Background: Pistacia atlantica Desf. (Anacardiaceae) has various applications for dietetic
and medicinal purposes.
Objective: The aim of the present study was to evaluate antioxidant, antiproliferative and anticholinesterase
activities of different extracts from leaf and stem of Pistacia atlantica Desf.
Methods: The antioxidant activity was performed by four methods: DPPH, ABTS, CUPRAC and
reducing power assays. Anti-cholinesterase activity was performed against acetylcholinesterase
(AChE) and Butyrylcholinesterase (BuChE) enzymes. Antiproliferative assays were investigated
against HeLa cell lines using xCELLigence RTCA instrument. The secondary metabolites composition
was established by HPLC-TOF/MS analysis.
Results: In DPPH, reducing power and in ABTS
.+ scavenging activity, all the extracts showed
strong inhibitory activity compared to synthetic antioxidants such as butylated hydroxytoluene
(BHT) and butylated hydroxyanisole (BHA), in which the activities were almost equal to the two
standards. The results were less significant in CUPRAC assay. The ethyl acetate (EtOAc) extracts
exhibited the best antioxidant activity in all tests. Moreover, P. atlantica extracts inhibited AChE
and BChE activities in a dose-dependent manner. The strongest AChE and BuChE inhibition activities
were obtained for EtOAc extract of the stem (IC50 values 15.14±0.74 and 24.01±0.21 μg/mL,
respectively) compared to galantamine (IC50 values 6.27±1.15 and 34.75±1.99 μg/mL, respectively).
P. atlantica extracts also showed significant antiproleferative activity against HeLa cell
lines, the best antiproleferative activity was obtained for the methanol and EtOAc extracts. The observed
biological activities can be attributed to the presence of phenolic compounds and flavonoids
in the extracts. The HPLC-TOF/MS analysis identified the presence of 22 phytochemicals. Gallic
acid and rutin were the main compounds detected. Cichoric, gentisic, vanillic, protocatechuic and
rosmarinic acids as well as catechin and quercetin were also present.
Conclusion: This study demonstrated good antioxidant, anticholinesterase and antiproliferative activities
of P. atlantica extracts, which opens up new possibilities for pharmaceutical and food industries.