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New and Highly Efficient Column Chromatographic Extraction and Simple Purification of Camptothecin from Camptotheca acuminata and Nothapodytes pittosporoides

Authors

  • Xue-Hua Zeng,

    1. Guangdong Provincial Key Laboratory of Biotechnology for Plant Development, College of Life Sciences, South China Normal University, Guangzhou, China
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  • Yue-Hong Li,

    1. Guangdong Provincial Key Laboratory of Biotechnology for Plant Development, College of Life Sciences, South China Normal University, Guangzhou, China
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  • Shan-Shan Wu,

    1. Guangdong Provincial Key Laboratory of Biotechnology for Plant Development, College of Life Sciences, South China Normal University, Guangzhou, China
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  • Rui-Lin Hao,

    1. Guangdong Provincial Key Laboratory of Biotechnology for Plant Development, College of Life Sciences, South China Normal University, Guangzhou, China
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  • Hui Li,

    1. Guangdong Provincial Key Laboratory of Biotechnology for Plant Development, College of Life Sciences, South China Normal University, Guangzhou, China
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  • He Ni,

    1. Guangdong Provincial Key Laboratory of Biotechnology for Plant Development, College of Life Sciences, South China Normal University, Guangzhou, China
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  • Han-Bing Han,

    1. Guangdong Provincial Key Laboratory of Biotechnology for Plant Development, College of Life Sciences, South China Normal University, Guangzhou, China
    2. College of Chemistry and Life Sciences, Guangdong University of Petrochemical Technology, Maoming City, Guangdong, China
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  • Hai-Hang Li

    Corresponding author
    1. Guangdong Provincial Key Laboratory of Biotechnology for Plant Development, College of Life Sciences, South China Normal University, Guangzhou, China
    • Correspondence to: Hai-Hang Li, Guangdong Provincial Key Laboratory of Biotechnology for Plant Development, College of Life Sciences, South China Normal University, Guangzhou, China 510631. E-mail: li_haihang@yahoo.com

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ABSTRACT

Introduction

Camptothecin, a widely used natural anti-cancer drug, is difficult to extract and purify effectively from plants.

Objective

To develop new and highly efficient extraction and purification methods for analysis and production of camptothecin from leaves and fruits of Camptotheca acuminata and Nothapodytes pittosporoides roots.

Methods

Dried materials were loaded in empty columns with fivefold 60% ethanol for leaves or 70% ethanol for fruits of C. acumnata, and sixfold 70% ethanol for N. pittosporoides roots. The columns were eluted with the same solvents at room temperature. Eluent was collected as extraction solution. Extraction solution from leaves and fruits of C. acuminata was vacuum-evaporated to remove ethanol, precipitated at pH 8.0 to remove alkaline insolubles and fractionated with chloroform at pH 3.0, which yields a crude product with 70% purity. Extraction solution from N. pittosporoides roots was concentrated to 1/10 volume and precipitated at pH 3.0, which yields a crude product with 60% purity. All crude products were purified by crystallisation. All steps were monitored by HPLC.

Results

Camptothecin was extracted from the three plant materials at a 98% rate with 15- or 18-fold solvent for content analysis, or at a 97% rate with five- or sixfold solvent for production. All crude products were purified to 98%. The overall recovery rates of camptothecin from plant materials to purified products reached 92% or higher.

Conclusion

The new procedures are simple and highly efficient, and have multiple advantages for quantitative analysis and large production of camptothecin from plants. Copyright © 2013 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

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