[Antifungal activity of aqueous extracts from the leaf of cowparsnip and comfrey]

Izv Akad Nauk Ser Biol. 2001 Jul-Aug:(4):435-41.
[Article in Russian]


We found that extracts from the leaves of medicinal comfrey and cowparsnip strongly inhibit the germination of Erysiphe graminis conidia and uredospores of Puccinia graminis. Spraying wheat seedlings with these extracts, in contrast to the irrigation of soil, markedly diminished infection in plants with powdery mildew. Antifungal activity in vitro and protective activity (when plants were sprayed) correlated with the level of phenolic compounds in these extracts. Experiments with healthy plants have demonstrated that the photosynthetic apparatus of wheat plants is stimulated by extracts. Spraying seedlings with the extracts resulted in an increased rate of O2 evolution calculated per unit of chlorophyll, an increase in the ratio (FM-FT)/FT in the experiments that recorded slow fluorescence induction, an increase in the relative light intensity of band A, and a decrease of relative intensity of band C in experiments with thermoluminescence of wheat leaves. These results provide evidence that the protective activity of comfrey and cowparsnip extracts is associated with their action on the pathogenic fungus and with the activation of natural defense reactions of the host plant.

Publication types

  • English Abstract

MeSH terms

  • Antifungal Agents / isolation & purification
  • Antifungal Agents / pharmacology*
  • Comfrey / chemistry*
  • Heracleum / chemistry*
  • Light-Harvesting Protein Complexes
  • Photosynthetic Reaction Center Complex Proteins / drug effects
  • Plant Extracts / pharmacology*
  • Triticum / drug effects
  • Triticum / physiology


  • Antifungal Agents
  • Light-Harvesting Protein Complexes
  • Photosynthetic Reaction Center Complex Proteins
  • Plant Extracts