Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science

Degree Discipline



Erythrina variegata belongs to the Erythrina genus, which consists of approximately 110 species of trees and shrubs. In its native regions, different parts of the plant have been used for its effectiveness in treating asthma, epilepsy, bacterial infections, and wounds. Characterization studies have been done for this plant, and researchers have identified several alkaloids, flavonoids, and other active phytoconstituents that help treat different ailments. Prior research has focused on the phytochemical profile of E. variegata’s leaves, flowers, and stem bark. This work aimed to address gaps in the characterization of E. variegata’s root bark while exploring the effectiveness of titanium and silver nanoparticles in cytotoxicity, antioxidant, electrochemical studies, and bioactive property enhancement. Overall research questions included whether the phytochemical profile of this medicinal plant could be expanded and whether this plant possessed antioxidant and cytotoxic capabilities to be used in human and environmental health applications. The methodology included preparing E. variegata root bark extract, examining bioactive compounds in the pure extract alone via GC-MS, and using the extract to synthesize silver and titanium nanoparticles. The synthesized nanoparticles were characterized using UV-visible spectroscopy, Fourier Transform Infrared spectroscopy (FTIR), Scanning Electron Microscopy (SEM), Energy Dispersive X-ray spectroscopy (EDS), and dynamic light scattering experiments. The mass spectrometry results confirm the presence of bioactive compounds known to belong to the Erythrina genus and some compounds unique to the root bark. Characterization studies confirmed the formation of titanium and silver nanoparticles using the plant’s extract. While examining the radical scavenging and cytotoxicity effectiveness of the plant nanoparticles, it was discovered that silver and titanium nanoparticles synthesized using the root bark extract could maintain and enhance specific bioactive properties of the plant. The research presented in this work sought to enhance current knowledge on chemical components regarding E. variegata and examine changes in phytochemical properties when used to synthesize silver and titanium nanoparticles. Through characterization experiments and the conduction of foundational application studies, this study was designed to contribute to the progress of incorporating natural products to enhance human and environmental health while promoting the use of green chemistry techniques.

Index Terms- Erythrina variegata, dynamic light scattering (DLS), energy dispersive X-ray spectroscopy (EDS), fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR), gas chromatography-mass spectrometry (GC-MS), green nanoparticle synthesis, scanning electron microscopy (SEM), ultra-violet visible spectroscopy (UV).

Committee Chair/Advisor

Harshica Fernando

Committee Member

Marco Giles

Committee Member

Gina Chiarella

Committee Member

Ananda Amarasekara


Prairie View A&M University


© 2021 Prairie View A & M University

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License.

Date of Digitization


Contributing Institution

John B Coleman Library

City of Publication

Prairie View





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