Protective effects of Phyllanthus phillyreifolius extracts against hydrogen peroxide induced oxidative stress in HEK293 cells

PLoS One. 2018 Nov 16;13(11):e0207672. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0207672. eCollection 2018.


Phyllanthus phillyreifolius, a plant species indigenous to Reunion Island, is used in folk medicine for treating diarrhea and as a diuretic. In the present study acetone and hydroethanol extracts of P. phillyreifolius were evaluated for their cytotoxicity and antioxidant effects using in vitro (TPC, ABTS, DPPH, FRAP, ORAC) and in cellulo (MTT, DCFH-DA, RT-qPCR) assays. Major compounds were evaluated using UPLC-QTOF-MS. MTT cell viability assay showed low cytotoxicity of extracts towards human embryonic kidney 293 (HEK293) cell line. Both extracts were rich in polyphenols (mainly ellagitannins) and showed high antioxidant potential and intracellular ROS decreasing effect. Preconditioning of HEK293 cells with extracts influenced gene expression of antioxidant enzymes, however ROS level decreasing effect was more related to their capacity to scavenge free radicals and with their reducing power. Strong antioxidant activity of extracts as well as the presence of geraniin supports the use of P. phillyreifolius in traditional medicine.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Cell Survival
  • Gene Expression Regulation / drug effects
  • Glucosides / pharmacology
  • HEK293 Cells
  • Humans
  • Hydrogen Peroxide / adverse effects*
  • Hydrolyzable Tannins / pharmacology
  • Medicine, Traditional
  • Oxidative Stress / drug effects*
  • Phyllanthus / chemistry*
  • Plant Components, Aerial / chemistry
  • Plant Extracts / chemistry
  • Plant Extracts / pharmacology*
  • Reactive Oxygen Species / metabolism


  • Glucosides
  • Hydrolyzable Tannins
  • Plant Extracts
  • Reactive Oxygen Species
  • Geraniin
  • Hydrogen Peroxide

Grant support

This study was supported by the grant from Campus France, dossier n°841528E to DG. The funders had no role in study design, data collection and analysis, decision to publish, or preparation of the manuscript.