Evaluation of parasite and host phenolic composition and bioactivities - The Practical Case of Cytinus hypocistis (L.) L. and Halimium lasianthum (Lam.) Greuter uri icon


  • Cytinus hypocistis (L.) L. is a comestible holoparasite with great potential for cosmeceutical application. Although its high tannin content has been associated with its bioactive and inhibitory enzyme properties, this is the first report establishing a relationship between parasite and host (Halimium lasianthum (Lam.) Greuter) phenolic profile and bioactive properties. Thus, five extracts (aerial and root extracts of non-parasited and parasited H. lasianthum and C. hypocistis) were evaluated. The tentative identification of both species comprises 39 phenolic compounds. Hydrolysable tannins and flavonoids were the main identified groups in C. hypocistis and H. lasianthum extracts, respectively. Regarding bioactivities, C. hypocistis exhibited excellent antioxidant results both in Oxidative Haemolysis (OxHLIA) and inhibition of Thiobarbituric Acid Reactive Substances Formation (TBARS). The tested extracts presented antimicrobial inhibition, anti-inflammatory activity, and effective cytotoxicity against tumour cells. C. hypocistis exhibited the lowest cytotoxicity on a non-tumour cell line. Principal Component Analysis (PCA) was a suitable approach to analyse differences among samples, explaining up to 67% of data variability and suggesting no similarities between parasite and host phenolic composition and bioactivities. Therefore, this comparative study emphasises the significance of both species as a source of biologically active compounds.

publication date

  • January 1, 2022