Biotechnological potential of israeli desert plants of the negev

A. Golan-Goldhirsh, H. Lugasi-Evgi, P. Sathiyamoorthy, Y. Pollack, J. Gopas

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contributionpeer-review

2 Scopus citations


Desert plants of the Negev and Beer Sheva bedouin market may provide a rich source of biologically active natural compounds. Screening of 66 desert plants for a variety of biological activities has led to the identification of a few desert plants which contain active compounds for anti-tumor, anti-malaria and mosquito larvicidal activity. Several species were identified as heavy metal accumulators, such plants could be further tested for phytoremediation of polluted soils. Especially high concentration of protein was found in seeds of Peganum harmala, Trigonella foenum-graecum, Corchorus olitorius, Nicotiana glauca, and Sinapis arvensis. Eight species showed above 80% inhibition of wheat-rootlets, 17 species showed above 90% viability inhibition of human melanoma cells in vitro. Extracts of 13 species inhibited above 96% survival of malarial protozoa and 7 species showed high toxicity against mosquito larvae. Further research on the isolation and characterization of the specific active compounds from these species is underway. These plants will be explored further for their biopharmaceutical and industrial uses.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationXXV International Horticultural Congress, Part 13
Subtitle of host publicationNew and Specialized Crops and Products, Botanic Gardens and Human-Horticulture Relationship
PublisherInternational Society for Horticultural Science
Number of pages7
ISBN (Print)9789066058736
StatePublished - 1 Jan 2000

Publication series

NameActa Horticulturae
ISSN (Print)0567-7572


  • Cancer
  • Fodder plants
  • Malaria
  • Medicinal plants
  • Mosquito
  • Phytoremediation
  • Protein

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Horticulture


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