Viability-reducing activity of Coryllus avellana L. extracts against human cancer cell lines.
Biomed Pharmacother. 2017 May ;89:565-572. Epub 2017 Mar 1. PMID: 28258038
The increasing rate of cancer incidence has encouraged the search for novel natural sources of anticancer compounds. The presence of small quantities of taxol and taxanes in Corylus avellana L. has impelled new potential applications for this plant in the field of biomedicine. In the present work, the cell viability-reducing activity of stems and leaves from three different hazel trees was studiedagainst three human-derived cancer cell lines (HeLa, HepG2 and MCF-7). Both leaf and stem extracts significantly reduced viability of the three cell lines either after maceration with methanol or using taxane extraction methods. Since maceration reduced cell viability to a greater extent than taxane extraction methods, we scaled up the maceration extraction process using a method for solid/liquid extraction (Zippertex technology). Methanol leaf extracts promoted a higher reduction in viability of all cell lines assayed than stem extracts. Fractionation of methanol leaf extracts using silica gel chormatography led to the purification and identification of two compounds by HPLC-MS and NMR: (3R,5R)-3,5-dihydroxy-1,7-bis(4-hydroxyphenyl) heptane 3-O-β-d-glucopyranoside and quercetin-3-O-rhamnoside. The isolated compounds decreased viability of HeLa and HepG2 cells to a greater extent than MCF-7 cells. Our results suggest a potential use of C. avellana extracts in the pharmacotherapy of cervical cancer and hepatocarcinoma and, to a lesser extent, breast cancer.