Antimicrobial alkaloids from Zanthoxylum tetraspermum and caudatum

Ajith P.K. Nissanka, Veranja Karunaratne, B. M.Ratnayake Bandara, Vijaya Kumar, Tsutomu Nakanishi, Masatoshi Nishi, Akira Inada, L. M.V. Tillekeratne, D. S.A. Wijesundara, A. A.Leslie Gunatilaka

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

104 Scopus citations


Two benzophenanthrene alkaloids, 8-acetonyldihydronitidine and 8-acetonyldihydroavicine were isolated from Zanthoxylum tetraspermum stem bark along with liriodenine, sesamin, lichexanthone and (+)-piperitol-γ,γ-dimethylallylether. The-species endemic to Sri Lanka, Z. caudatum, contained sesamin, savinin, liriodenine, decarine and 8-O-desmethyl-N-nornitidine. 8-Acetonyldihydronitidine and 8-acetonyldihydroavicine showed significant antibacterial activity while the former along with liriodenine was strongly antifungal. Savinin exhibited potent spermicidal activity. Both savinin and sesamin exhibited significant insecticidal activity.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)857-861
Number of pages5
Issue number8
StatePublished - Apr 12 2001


  • 8-Acetonyldihydroavicine
  • 8-Acetonyldihydronitidine
  • Antimicrobial
  • Benzophenanthrene alkaloids
  • Insecticidal
  • Rutaceae
  • Spermicidal
  • Z. caudatum
  • Zanthoxylum tetraspermum

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Molecular Biology
  • Plant Science
  • Horticulture


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