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Alkaloidal Compound Matrine.

(Note: all prices are listed in CAD.)

Matrine is an alkaloidal compound which occurs naturally in the plant Sophora flavescens. This plant is used as antipyretic and anti-inflammatory herb employed commonly in traditional Chinese medicines, as well as other species of the Sophora genus. It has application as an antinociceptive in many in vitro and animal studies, with binding affinity to the kappa, mu and delta opioid receptors (it is an agonist). Furthermore, it was effective in mice models as a treatment for neuropathic pain. [1]

In addition, research has indicated matrine as having immunosuppressant [2], antiviral [3] [4], hepatoprotective/antifibrotic [5] [6], cardioprotective/antiarrhythmic [7] [8], antidiarrheal [9], and anticarcinogenic effects. A paper, published by the Ningxia Medical University, concluded that “…consistent with the results of other research groups, a previous study also showed that matrine had fewer side effects and broader indications compared with conventional anticancer drugs.” [1]

This alkaloidal compound is also a known antifeedant against the formosan subterranean termite, with an average LD50 of 8.3 micrograms (of matrine hydrochloride) per insect [10]. Entomological studies have shown that it also prevents wood damage in the common types used in furniture and housing. In one study researches observed full protection against termite damage after applying a coating of 5% matrine hydrochloride in water (by weight, e.g. 50 grams matrine hydrochloride per kilogram) on wood. [10] It also has nematicidal effects against the pine wood nematode, which causes the blight known as pine wilt on pine wood [11].

This compound is available as the freebase form. It is NOT intended for human consumption, and is for laboratory reagent or forensic/analytical purposes ONLY. The intent of its sale is agrochemical and other agricultural research.

WARNING: Due to the fact that it is a nitrogenous base, matrine freebase (upon dissolving in solution) can have a very high pH, and can be potentially corrosive upon contact with the epidermis or mucosal membranes. Because of this, it is strongly recommended that you neutralize matrine freebase with an acid (such as vinegar or citric acid in lime/lemon juice) before usage for agrochemical application (e.g. termite antifeedant) or handling directly with bare hands. Additionally, it is recommended that you do NOT apply matrine solution to blooming crops, so as to avoid exposure to honeybees and other bees during direct treatment of the solution on crops or weeds in bloom. This product may show residual accumulation or bioaccumulation, especially in humid climates and under slow drying conditions.

[1] – Haiyan, W., Yuxiang, L., Linglu, D., Tingting, X., Yinju, H., Hongyan, L., . . . Jianqiang, Y. (2013). Antinociceptive effects of matrine on neuropathic pain induced by chronic constriction injury. Pharmaceutical Biology, 51(7), 844-850. doi:10.3109/13880209.2013.767363

[2] – Pei, R. J., Xiao, L., Fan, X. P., & Liu, X. J. (1998). The effects of matrine on mouse immune functions. Hai Xia Yao Xue, 10, 7-8.

[3] – Long, Y., Lin, X., Zeng, K., Zhang, L. (2004). Efficacy of intramuscular matrine in the treatment of chronic hepatitis B. Hepatobiliary Pancreat Dis Int, 3(1), 69-72.

[4] – Liu, J., Zhu, M., Shi, R., & Yang, M. (2003). Radix Sophorae flavescentis for Chronic Hepatitis B: A Systematic Review of Randomized Trials. The American Journal of Chinese Medicine, 31(03), 337-354. doi:10.1142/s0192415x03001107

[5] – Zhao, J., Wan, X., Luo, M., Chen, T., & He, P. (2012). Antifibrotic effects of glycyrrhizin and matrine in vitro and in vivo. Biomedicine & Preventive Nutrition, 2(2), 132-137. doi:10.1016/j.bionut.2011.12.006

[6] – Zhang, J., Zhang, M., Jin, C., Zhou, B., Xie, W., Guo, C., … & Qian, D. (2000). Matrine inhibits production and actions of fibrogenic cytokines released by mouse peritoneal macrophages. Acta Pharmacologica Sinica, 22(8), 765-768.

[7] – Ai, J., Gao, H., He, S., Wang, L., Luo, D., & Yang, B. (2000). Effects of matrine, artemisinin, tetrandrine on cytosolic [Ca~(2+)] _ (i) in guinea pig ventricular myocytes. Acta pharmacologica Sinica, 22(6), 512-515.

[8] – Zhang, B. H., Wang, N. S., Li, X. J., Kong, X. J., & Cai, Y. L. (1990). Anti-arrhythmic effects of matrine. Zhongguo yao li xue bao= Acta pharmacologica Sinica, 11(3), 253-257.

[9] – Xin, S. M., & Ma, Z. Q. (1998). Anti-diarrhea effect of matrine. Zhong Cheng Yao, 20(1998), 30-32.

[10] – Mao, L., & Henderson, G. (2007). Antifeedant Activity and Acute and Residual Toxicity of Alkaloids from Sophora flavescens (Leguminosae) Against Formosan Subterranean Termites (Isoptera: Rhinotermitidae). Journal of Economic Entomology, 100(3), 866-870. doi:10.1603/0022-0493(2007)100[866:aaaaar];2

[12] – Matsuda, K., Yamada, K., Kimura, M., & Hamada, M. (1991). Nematicidal activity of matrine and its derivatives against pine wood nematodes. Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry, 39(1), 189-191. doi:10.1021/jf00001a038