• Seema Devi R. Department of Botany, N. S. S College, Manjeri, Malappuram, Kerala, India 676122
  • John Ernest Thoppil


Objective: Plant-derived compounds with therapeutic effect are getting attention all over the world. Researchers are mainly targeting to ethnic and folk knowledge for the exploration of novel drug candidates. Orthosiphon thymiflorus is a medicinal, aromatic herb used in folk medicine and Ayurvedic preparations. Hence, it is important to evaluate the cytotoxic potential and chemical profile of the plant.

Methods: Cytotoxicity was evaluated in vitro in DLA and EAC cell lines and in vivo by Allium chromosome aberration assay. Phytochemical screening of the extract was done by UV/Vis spectroscopy and FT-IR.

Results: Plant extracts showed significant toxicity in cell lines in higher concentration (100 µg/ml and 200 µg/ml). Cytotoxicity in vivo was determined by the reduction of mitotic index (MI) and induction of chromosome aberration (CA) by the extracts in meristematic cells of Allium. Plant extracts showed a time and dose dependent effect on MI and incidence of CA. Both extracts induced a spectrum of clastogenic as well as non-clastogenic CA. Phytochemical analysis of both extracts revealed the presence of bioactive compounds.

Conclusion: Bioactivity of the crude extracts may be ascribed to the active compounds present in the extract as indicated by spectroscopic analysis. Further phytochemical investigations may pave a new avenue to cancer drug research. Also, the cytotoxicity of extract apprises the necessity of further studies in the mammalian system.

Keywords: Orthosiphon thymiflorus, Cytotoxicity, Mitotic Index, Allium cepa Chromosome aberration assay, UV-Vis spectroscopy, FT-IR.


Download data is not yet available.


Mathews HB, Lucier GW, Fisher KD. Medicinal herbs in the United States: research needs. Environ Health Perspect 1999;107:773-8.

De-Smet PR, Kellar K, Hansel R, Chandler RF. Adverse effects of herbal drugs. Berlin/Heidolorg/New York: Springer-Verlag; 1997.

Okafor JC. Identification and conservation of plants used in traditional medicine. International workshop on evaluation of traditional medicines. University of Nigeria, Nsukka; 1987.

Kamkaen N, Jenny M, Heather MA, Cavanagh A. Cytotoxic effect of four Thai edible plants on mammalian cell proliferation. Thai Pharm Health Sci J 2006;1:189-95.

Lee KH. Novel antitumor agents from higher plants. Med Res Rev 1999;19:539-96.

Wang HK, Morris-Natschke SL, Lee KH. Recent advances in the discovery and development of topoisomerase inhibitors as antitumor agents. Med Res Rev 1997;17:367-25.

Fiskesjö G. The allium test as a standard in environmental monitoring. Hereditas 1985;102:99-112.

Warrier PK, Nambiar VPK, Ramankutty C. Indian medicinal plants: a compendium of 500 species. India: Orient Longman Pvt. Ltd; 1995. p. 191-2.

Englert J, Harnischfeger G. Diuretic action of aqueous Orthosiphon extract in rats. Planta Med 1991;58:237-8.

Yang LL, Yen KY, Kiso Y, Kikino H. Antihepatotoxic actions of formosan plant drugs. J Ethnopharmacol 1987;19:103.

Chen CP, Lin CC, Namba T. Screening of Taiwanese crude drugs for antibacterial activity against streptococcus mutants. J Ethnopharmacol 1989;27:285.

Strober W. Trypan blue exclusion test of cell viability. In: Coligan JE, Kruisbeek AM, Margulis DH, Shevach EM, Strober W. editors. Current Protocols in Immunology. New York: John Wiley and Sons; 1992. p. A.3.3–4.

Sharma AK, Sharma A. Chromosome technique theory and practice, Butter Worth, London: 1990.

Mukherjee A, Sharma A. Effects of cadmium and selenium on cell division and chromosomal aberrations in Allium sativum. Water Air Soil Pollut 1988;37:433–8.

Kerr JF, Wyllie AH, Currie AR. Apoptosis: a basic biological phenomenon with wide-ranging implications in tissue kinetics. Br J Cancer 1972;26:239–57.

Elmore S. Apoptosis: a review of programmed cell death. Toxicol Pathol 2007;35:495–516.

Sini KR, Haribabu Y, Sajith MS, Sreekumar SK. In-vitro cytotoxic activity of Orthosiphon thymiflorus (Roth.) sleensen leaf extract against dalton lymphoma ascites cell line. J Chem Pharm Res 2012;4:917-21.

Roy K, Kodama S, Suzuki K, Watanabe M. Delayed cell death, giant cell formation and chromosome instability induced by X-irradiation in human embryo cells. J Radiat Res 1999;40:311–22.

Matsuzaki H, Schmied BM, Ulrich A, Batra SK, Pour PM. In vitro Induction of giant cell tumors from cultured Hamster islets treated with N-Nitrosobis (2-Oxopropyl) amine. Am J Pathol 2000;156:439–43.

Fiskesjö G. Nucleolar dissolution induced by Aluminium in root cells of Allium. Physiol Plant 1983;59:508-11.

Cebulska-Wasilewska A. Editors. Rapid diagnosis in populations at risk from radiation and chemicals. Netherlands: IOS Press BV; 2009.

Dashek WV, Harrison M. Editors. Plant Cell Biology. USA: Science publishers; 2006.

Obe G, Vijayalaxmi. Editors. Chromosomal alterations: Methods, results, and importance in Human health. Berlin Heidelberg: Springer-Verlag; 2007.

Khanna N, Sharma S. Allium cepa root chromosome aberration assay: A review. Indian J Pharm Biol Res 2013;1:105-19.

Kabarity A, Nahas A. Induction of polyploidy and C-tumours after treating Allium cepa root tips with the herbicide Treflanâ€. Biol Plantarum 1979;21:253-8.

Fenech M, Kirsch-Volders M, Natarajan A, Surralles J, Crott J, Parry J, et al. Molecular mechanisms of micronucleus, nucleoplasmic bridge, and nuclear bud formation in mammalian and human cells. Mutagenesis 2011;26:125–32.

Shimizu N, Shingaki K, Kaneko-Sasaguri Y, Hashizume T, Kanda T. When, where and how the bridge breaks: anaphase bridge breakage plays a crucial role in gene amplification and HSR generation. Exp Cell Res 2005;302:233–43.

Shimizu N, Itoh N, Utiyama H, Wahl GM. Selective entrapment of extrachromosomally amplified DNA by nuclear budding and micronucleated during S phase. J Cell Biol 1998;140:1307–20.

Shimizu N, Shimura T, Tanaka T. Selective elimination of acentric double minutes from cancer cells through the extrusion of micronuclei. Mutat Res Fundam Mol Mech Mutagen 2000;448:81–90.

Kumar KJ, Prasad DAG. Identification and comparison of biomolecules in medicinal plants of Tephrosia tinctoria and Atylosia albicans by using FTIR. Romanian J Biophys 2011;21:63-71.



How to Cite

R., S. D., and J. E. Thoppil. “CYTOTOXIC STUDIES AND PHYTOCHEMICAL ANALYSIS OF ORTHOSIPHON THYMIFLORUS (ROTH) SLEESEN”. International Journal of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences, vol. 8, no. 2, Feb. 2016, pp. 249-55,



Original Article(s)