Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:


Compound from Myrtles Synthesized

Successful total synthesis of myrtucommulone A

Myrtle has been considered to be a medicinal plant since ancient times. In addition to a number of essential oils, myrtle contains myrtucommulone A, a pharmacologically interesting compound that has antibacterial, analgesic, and strong anti-inflammatory effects, among others. Recent tests also indicate a highly selective cytostatic effect on tumors. A team led by Johann Jauch has now successfully synthesized myrtucommulone A in the laboratory.

As the scientists report in the journal Angewandte Chemie, the synthetic compound has the same anti-inflammatory and cytostatic activity as the natural version.

The myrtle (Myrtus communis) is an evergreen shrub native to the Mediterranean region that has small, aromatically scented, leathery leaves, small white flowers, and blue-black berries. The leaves and berries are occasionally used in Mediterranean cooking. Since ancient times, the myrtle, rich in essential oils, has been known as a medicinal plant. Pharmacological researchers are particularly interested in a group of substances, called the myrtucommulones, from the myrtle plant. However, their extraction from the leaves of the myrtle is very difficult and delivers small yields.

“The synthetic preparation of myrtucommulones would make these substances available in quantities sufficient to better examine their pharmacological properties,” says Jauch. “Also, we could develop analogues that may be more effective than the original substances. The strength of the natural substance could thus be augmented.”

The researchers have now succeeded in such a total synthesis. Starting with commercially available starting materials or substances known from the literature, the team from Saarland University in Saarbrücken and the University of Tübingen has now synthesized myrtucommulone A, its natural variants C and F, and an analogue in a one-step reaction. Their structures could be confirmed by means of spectroscopic techniques and a crystal structure analysis.

“Laboratory tests demonstrated that the synthetic myrtucommulone A has just as strong an anti-inflammatory effect as the natural compound,” says Jauch. “Just like the agent derived from the plant extract, it triggers programmed cell death (apoptosis) in tumor cells.” The scientists next plan to determine the absolute spatial configuration of the compound and to produce and test more analogues.

Author: Johann Jauch, Universität des Saarlandes, Saarbrücken (Germany),

Title: Total Synthesis of Myrtucommulone A

Angewandte Chemie International Edition, Permalink:

Johann Jauch | Angewandte Chemie
Further information:

More articles from Life Sciences:

nachricht First time-lapse footage of cell activity during limb regeneration
25.10.2016 | eLife

nachricht Phenotype at the push of a button
25.10.2016 | Institut für Pflanzenbiochemie

All articles from Life Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Etching Microstructures with Lasers

Ultrafast lasers have introduced new possibilities in engraving ultrafine structures, and scientists are now also investigating how to use them to etch microstructures into thin glass. There are possible applications in analytics (lab on a chip) and especially in electronics and the consumer sector, where great interest has been shown.

This new method was born of a surprising phenomenon: irradiating glass in a particular way with an ultrafast laser has the effect of making the glass up to a...

Im Focus: Light-driven atomic rotations excite magnetic waves

Terahertz excitation of selected crystal vibrations leads to an effective magnetic field that drives coherent spin motion

Controlling functional properties by light is one of the grand goals in modern condensed matter physics and materials science. A new study now demonstrates how...

Im Focus: New 3-D wiring technique brings scalable quantum computers closer to reality

Researchers from the Institute for Quantum Computing (IQC) at the University of Waterloo led the development of a new extensible wiring technique capable of controlling superconducting quantum bits, representing a significant step towards to the realization of a scalable quantum computer.

"The quantum socket is a wiring method that uses three-dimensional wires based on spring-loaded pins to address individual qubits," said Jeremy Béjanin, a PhD...

Im Focus: Scientists develop a semiconductor nanocomposite material that moves in response to light

In a paper in Scientific Reports, a research team at Worcester Polytechnic Institute describes a novel light-activated phenomenon that could become the basis for applications as diverse as microscopic robotic grippers and more efficient solar cells.

A research team at Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI) has developed a revolutionary, light-activated semiconductor nanocomposite material that can be used...

Im Focus: Diamonds aren't forever: Sandia, Harvard team create first quantum computer bridge

By forcefully embedding two silicon atoms in a diamond matrix, Sandia researchers have demonstrated for the first time on a single chip all the components needed to create a quantum bridge to link quantum computers together.

"People have already built small quantum computers," says Sandia researcher Ryan Camacho. "Maybe the first useful one won't be a single giant quantum computer...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>



Event News

#IC2S2: When Social Science meets Computer Science - GESIS will host the IC2S2 conference 2017

14.10.2016 | Event News

Agricultural Trade Developments and Potentials in Central Asia and the South Caucasus

14.10.2016 | Event News

World Health Summit – Day Three: A Call to Action

12.10.2016 | Event News

Latest News

Ice shelf vibrations cause unusual waves in Antarctic atmosphere

25.10.2016 | Earth Sciences

Fluorescent holography: Upending the world of biological imaging

25.10.2016 | Power and Electrical Engineering

Etching Microstructures with Lasers

25.10.2016 | Process Engineering

More VideoLinks >>>