Evaluation of different solvents for phytochemical constituents and antioxidant activities of the leaves of Acanthus montanus (Nees) T. Anderson

Joy Enitan Ale, Ibraheem Oduola Lawal, Temitope Olorunyomi Omogbene

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.5937/leksir2141018A


Bear’s breech or mountain thistle (Acanthus montanus (Nees) T. Anderson) is a shrub belonging to Acanthaceae family. It is widespread in Africa, Romania, Greece, and Eastern Mediterranean. African people engage its medicinal use for the management of urethral pain, endometritis, urogenital infections, urinary disease, aches and pains. Fresh leaves of A. montanus were collected from Forestry Research Institute of Nigeria (FRIN) herbal garden and identified at the Forestry Herbarium, Ibadan. About 200 g of the powered sample was macerated in 400 mL each of three organic solvents such as ethyl acetate, acetone and methanol respectively, for 24 h. Each extracts were screened for phytochemicals such as flavonoids, saponins, phenols, terpenoids, phlobotannins, alkaloids, tannins, and cardiac glycosides. Estimation of total flavonol content, and antioxidant assays such as 2,2-diphenyl 1-picrylhydrazyl (DPPH) and nitric oxide radical scavenging activity were also carried out. The quantitative phytochemical test (flavonol content) revealed that Acanthus montanus methanol extract was the richest one among the solvent systems while acetone extract gave the best antioxidant activity. It was observed that the antioxidant activity could be attributed to moderately polar extracts. The study, therefore, provides evidence that various solvents used in extraction can result in differences in quantitative phytochemicals and antioxidant activity.


phytochemical estimation, phytomedicine, free radical, secondary metabolite, medicinal plant, extraction solvent

Full Text:



Adam, A.A. and Omogbene, T.O. (2020). Phytochemical and phytomineral (macro and trace) compositions of the leaf, stem bark and root of Blighia sapida K.D. Koenig. J. Med. Pl. Stud., 8(5):20-24. https://doi.org/10.22271/plants.2020.v8.i5a.1190

Adeyemi, O.O., Okpo, S.O. and Young-Nwafor, C.C. (1999). The relaxant activity of the methanolic extract of Acanthus montanus on the intestinal smooth muscles. J Ethnopharmocol. 68:169–173.

Al Ghasham, A., Al Muzaini, M., Qureshi, K.A., Elhassan, G.O., Khan, R.A., Farhana, S.A., Hashmi, S., El-Agamy, E. and Abdallah, W.E. (2017). Phytochemical screening, antioxidant and antimicrobial activities of methanolic extract of Ziziphus mauritiana Lam. leaves collected from Unaizah, Saudi Arabia. Int. J. Pharm. Res. 6:33-46.

Alabri, T.H.A., Al Muselami, A.H.S., Hossain, M.A., Weli, A.M. and Al-Kiyami, Q. (2014). Comparative study of phytochemical screening , antioxidant and antimicrobial capacities of fresh and dry leaves crude plant extracts of Datura metel L.J. King. Saud. Univ. Sci., 26:237-243.

Aliyu, A.B., Musa, A.M., Oshanimi, J.A., Ibrahim, H.A. and Oyewale, A.O. (2008). Phytochemical analyses and mineral elements composition of some medicinal plants of northern Nigeria. Nig. J. Pharm. Sci. 7:1, 119–125

Benkeblia, N. (2004). Antimicrobial activity of essential oil extracts of various onions (Allium cepa) and garlic (Allium sativum). Lebensm.-Wiss. U.-Technol. 37:263-68.

Chukwujekwu, J.C., van Staden, J. and Smith, P. (2005). Antibacterial and anti-malarial activities of some Nigerian medicinal plants. SAJB 71(3):316-325. DOI: 10.1016/S0254-6299(15)30105-8

Dhawan, D. and Gupta, J. (2017). Comparison of different solvents for phytochemical extraction potential from Datura metel plant leaves. Int. J. Biol. Chem. 11: 17-22.

Ebrahimzadeha, M.A., Nabavia, S.M., Nabavia, S.F., Bahramian, F. and Bekhradnia, A.R. (2010). Antioxidant and free radical scavenging activity of H. officinalis L. Var. angustifolius, V. odorata, B. hyrcana and C. speciosum. Pharm. Sci., 23(1): 29-34.

Hassan, B. A. R. (2012). Medicinal Plants (Importance and Uses). Pharmaceutica Analytica Acta, 3:10. DOI: 10.4172/2153-2435.1000e139


Ibe, A.E. and Nwufo, M.I. (2005). Identification, collection and domestication of medicinal plants in southern Nigeria. African Dev., 30:66–77.

Igoli, J.O., Igwue, I.C. and Igoli, N.P. (2004). Traditional medicinal practices among the Igede people of Nigeria. J. Herbs Spices & Med. Plants 10(4):1-10. DOI: 10.1300/J044v10n04_01

Javaid, A. and Saddique, A. (2012).Control of charcoal rot fungusMacrophomina phaseolina by extracts of Datura metel.Nat. Prod. Res., 26:1715-1720.

Jimoh, W.A., Fagbenro, O.A. and Adeparusi, E.O. (2010). Digestibility coefficients of processed jackbean meal for Nile Tilapia, Oreochromis niloticus diets. Int. J. Fish. & Aqua., 2(4): 102-107.

Kobus-Cisowska, J., Szczepaniak, O., Szymanowska-Powałowska, D., Piechocka, J., Szulc, P. and Dziedziński, M. (2020). Antioxidant potential of various solvent extract from Morus alba fruits and its major polyphenols composition. Ciência Rural, Santa Maria, 50:1, 12pp.

Krishnaraju, A.V., Rao, T.V.N., Sundararaju, D. Vanisree, M., Tsay, H.-S. and Subbaraju, G.V. (2006). Biological screening of medicinal plants collected from eastern ghats of india using Artemia salina (Brine Shrimp Test). Int. J. Appl. Sci. Eng., 4, 2:115-125.

Lawal, I.O., Olufade, I.I., Rafiu, B.O. and Aremu, A.O. (2020b). Ethnobotanical survey of plants used for treating cough associated with respiratory conditions in Ede South Local Government Area of Osun State, Nigeria. Plants., 9(5):647. https://doi.org/10.3390/plants9050647

Lawal, I.O., Omogbene, T.O. and Adam, A.A. (2020a). Phytomenadione as a dietary supplement: Sources and health benefits. In: C. Egbuna, A.P. Mishra, M.R. Goyal (Eds.). Preparation of phytpharmaceuticals for the management of disorders: The development of nutraceuticals and traditional medicine. Pg 381-389. https://doi.org/10.1016/B978-0-12-820284-5.00023-X

Liyana-Pathirana, C.M. and Shahidi, F. (2005). Antioxidant activity of commercial soft and hard wheat ( triticum aestivum l.) as affected by gastric pH conditions. J. Agric. & Food Chem. 53(7):2433-40. DOI: 10.1021/jf049320i.

Moyo, M., Aremu, A.O. and Van Staden, J. (2015). Medicinal plants: An invaluable, dwindling resource in sub-SaharanAfrica. J. Ethnopharmacol.,174, 595–606.

Okoli, C.O., Akah, P.A., Onuoha, N.J. et al. (2008). Acanthus montanus: An experimental evaluation of the antimicrobial, anti-inflammatory and immunological properties of a traditional remedy for furuncles. BMC Complement. Altern. Med. 8, 27. https://doi.org/10.1186/1472-6882-8-27

Okwu, D.E. (2001). Global J. Pure Appl. Sci., 8:455-459.

Okwu, D.E. (2004). Pytochemical and vitamin content of indigenous spices of South Eastern Nigeria. J. Sustain. Agric. Environ. 6:30-34.

Paduch, R., Kandefer-Szerszeń, M., Trytek, M., & Fiedurek, J. (2007). Terpenes: substances useful in human healthcare. Archivum immunologiae et therapiae experimentalis, 55(5), 315–327. https://doi.org/10.1007/s00005-007-0039-1

Patel, S. 2016. Plant-derived cardiac glycosides: Role in heart ailments and cancer management. Biomedicine and Pharmacotherapy 84: 1036-1041.

Pieme, C.A., Dzoyem, J.P., Kechia, F.A., Etoa, F.X. and Penlap, V. (2008). In vitro Antimicrobial Activity of Extracts from Some Cameroonian Medicinal Plants. Journal of Biological Sciences, 8: 902-907. DOI: 10.3923/jbs.2008.902.907

Roy, S., Pawar, S. and Chowdhary, A. (2016). Evaluation of in vitro cytotoxic and antioxidant activity of Datura metel Linn. and Cynodon dactylon Linn. extracts. Pharmacogn. Res., 8: 123-127.

Santos, M.L., Magalhães, C.F., da Rosa, M.B., de Assis Santos D., Brasileiro, B.G., de Carvalho, L.M., da Silva, M.B., Zani, C.L., de Siqueira, E.P., Peres, R.L., Andrade, A.A. (2014). Antifungal activity of extracts from Piper aduncum leaves prepared by different solvents and extraction techniques against dermatophytes Trichophyton rubrum and Trichophyton interdigitale. Brazilian Journal of Microbiology 44(4): 1275-8.

Sasidharan, S., Chen, Y., Saravanan, D., Sundram, K.M., Latha, L.Y. (2011). Extraction, isolation and characterization of bioactive compounds from plants' extracts. Afr. J. Tradit. Complement. Altern. Med. 8(1):1-10.

Saxena HO, Soni A, Mohammad N, Choubey SK. Phytochemical screening and elemental analysis in different plant parts of Desv. A dashmul species. J. Chem Pharmaceut Res. 2014; 6(5):756-760

Sofowora, A. (1996). Research on medicinal plants and traditional medicine in Africa.J. Altern. Complementary Med.,2, 365–372

Trease G.E, Evans .W.C, ʽʽPharmacognogy”, Bailliere Tiridel and macmillan publisher, London, 2 nd ed.1989,pp. 45-50.

Truong, D.-H., Nguyen, D.H., Ta, N.T.A., Bui, A.V., Do, T.H. and Nguyen, H.C. (2019). Evaluation of the use of different solvents for phytochemical constituents, antioxidants, and in vitro anti-inflammatory activities of Severinia buxifolia. J. Food Qual., Article ID 8178294, 9 pages. https://doi.org/10.1155/2019/8178294

Xie, J. and Schaich, K. 2014. Re-evaluation of the 2, 2-diphenyl-1- picrylhydrazyl free radical (DPPH) assay for antioxidant activity. Journal of Agriculture and Food Chemistry 62(19): 4251-4260.

Zayachkivska, O. S., Konturek, S. J., Drozdowicz, D., Konture, P. C. 2005. Gastroprotective Effects of Flavonoids in Plant Extracts. Journal of Physiology and Pharmacology 56(1): 219 – 231.


  • There are currently no refbacks.

Copyright (c) 2021 Ibraheem Lawal

ISSN 0455-6224 (Print)
ISSN 2560-3965 (Online)

Creative Commons License Except where otherwise noted, the content on this site is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.