Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)



Committee Chair

William N. Setzer

Committee Member

Luis Cruz-Vera

Committee Member

Bernhard Vogler


Botanical chemistry., Cherokee Indians--Ethnobotany., Houma Indians--Ethnobotany., Medicinal plants., Redbud., Zanthoxylum clava-herculis.


This thesis project studied the bark of North American plants, Cercis canadensis and Zanthoxylum clava-herculis, plants used medicinally by the Cherokee Indians. The C. canadensis bark was analyzed through Soxhlet extraction, column chromatography, and thin layer chromatography to isolate its nonvolatile components. Collection and analysis of NMR experiments- proton, carbon, HSQC, HMBC, and COSY, led to identification of the compound lupeol. The C. canadensis and Z. clava-herculis bark essential oil was collected with Likens-Nickerson hydrodistillation and analyzed through GC-MS and chiral GC-MS. Major components of the C. canadensis bark oil include 1-hexanol, hexanoic acid, (2E)-hexenoic acid, oleic acid amide, and 1-docosanal. Major components of the Z. clava-herculis bark oil were sabinene, limonene, γ-terpinene, and terpinen-4-ol. The compounds identified have various reported bioactivities in the literature suggesting a possible reason for their medicinal use by the Cherokee.



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