Active-oxygen scavenging activity of plant extracts

Biol Pharm Bull. 1995 Jan;18(1):162-6. doi: 10.1248/bpb.18.162.


To find antioxidative compounds present in plants, 65 types of plant extract were tested using the neotetrazolium method for evidence of superoxide anion-scavenging effects and 7 plant extracts were selected for further investigation. The activity of active-oxygen scavengers such as superoxide anion radicals, hydroxyl radicals, singlet oxygens and lipid peroxides in the 7 plant extracts (Aeseclus hippocastanum L., Hamamelis virginiana L. Polygonum cuspidatum Sieb., Quercus robur L., Rosemarinous officinalis L., Salvia officinalis L. and Sanguisorba officinalis L.) was examined in detail by both ESR spin-trapping and malondialdehyde generation. Furthermore, the active-oxygen scavenging activity of these plant extracts was evaluated using a murine dermal fibroblast culture system. Both Aeseclus hippocastanum L. and Hamamelis virginia L. were found to have strong active-oxygen scavenging activity of and protective activity against cell damage induced by active oxygen. Both Aeseclus hippocastanum L. and Hamamelis virginiana L. are proposed as potent plant extracts with potential application as anti-aging or anti-wrinkle material for the skin.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Cells, Cultured
  • Electron Spin Resonance Spectroscopy
  • Fibroblasts / drug effects
  • Free Radical Scavengers*
  • Hydroxyl Radical / metabolism
  • Lipid Peroxidation / drug effects
  • Malondialdehyde / metabolism
  • Mice
  • Mice, Inbred ICR
  • Plant Extracts / pharmacology
  • Plants, Medicinal / chemistry*
  • Reactive Oxygen Species / metabolism*
  • Tetrazolium Salts / chemistry


  • Free Radical Scavengers
  • Plant Extracts
  • Reactive Oxygen Species
  • Tetrazolium Salts
  • neotetrazolium
  • Hydroxyl Radical
  • Malondialdehyde