In vitro cytotoxicity screening, phytochemical profile and heavy metal analysis of different extracts of Acrostichum heterophyllum L.

George, Meera ; Josekumar, V S


The present study was carried out to identify the phytochemical profile, heavy metal content and cytotoxicity of the epiphytic fern, Acrostichum heterophyllum L., which is a herb used in many traditional and tribal systems of medicine. Preliminary scientific evaluation towards the possibility of this species as a potential bioactive agent is attempted here. Three different extracts in hexane, ethyl acetate and methanol were prepared sequentially and obtained a percentage yield of 2.714, 3.82 and 8.058, respectively. Phytochemical screening revealed presence of flavonoids, alkaloids, sugars, glycosides, phenolics and tannins as major components of ethyl acetate and methanol extracts. All the heavy metals analyzed were found to be below the permissible limits. MTT assay using L929 cell line identified IC50 value of hexane, ethyl acetate and methanolic extracts as 254.18, 266.99 and 191.93 µg/mL, respectively. High IC50 values reported in the present study suggests low toxicity of the extracts. The brine shrimp lethality assay also revealed the nontoxic nature of the extracts upto concentrations of 1000 µg/mL. The results indicate the suitability of A. heterophyllum as herbal a drug resource.


Acrostichum heterophyllum L., Drymoglossum heterophyllum (L.) C. Chr., Heavy metal, In vitro cytotoxicity, L929 cell line, Phytochemical analysis.

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