Omana Sukumaran Bindhu, Maheshwari Kumari Singh

Pharmacognosy Magazine 2014 10(38):350-356

Introduction: Plant latex is a natural source of biologically active compounds and several hydrolytic enzymes responsible for their diverse health benefits. Recent past has witnessed substantial progress in understanding their supplementary industrial and pharmaceutical utility. Calotropis gigantea is one of the important latex producing plants belonging to asclepediaceae family with wide ethnopharmacological applications and is rich in proteolytic enzymes. Present study investigates hemostatic, milk clotting and blood stain removal potential of C. gigantea latex proteases. Materials and Methods: The protease activity of crude enzyme (CE), obtained by centrifugation followed by ammonium sulphate precipitation and dialysis, was assayed using casein as the substrate. Effect of pH, temperature and specific inhibitors on protease activity was determined. Native PAGE and in gel protease activity of CE was performed. Hemostatic (Fibrinogen polymerization, fibrinogen agarose plate and blood clot lysis assays), milk clotting and blood stain removal efficacies of CE were determined. Results: CE exhibited high caseinolytic activity. Enzyme activity was optimum at 37-50ºC and pH 8.0. Fibrinogen polymerization assay showed concentration dependent increase in turbidity indicating thrombin like activity which was further confirmed by fibrinogen agarose plate assays. Clot lysis assay indicated 92.41% thrombolysis by CE in 90 min. CE also revealed significantly high ratio of milk clotting to protease activity (Milk Clotting Index, MCI = 827.59 ± 1.52). Complete destaining of blood stained fabric was observed when incubated with 1% detergent incorporated with 0.1mg/ml CE. The study highlights and validates the compound application potential of latex cysteine proteases from C. gigantea.