Journal of
Pharmacognosy and Phytotherapy

  • Abbreviation: J. Pharmacognosy Phytother.
  • Language: English
  • ISSN: 2141-2502
  • DOI: 10.5897/JPP
  • Start Year: 2009
  • Published Articles: 226

Full Length Research Paper

Chemical composition and immunological activities of polysaccharides isolated from the malian medicinal plant Syzygium guineense

Parakashtha Ghildyal1,2, Tom Erik Grønhaug1, Anders Rusten1, Mona Skogsrud1, Bent Rolstad2, Drissa Diallo3, Terje Einar Michaelsen1,4, Marit Inngjerdingen5* and Berit Smestad Paulsen1
1Department of Pharmaceutical Chemistry, School of Pharmacy, University of Oslo, P. O. Box 1068, Blindern, N-0316 Oslo, Norway. 2Department of Anatomy, Institute of Basic Medical Sciences, University of Oslo, P. O. Box 1105, Blindern, N-0317 Oslo, Norway. 3Département de Médecine Traditionnelle, Institut National de Recherche en Santé Publique, BP 1746, Bamako, Mali. 4The Norwegian Institute of Public Health, P. O. Box 4404, N-0403 Oslo, Norway. 5Institute of Immunology, Oslo University Hospital - Rikshospitalet, P. O. Box 4950, Nydalen, N-0424 Oslo, Norway.
Email: [email protected]

  •  Accepted: 20 August 2010
  •  Published: 31 October 2010


In Mali and other West African countries, the leaves of the tree Syzygium guineenseare utilized in the traditional medicine against various ailments such as wound healing, ulcers, diarrhoea, rheumatism and infections. The immune modulating activity may in part be conferred by pectic polysaccharides, which is a major constituent of the plant cell wall. Previous studies on pectic polysaccharides from the leaves of Malian medicinal trees have shown that they posses several immunological activities. In the present study, we have isolated and characterised two immunologically active polysaccharide fractions from the leaves of S. guineense. One of the fractions contained an arabinogalactan type II polysaccharide, called Sg50A1, while the other polysaccharide fraction was a mixture of oligosaccharides of the pectic type, called Sg50A2. Both polysaccharides had high complement fixing ability, as well as the ability to stimulate nitric oxide release from macrophages, up-regulation of CD86 on dendritic cells, and proliferation of B cells. Sg50A1 and Sg50A2 also stimulated the secretion of pro-inflammatory and anti-inflammatory cytokines from both B cells and dendritic cells. Collectively, these results indicate that the presence of arabinogalactan structures within the polysaccharides is important for immunological activity and that plant-derived polysaccharides may be able to influence inflammatory processes.


Key words: Pectic polysaccharides, arabinogalactan, Syzygium guineense, immunomodulation.