Strychnos nux vomica Linn.(Loganaceae) commonly known as Nux vomica (Kupeelu), is a poisonous plant and its seeds are used widely in Ayurvedic system of medicine since time immemorial. Ayurveda advocates that nux vomica seeds are to be administered in therapeutics only after going through certain purificatory measures (Shodhana). There are more than six media: cow's urine (Go mutra), cow's milk (Go dugdha), cow's ghee (Go ghrita), Kanji (thin gruel), castor oil (Eranda taila) and fresh ginger juice (Ardraka swarasa) etc., which have been reported in different classical texts of Ayurveda for proper processing of nux vomica seeds. In this study, an attempt has been made to purify the seeds by using three different methods as described in ancient treatise by using cow's urine and cow's milk as media alone and together. This study revealed that all the methods studied reduced the toxicity of strychnine and brucine contents in comparison to the raw seeds as determined by HPTLC. Out of these three methods maximum reduction in strychnine and brucine contents was found when the seeds were purified by keeping them in cow's urine for seven days followed by boiling in cow's milk for three hrs.
Kupeelu; Strychnos nuxvomica; Shodhana; strychnine; Ayurveda; brucine; Cow's milk; Cow's urine
Seeds of Kupeelu (Strychnos nux-vomica Linn.), a known poisonous drug, is used extensively in various Ayurvedic formulations with great therapeutic significance. Ayurveda recommends the administration of Kupeelu only after passing through specific purificatory procedures in different media like cow's urine (Go mutra), cow's milk (Go dugdha), cow's ghee (Go ghrita), Kanji (thin gruel) etc. Strychnos nux vomica seeds are extensively advocated for nervous debility, paralysis, and weakness of limbs, sexual weakness, dyspepsia, and dysentery and in rheumatism where it can be assumed that besides other properties, Kupeelu may have some sort of anti-inflammatory activity too. In the present study, the powder of raw and processed Kupeelu seeds (processed / purified with Kanji i.e sour gruel) as test drugs were assessed for anti-inflammatory activity by employing Carrageenan and Formaldehyde induced hind paw oedema in Wistar strain albino rats at a dose of 22.5 mg/kg body weight orally. This study reveals that both raw and purified Kupeelu showed presence of highly significant anti-inflammatory activity against formaldehyde induced hind paw oedema, but did not have similar activity against Carrageenan induced hind paw oedema.
Kupeelu; Kanji; anti-inflammatory; purification; Shodhana; purificatory procedure
A simple, sensitive, and specific thin layer chromatography (TLC) densitometry method has been developed for the simultaneous quantification of strychnine and brucine in the seeds of Strychnos nux-vomica.
Materials and Methods:
The method involved simultaneous estimation of strychnine and brucine after resolving it by high performance TLC (HPTLC) on silica gel plate with chloroform–methanol–formic acid (8.5:1.5:0.4 v/v/v) as the mobile phase.
The method was validated as per the ICH guidelines for precision (interday, intraday, intersystem), robustness, accuracy, limit of detection, and limit of quantitation. The relationship between the concentration of standard solutions and the peak response was linear within the concentration range of 50–1000 ng/spot for strychnine and 100–1000 ng/spot for brucine. The method precision was found to be 0.58–2.47 (% relative standard deviation [RSD]) and 0.36–2.22 (% RSD) for strychnine and brucine, respectively. Accuracy of the method was checked by recovery studies conducted at three different concentration levels and the average percentage recovery was found to be 100.75% for strychnine and 100.52% for brucine, respectively.
The HPTLC method for the simultaneous quantification of strychnine and brucine was found to be simple, precise, specific, sensitive, and accurate and can be used for routine analysis and quality control of raw material of S. nux-vomica and several unani and ayurvedic formulations containing this as an ingredient.
HPTLC; method development; strychnine; brucine; validation
Strychnos nux-vomica, commonly known as kuchla, contains strychnine and brucine as main constituents. Minor alkaloids present in the seeds are protostrychnine, vomicine, n-oxystrychnine, pseudostrychnine, isostrychnine, chlorogenic acid, and a glycoside. Seeds are used traditionally to treat diabetes, asthma, aphrodisiac and to improve appetite.
The present study was aimed to evaluate the various pharmacognostical characters and antidiabetic activity of S. nux-vomica seed.
Materials and Methods:
Pharmacognostical characters were performed as per the WHO guideline. Extraction was carried out in petroleum ether, chloroform, alcohol, hydroalcoholic, aqueous, and phytochemical constituents present in extracts were detected by different chemical tests. Among these extracts hydroalcoholic, aqueous extracts were evaluated for antidiabetic activity on the basis of extractive yield and phytoconstituents, in alloxan-induced diabetic rats using gliclazide as standard.
Various analytical values of S. nux-vomica extract were established. Phytoconstituents present in S. nux-vomica extracts were detected.
S. nux-vomica extracts show antihyperglycemic activity in experimental animals.
Antidiabetic activity; alloxan; extract; kuchla
Ayurvedic preparations claim on their label only the quantity of crude drugs and not the quantity of active ingredients present therein. So work was taken up to find the percentage of strychnine and brucine from Ayurvedic pills of Nux vomica powder by TLC spectrophotometric analysis, which study has not been reported earlier. However, the literature survey only revealed the following work.
Some plants used in Unani system of medicine are toxic, even deadly poisonous. The drugs having such plants as their components are detoxified before they are dispensed to the patients. One such drug, capsule Hudar, has Strychnos nux-vomica L. (Azraqi) seeds as one of its components and is very effectively used to elevate blood pressure. Ancient manuscripts describe many methods of its detoxification. It has been found that the detoxification processes studied reduce the strychnine content, as determined either by using uv-vis spectrophotometer or HPLC, present in Strychnos nux vomica seeds which is responsible for Strychnos nux vomica toxicity. The decrease in strychnine amount was best when the seeds were immersed for detoxification in excess of water for 5 days, in milk for 2 days followed by their boiling in milk. Strychnine in small amounts has been reported to give subjective feeling of stimulation
Strychnos nux vomica; detoxification; Unani medicine
Seed of Guñjā (Abrus precatorius Linn.), a known poisonous drug, is used extensively in various ayurvedic formulations with great therapeutic significance. Ayurveda recommends the administration of Guñjā in diseases like Indralupta (alopecia), Śotha (edema), Kṛmi (helminthes), Kuṣṭha (skin diseases), Kaṇḍu (itching), Prameha (urinary disorders) etc., after being treated with specific Śodhana (purification) procedures.
To assess the antimicrobial action of of raw and Śhodhita (Processed) Guñjā seeds
Guñjā seeds after being processed with Godugdha (cow's milk), Nimbu swarasa (Lemon juice), Kāñjī (Sour gruel) and water, as the media, were evaluated for its antibacterial effect against clinically important bacterial strains using agar well diffusion method.
Aqueous extracts of raw seeds of Guñjā exert its antibacterial effect on both Gram positive, as well as Gram negative bacteria but none of the Śodhita Guñjā seeds showed any bactericidal effect on any bacterial strains. Chloroform extracts of all the Śodhita Guñjā seed extracts could inhibit bacterial growth but with variations
The study displayed that chloroform extracts of raw and śodhita samples for bacterial study were much sensitive than the aqueous extracts.
Abrin; Abrus precatorius Linn; anti-bacterial; Guñjā; Śhodhana
In Ayurveda, a series of pharmaceutical procedures which converts a poisonous drug into a therapeutically very effective medicine for various ailments is termed as Shodhana. Various medias are being used for processing the herbal poisonous drugs, are quite interesting to understand with modern scientific technology. The analysis of media before and after Shodhana (purification /processing) will give clear rationale behind the selection of the particular media for the particular drug. The change that takes place during the Shodhana process can be explored by modern analytical methods. Researchers have proved the presence of strychnine and brucine in milk after Shodhana of Nux-vomica highlighting the role media for Shodhana. Importance of Shodhana, the role of media used for Shodhana process of few poisonous drugs is dealt briefly with scientific view.
Shodhana; Purification; Processing; Poisonous herbs; Media
Total six samples of Karpanpatru Taila were prepared with Murchchhita and Amurchchhita Sarshapa Taila (mustard oil) by using three different liquid media i.e. Gomutra, Takra and Kanji by following classical method and analyzed. The pharmaceutical analysis revealed that the Karpanpatru Taila prepared with Murchchhita Sarshapa taila by using Kanji, Gomutra, Takra as a liquid media showed minimum loss i.e. 4.00%, 8,33% & 8.66 respectively in comparison to Amurchchhita Sarshapa Taila by using Kanji, Gomutra, Takra i.e. 5.5%, 10.68%, 12% respectively. Pharmaceutical drawbacks like excessive frothing and burning of eyes & nose were absent during the preparation of Karpanpatru Taila with Takra and Kanji while present in batch of Gomutra. Analytical study reveals that Acid value was negligible increased after even 6 month in the samples of Murchchhita Karpanpatru Taila while significant increased in the samples of Amurchchhita Karpanpatru Taila. Saponification value was decreased in the samples of Murchhita Karpanpatru Taila while increased in the samples Amurchchhita Karpanpatru taila. Microbial growth was found absent in all the samples of Karpanpatru Taila even after 6 months.
Sneha Kalpana; Murchchhana; Gomutra; Takra; Kanji; Acid value; Saponification value
Generally, Tailas and Ghritas have been prepared by using Kalka (paste) and Drava dravya (liquid media usually SwaRasa or Kwatha). However, Apamarga Kshara taila is prepared by using Apamarga Kshara drava (the alkali is obtained after dissolving it in water, after obtaining it by burning, dissolving, and filtration of the same plant). Therefore, to evaluate the role of the media during the preparation, the Taila was prepared in different samples by using the fresh and dry paste of Apamarga along with SwaRasa and Kwatha of Apamarga. All the samples were tested through various analytical parameters, that is, pH, acid value, iodine value, saponification value, and soon. Finally, it was found that Apamarga Kshara taila prepared by using fresh Kalka and Ksharajala was better and it was also an easy pharmaceutical procedure.
Kalka; Kshara and Kshara Drava; Swarasa; Decoction; taila
Strychnos potatorum Linn (Loganiaceae) is a moderate sized tree found in southern and central parts of India, Sri Lanka and Burma. In traditional system of medicine, Strychnos potatorum Linn seeds were used for various ailments including inflammation, diabetes etc. To investigate the folkloric use of the seeds the present study was carried out on Freund's adjuvant induced arthritic rats.
The present study states the effect of the aqueous extract (SPE) and the whole seed powder (SPP) of Strychnos potatorum Linn seeds on the Freund's complete adjuvant (FCA) induced arthritic rat paw edema, body weight changes and alterations in haematological and biochemical parameters in both developing and developed phases of arthritis. Histopathology of proximal interphalangeal joints and radiology of hind legs were studied.
In FCA induced arthritic rats, there was significant increase in rat paw volume and decrease in body weight increment, whereas SPP and SPE treated groups, showed significant reduction in paw volume and normal gain in body weight. The altered haematological parameters (Hb, RBC, WBC and ESR) and biochemical parameters (blood urea, serum creatinine, total proteins and acute phase proteins) in the arthritic rats were significantly brought back to near normal by the SPP and SPE treatment at the dose of 200 mg/kg/p.o in both developing and developed phases of arthritis. Further the histopathological and radiological studies revealed the antiarthritic activity of SPP and SPE by indicating fewer abnormalities in these groups when compared to the arthritic control group.
In conclusion, both SPP and SPE at the specified dose level of 200 mg/kg, p.o. showed reduction in rat paw edema volume and it could significantly normalize the haematological and biochemical abnormalities in adjuvant induced arthritic rats in both developing and developed phases of FCA induced arthritis. Further the histopathological and radiological studies confirmed the antiarthritic activity of SPP and SPE.
Ghrita (ghee) is the foremost substance of Indian cuisine from centuries. Ayurvedic classics described eight kinds of ghee from eight different animal milk, among them ghee made from cow milk is said to be the superior and ghee of ewe milk is said to be the inferior and also detrimental to heart. The present study was undertaken to evaluate chronic administration of cow ghee (Go Ghrita) and ghee of ewe milk (Avika Ghrita) to experimental animals. Experiment was carried out on Wistar strain albino rats and study was done at two dose levels. The test drugs were administered orally for 45 consecutive days. Parameters, such as gross behavior, body weight, weight of important organs, total fecal fat content, electrocardiogram, serum biochemical parameters, and histopathology of different organs were studied. Both the test drugs did not alter the gross behavior, body weight, weight of organs, and cytoarchitecture of different organs to significant extent. Avika Ghrita at a low dose significantly decreased triglyceride content, significantly prolonged QTc and at both dose levels it significantly shortened the PR interval. This study shows chronic administration of Avika Ghrita and Go Ghrita has no marked differences between them except the QTc prolongation in Avika Ghrita. This may be the basis for the classics to categorize Avika Ghrita as Ahridya.
Ahridya; albino rats; Avika Ghrita; cholesterol; ghee; Go Ghrita
Guduchi (Tinospora cordifolia wild miers) is a well-known medicinal plant, which is abundantly used in different ayurvedic formulations utilizing varieties of media. The drug has properties like Rasayana (rejuvenating property), Krimighna (anthelmintics), and Kushtghna (used in skin disorders), as described in ayurvedic literature. Taila (oil) and Ghrita (ghee) are used as media in Ayurvedic Sneha (oleaginous) formulations. Both the test drugs, Guduchi Taila and Ghrita, are prescribed in Vatrakta (gout) and also indicated for Kushtha (skin disorder). With all these details, the Guduchi Taila and Guduchi Ghrita samples, prepared by using Taila and Ghrita as media, have been subjected to comparative pharmacological investigations, to assess the impact of the media on the expression of pharmacological activity. The formulations have been evaluated for immunomodulation, anti-inflammatory, and anti-stress activities. Both the formulations have been found to be active in most of the experiments, however, with the change of media, their results vary at different levels. Taila prepared from Guduchi was found to have an immunostimulating activity. The formulation prepared with Ghrita exhibited an anti-stress effect with an immunosuppressing activity.
Guduchi (Tinospora cordifolia wild miers); Guduchi Taila; Guduchi Ghrita; Immunomodulation; Anti-inflammatory; Anti-stress
Ayurvedic preparations contain toxic elements like heavy metals and other chemicals exceeding their permissible limits. Ayurvedic method of detoxification of such products involves Shodhana. Hence, in present paper it has been decided to replace Ayurvedic Shodhana process by chemical purification method and to study the benefits and/or drawbacks of the traditional Ayurvedic Shodhana process. Crude aconite root, Ayurvedic Shodhana treated aconite root and chemical Shodhana treated aconite root samples were evaluated for toxicity and changes by animal studies and thin layer chromatography (TLC) respectively. The results of the toxicity study suggest that the modified method of Shodhana is less efficient as compared to the traditional Ayurvedic Shodhana process. TLC studies have shown that pseudoaconitine and aconitine were converted into far less toxic substances like veratroyl pseudoaconine and benzoylaconine respectively only in traditional Ayurvedic Shodhana.
Aconitine; Shodhana; Toxicity
In some parts of India people follow a religious ritual of drinking an herbal preparation made from the bark of the Alstonia scholaris tree (Blackboard tree) on the day of the new moon in the month of July. This tree could be easily confused with the Strychnos nux vomica tree. Brucine is the predominant alkaloid present in the bark of the Strychnos nux vomica tree. The toxicological property of brucine is similar to strychnine. Brucine is a neurotoxin. A 29-year-old male presented with a history of consumption of an herbal preparation made from the bark of the Strychnos nux vomica tree confusing it for Alstonia scholaris. Soon after, he developed convulsions and later died in hospital on the same day. The aim of this case report is to highlight the fact that people must be cautious when they follow religious rituals.
Brucine; Alstonia scholaris; strychnine; poisoning
A new strategy for the synthesis of the Strychnos alkaloid (±)-strychnine has been developed and is based on an intramolecular [4+2]-cycloaddition/rearrangement cascade of an indolyl substituted amidofuran. The critical D-ring was assembled by an intramolecular palladium catalyzed enolate-driven cross-coupling of an N-tethered vinyl iodide.
Rasashastra is a branch which deals with the pharmaceutics of Rasaoushadhis. Bhasmas are one among such Rasaoushadhis which are known for their low doses and fast action. A verse from Rasaratnasamuchchaya says that the bhasma prepared by using Mercury as media is of best quality.
Materials and Methods:
Following this principle, Yashadabhasma (Zinc calx) was prepared by subjecting it to Samanya shodhana (general purification method for all metals), Vishesha shodhana (specific putification method for Zinc), Jarana (roasting) and Marana (incineration) with Parada(Mercury) as a media under Gajaputa (classical heating system with 1000 cowdung cakes).
Results and Conclusion:
Yellow colored Yashadabhasma which passed all the classical bhasmaparikshas (tests for properly prepared calx) was obtained after two putas. The bhasma did not pass Nishchandratva(free from shining particles) test after 1stputa but was passed after giving it 2ndputa.
Bhasmapariksha; Gajaputa; Marana; Yashadabhasma
A trans-cleaving asymmetric hammerhead ribozyme directed against an AUC decreases target motif within an RNA specific for human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) was generated. The AUC decreases motif of the target RNA was permutated in order to generate all 12 variants of an NUX decreases consensus target motif, wherein N = A, C, G or U and X = A, C or U. Four asymmetric hammerhead ribozymes differing in the nucleotide that is complementary to N were generated, of which each was specific for three of the 12 target motifs. The residual sequence context within helices I and III remained unchanged. All 12 combinations resulted in cleavage of the target RNA. Using single-turnover conditions, the detectable cleavage rate constants at 37 degrees C were determined, which varied considerably depending on the NUX decreases motif. The NUC decreases motifs were cleaved more efficiently, with AUC decreases being cleaved best. Comparison with previous studies indicates that the sequence context of the NUX decreases motif plays a major role for the detectable cleavage activity.