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International Conference on Natural Products and Physiologically Active Substances (ICNPAS-2004) September 12-17, 2004, Novosibirsk, Russia Oral Communication

Constituents of a Thai medicinal plant: Clinacanthus nutans Lindau

Walter C. Taylora and Pittaya Tuntiwachwuttikulb


School of Chemistry, University of Sydney, NSW 2006, Australia Department of Chemistry, Silpakorn University, Nakorn Pathom 73000, Thailand E-mails: [email protected] [email protected]


This paper will report some results of an ongoing collaborative programme with Thai scientists to study the chemistry and pharmacology of Thai medicinal plants. As an example, some results obtained in a study of Clinacanthus nutans Lindau will be presented. C. nutans (Acanthaceae) is a small shrub occurring throughout SE Asia. In Thailand an alcoholic extract of fresh leaves is used externally for treatment of skin rash, especially genital lesions caused by herpes simplex (HSV) and varicella-zoster (VZV) viruses. In support, leaf extracts have shown significant inhibitory activity in in vitro virucidal models and several clinical trials have reported the successful use of a cream containing C. nutans extract for the treatment of genital herpes in patients. Bioassay-guided fractionation of an ethanolic extract of C. nutans leaves has led to the isolation of a mixture of cerebrosides (1), and a monolinolenylgalactosylglycerol (2). The isolation and structure elucidation of 1 and 2 by spectroscopic and chemical methods will be reported and the significance of the results will be discussed.

O CH2OH HN O O OH HO OH 1 n = 13, 15, 17-23 (CH2)nCH3 HO OH OH (CH2)7CH3 CH2OH O O HO CH2 OH H OH OH CH2OR 2 R = linolenyl


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Bioactive constituents from the leaves of Clinacanthus nutans Lindau