Nine bisindole alkaloids, comprising four belonging to the macroline-sarpagine group, and five belonging to the macroline-pleiocarpamine group, were isolated from the stem-bark extracts of Alstonia angustifolia (Apocynacea). Their structures were established using NMR and MS analyses.
Racemic andransinine (1), an indole alkaloid derivative obtained during isolation of alkaloids from Alstonia angustiloba and Kopsia pauciflora, was found to undergo spontaneous resolution when crystallized in EtOAc, forming racemic conglomerates (an equimolar mechanical mixture of enantiomerically pure individual crystals). X-ray analyses of the enantiomers (obtained from crystals from EtOAc solution and from chiral-phase HPLC) provided the absolute configuration of each enantiomer as (15R,16S,21R)-(+)-andransinine (1a or I+) and (15S,16R,21S)-(-)-andransinine (1b or I-).
Alstonia scholaris (L.) R. Br. and Alstonia macrophylla Wall. ex G. Don are two vital medicinal plant species (family: Apocynaceae). In India, the therapeutic use of Alstonia scholaris has been described in both codified and non-codified drug systems for the treatment of malaria, jaundice, gastrointestinal troubles, cancer and in many other ailments. Other species, Alstonia macrophylla has been used in conventional medicines in Thailand, Malaysia and Philippines as a general tonic, aphrodisiac, anticholeric, antidysentery, antipyretic, emmenagogue, and vulnerary agents. In India, Alstonia macrophylla is used as a substitute for Alstonia scholaris in various herbal pharmaceutical preparations. However, one certainly cannot evaluate the truthfulness of a practice (i.e. in scientific terms). In this article we discuss and summarize comparative data about traditional uses, phytochemistry, pharmacology and toxicity of Alstonia scholaris and Alstonia macrophylla. Moreover, in order to unfold future research opportunities, lacunae in the present knowledge are also highlighted.
Three new bisindole alkaloids of the macroline-macroline type, perhentidines A-C (1-3), were isolated from the stem-bark extract of Alstonia macrophylla and Alstonia angustifolia. The structures of these alkaloids were established on the basis of NMR and MS analyses. The absolute configurations of perhentinine (4) and macralstonine (5) were established by X-ray diffraction analyses, which facilitated assignment of the configuration at C-20 in the regioisomeric bisindole alkaloids perhentidines A-C (1-3). A potentially useful method for the determination of the configuration at C-20 based on comparison of the NMR chemical shifts of the bisindoles and their acetate derivatives, in these and related bisindoles with similar constitution and branching of the monomeric units, is also presented.
Four new linearly fused bisindole alkaloids, lumutinines A-D (1-4), were isolated from the stem-bark extract of Alstonia macrophylla. Lumutinines A (1) and B (2) represent the first examples of linear, ring A/F-fused macroline-macroline-type bisindoles, while lumutinines C (3) and D (4) were constituted from the union of macroline and sarpagine moieties. A reinvestigation of the stereochemical assignment of alstoumerine (8) by NMR and X-ray diffraction analyses indicated that the configuration at C-16 and C-19 required revision.
Lumusidines A-D, bisindole alkaloids of the macroline-macroline type, and one of the macroline-pleiocarpamine type, villalstonidine F, were isolated from the stem-bark extract of Alstonia macrophylla (Apocynaceae). The structures and absolute configurations of these alkaloids were established using NMR, MS, and X-ray diffraction analyses.
A total of 20 new indole alkaloids comprising mainly oxidized derivatives of macroline- (including alstofonidine, a macroline indole incorporating a butyrolactone ring-F), pleiocarpamine-, and sarpagine-type alkaloids were isolated from the bark and leaf extracts of Alstonia angustifolia. The structures and relative configurations of these alkaloids were determined using NMR and MS analyses and in some instances confirmed by X-ray diffraction analyses. Alkaloids 3, 7, 35, and 41 showed moderate to weak activity, while 21 showed strong activity in reversing multidrug resistance in vincristine-resistant KB cells.
A cytotoxic bisindole alkaloid possessing an unprecedented structure in which two indole moieties are bridged by an aromatic spacer unit has been isolated from Alstonia angustifolia. The structure was established by analysis of the spectroscopic data and confirmed by X-ray diffraction analysis. A possible biogenetic pathway from pyrocatechuic acid and pleiocarpamine is presented.
Two new venalstonine derivatives, viz., venacarpines A and B, and one new dioxokopsan derivative, kopsorinine, in addition to the kopsifolines A-F, and 11 other known alkaloids, were isolated from a Malayan Kopsia species. The structures of the new alkaloids were determined using NMR and MS analysis.
Ten new indole alkaloids, alstomaline (1), 10,11-dimethoxynareline (2), alstohentine (3), alstomicine (4), 16-hydroxyalstonisine (5), 16-hydroxyalstonal (6), 16-hydroxy-N(4)-demethylalstophyllal oxindole (7), alstophyllal (8), 6-oxoalstophylline (9), and 6-oxoalstophyllal (10), in addition to 21 other known ones, were obtained from the leaf extract of the Malayan Alstonia macrophylla. The structures were determined using NMR and MS analysis.
Six new alkaloids, viz., alstolactone, affinisine oxindole, lagumicine, N(4)-demethylalstonerine, N(4)-demethylalstonerinal, and 10-methoxycathafoline N(4)-oxide, in addition to 36 other known alkaloids, were obtained from the leaf extract of Alstonia angustifolia var. latifolia. The structures of the new alkaloids were determined using NMR and MS analysis.
A total of 25 alkaloids were isolated from the leaf and stem-bark extracts of Alstonia spatulata, of which five are new alkaloids of the strychnan type (alstolucines A-E, 1-5) and the other, a new alkaloid of the secoangustilobine A type (alstolobine A, 6). The structures of these alkaloids were established using NMR and MS analysis and, in the case of alstolucine B (2), also confirmed by X-ray diffraction analysis. A reinvestigation of the stereochemical assignment of scholaricine (13) by NMR and X-ray analyses indicated that the configuration at C-20 required revision. Alkaloids 1, 2, 6, 7, 9, 10, and 13 reversed multidrug resistance in vincristine-resistant KB cells.
A methanol extract of the stem bark of the Malayan Alstonia penangiana provided seven new bisindole alkaloids, comprising six macroline-sarpagine alkaloids (angustilongines E-K, 1-6) and one macroline-pleiocarpamine bisindole alkaloid (angustilongine L, 7). Analysis of the spectroscopic data (NMR and MS) of these compounds led to the proposed structures of these alkaloids. The macroline-sarpagine alkaloids (1-6) showed in vitro growth inhibitory activity against a panel of human cancer cell lines, inclusive of KB, vincristine-resistant KB, PC-3, LNCaP, MCF7, MDA-MB-231, HT-29, HCT 116, and A549 cells (IC50 values: 0.02-9.0 μM).
A total of seventeen alkaloids, comprising six macroline (including alstofolinine A, a macroline indole incorporating a butyrolactone ring-E), two ajmaline, one sarpagine, and eight akuammiline alkaloids, were isolated from the stem-bark and leaf extracts of the Malayan Alstonia macrophylla. The structure and relative configurations of these alkaloids were established using NMR, MS and in several instances, confirmed by X-ray diffraction analysis. Six of these alkaloids were effective in reversing multidrug-resistance (MDR) in vincristine-resistant KB cells.
A total of 20 alkaloids were isolated from the leaf and stem-bark extracts of Alstonia angustiloba, of which two are hitherto unknown. One is an alkaloid of the angustilobine type (angustilobine C), while the other is a bisindole alkaloid angustiphylline, derived from the union of uleine and secovallesamine moieties. The structures of these alkaloids were established using NMR and MS analysis. Angustilobine C showed moderate cytotoxicity towards KB cells.
Four alkaloids comprising two vallesamine, one strychnan, and one pyranopyridine alkaloid, in addition to 32 other known alkaloids were isolated from two Malayan Alstonia species, Alstonia pneumatophora and Alstonia rostrata. The structures of these alkaloids were determined using NMR and MS analyses, and in one instance, confirmed by X-ray diffraction analysis. The nor-6,7-secovallesamine alkaloid, pneumatophorine, is notable for an unusual incorporation of a 3-ethylpyridine moiety in a monoterpenoid indole. The rhazinilam-type alkaloids (rhazinicine, nor-rhazinicine, rhazinal, and rhazinilam) showed strong cytotoxicity toward human KB, HCT-116, MDA-MB-231, and MRC-5 cells, while pneumatophorine, the uleine alkaloid undulifoline, and the strychnan alkaloids, N4-demethylalstogustine and echitamidine, induced concentration dependent relaxation in phenylephrine-precontracted rat aortic rings.
Two new monoterpenoid indole alkaloids, alstoscholactine (1) and alstolaxepine (2), were isolated from Alstonia scholaris. Compound 1 represents a rearranged stemmadenine alkaloid with an unprecedented C-6-C-19 connectivity, whereas compound 2 represents a 6,7- seco-angustilobine B-type alkaloid incorporating a rare γ-lactone-bridged oxepane ring system. Their structures and absolute configurations were determined by spectroscopic analyses. Compound 1 was successfully semisynthesized from 19 E-vallesamine. Compound 2 induced marked vasorelaxation in rat isolated aortic rings precontracted with phenylephrine.