Planta Med 1979; 36(6): 119-127
DOI: 10.1055/s-0028-1097251
Research Articles

© Georg Thieme Verlag Stuttgart · New York

Alkaloids from Leaves and Flowers of Colchicum autumnale L.1

V. Malichová, H. Potěšijová, V. Preininger, F. Šantavý
  • Institute of Chemistry, Medical Faculty, Palacký University, Olomouc, CSSR.
1 Substances from Plants of the Subfamily Wurmbaeoideae and their Derivatives. Part LXXXV. Part LXXXIV: Collection Czechoslov. Chem. Commun. 42,. 1581 (1977).
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Publication History

Publication Date:
13 January 2009 (online)


The alkaloid content in fresh and dry leaves and flowers of Colchicum autumnale L. was studied. Results show that 2– and 3–demethylated derivatives of colchicine do not occur in extracts from fresh material but they are present in considerable quantity in material slowly dried before extraction due to enzymatic liberation. Demethylated products are not bound in form of glycosides, but are attached in an unknown manner to cell constituents. In addition to known alkaloids we have found cornigerine, 2– and 3–demethyl–N–deacetyl–N–formylcolchicine, 2– and 3–demethyl–demecolcine, and a new alkaloid 2–de–methylcolchifoline but no alkaloids without tropolone ring. Suitably dried leaves and flowers could be used for the commercial isolation of colchicine alkaloids – instead of seeds and corms which are difficult to obtain.