Chuan Lin

Copyright © 2014 Fengyang Chen et al. 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.


Metasequoia glyptostroboides Hu et Cheng is the only living species in the genus Metasequoia Miki ex Hu et Cheng (Taxodiaceae), which is well known as a “living fossil” species. In the Chinese folk medicine, the leaves and bark of M. glyptostroboides are used as antimicrobic, analgesic, and anti-inflammatory drug for dermatic diseases. This study is the first to report the free radical scavenging capacity, antioxidant activity, and proanthocyanidin composition of the bark of M. glyptostroboides. We observed total of six extracts and fractions, which were easily obtained by water-ethanol extraction and followed by a further separation with D101 resin column chromatography, had significant DPPH radical, superoxide anion radical, and hydroxyl radical scavenging capacity, total antioxidative capacity (T-AOC), lipid peroxidation inhibitory activity, and metal ions chelating capacity. The fraction MGEB, which was obtained by 60% ethanol extraction and followed by a further separation with D101 resin column chromatograph, possessed the highest proanthocyanidin content and the highest free radical scavenging and antioxidant activities. Furthermore, MGEB could significantly protect against CCl4 induced acute liver injury through inhibition of oxidative stress in mice. In addition, ten proanthocyanidins were isolated from MGEB, and six of them were firstly reported from this plant.