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    Propolis extracts are widely used in traditional folk medicine and exhibit several properties such as antitumor, anti-inflammatory, and antimicrobial. However, these products have not been investigated in combination with medicines used in clinical practice. This study aimed to evaluate the chemical composition of propolis extracts from Apis mellifera scutellata and different Meliponini species and characterize their cytotoxicity against tumor cells, antibacterial effects, and interference with the actions of doxorubicin and gentamicin. Chromatographic and spectrometric analyses were performed using ultra-high-performance liquid chromatography (UPLC)-tandem mass spectrometry (MS/MS). Propolis extracts were evaluated for cytotoxicity and synergism using the 3-(4,5-dimethylthiazol-2-yl)-2,5-diphenyltetrazolium bromide (MTT) assay and the antimicrobial activity was examined using the broth microdilution technique and synergism was investigated using checkerboard and time-kill assays. The chemical characterization revealed the presence of 63 compounds, and the extracts showed selective cytotoxicity against tumor cell lines. Propolis extracts of mandaçaia and mirim exerted selective synergistic cytotoxicity in combination with doxorubicin. Except for the tubuna extract, all evaluated extracts exhibited antibacterial effects on gram-positive strains. Mandaçaia and mirim extracts exerted a synergistic effect with gentamicin; however, only mandaçaia extract exerted a selective effect. Propolis could be a source of antineoplastics and antibiotics. These natural products may reduce the occurrence of doxorubicin and gentamicin related adverse effects, resistance, or both. Copyright © 2020 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.


    Monica Surek, Mariana M Fachi, Alexandre de Fátima Cobre, Favízia F de Oliveira, Roberto Pontarolo, Amanda R Crisma, Wesley M de Souza, Karina B Felipe. Chemical composition, cytotoxicity, and antibacterial activity of propolis from Africanized honeybees and three different Meliponini species. Journal of ethnopharmacology. 2021 Apr 06;269:113662

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    PMID: 33307049

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