In-silico and In-vitro Studies of Antioxidant and Sun Protection Activities of Sappan Wood (Caesalpinia sappan L.)


  • Ni Putu L. Laksmiani Department of Pharmacy, Mathematics and Natural Science Faculty, Udayana University, Bukit Jimbaran 80361, Bali, Indonesia
  • Ni Putu E. Leliqia Department of Pharmacy, Mathematics and Natural Science Faculty, Udayana University, Bukit Jimbaran 80361, Bali, Indonesia
  • Pande M. N. Armita Department of Pharmacy, Mathematics and Natural Science Faculty, Udayana University, Bukit Jimbaran 80361, Bali, Indonesia
  • Nyoman I. G. K. Arijana Department of Histology, Faculty of Medicine, Udayana University, Sudirman 80234, Bali Indonesia
  • Anak A. B. Y. Saputra Department of Pharmacy, Mathematics and Natural Science Faculty, Udayana University, Bukit Jimbaran 80361, Bali, Indonesia
  • Kadek I.  Prananingtyas Department of Pharmacy, Mathematics and Natural Science Faculty, Udayana University, Bukit Jimbaran 80361, Bali, Indonesia


Antioxidant, Docking, DPPH, FIC, Sappan wood, Sun protection


Sappan wood which contains brazilin and brazilein is known to have antioxidants potential because of its hydroxyl groups. The use of antioxidants in sunscreen preparations increases photoprotective activity. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the antioxidant activity of sappan wood, to determine the affinity of brazilein and brazilin for glutathione peroxidase (GPX) and catalase protein targets in silico, and describe the ability of sappan wood as an in vitro sun protection agent. The
antioxidant activity was assessed using the 2,2-diphenyl-1-picrylhydrazyl (DPPH) radical scavenging and ferrous ion chelating (FIC) assays, while the in silico test was carried out by using molecular docking with the autodock 4.2 programs. Sunscreen activity was tested by determining the sun protection factor (SPF) using the spectrophotometric method. Sappan wood was found to have very high antioxidant activity, with IC50 values of 0.88 ppm and 1.75 ppm for the ethyl acetate fraction and
methanol extract, respectively, which were lower than that of ascorbic acid (7.8 ppm) in the DPPH scavenging assay.. In the FIC assay, the IC50 values were 69.46, 62.59, and 10.21 ppm for the extract, the fraction and EDTA, respectively. SPF value of the extract and the fraction of sappan wood were 17.91 and 19.53 at a 200 ppm concentration each. Brazilein and brazilin in sappan wood can induce GPX and catalase. Sappan wood has great potential to be developed as a sunscreen with a dual
function as antioxidants and as UVB rays absorber. 


Shahidan MF, Shariff MKM, Jones P, Salleh E, Abdullah AM. A comparison of Mesua ferrea L. and Hura crepitans L. for shade creation and radiation modification in improving thermal comfort. Landsc Urban Plan. 2010; 97(3):168-181.

Judistiani RTD, Nirmala SA, Rahmawati M, Ghrahani R, Natalia YA, Sugianli AK, Indrati AR, Suwarsa O, Setiabudiawan B. Optimizing ultraviolet B radiation exposure to prevent vitamin D deficiency among pregnant women in the tropical zone: report form cohort study n

vitamin D status and its impact during pregnancy in Indonesia. BMC Preg Childbirth. 2019; 19(209):1-9.

Engelson O. The relationship between ultraviolet radiation exposure and Vitamin D status. Nutrients 2010; 2(5):482-495.

Korac RR and Khambholja KM. Potential of herbs in skin protection from ultraviolet radiation. Pharmacogn Rev.2011; 5(10):164-173.

Kullavanijaya P, Henry W, Lim HW. Photoprotection. J Am Acad Dermatol. 2005; 52:959-961.

Darvin M, Zastrow L, Sterry W, Lademann J. Effect of supplemented and topically applied antioxidant substances on human tissue. Skin Pharmacol Appl Skin Physiol. 2006; 19:238-247.

Nimse SB and Pal D. Free radical, natural antioxidants and their reaction mechanisms. RSC Adv. 2015; 5:27986-28006.

Devasagayam TPA, Tilak JC, Boloor KK, Sane KS, Ghaskadbi SS, Lele RD. Free radicals and antioxidants in human health: current status and future prospects. JAPI. 2004; 52:794-804.

Yoshikawa T, Toyokuni S, Yamamoto Y, Naito , (eds) Free radicals in chemistry biology and medicine. London: OICA International; 2000. 348-357 p.

Lu JM, Lin PH, Yao Q, Chen C. Chemical and molecular mechanism of antioxidants: experimental approaches and model systems. J Cell Mol Med. 2010; 14(4):840-860.

Bauza CV, Starkov A, Arumi EG. Measurements of the antioxidant enzyme activities of superoxide dismutase, catalase, and glutathione peroxidase. Meth Cell Biol. 2007; 80:379-393.

Wang L, Ding L, Yu Z, Zhang T, Ma S, Liu J. Intracellular ROS scavenging and antioxidant enzyme regulating capacities of corn gluten meal-derived antioxidant peptides in HepG2 cells. Food Res Int. 2016; 90:33-41.

Cefali LC, Ataide JA, Moriel P, Foglio MA, Mazzola PG. Plant-based active photoprotectants for sunscreens. Int J Cosmet. 2016; 38:346-353.

Saewan N and Jimtaisong A. Natural products as photoprotection. J Cosmet Dermatol. 2015; 14(1):47-63.

Gonzalez S, Lorente MF, Calzada YG. The latest in skin photoprotection. Clin Dermatol. 2008; 26(6):614-626.

Mishra AK, Mishra A, Chattopadhyay P. Herbal cosmeceuticals for photoprotection from ultraviolet B radiation: A review. Trop J Pharm Res. 2011; 10(3):351- 360.

Aburjai T and Natsheh FM. Plants used in cosmetics. Phytother Res. 2003; 17(9):987-1000.

Hubner A, Sobreira F, Neto AV, Pinto CAS, Dario MF, Diaz IEC, Lourenco FR, Rosado C, Baby AR, Bacchi EM. The synergistic behavior of antioxidant phenolic compounds obtained from winemaking waste’s valorization, increased the efficacy of a sunscreen system. Antioxid. 2019; 8(11):530.

Lim DK, Choi U, Shin DH. An oxidative activity of some solvent extract from Caesalpinia sappan Linn. Korean J Food Sci Technol. 1997; 28(1):77-82.

Jin SK, Ha SR, Choi JS. Effect of Caesalpinia sappan L. extract on physic-chemical properties of emulsion-type pork sausage during cold storage. Meat Sci. 2015; 110:245-252.

Shah MA, Bosco SJD, Mir SA. Plants extracts as natural antioxidants in meat and meat products. Meat Sci. 2014; 98(1):21-33.

Badami S, Moorkoth S, Rai SR, Kannan E, Bhojraj S. Antioxidant activity of Caesalpinia sappan heartwood. Biol Pharm Bull. 2003; 26:1534-1537.

Baba SA and Malik SA. Determination of total phenolic and flavonoid content, antimicrobial and antioxidant activity of root extract of Arisaema jacquemontii Blume. J Taibah Univ Sci. 2015; 9(4):449-454.

Chandra S, Khan S, Avula B, Lata H, Yang MH, Elsohly MA, Khan IA. Assessment of total phenolic and flavonoid content, antioxidant properties, and yield of aeroponically and conventionally grown leafy vegetables and fruit crops: A comparative study. Evid-Based Compl Altern Med. 2014; 2014:253875.

Kano M, Takayanagi T, Harada K. Antioxidative activity of anthocyanins from purple sweet potato Ipomoera batatas cultivar ayamurasaki. Biosci Biotechnol Biochem. 2005; 69(5):979-988.

Ju EJ, Bae MS, Jo EK, Jo YH, Lee SC. Antioxidant activity of different parts of eggplants. J Med Plant Res. 2011; 5(18):4610-4615.

Laksmiani NPL, Paramita NLPV, Wirasuta IMAG. In vitro and in silico antioxidant activity of purified fractions from purple sweet potato ethanolic extract. Int J Pharm Pharm Sci. 2016; 8(8):177-181.

Fonseca AP and Rafaela N. Determination of sun protection factor by UV-Vis Spectrophotometry. Health Care CurrRev. 2013; 1(1):1000108.

Mansur JS, Breder MN, Mansur MC, Azulay RD. Determination of Sun Protection Factor by Spectrophotometry. An Bras Dermatol. 1986; 61:121-124.

Jain AJ and Nicholls A. Recommendations for evaluational methods. J Comput Aided Mol. 2008; 22:133-139.

Laksmiani NPL, Sanjaya IKN, Leliqia NPE. The activity of avocado (Persea Americana Mill.) seed extract containing catechin as a skin lightening agent. J Pharm Pharmacogn Res. 2020; 8(5):449-456.

Kozlowska M, Scibisz I, Zareba D, Ziarno M. Antioxidant properties and effect on lactic acid bacterial growth of spice extracts. CyTA – J Food. 2015; 13(4):573-577.

Stratil P, Klejdus B, Kuban V. Determination of total content of phenolic compounds and their antioxidant activity in vegetables-evaluation of spectrophotometric methods. J Agric Food Chem. 2006; 54(3):607-616.

Ya QM, Xing QY, Zhong XF, Jian CC, Gui HX, Dong HL. Phenolic compounds and antioxidant activity of extracts from ultrasonic treatment of satsuma mandarin (Citrus unshui Marc.) peels. J Agric Food Chem. 2008; 56(14):5682-5690.

Khanum R, Mazhar F, Jahangir M. Antioxidant evaluations of polar and non-polar fractions of Cajanus cajan seeds. J Med Plant Res. 2015; 9(6):193-198.

Oliveira FC, Edwards HGM, Velozo ES, Nesbitt M. Vibrational spectroscopic study of brazilin and brazilein, the main constituents of brazilwood from Brazil. Vib Spectrosc. 2002; 28(2):243-249.

Kumar S and Pandey AK. Chemistry and biological activities of flavonoids: An overview. Sci World J. 2013; 2013:162750.

Liu RH. Health benefits of fruit and vegetables are from additive and synergistic combinations of phytochemicals. Am J Clin Nutr. 2003; 78(3):517-520.

Rahman K. Garlic and aging: new insights into an old remedy. Ageing Res Rev. 2003; 2(1):39-56.

Laksmiani NPL, Meiyanto E, Susidarti RA. Cytotoxic activity of brazilein isolated from secang (Caesalpinia sappan L.) against MCF7/DOX Cells by inhibition of Pglycoprotein. Int J Pharm Pharm Sci. 2017; 9(12):124-130.

Molyneux P. The use of the stable free radical diphenylpicrylhydrazyl (DPPH) for estimating antioxidant activity. Songklanakarin J Sci Technol. 2004; 26(2):211- 219.

Aboul-Enein AM, El-Baz FK, El-Baroty GS, Youssef AM, El-Baky HHA. Antioxidant activity of algal extracts on lipid peroxidation. J Med Sci. 2003; 3(1):87-98.

Elmastas M, Gulcin OI, Kufrevioglu OI, Ibaoglu K, AboulEnein HY. Radical Scavenging Activity and Antioxidant Capacity of Bay Leaf Extracts. J Iran Chem Soc. 2006; 3(3):258-266.

Da SVV, Ropke CD, de Almeida RL, Miranda DV, Kera CZ, Rivelli DP, Sawada TC, Barros SB. Chemical stability and SPF determination of Pothomorphe umbrellata extract gel and photostability of 4-nerolidylcathecol. Int J Pharm. 2005; 303:125-131.

Svobodova A, Psotova J, Walterova D. Natural phenolic in the prevention of UV-induced skin damage, a review. Biomed Pap. 2003; 147:137-145.

Choquenet B, Couteau C, Paparis E, Coiffard LJM. Flavonoids and polyphenols, molecular families with sunscreen potential: Determining effectiveness with an Invitro method. Nat Prod Commun. 2009; 4(2):227-230.

Maria CPP, Reis M, Suzana GL, Cristal CC, Alane BV, Ronald SS, Octavio AFP, Alvaro ACL, Gilda GL, Eduardo RJ, Elisabete PS. In vitro and in vivo evaluation of efficacy and safety of photoprotective formulations containing antioxidant extracts. Rev Bras Pharmacogn. 2016; 26:251- 258.




How to Cite

Laksmiani, N. P. L., Leliqia, N. P. E., Armita, P. M. N., Arijana, N. I. G. K., Saputra, A. A. B. Y., & Prananingtyas, K. I. (2020). In-silico and In-vitro Studies of Antioxidant and Sun Protection Activities of Sappan Wood (Caesalpinia sappan L.): Tropical Journal of Natural Product Research (TJNPR), 4(12). Retrieved from