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Isolation of an antibiotic substance from the leaves of Withania somnifera Dunal

Isolation of an antibiotic substance from the leaves of Withania somnifera Dunal

Dissert Pharmaceut 14(4): 501-506

An active crystalline substance with the structure of an unsaturated lactone, m. p. 159-160[degree], was isolated with a yield of about 0.11% from the leaves of the Indian plant W. somnifera cultivated in Poland. The substance is slightly soluble in water and moderately so in alcohol and propylene glycol. Biological activity was investigated with dilute aqueous solutions and a 1% vaseline ointment. In concentrations of 10 [gamma] per ml, the isolated substance inhibited growth of bacteria, acid-fast bacilli, and pathogenic fungi, but was inactive against Gram-negative organisms. In vivo experiments showed strong therapeutic activity in abscesses provoked in rabbits experimentally. Its effect was somewhat stronger then that of penicillin ointment.

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