Optimized Thin Layer Chromatographic Method for Screening Pharmaceutically Valuable Alkaloids of Catharanthus roseus (Madagascar Periwinkle)

Optimized Thin Layer Chromatographic Method for Screening Pharmaceutically Valuable Alkaloids of Catharanthus roseus (Madagascar Periwinkle)

Loading document ...
Loading page ...


Author(s): Viresh Mohanlall, N.L. Magagula, B. Odhav

Download Full PDF Read Complete Article

1123 1888 1-20 Volume 1 - Dec 2012


The aerial parts of Catharanthus roseus (C. roseus) plant have been known to contain many important alkaloids such as Vincristine, Vinblastine, Vindoline and Ajmalicine which are of interest to this study. Ajmalicine has also been found in abundance in the roots of this medicinal plant. The main objective of this study was to screen a methanolic extract of C. roseus for the presence of pharmaceutically valuable alkaloids using previously optimized conditions established in our laboratory set up.This methanolic extract was further purified for specific alkaloids present using modified Shams et al. (2009) method I extraction procedure. Extracts of C. roseus have been subjected to optimum conditions before and after Thin layer Chromatography which was performed in a trough chamber of 10 cm x 10 cm area saturated with Ethyl acetate: Benzene: Methanol: 25% Ammonia solution (100:5:5:3) as a developing solvent and sprayed with Cerium Ammonium Sulphate (CAS) reagent specific for the detection of alkaloids.Results have shown that the alkaloids of interest; Vincristine, Vinblastine, Vindoline and Ajmalicine could be chromatographically identified in extracts of C. roseus intact plant after individual alkaloid purification procedure. This has confirmed the anti-neoplastic and anti-hypertensive properties these alkaloids have in making the plant effective in healing cancer and high blood pressure as it was originally used by traditional people.


Catharanthus roseus, Vincristine, Vinblastine, Vindoline, Ajmalicine, Thin Layer Chromatography, Cerium Ammonium Sulphate reagent


  1. Aniszewski, T. (2007). Alkaloids--secrets of Life: Alkaloid Chemistry, Biological Significance, Applications and Ecological Role. Netherlands, Elsevier: 316
  2. Ataei-Azimi, A., B. D. Hashemloian, et al. (2008). "High in vitro production of ant-canceric indole alkaloids from periwinkle (Catharanthus roseus) tissue culture." African Journal of Biotechnology 7(16): 2834-2839
  3. Baerheim-Svendsen, A. and R. Verpoorte (1983). Chromatography of alkaloids Part A: Thin Layer Chromatography. Amsterdam, Elsevier. 23
  4. Magagula, N. L., V. Mohanlall, et al. (2012/3). Optimizing production of alkaloids in cell suspension culture, callus culture, and Agrobacterium rhizogen transformed hairy root culture of Catharanthus roseus South Africa, Durban University of Technology
  5. Roquebert, J. and P. Demichel (1984). "Inhibition of the alpha 1 and alpha 2-adrenoceptor-mediated pressor response in pithed rats by raubasine, tetrahydroalstonine and akuammigine." Eur J Pharmacol. 106(1): 3
  6. Schmelzer, G. H. (2011). Plant Resources of Tropical Africa. African ornamentals. Proposals and examples. Catharanthus roseus (L) G. Don. PROTA. Wageningen, Netherlands, PROTA foundation: 56
  7. Shams, K. A., N. M. Nazif, et al. (2009). "Isolation and characterization of antineoplastic alkaloids from Catharanthus roseus L. Don. Cultivated in Egypt." Afr. J. Traditional, Complementary and Alternative Medicines 6(2): 118 - 122
  8. Van Der Heijden, R., D. Jacobs, et al. (2004). "The Catharanthus alkaloids: pharmacognosy and biotechnology." Current Medicinal Chemistry 11(5): 607-628
  9. Wink, M. and M. F. Roberts (1998). Alkaloids: biochemistry, ecology, and medicinal applications. Alkaloids: biochemistry, ecology, and medicinal applications. New York, Plenum Press: 479

Cite this Article:

International Journal of Sciences is Open Access Journal.
This article is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International (CC BY 4.0) License.
Author(s) retain the copyrights of this article, though, publication rights are with Alkhaer Publications.

Search Articles

Issue June 2023

Volume 12, June 2023

Table of Contents

World-wide Delivery is FREE

Share this Issue with Friends:

Submit your Paper