Essential Oil Applications, Eucalyptus|

Eucalyptus essential oil and its major constituent eucalyptol are extensively employed in the cosmetic, food, and pharmaceutical industries and their clinical use has recently expanded worldwide as an adjuvant in the treatment of infective and inflammatory diseases. We previously demonstrated that essential oil from Eucalyptus globulus (Labill.) (EO) stimulates in vitro the phagocytic activity of human monocyte-derived macrophages and counteracts the myelotoxicity induced by the chemotherapeutic 5-fluorouracil in immunocompetent rats. Here we characterize some mechanistic aspects underlying the immunostimulatory ability exerted by EO on macrophages. The internalization of fluorescent beads, fluorescent zymosan BioParticles, or apoptotic cancer cells was evaluated by confocal microscopy. Pro-inflammatory cytokine and chemokine release was determined by flow cytometry using the BD cytometric bead array. Receptor involvement in EO-stimulated phagocytosis was assessed using complement- or IgG-opsonized zymosan particles. The localization and expression of podosome components was analyzed by confocal microscopy and western blot. The main results demonstrated that: EO-induced activation of a macrophage is ascribable to its major component eucalyptol, as recently demonstrated for other cells of innate immunity; EO implements pathogen internalization and clearance by stimulating the complement receptor-mediated phagocytosis; EO stimulates podosome formation and increases the expression of podosome components. These results confirm that EO extract is a potent activator of innate cell-mediated immunity and thereby increase the scientific evidence supporting an additional property of this plant extract besides the known antiseptic and anti-inflammatory properties.

Zonfrillo, M., et al. (2022). “Essential Oil from Eucalyptus globulus (Labill.) Activates Complement Receptor-Mediated Phagocytosis and Stimulates Podosome Formation in Human Monocyte-Derived Macrophages.” Molecules 27(11): 3488.

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