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The ethanolic extract of the aerial parts of Markhamia zanzibarica (Bignoniaceae) was tested for its cytotoxic activity against human cervical adenocarcinoma cell line (HeLa). It showed a potent effect with an IC50 of 9.68 μg/ml compared to Doxorubicin (7.28 μg/ml). The fractions obtained from the successive partitioning of the total extract, were tested against the same cell line; the results revealed that n-hexane extract was the most potent 9.23 μg/ml, followed by ethyl acetate, butanol and chloroform fractions with IC50 of 21.2, 22.4 and 49.6 μg/ml, respectively. Column chromatography led to the isolation of oleanolic acid (1), ursolic acid (2) and luteolin (3). The structures of the isolated compounds were elucidated using spectroscopic techniques.



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