Presentation Title

The Separation and Quantification of Mesembrine Alkaloids in the South African Plant, Sceletium tortuosum: A Possible Alternative to Antidepressants

Faculty Mentor

David Schrum

Start Date

18-11-2017 12:30 PM

End Date

18-11-2017 1:30 PM

Location

BSC-Ursa Minor 124

Session

Poster 2

Type of Presentation

Poster

Subject Area

physical_mathematical_sciences

Abstract

The South African plant, Sceletium tortuosum, is known to elevate mood and decrease anxiety, stress, and tension. If taken in a proper dosage, this plant can induce euphoria and possibly sedation. The neurological effects are due to the four mesembrine alkaloids in the plant that act as selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs). These mesembrine alkaloids include Mesembrenol, Mesembranol, Mesembrine, and Mesembrenone. The isolation and quantification of each alkaloid is important for they can potentially be harvested for pharmaceutical uses. Each mesembrine alkaloid will be isolated and collected in milligram amounts in order to test for biological activity that will determine their effectiveness as SSRIs. In this study, the dry milled form of Sceletium tortuosum was reduced to a crude oil, extracting out the four mesembrine alkaloids. The products were then characterized by gas chromatography–mass spectrometry (GC-MS). Currently, the crude oil products are being analyzed on the Biotage instrument in order to vary parameters for optimal separation for future trials. Future work will involve further isolation of the mesembrines and continual repetition of the extraction process in order to obtain milligram amounts of each alkaloid to be tested for biological activity to determine their effectiveness as SSRIs.

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Nov 18th, 12:30 PM Nov 18th, 1:30 PM

The Separation and Quantification of Mesembrine Alkaloids in the South African Plant, Sceletium tortuosum: A Possible Alternative to Antidepressants

BSC-Ursa Minor 124

The South African plant, Sceletium tortuosum, is known to elevate mood and decrease anxiety, stress, and tension. If taken in a proper dosage, this plant can induce euphoria and possibly sedation. The neurological effects are due to the four mesembrine alkaloids in the plant that act as selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs). These mesembrine alkaloids include Mesembrenol, Mesembranol, Mesembrine, and Mesembrenone. The isolation and quantification of each alkaloid is important for they can potentially be harvested for pharmaceutical uses. Each mesembrine alkaloid will be isolated and collected in milligram amounts in order to test for biological activity that will determine their effectiveness as SSRIs. In this study, the dry milled form of Sceletium tortuosum was reduced to a crude oil, extracting out the four mesembrine alkaloids. The products were then characterized by gas chromatography–mass spectrometry (GC-MS). Currently, the crude oil products are being analyzed on the Biotage instrument in order to vary parameters for optimal separation for future trials. Future work will involve further isolation of the mesembrines and continual repetition of the extraction process in order to obtain milligram amounts of each alkaloid to be tested for biological activity to determine their effectiveness as SSRIs.