ISLA Maria Ines
capítulos de libros
Plants of the Monte region from Argentina: phytochemistry and its use in health care
Phytochemicals in Human Health
Año: 2021; p. 1 - 10
The Monte region from Argentina represents one of the extreme environments for the growth of numerous plant species due to its aridity, intense ultraviolet radiation, low temperatures and marked thermal amplitude. Bioprospecting of plant species that inhabit these environments has been carried out, in order to identify phytochemicals of medicinal value. Species such as Zuccagnia punctata, Larrea divaricata, and Larrea cuneifolia are used as anti-infectives and have a high anti-microbial potency against human pathogenic bacteria (Gram-positive and Gram-negative) resistant to multiple commercial antibiotics, were also active as anti-fungal, principally against yeasts isolated from vaginal infections. These species popularly used also to treat rheumatism and arthritis and are noted for accumulating metabolites with anti-inflammatory capacity higher than some commercial drugs. Studied plant species have been used as powerful anti-oxidants with the potency to reduce the risk of diseases associated with oxidative processes such as cancer. Anti-ulcerogenic and anti-hypertensive activities were also detected. The chemical markers of aqueous and ethanolic extracts are chalcones (2′,4′-dihydroxychalcone and 2′,4′-dihydroxy 3- methoxy chalcone) and dihydrochalcones in Z. punctata, and lignans (nordihydroguaiaretic acid, trihydroxy-6,7´cyclolignan, dihydroxy-methoxy-epoxylignan) in Larrea species. Regarding the toxicological studies, none of the analyzed species had a toxic effect at the doses at which they have biological activity in vitro and in vivo assays. The absence of toxic damage constitutes a positive step towards determining the safe use of the plants studied in traditional medicine. The results obtained would justify the use of extracts or bioactive compounds obtained from these species for the development of phytomedicines and/or phytocosmetics. The obtained derivative products would allow giving greater added value to these species to promote their sustainable use by the inhabitants of the region and by pharmaceutical industry.