Pharmaceutical treasure of herbs is well known and some of which have long been served as natural medicines or nourishments to enrich human health. It is conceivable that herbs offer unique habitats for endophytic microbes. Interestingly, the metabolic exchange between endophytes and their herbal hosts does not only allow the microbial subsistence but also enable them to form analog bioactive substances to those produced by their hosts. These challenge us to focus on searching for beneficial microbes from herbs and industrialize them as the producers of pharmaceutical products. In this work, we isolated 37 actinobacteria from rhizomes of fingerroot (Boesenbergia rotunda), ginger (Zingiber officinale), galangal (Alpinia galanga) and turmeric (Curcuma longa). These actinobacteria were classified preliminarily based on their morphology to the genus Streptomyces (86 %) and other unknown genera (14 %). To screen for anticancer activity, we found that 68% of all isolated actinobacteria produced L-asparaginase, which is a hydrolytic enzyme that acts as an inhibitor of leukemia. Streptomyces sp. ALP03 was among the active isolates exhibited the highest enzyme activity of L-asparaginase and showed a maximum 97.93 % similarity of its 16S rRNA gene sequence to Streptomyces spongiae Sp080513SC-24T. The cytotoxicity assays against diverse types of cancer cell lines will be carried out to assess the anticancer potential of isolate ALP03 and the others showing distinct L-asparaginase activity. With these findings, we conclude that herbal rhizomes have yet been a promising source for the discovery of useful microbes and their pharmaceutical products.

  • This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

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