Cytotoxic Evaluation of Daphne pontica L. Aerial Part Extracts on Three Cancerous Cell Lines by MTT Assay

  • Behshad Eskandari Department of Pharmacognosy, Faculty of Pharmacy, Tehran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran
  • Maliheh Safavi Department of Biotechnology, Iranian Research Organization for Science and Technology (IROST), Tehran, Iran
  • Seyede Nargess Sadati Lamardi Department of Traditional Pharmacy, School of Persian Medicine, Tehran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran
  • Mahdi Vazirian Department of Pharmacognosy, School of Pharmacy, Tehran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran
Cytotoxic; MTT; Daphne pontica; Cancer cell line


Nowadays, cancer is the second prevalent cause of mortality after cardiovascular diseases in developed and the third one in developing countries. Adverse effects of chemotherapeutic agents bring the necessity of investigating about new medications with fewer side effects. Daphne L. genus is one of the natural sources with valuable reported anticancer effects. This study aimed to assess the cytotoxic effect of some extracts from the aerial parts of Daphne pontica collected from North of Iran on cancer cell lines. Extraction of the plant material was performed by maceration (3×72 h) of 200 g of sample with petroleum ether, chloroform, ethyl acetate, and methanol, respectively. The total extract was also obtained by maceration of the sample with 80% ethanol. Different concentrations of the dried extracts were prepared to assess their cytotoxic effect by 24 h incubation of cell lines with different extracts and then MTT (dimethyl thiazolyl diphenyl tetrazolium) assay on three cancerous cell lines (MDA-MB-231, MCF-7 and T47D), performed in triplicate. IC50 was then estimated from curves constructed by plotting cell survival (%) versus sample concentration (µg/ml). Results indicated that ethyl acetate fraction of D. pontica had the most potent cytotoxic effect in MTT assay with IC50=977.46 µg/ml; while other fractions were weaker in toxicity (IC50>1000 µg/ml). By comparing to potent cytotoxic effects of other Daphne species, it seems that the cytotoxic properties of D. pontica is different from other species of this genus  since according to this study, no significant antineoplastic properties against the three breast cancer cell lines were determined. Further studies on other pharmacological activities of this plant are recommended.


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How to Cite
Eskandari B, Safavi M, Sadati Lamardi SN, Vazirian M. Cytotoxic Evaluation of Daphne pontica L. Aerial Part Extracts on Three Cancerous Cell Lines by MTT Assay. Trad Integr Med. 4(2):58-63.
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