Evolution of flower pigments in the genus Iris (Iridaceae)
Flower colour polymorphism in Iris chamaeiris: Does the colour matter?
Could flower colour be involved in speciation process in the Californica series of the genus Iris?
July 2007- June 2011: Join the research project in Dr. Zhao’s lab supported by the National Basic Research Program of China (2007CB106802).
The project focused on chemical constituents and pharmacological activities of two species of the genus Iris (Iridaceae) : Iris tenuifolia (belongs to the subgenus Limniris, section Limniris, collected from Xilingol League of Inner Mongolia, China in July 2007) and Iris halophila var. sogdiana (belongs to the subgenus Xyridion, section Xyridion, collected from Aksu prefecture of Xinjiang, China, in June 2009). Their important adaptation to the special environment (drought and saline environment, respectively), essential traditional medicinal value as ethnic medicine (traditional Mongolian herb medicine and Uighur herb medicine, respectively) and the apparent rich chemical diversity prompted us to search for unusual-structural and bio-active natural products via chromatographic and spectroscopic techniques.
We have isolated (Open Column Chromatography, MPLC, HPLC, Preparative TLC etc.) and characterized (UV, MS, 1D/2D-NMR, X-ray Diffraction etc.) 16 compounds from roots and rhizomes of the two species, including 4 unusual-structural novel flavonoid compounds. Initial activity tests of the crude extracts and compounds from Iris tenuifolia showed good potential for drug development.
(i) Yan-Mei Cui, Hui Wang, Quan-Ru Liu, Mei Han, Yang Lu, Chang-Qi Zhao. Flavans from Iris tenuifolia and their Effects on β-amyloid Aggregation and Neural Stem Cells Proliferation in vitro. Bioorganic & Medicinal Chemistry Letters, 2011, 21(15): 4400-4403.
(ii) Hui Wang, Yan-Mei Cui, Chang-Qi Zhao. Flavonoids of the genus Iris (Iridaceae). Mini-reviews in Medicinal Chemistry, 2010, 10(7): 643-661.