Comparative analysis of bioactivities of four Polygonum species

Wu Yang Huang, Yi Zhong Cai, Jie Xing, Harold Corke*, Mei Sun

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

48 Scopus citations


Many species of Polygonum are rich in bioactive constituents, which contribute to a wide range of medicinal properties. In this study, we assessed the scavenging activity against ABTS.+ and hydroxyl radicals, chelating activity against Fe2+, xanthine oxidase inhibition, antimicrobial activity, and total contents of phenolics and flavonoids in the extracts of leaves and stems or whole plants from four medicinal Polygonum species. Total antioxidant capacities and phenolic contents of Polygonum capitatum, Polygonum chinensis, Polygonum cuspidatum, and Polygonum multiflorum were 74.60, 53.66, 56.22, and 14.34 mmol trolox/100 g dry weight (DW), and 8.69, 4.15, 6.33, and 1.27 g gallic acid/100 g DW, respectively, significantly higher than those of five dietary vegetables, fruits and spices (spring onion, broccoli, orange, carrot, and ginger). Major bioactive constituents in the tested plant extracts were also investigated using LC-MS. They were mainly phenolic compounds, e.g., flavonoids, phenolic acids and their derivatives, tannins, stilbenes, and anthraquinones. This study shows that, in addition to their roots, the leaves and stems of P. cuspidatum and P. capitatum also exhibit potent antioxidant properties and are a potential resource of natural bioactive antioxidants.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)43-49
Number of pages7
JournalPlanta Medica
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2008
Externally publishedYes


  • Antimicrobial activity
  • Antioxidant capacity
  • Phenolic compounds
  • Polygonaceae
  • Polygonum
  • Xanthine oxidase inhibition


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