Chemical composition variability in the Uncaria tomentosa (cat's claw) wild population

Evelyn Maribel Condori Peñaloza, Samuel Kaiser, Pedro Ernesto de Resende, Vanessa Pittol, Ânderson Ramos Carvalho, George González Ortega

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20 Citations (Scopus)


Uncaria tomentosa (cat’s claw) is a vine widely distributed throughout the South-American rainforest. Many studies investigating the chemical composition of cat’s claw have focused on the pentacyclic (POA) and tetracyclic oxindole alkaloids (TOA), quinovic acid glycosides (QAG), and polyphenols (PPH). Nevertheless, it is still uncertain how environmental factors affect chemical groups. The aim of this work was to better understand the influence of environmental factors (geographic origin, altitude, and season) on cat’s claw chemical composition. Stem bark, branches and leaf samples were extracted and analyzed by HPLC-PDA. The data obtained were explored by multivariate analysis (HCA and PCA). Higher amounts of oxindole alkaloids and PPH were found in leaves, followed by stem bark and branches. No clear relationship was verified among geographic origin or altitude and chemical composition, which remained unchanged regardless of season (dry or rainy). However, three oxindole alkaloid chemotypes were clearly recognized: chemotype I (POA with cis D/E ring junction); chemotype II (POA with trans D/E ring junction); and chemotype III (TOA). Thus, environmental factors appear to have only a minor influence on the chemical heterogeneity of the cat’s claw wild population. Nevertheless, the occurrence of different chemotypes based on alkaloid profiles seems to be clear
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)378-386
Number of pages9
JournalQuimica Nova
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 11 Feb 2015

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