Phytochemical Investigation of Uvaria Scheffleri Roots for Antiplasmodial and Antimicrobial Compounds

More than half of the world’s population is affected by diseases caused by protozoan parasites. Malaria is the world’s most important life-threatening tropical parasitic disease. Most deaths occur among children aged less than 5years in Africa where a child dies every minute from malaria.

In Africa this situation is worsen due to the emergence of resistance by the protozoan parasite plasmodium towards the available currently used antimalarial drugs. Thus there is need to look for alternative antimalarial drugs before resistance is fully developed to the currently used drugs such as artemisinin and quinine derivatives.

Microbial infections are caused by microbes such as bacteria, parasites, viruses and fungi. Infectious diseases caused by microbes are responsible for more deaths worldwide than any other single cause. Antimicrobial resistance threatens the effective prevention and treatment of an ever increasing range of infections caused by bacteria, parasites, viruses and fungi. These menaces thus prompt the need for urgent solutions.

The crude extract of the roots of Uvaria Scheffleri were subjected to a combination of chromatographic techniques leading to the isolation of six pure compounds SOO1-SOO6 which were characterized using spectroscopic evidence (1H and 13C NMR). One of the compounds isolated and characterized was a trimeric monoterpenoid, (+/-)-schefflone (SOO2) which is a mosquito larvicidal agent. Other compounds are still being characterized and will appear on my report.

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