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Diverse Therapeutic Potential of Nitidine, A Comprehensive Review

[ Vol. 19 , Issue. 12 ]


Haroon Khan*, Taibi Ben Hadda and Rachid Touzani   Pages 986 - 991 ( 6 )


Background: Nitidine is a bioactive plant benzophenanthridine alkaloid isolated from the root of Zanthoxylum nitidum. Since its discovery in 1959, literature revealed marked anticancer, neuroprotective, antimalarial, anti-HIV, analgesic, anti-inflammatory and antifungal activities. However, its clinical status is not defined yet.

Methods: Various scientific search engines were used for the available literature All the peer-reviewed journals were considered in this review. MOE (molecular operating environment) ligand-based pharmacophores features of nitidine were also studied to determine the various targeted sites in the molecule.

Results: The search revealed an outstanding therapeutic potential in terms of various pharmacological effects of the molecule. MOE (Molecular Operating Environment) ligand-based pharmacophores features of nitidine showed that it has got multiple bioactive functional sites that implicate its sensitivity towards several receptors protein and therefore could be a useful lead compound. Despite having an outstanding therapeutic potential, it is not subjected to clinical trial yet, probably, due to host toxicity and being a quaternary salt, charged at all body pH values, and therefore, absorption through the gastro-intestinal-tract could be an issue.

Conclusion: The issues can be resolved while applying latest pharmaceutical technologies, synthesizing its derivatives and subsequent clinical studies and thus could lead to the discovery of new clinically effective molecule(s).


Nitidine, benzophenanthridine, alkaloid, Zanthoxylum nitidum, MOE ligand based pharmacophores features, clinical trials.


Department of Pharmacy, Abdul Wali Khan University, Mardan 23200, Mohammed First University, Faculty of Sciences Materials Chemistry Laboratory, Oujda 60000, Mohammed First University, Faculty of Sciences Materials Chemistry Laboratory, Oujda 60000

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