Generic placeholder image

Current Traditional Medicine


ISSN (Print): 2215-0838
ISSN (Online): 2215-0846

Review Article

Mediterranean Cypress “Cupressus sempervirens”: A Review on Phytochemical and Pharmacological Properties

Author(s): Mohd Kamil Hussain, Mohammad Saquib, Tanveer Ahamad, Shahnaaz Khatoon and Mohammad Faheem Khan*

Volume 5, Issue 4, 2019

Page: [278 - 297] Pages: 20

DOI: 10.2174/2215083805666190619103224

Price: $65


Background: Cupressus sempervirens (C. sempervirens), commonly known as Mediterranean cypress is native to the eastern Mediterranean region, North America and subtropical Asia at higher altitudes. The crude, semi-purified and purified extracts of C. sempervirens have long been recognized for its pharmacological activities as evidenced by its extensive use by indigenous cultures in herbal medicines, tonics and infusion. Pharmacological properties displayed the prodigious biological activities that could be further explored for development of new herbal formulations or therapeutic agents.

Aims: This review presents a critical analysis of the current state of knowledge about the ethno medicinal uses, phytochemistry and pharmacological properties of C. sempervirens L and its future applications.

Materials and Methods: Literature related to C. sempervirens and its synonyms were searched on the available online literature databases such as Google Scholar, PubMed, SciFinder, Scopus, Springer, ScienceDirect, Wiley, ACS, Scielo and Web of Science, thesis, dissertations, books, reports, local herbal encyclopedias and other relevant websites.

Results: A review of literature showed that decoction of cones and young branches of C. sempervirens gave astonishing effect in the treatment of hemorrhoids and to treat excessive sweating in the feet. Enormous pharmacological properties have been found including antiseptic, anti-inflammatory, antispasmodic, antioxidant, antimicrobial, hepatoprotective, wound-healing, anticoagulant, antihyperlipidemic, anticancer, neurobiological, antidiabetic, and antiosteoporotic. Approximately 109 phytochemical constituents have been searched out as isolates from various parts of this plant comprising mostly diterpenoids and biflavonoids.

Conclusion: Numerous in vivo and in vitro studies have provided support for the traditional uses of C. sempervirens but further research work is required towards isolating more active constituents and for validating its clinical utilization in the herbal formulations for humans as well as investigating any potential toxicity for future clinical studies.

Keywords: Cupressus sempervirens L., Mediterranean cypress, 8, 8’-biapigenin, diterpenoids, bioflavonoids, trans-communic acid.

Graphical Abstract
Wealth of India (Raw Materials) In: Council of Scientific and Industrial Research, New Delhi, India 1950; p. 2: 398.
Debreczy Z, Racz I, Musial K, Eds. Conifers Around the World. 1st ed. Dendro Press 2012; p. 1089.
Viñas RA, Caudullo G, Oliveira S, de Rigo D. Cupressus sempervirens in Europe: Distribution, habitat, usage and threats 2016.
Rawat P, Khan MF, Kumar M, et al. Constituents from fruits of Cupressus sempervirens. Fitoterapia 2010; 81(3): 162-6.
[] [PMID: 19686818]
Alfazairy AAM. Antimicrobial activity of certain essential oils against hindgut symbionts of the drywood termite Kalotermes flavicollis Fabr and prevalent fungi on termite-infested wood. J Appl Entomol 2004; 128: 554-60.
Alzweiri M, Sarhan AA, Mansi K, Hudaib M, Aburjai T. Ethnopharmacological survey of medicinal herbs in Jordan, the Northern Badia region. J Ethnopharmacol 2011; 137(1): 27-35.
[] [PMID: 21335083]
Chopra RN, Nayar SL, Chopra IC. Glossary of Indian Medicinal Plants. New Delhi: Council of Scientific and Industrial Research 1986.
El-Quesni FEM, Taha LS, Ibrahim SMM, Farahat MM. Growth and chemical constituents of Cupressus sempervirens L. plant as influence by kinetin and iron treatments at Nubaria. Am-Eurasian J Agric Environ Sci 2007; 2: 282-8.
Tisserand R, Balacs T. Essential oil safety: A Guide for Health Care Professionals In: Churchill Livingstone, UK 1995; p. 28:31.
Holmes P. The Energetics of Western Herbs In. Artemis Press: Boulder, USA 1989.
Enzell C, Erdtman H. The chemistry of the natural order Cupressales. XIX: The occurrence of Manool in Cupressus sempervirens L. Acta Chem Scand 1957; 11: 902-3.
Piovetti L, Gonzalez E, Diara A. Diterpene composition of Cupressus dupreziana and Cupressus sempervirens. Phytochemistry 1980; 19: 2772-3.
Piovetti L, Francisco C, Pauly G, Benchabane O, Bernard-Dagan C, Diara A. Volatile constituents of Cupressus dupreziana and the sesquiterpenes of Cupressus sempervirens. Phytochemistry 1981; 20: 1299-302.
Piovetti L, Yani A, Combaut G, Diara A. Waxes of Cupressus dupreziana and Cupressus sempervirens. Phytochemistry 1981; 20: 1135-6.
Tabacchi R, Garnero J, Buil P. Sur la présence d’un ester du décadiénol-2(E), 4(Z) et de diterpènesdansl’ huileessentielle de cyprès (Cupressus sempervirens L.). Helv Chim Acta 1975; 58: 1184-7.
Garnero J, Buil P, Joulain D, Tabacchi R. Contribution to the study of the chemical composition of the essential oil from the terminal branches of the cypress tree in the Grasse area-Cupressus sempervirens Linnaeus-Cupressus fastigiata De Candolle. Int Congr Essent Oils [Pap] 1979; 7: 379-83.
Pauly G, Yani A, Piovetti L, Bernard-Dagan C. Volatile constituents of the leaves of Cupressus dupreziana and Cupressus sempervirens. Phytochemistry 1983; 22: 957-9.
Floreani SA, Retamar JA, Gros EG. Essential oil of Cupressus sempervirens (cultivar ‘Stricta’). Essenze Deriv Agrum 1985; 51: 10-9.
Chanegriha N, Baaliouamer A, Meklati BY, Favre-Bonvin J, Alamercery S. Chemical composition of algerian cypress essential oil. J Essent Oil Res 1993; 5: 671-4.
Ibrahim NA, El-Seedi HR, Mohammed MM. Constituents and biological activity of the chloroform extract and essential oil of Cupressus sempervirens. Chem Nat Compd 2009; 45: 309-13.
Nejia H, Séverine C, Jalloul B, Mehrez R, Stéphane CJ. Extraction of essential oil from Cupressus sempervirens: Comparison of global yields, chemical composition and antioxidant activity obtained by hydrodistillation and supercritical extraction. Nat Prod Res 2013; 27(19): 1795-9.
[] [PMID: 23316864]
Zouaghi N, Bellel C, Cavaleiro C, Nadjemi B, Yousfi M. Identification of volatile compounds, antimicrobial properties and antioxidant activity from leaves, cones and stems of Cupressus sempervirens from Algeria. Afr J Microbiol Res 2015; 9: 83-90.
Khabir M, Khatoon F, Ansari WH. Flavonoids of Cupressus sempervirens and Cupressus cashmeriana. J Nat Prod 1987; 50: 511-2.
Romani A, Galardi C, Pinelli P, Mulinacci N, Heimler D. HPLC quantification of flavonoids and biflavonoids in Cupressaceae leaves. Chromatographia 2002; 56: 469-74.
Ibrahim NA, El-Seedi HR, Mohammed MM. Phytochemical investigation and hepatoprotective activity of Cupressus sempervirens L. leaves growing in Egypt. Nat Prod Res 2007; 21(10): 857-66.
[] [PMID: 17680494]
Mangoni L, Belardini M. Components of Cupressus sempervirens resin. I. Communic acid, cupressic acid and isocupressic acid. Gazz Chim Ital 1964; 94: 1108-21.
Maillard C, Vaillant J, Babadjamian A, Diaz-Lanza AM, Balansard G. A review of neocupressic acids 1, 2 and 3 structures in green galbulus of Cupressus sempervirens L. Plantes Medicinales et Phytotherapie 1993; 26: 5-9.
Mangoni L, Caputo R. Sempervirol, a novel type of diterpene phenol. Tetrahedron Lett 1967; 8: 673-5.
Kolayli S, Ocak M, Aliyazicioglu R, Karaoglu S. Chemical analysis and biological activities of essential oils from trunk-barks of 8 trees. Asian J Chem 2009; 21: 2684-94.
Wang C, Qu W, Sun W, Li Y. The antioxidation and antitumor activity and chemical characterization of essential oil from Cupressus sempervirens L. Tianran Chanwu Yanjiu Yu Kaifa 2008; 20: 223-8.
Aazza S, Lyoussi B, Miguel MG. Antioxidant and antiacetylcholinesterase activities of some commercial essential oils and their major compounds. Molecules 2011; 16(9): 7672-90.
[] [PMID: 21900869]
Fayed SA. Chemical composition, antioxidant, anticancer properties and toxicity evaluation of leaf essential oil of Cupressus sempervirens. Not Bot Horti Agrobot Cluj-Napoca 2015; 43: 320-6.
Sacchetti G, Maietti S, Muzzoli M, et al. Comparative evaluation of 11 essential oils of different origin as functional antioxidants, antiradicals and antimicrobials in foods. Food Chem 2005; 91: 621-32.
Tumen I, Senol FS, Orhan IE. Evaluation of possible in vitro neurobiological effects of two varieties of Cupressus sempervirens (Mediterranean cypress) through their antioxidant and enzyme inhibition actions. Turkish J Biochem 2012; 37: 5-13.
Asgary S, Naderi GA, Shams Ardekani MR, et al. Chemical analysis and biological activities of Cupressus sempervirens var. horizontalis essential oils. Pharm Biol 2013; 51(2): 137-44.
[] [PMID: 23167275]
Aazza S, Lyoussi B, Megías C, et al. Anti-oxidant, anti-inflammatory and anti-proliferative activities of Moroccan commercial essential oils. Nat Prod Commun 2014; 9(4): 587-94.
[] [PMID: 24868891]
Senol FS, Orhan IE, Ustun O. In vitro cholinesterase inhibitory and antioxidant effect of selected coniferous tree species. Asian Pac J Trop Med 2015; 8(4): 269-75.
[] [PMID: 25975497]
Zengin G, Mollica A, Aktumsek A, Picot CMN, Mahomoodally MF. In vitro and in silico insights of Cupressus sempervirens, Artemisia absinthium and Lippia triphylla: Bridging traditional knowledge and scientific validation. Eur J Integr Med 2017; 12: 135-41.
Loizzo MR, Saab AM, Tundis R, et al. Phytochemical analysis and in vitro antiviral activities of the essential oils of seven Lebanon species. Chem Biodivers 2008; 5(3): 461-70.
[] [PMID: 18357554]
Mazari K, Bendimerad N, Bekhechi C, Fernandez X. Chemical composition and antimicrobial activity of essential oils isolated from Algerian Juniperus phoenicea L. and Cupressus sempervirens L. J Med Plants Res 2010; 4: 959-64.
Hussain J, Khan FA, Khattak MR, Shah SMM, Zahoor M, Shah SMH. Screening of crude phytochemicals and antimicrobial activities of selected medicinal plants of Peshawar Region Khyber Pakhtoon Khawa Pakistan. J Pharm Res 2011; 4: 3712-6.
Nouri AB, Dhifi W, Bellili S, et al. Chemical composition, antioxidant potential, and antibacterial activity of essential oil cones of Tunisian Cupressus sempervirens, J Chem 2015; 01-09. (Article ID 538929)
Turchetti B, Pinelli P, Buzzini P, et al. In vitro antimycotic activity of some plant extracts towards yeast and yeast-like strains. Phytother Res 2005; 19(1): 44-9.
[] [PMID: 15798996]
Toroglu S. In vitro antimicrobial activity and antagonistic effect of essential oils from plant species. J Environ Biol 2007; 28(3): 551-9.
[PMID: 18380074]
Mothana RAA, Gruenert R, Bednarski PJ, Lindequist U. Evaluation of the in vitro anticancer, antimicrobial and antioxidant activities of some Yemeni plants used in folk medicine. Pharmazie 2009; 64(4): 260-8.
[PMID: 19435146]
Zhang J, Rahman AA, Jain S, et al. Antimicrobial and antiparasitic abietane diterpenoids from Cupressus sempervirens. Res Rep Med Chem 2012; 2: 1-6.
Mohareb ASO, Badawy MEI, Abdelgaleil SAM. Antifungal activity of essential oils isolated from Egyptian plants against wood decay fungi. J Wood Sci 2013; 59: 499-505.
Afsharzadeh M, Naderinasab M, Tayarani Najaran Z, Barzin M, Emami SA. In-vitro antimicrobial activities of some Iranian conifers. Iran J Pharm Res 2013; 12(1): 63-74.
[PMID: 24250573]
Selim SA, Adam ME, Hassan SM, Albalawi AR. Chemical composition, antimicrobial and antibiofilm activity of the essential oil and methanol extract of the Mediterranean cypress (Cupressus sempervirens L.). BMC Complement Altern Med 2014; 14: 179-7.
[] [PMID: 24890383]
Badawy MEI, Abdelgaleil SAM. Composition and antimicrobial activity of essential oils isolated from Egyptian plants against plant pathogenic bacteria and fungi. Ind Crops Prod 2014; 52: 776-82.
Badawy MEI, Kherallah IEA, Mohareb ASO, Salem MZM, Yousef HA. Chemical composition and antifungal activity of essential oils isolated from Cupressus sempervirens L. and Juniperus phoenicea L. grown in Al-Jabel Al-Akhdar Region, Libya against Botrytis cinerea. Nat Prod J 2017; 7(4): 298-308.
Amouroux P, Jean D, Lamaison JL. Antiviral activity in vitro of Cupressus sempervirens on two human retroviruses HIV and HTLV. Phytother Res 1998; 12: 367-78.
[ 5<367:AID-PTR301>3.0.CO;2-N]
Emami SA, Tayarani-Najaran Z, Ghannad MS, Karamadini PK, Karamadini MK. Antiviral Activity of Obtained Extracts from Different Parts ofCupressus sempervirens against Herpes Simplex Virus Type 1. Iran J Basic Med Sci 2009; 12: 133-9.
Koriem KMM. Lead toxicity and the protective role of Cupressus sempervirens seeds growing in Egypt Rev Latinoam. Quím 2009; 37: 230-42.
Ali SA, Rizk MZ, Ibrahim NA, Abdallah MS, Sharara HM, Moustafa MM. Protective role of Juniperus phoenicea and Cupressus sempervirens against CCl(4). World J Gastrointest Pharmacol Ther 2010; 1(6): 123-31.
[] [PMID: 21577307]
Koriem KMM, Gad IB, Nasiry ZK. Protective effect of Cupressus sempervirens extract against indomethacin-induced gastric ulcer in rats. Interdiscip Toxicol 2015; 8(1): 25-34.
[] [PMID: 27486357]
Meunier MT, Villie F, Bastide P. The interaction of Cupressus sempervirens L. proanthocyanidolic oligomers with elastase and elastins. J Pharm Belg 1994; 49(6): 453-61.
[PMID: 7884634]
Tumen I, Süntar I, Keleş H, Küpeli Akkol E. A therapeutic approach for wound healing by using essential oils of cupressus and juniperus species growing in Turkey. Evid Based Complement Alternat Med 2012.2012728281
[] [PMID: 21941588]
Tognolini M, Barocelli E, Ballabeni V, et al. Comparative screening of plant essential oils: Phenylpropanoid moiety as basic core for antiplatelet activity. Life Sci 2006; 78(13): 1419-32.
[] [PMID: 16274702]
Ulusal BG, Arikan S, Durusoy C. Anticoagulant effect of Cupressus sempervirens. Phytother Res 2007; 21(11): 1116-22.
[] [PMID: 17628881]
Landolt PJ, Hofstetter RW, Biddick LL. Plant essential oils as arrestants and repellents for neonate larvae of the codling moth (Lepidoptera: Tortricidae). Environ Entomol 1999; 28: 954-60.
Tapondjou AL, Adler C, Fontem DA, Bouda H, Reichmuth C. Bioactivities of cymol and essential oils of Cupressus sempervirens and Eucalyptus saligna against Sitophilus zeamais Motschulsky and Tribolium confusum du Val. J Stored Prod Res 2005; 41: 91-102.
Giatropoulos A, Pitarokili D, Papaioannou F, et al. Essential oil composition, adult repellency and larvicidal activity of eight Cupressaceae species from Greece against Aedes albopictus (Diptera: Culicidae). Parasitol Res 2013; 112(3): 1113-23.
[] [PMID: 23263252]
Karkabounas S, Kiortsis DN, Zelovitis J, et al. Effects of Cupressus sempervirens cone extract on lipid parameters in Wistar rats. In Vivo 2003; 17(1): 101-3.
[PMID: 12655800]
Alkofahi A, Batshoun R, Qwis W, Najib N. Biological activity of some Jordanian medicinal plant extracts. Fitoterapia 1997; 68: 163-8.
Emami SA, Sadeghi-Aliabadi H, Saeidi M, Jafarian A. Cytotoxic evaluations of Iranian conifers on cancer cells. Pharm Biol 2005; 43(4): 299-304.
[] [PMID: 28925830]
Loizzo MR, Tundis R, Menichini F, Saab AM, Statti GA, Menichini F. Antiproliferative effects of essential oils and their major constituents in human renal adenocarcinoma and amelanotic melanoma cells. Cell Prolif 2008; 41(6): 1002-12.
[] [PMID: 19040575]
Mehdi A, Fatemeh M, Aysa R, et al. Cupressus sempervirens extract inhibited human basal cell carcinoma tumorigenesis, local invasion, and angiogenic property. Comp Clin Pathol 2017; 26: 203-11.
Verma V, Sharma V, Singh V, et al. Labda-8(17),12,14-trien-19-oic acid contained in fruits of Cupressus sempervirens suppresses benign prostatic hyperplasia in rat and in vitro human models through inhibition of androgen and STAT-3 signaling. Phytother Res 2014; 28(8): 1196-203.
[] [PMID: 24399792]
Rhee IK, Appels N, Luijendijk T, Irth H, Verpoorte R. Determining acetylcholinesterase inhibitory activity in plant extracts using a fluorimetric flow assay. Phytochem Anal 2003; 14(3): 145-9.
[] [PMID: 12793460]
Pohanka M, Hrabinova M, Kuca K, Simonato JP. Assessment of acetylcholinesterase activity using indoxylacetate and comparison with the standard Ellman’s method. Int J Mol Sci 2011; 12(4): 2631-40.
[] [PMID: 21731462]
Khan MF, Kumar P, Pandey J, Srivastava AK, Tamrakar AK, Maurya R. Synthesis of novel imbricatolic acid analogues via insertion of N-substituted piperazine at C-15/C-19 positions, displaying glucose uptake stimulation in L6 skeletal muscle cells. Bioorg Med Chem Lett 2012; 22(14): 4636-9.
[] [PMID: 22726926]
Khan MF, Azad CS, Kumar A, Saini M, Narula AK, Jain S. Novel imbricatolic acid derivatives as protein tyrosine phosphatase-1B inhibitors: Design, synthesis, biological evaluation and molecular docking. Bioorg Med Chem Lett 2016; 26(8): 1988-92.
[] [PMID: 26965864]
Boussoussa H, Khacheba I, Berramdane T, Maamri A, Bendahgane H, Yousfi M. In vitro antidiabetic effect of saponins and phenolic extracts from fruits and seeds of algerian cypress tree: Cupressus sempervirens L. Curr Enzym Inhib 2018; 14(2): 92-6.
Siddiqui JA, Swarnkar G, Sharan K, et al. 8,8′'-Biapigeninyl stimulates osteoblast functions and inhibits osteoclast and adipocyte functions: Osteoprotective action of 8,8′'-biapigeninyl in ovariectomized mice. Mol Cell Endocrinol 2010; 323(2): 256-67.
[] [PMID: 20380869]
Khan MF, Dev K, Lahiri S, et al. Osteogenic activity of natural diterpenoids isolated from Cupressus sempervirens fruits in calvarial derived osteoblast cells via differentiation and mineralization. Phytomedicine 2014; 21(14): 1794-800.
[] [PMID: 25481392]
Al-Snafi AE. Medical importance of Cupressus sempervirens- A review. IOSR J Pharm 2016; 6: 66-76.
Papa G, Romano A, Quaratino D, et al. Prevalence of sensitization to Cupressus sempervirens: A 4-year retrospective study. Sci Total Environ 2001; 270(1-3): 83-7.
[] [PMID: 11327403]
Sénéchal H, Šantrůček J, Melčová M, et al. A new allergen family involved in pollen food-associated syndrome: Snakin/gibberellin-regulated proteins. J Allergy Clin Immunol 2018; 141(1): 411-414.e4.
[] [PMID: 28782634]
Liccardi G, Calzetta L, Apicella G, et al. Allergy in adolescent population (14-18 years) living in Campania region (Southern Italy). A multicenter study. Eur Ann Allergy Clin Immunol 2019; 51(1): 44-7.
[] [PMID: 30066997]
Shahali Y, Sutra JP, Hilger C, et al. Identification of a polygalacturonase (Cup s 2) as the major CCD-bearing allergen in Cupressus sempervirens pollen. Allergy 2017; 72(11): 1806-10.
[] [PMID: 28439939]
Anibarro PC, de Alba IF, Medina AA, et al. P. Picon J. nCup a 1 as a marker of allergy to cypress pollen. Aerobiologia 2018; 34(4): 573-84.
Sénéchal H, Keykhosravi S, Couderc R, et al. Pollen/Fruit Syndrome: Clinical relevance of the cypress pollen allergenic gibberellin-regulated protein. Allergy Asthma Immunol Res 2019; 11(1): 143-51.
[] [PMID: 30479084]

Rights & Permissions Print Cite
© 2024 Bentham Science Publishers | Privacy Policy