Anti-inflammatory potential of ellagic acid, gallic acid and punicalagin A&B isolated from Punica granatum

BMC Complement Altern Med. 2017 Jan 14;17(1):47. doi: 10.1186/s12906-017-1555-0.


Background: Punica granatum (pomegranate), an edible fruit originating in the Middle East, has been used as a traditional medicine for treatment of pain and inflammatory conditions such as peptic ulcer. The numerous risks associated with nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) for treatment of pain and inflammation give rise to using medicinal herbs as alternative therapies. This study aimed to evaluate the anti-inflammatory effect of isolated compounds from the ethyl acetate (EtOAc) fraction of P. granatum by determination of their inhibitory effects on lipopolysaccharide (LPS), stimulated nitric oxide (NO), prostaglandin E2 (PGE-2), interleukin-6 (IL-6) and cyclooxxgenase-2 (COX-2) release from RAW264.7 cells.

Methods: The compounds ellagic acid, gallic acid and punicalagin A&B were isolated from EtOAc by high performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) and further identified by mass spectrometry (MS). The inhibitory effect of ellagic acid, gallic acid and punicalagin A&B were evaluated on the production of LPS-induced NO by Griess reagent, PGE-2 and IL-6 by immunoassay kit and prostaglandin E2 competitive ELISA kit, and COX-2 by Western blotting.

Results: Ellagic acid, gallic acid and punicalagin A&B potentially inhibited LPS-induced NO, PGE-2 and IL-6 production.

Conclusion: The results indicate that ellagic acid, gallic acid and punicalagin may be the compounds responsible for the anti-inflammatory potential of P. granatum.

Keywords: Cytokines; Cytotoxicity; Ellagic acid; Gallic acid; Inflammation; Punica granatum; Punicalagin.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Anti-Inflammatory Agents / analysis
  • Anti-Inflammatory Agents / isolation & purification
  • Anti-Inflammatory Agents / pharmacology*
  • Dinoprostone / immunology
  • Ellagic Acid / analysis
  • Ellagic Acid / isolation & purification
  • Ellagic Acid / pharmacology*
  • Fruit / chemistry
  • Gallic Acid / analysis
  • Gallic Acid / isolation & purification
  • Gallic Acid / pharmacology*
  • Hydrolyzable Tannins / analysis
  • Hydrolyzable Tannins / isolation & purification
  • Hydrolyzable Tannins / pharmacology*
  • Interleukin-6 / genetics
  • Interleukin-6 / immunology
  • Lythraceae / chemistry*
  • Macrophages / drug effects
  • Macrophages / immunology
  • Mice
  • Plant Extracts / analysis
  • Plant Extracts / isolation & purification
  • Plant Extracts / pharmacology*
  • RAW 264.7 Cells


  • Anti-Inflammatory Agents
  • Hydrolyzable Tannins
  • Interleukin-6
  • Plant Extracts
  • Ellagic Acid
  • Gallic Acid
  • punicalagin
  • Dinoprostone