Ponapensin, a cyclopenta[bc]benzopyran with potent NF-κB inhibitory activity from Aglaia ponapensis

Angela A. Salim, Alison D. Pawlus, Hee Byung Chai, Norman R. Farnsworth, A. Douglas Kinghorn, Esperanza J. Carcache-Blanco

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30 Scopus citations


Two new compounds, a cyclopenta[bc]benzopyran, ponapensin (1), and an aglaialactone, 5,6-desmethylenedioxy-5-methoxy-aglalactone (2), together with nine known compounds were isolated from the CHCl3 soluble extract of the leaves and twigs of Aglaia ponapensis. Their structures were established by spectroscopic data interpretation. Ponapensin (1) exhibited significant NF-κB inhibitory activity in an Elisa assay, and was found to be more potent than the positive control rocaglamide. All of the compounds isolated were also tested in a panel of human cancer cell lines, with the known sterol E-volkendousin (3) and methyl rocaglate (aglafoline) found to be the only active substances.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)109-112
Number of pages4
JournalBioorganic and Medicinal Chemistry Letters
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 1 2007

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This investigation was supported by a new faculty start up package to E. J. C. -B. and, in part, by Grant U19-CA52956 from NCI/NIH (A. D. K.). We thank Dr. Y. Sagawa and S. F. Glassman, for the collection and identification of the plant material, respectively, with financial support from the NCI. We also thank Mr. J. Fowble, College of Pharmacy, The Ohio State University, for facilitating the running of the 400 MHz NMR instrument, and Dr. Christopher M. Haddad and Ms. Susan Fletcher, Department of Chemistry, The Ohio State University, for the mass spectrometric data.


  • Aglaia ponapensis
  • Cyclopenta[bc]benzopyran
  • NF-κB
  • Ponapensin

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