Dibenzocyclooctadiene lignans from Schisandra spp. selectively inhibit the growth of the intracellular bacteria Chlamydia pneumoniae and Chlamydia trachomatis.

Hakala E, Hanski L, Uvell H, Yrjönen T, Vuorela H, Elofsson M, Vuorela PM

J. Antibiot. 68 (10) 609-614 [2015-10-00; online 2015-05-07]

Lignans from Schisandra chinensis berries show various pharmacological activities, of which their antioxidative and cytoprotective properties are among the most studied ones. Here, the first report on antibacterial properties of six dibenzocyclooctadiene lignans found in Schisandra spp. is presented. The activity was shown on two related intracellular Gram-negative bacteria Chlamydia pneumoniae and Chlamydia trachomatis upon their infection in human epithelial cells. All six lignans inhibited C. pneumoniae inclusion formation and infectious progeny production. Schisandrin B inhibited C. pneumoniae inclusion formation even when administered 8 h post infection, indicating a target that occurs relatively late within the infection cycle. Upon infection, lignan-pretreated C. pneumoniae elementary bodies had impaired inclusion formation capacity. The presence and substitution pattern of methylenedioxy, methoxy and hydroxyl groups of the lignans had a profound impact on the antichlamydial activity. In addition our data suggest that the antichlamydial activity is not caused only by the antioxidative properties of the lignans. None of the compounds showed inhibition on seven other bacteria, suggesting a degree of selectivity of the antibacterial effect. Taken together, the data presented support a role of the studied lignans as interesting antichlamydial lead compounds.

Chemical Biology Consortium Sweden (CBCS) [Collaborative]

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PubMed 25944533

DOI 10.1038/ja.2015.48

Crossref 10.1038/ja.2015.48

pii: ja201548

Laboratories for Chemical Biology Umeå (LCBU)