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Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine
Volume 2017, Article ID 9438607, 7 pages
Research Article

Biological and Phytochemical Investigations on Caesalpinia benthamiana, a Plant Traditionally Used as Antimalarial in Guinea

1Research and Valorization Center on Medicinal Plants, Dubreka, Guinea
2Department of Pharmacy, University Gamal Abdel Nasser of Conakry, Conakry, Guinea
3Laboratory of Microbiology, Parasitology and Hygiene (LMPH), Faculty of Pharmaceutical, Biomedical and Veterinary Sciences, University of Antwerp, Universiteitsplein 1, 2610 Antwerp, Belgium
4Natural Products & Food Research and Analysis (NatuRA), Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences, University of Antwerp, Universiteitsplein 1, 2610 Antwerp, Belgium

Correspondence should be addressed to Aliou Mamadou Balde; rf.oohay@2002uoilamb

Received 21 February 2017; Revised 7 June 2017; Accepted 25 July 2017; Published 10 September 2017

Academic Editor: Pierre Champy

Copyright © 2017 Jean Loua 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.


Caesalpinia benthamiana is widely used as antimalarial in Guinean traditional medicine. Leaf extracts of the plant were tested for their in vitro antiprotozoal activity against Trypanosoma brucei brucei and T. cruzi and the chloroquine-sensitive Ghana strain of Plasmodium falciparum along with their cytotoxicity on MRC-5 cells. The methanolic extract showed the strongest antiprotozoal activity against P. falciparum (IC50 4 μg/ml), a good activity against T. brucei (IC50 13 μg/ml), and a moderate activity against T. cruzi (IC50 31 μg/ml) along with an IC50 on human MRC-5 cells of 32 μg/ml. Bioassay-guided fractionation from the methanolic extract led to antiplasmodially active subfractions. A prospective, placebo-controlled ethnotherapeutic trial assessed the antimalarial effectiveness and tolerability of C. benthamiana syrup administered orally to children with uncomplicated malaria as compared with chloroquine syrup. Phytochemical screening of the leaf extracts indicated the presence of flavonoids, terpenoids, tannins, saponins, and iridoids.