Revista Argentina de microbiología vol:17 issue:4 pages:187-94
Crude extracts from fresh green leaves of Melia azedarach L contain an antiviral factor (FAV) able to inhibit the replication of several animal viruses, e.g. Polio, VSV, HSV, FMDV, Sindbis, Junín, Pichinde and Tacaribe in Vero or BHK-21 cells. Crude preparations were subjected to different steps of purification like chromatography on Sephadex G-100 and DEAE-Sephadex. The antiviral activity of G-100 and DEAE fractions was fully conserved, whereas contaminating proteins were lost. Two types of cytotoxicity tests were performed with the different fractions. Two-fold serial dilutions of each of them were added to preformed monolayers of Vero or BHK-21 cells and cellular viability was tested. While crude extracts were toxic at low dilutions (less than or equal to 1:10), G-100 and DEAE fractions were not. The other cytotoxicity assay consisted in seeding the cells in the presence of different concentrations of each fraction. G-100 fraction affected cell growth at low dilutions (less than or equal to 1:5), while DEAE fraction did not. It should be remarked that the purification procedure rendered a partial purified DEAE fraction with an increased specific activity (antiviral activity/mg of protein). It is concluded that an antiviral factor devoid of toxicity exists in M. azedarach L extracts, which exhibited a broad spectrum of antiviral activity.