Phytochemical-based evidence of the health benefits of bidens pilosa extracts and cytotoxicity
Oladayo, Amed Idris
Mark Steve, Maboeta
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Purpose Bidens pilosa L. is traditionally used as a flavouring agent in foods, in the treatment of diseases, in agriculture as a biopesticide and herbicide, and in the phytoremediation of soils contaminated with heavy metals. The vast range of uses of B. pilosa for a variety of purposes is questionable, hence motivating the objectives of this study, which are to assess the cytotoxicity, health benefits, and/or risks of B. pilosa using chemical-based evidence. Methods A real-time cell analysis (xCELLigence system), ultra-high-performance liquid chromatography coupled to a quadrupole-time-of-flight mass spectrometer, high-performance liquid chromatography with a diode array detector, and chemical-based spectrophotometric methods were adopted in the study. Results High concentrations of the ethanol extracts exhibited cytotoxic activity on HepG2 (cancerous), and Vero (non-can- cerous) cell lines, whereas the water extracts promoted cell proliferation at selected concentrations. The chemical profiling enabled the separation as well as characterisation of 137 phytochemicals. These were mainly phenolic acids, flavonoids, fatty acids, coumarins, and furanocoumarins. There was no toxic compound identified. Conclusion The ethanol extracts are generally more potent and exhibit stronger antioxidant activity and cytotoxicity, prob- ably due to the presence of more flavonoids and phenolic acids, validating the uses of B. pilosa and its relevance as a source of functional phytochemicals.