Spirostanol Sapogenins and Saponins from Convallaria majalis L. Structural Characterization by 2D NMR, Theoretical GIAO DFT Calculations and Molecular Modeling

Molecules. 2021 May 18;26(10):2999. doi: 10.3390/molecules26102999.


Two new spirostanol sapogenins (5β-spirost-25(27)-en-1β,2β,3β,5β-tetrol 3 and its 25,27-dihydro derivative, (25S)-spirostan-1β,2β,3β,5β-tetrol 4) and four new saponins were isolated from the roots and rhizomes of Convallaria majalis L. together with known sapogenins (isolated from Liliaceae): 5β-spirost-25(27)-en-1β,3β-diol 1, (25S)-spirostan-1β,3β-diol 2, 5β-spirost-25(27)-en-1β,3β,4β,5β-tetrol 5, (25S)-spirostan-1β,3β,4β,5β-tetrol 6, 5β-spirost-25(27)-en-1β,2β,3β,4β,5β-pentol 7 and (25S)-spirostan-1β,2β,3β,4β,5β-pentol 8. New steroidal saponins were found to be pentahydroxy 5-O-glycosides; 5β-spirost-25(27)-en-1β,2β,3β,4β,5β-pentol 5-O-β-galactopyranoside 9, 5β-spirost-25(27)-en-1β,2β,3β,4β,5β-pentol 5-O-β-arabinonoside 11, 5β-(25S)-spirostan-1β,2β,3β,4β,5β-pentol 5-O-galactoside 10 and 5β-(25S)-spirostan-1β,2β,3β,4β,5β-pentol 5-O-arabinoside 12 were isolated for the first time. The structures of those compounds were determined by NMR spectroscopy, including 2D COSY, HMBC, HSQC, NOESY, ROESY experiments, theoretical calculations of shielding constants by GIAO DFT, and mass spectrometry (FAB/LSI HR MS). An attempt was made to test biological activity, particularly as potential chemotherapeutic agents, using in silico methods. A set of 12 compounds was docked to the PDB structures of HER2 receptor and tubulin. The results indicated that diols have a higher affinity to the analyzed targets than tetrols and pentols. Two compounds (25S)-spirosten-1β,3β-diol 1 and 5β-spirost-25(27)-en-1β,2β,3β,4β,5β-pentol 5-O-galactoside 9 were selected for further evaluation of biological activity.

Keywords: Convallaria majalis; GIAO DFT; Liliaceae; NMR; docking; spirostanol sapogenins; steroidal sapogenins.

MeSH terms

  • Carbon-13 Magnetic Resonance Spectroscopy*
  • Convallaria / chemistry*
  • Density Functional Theory*
  • Models, Molecular*
  • Molecular Docking Simulation
  • Proton Magnetic Resonance Spectroscopy*
  • Sapogenins / analysis*
  • Sapogenins / chemistry
  • Sapogenins / isolation & purification
  • Saponins / analysis*
  • Saponins / chemistry
  • Saponins / isolation & purification
  • Spirostans / analysis*
  • Spirostans / chemistry
  • Spirostans / isolation & purification


  • Sapogenins
  • Saponins
  • Spirostans