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Journal of Analytical Methods in Chemistry
Volume 2015, Article ID 948262, 9 pages
Research Article

Phytochemical Analysis and Anti-Inflammatory Activity of the Extracts of the African Medicinal Plant Ximenia caffra

1New Use Agriculture and Natural Plant Products Program, Department of Plant Biology and Pathology, Rutgers University, 59 Dudley Road, New Brunswick, NJ 08901, USA
2Department of Medicinal Chemistry, Ernest Mario School of Pharmacy, Rutgers University, 160 Frelinghuysen Road, Piscataway, NJ 08854, USA
3Department of Pharmaceutics, Ernest Mario School of Pharmacy, Rutgers University, 160 Frelinghuysen Road, Piscataway, NJ 08854, USA
4National Botanical Research Institute, Windhoek, Namibia
5PlantaPhile, 705B Park Avenue, Collingswood, NJ 08108, USA
6Drug Discovery and Development Program, Science, Technology and Innovation Division, Multidisciplinary Research Center University of Namibia, 340 Mandume Ndemufayo Avenue Private Bag Box 13301, Windhoek, Namibia

Received 11 December 2014; Accepted 1 February 2015

Academic Editor: Mengxia Xie

Copyright © 2015 Jing Zhen 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.


A method was developed for identification and quantification of polyphenols in the leaves of Ximenia caffra using HPLC/UV/MS. Based on analyzing the MS and UV data and in comparison to the authentic standards, a total of 10 polyphenols were identified and quantified, including gallic acid, catechin, quercetin, kaempferol, and their derivatives. The total content of these compounds was found to be approximately 19.45 mg/g in the leaf and the most abundant is quercetin-rutinoside (9.08 mg/g). The total phenolic content as measured by Folin-Ciocalteu assay was 261.87 ± 7.11 mg GAE/g and the total antioxidant capacity as measured in vitro was 1.46 ± 0.01 mmol Trolox/g. The antiproliferative effect of the leaf extract was measured by MTS assay with IC50 value of 239.0 ± 44.5 μg/mL. Cell-based assays show that the leaf extract inhibits the mRNA expression of proinflammatory genes (IL-6, iNOS, and TNF-α) by using RT-qPCR, implying its anti-inflammatory effects. It was further demonstrated that the underlying therapeutic mechanism involves the suppression of NF-κB, a shared pathway between cell death and inflammation.