Antiviral activity of some South American medicinal plants.Phytother Res. 1999 Mar; 13(2):142-6.PR
Folk medicinal plants are potential sources of useful therapeutic compounds including some with antiviral activities. Extracts prepared from 10 South American medicinal plants (Baccharis trinervis, Baccharis teindalensis, Eupatorium articulatum, Eupatorium glutinosum, Tagetes pusilla, Neurolaena lobata, Conyza floribunda, Phytolacca bogotensis, Phytolacca rivinoides and Heisteria acuminata) were screened for in vitro antiviral activity against herpes simplex type I (HSV-1), vesicular stomatitis virus (VSV) and poliovirus type 1. The most potent inhibition was observed with an aqueous extract of B. trinervis, which inhibited HSV-1 replication by 100% at 50-200 micrograms/mL, without showing cytotoxic effects. Good activities were also found with the ethanol extract of H. acuminata and the aqueous extract of E. articulatum, which exhibited antiviral effects against both DNA and RNA viruses (HSV-1 and VSV, respectively) at 125-250 micrograms/mL. The aqueous extracts of T. pusilla (100-250 micrograms/mL), B. teindalensis (50-125 micrograms/mL) and E. glutinosum (50-125 micrograms/mL) also inhibited the replication of VSV, but none of the extracts tested had any effect on poliovirus replication.