Archives of pharmacal research

Lignan and flavonoids from the stems of Zea mays and their anti-inflammatory and neuroprotective activities.

PMID 24748513


The stems of Zea mays L., otherwise known as cornstalks, were extracted with 80 % aqueous MeOH, and the concentrated extract was successively partitioned with ethyl acetate (EtOAc), normal butanol, and water. From the EtOAc fraction, a new lignan along with three known flavonoids, tricin (1), salcolin A (2), and salcolin B (3), were isolated. The chemical structure of the lignan was determined to be tetrahydro-4,6-bis(4-hydroxy-3-methoxyphenyl)-1H,3H-furo[3,4-c]furan-1-one (4) through spectroscopic data analyses including NMR, MS, and IR. All compounds were isolated for the first time from this plant. The isolated compounds were evaluated for their inhibitory activity against NO production in Lipopolysaccharide-induced RAW 264.7 cells and their protective activity in glutamate-induced cell death in HT22 cells. The compounds 1, 2 and 4 showed anti-inflammatory effects with IC50 values of 2.63, 14.65, and 18.91 μM, respectively, as well as neuroprotective effects with EC50 values of 25.14, 47.44, and >80 μM, respectively.