Madhunashini (Gymnema sylvestre R. Br.) commonly known as ‘Gudmar’ in Hindi is an important medicinal climber and extensively used in almost all Indian System of Medicine as a remedy for diabetes, rheumatism, cough, ulcer, jaundice, dyspepsia, constipation, eyes pain and also in snakebite. In India, it is found growing in Andhra Pradesh, Bihar, Chhattisgarh, Karnataka, Kerala, Madhya Pradesh, Maharastra, Orissa, Tamil Nadu, Uttar Pradesh and West Bengal. The major phytoconstituents are gymnemic acids, gudmarin and saponins.
In the present study, Gymnema germplasm collected from various regions of Madhya Pradesh was evaluated on the basis of their morphological characteristics and gymnemic acid content. Gymnemic acid content in the leaves was estimated by HPLC. We have also standardized the non-destructive harvesting practices of Gudmar. Selective harvesting was done without harming the main plant. Only mature leaves (60%) were hand plucked in the month of October. Second harvest was done in the month of June.
Data revealed that gymnemic acid content varied between 0.96% ± 0.03 (Seoni) to 1.58% ±0.03 (Amarkantak). It was also observed that the leaves left at the time of 1st harvest during October matured in June at the time of 2nd harvest.
Non destructive harvesting practice did not have any negative impact on overall development of the plant. It is evident that there is wide variation in the morphological characteristics and gymnemic acid content in G. sylvestre collected from various locations, which can be exploited for further crop improvement programmes.
Cultivation; Gymnema sylvestre; gymnemic acid; non-destructive harvesting
There are many vanishing cultures that possess a wealth of knowledge on the medicinal utility of plants. The Malasars of Dravidian Tamils are an indigenous society occupying the forests of the Western Ghats, South India. They are known to be exceptional healers and keepers of traditional aboriginal knowledge (TAK) of the flora in the Velliangiri holy hills. In fact, their expertise is well known throughout India as evidenced by the thousands of pilgrims that go to the Velliangiri holy hills for healing every year. Our research is the first detailed study of medicinal plants in India that considers variation in TAK among informants using a quantitative consensus analysis. A total of 95 species belonging to 50 families were identified for medicinal and general health purposes. For each species the botanical name, family, local name, parts used, summary of mode of preparation, administration and curing are provided. The consensus analysis revealed a high level of agreement among the informants usage of a particular plant at a local scale. The average consensus index value of an informant was FIC > 0.71, and over 0.80 for some ailments such as respiratory and jaundice. Some of the more common problems faced by the Malasars were gastrointestinal disorders, respiratory illness, dermatological problems and simple illness such as fever, cough, cold, wounds and bites from poisonous animals. We also discovered several new ethnotaxa that have considerable medicinal utility. This study supports claims that the Malasars possess a rich TAK of medicinal plants and that many aboriginals and mainstream people (pilgrims) utilize medicinal plants of the Velliangiri holy hills. Unfortunately, the younger generation of Malasars are not embracing TAK as they tend to migrate towards lucrative jobs in more developed urban areas. Our research sheds some light on a traditional culture that believes that a healthy lifestyle is founded on a healthy environment and we suggest that TAK such as that of the Malasars may serve toward a global lifestyle of health and environmental sustainability.
The paper deals with the common edible fruit yielding plants, During the course of medicinal plant survey of shevaroy hills of Eastern ghats. Salem district, Tamil Nadu. Thirty species belonging to 23 genera and 21 families yield edible fruits. They are listed in alphabetical order followed by family, common name and Tamil names.
Ethno-botanical explorations with regard to the folk-lore medicine in Coimbatore district of Tamil Nadu and Palghat district of Kerala for jaundice was carried out. Out of twenty remedies thus gathered two are found to be new reports and a few others have got interesting combination. The specimens are identified at Botanical Survey of India, Coimbatore and deposited in the Herbarium of Ethnobiology department of International Institute of Ayurveda, Coimbatore. Two newly reported plants for Jaundice namely Alysicarpus vaginalis DC. and Justicia tranquebariensis L. f, have been taken for phytochemical screening and pharmacological studies. The botanical name of the plant, local name, Sanskrit name and the part of the plant employed are given in table I.
Premna tomentosa Willd is a moderate sized deciduous tree of apparently more economic and medicinal values. It is not commonly seen to be used by the medicinemen of Tamil Nadu now-a–days. The plant has been located in the plains and hills of Tamil Nadu, with the help of its varied vernacular names. It is in excessive biotic disturbance. It has been found to be in reproductive isolation, Hence, macropropagation of this plant has been contemplated and tried successfully for the first time. The results are reported.
Antimicrobial activity of 18 ethnomedicinal plant extracts were evaluated against nine bacterial strains (Bacillus subtilis, Staphylococcus aureus, Staphylococcus epidermidis, Enterococcus faecalis, Escherichia coli, Klebsiella pneumonia, Pseudomonas aeruginosa, Ervinia sp, Proteus vulgaris) and one fungal strain (Candida albicans). The collected ethnomedicinal plants were used in folk medicine in the treatment of skin diseases, venereal diseases, respiratory problems and nervous disorders.
Plants were collected from Palni hills of Southern Western Ghats and the ethnobotanical data were gathered from traditional healers who inhabit the study area. The hexane and methanol extracts were obtained by cold percolation method and the antimicrobial activity was found using paper disc diffusion method. All microorganisms were obtained from Christian Medical College, Vellore, Tamil Nadu, India.
The results indicated that out of 18 plants, 10 plants exhibited antimicrobial activity against one or more of the tested microorganisms at three different concentrations of 1.25, 2.5 and 5 mg/disc. Among the plants tested, Acalypha fruticosa, Peltophorum pterocarpum, Toddalia asiatica,Cassia auriculata, Punica granatum and Syzygium lineare were most active. The highest antifungal activity was exhibited by methanol extract of Peltophorum pterocarpum and Punica granatum against Candida albicans.
This study evaluated the antimicrobial activity of the some ethnomedicinal plants used in folkloric medicine. Compared to hexane extract, methanol extract showed significant activity against tested organisms. This study also showed that Toddalia asiatica, Syzygium lineare, Acalypha fruticosa and Peltophorum pterocarpum could be potential sources of new antimicrobial agents.
An ethnobotanical survey was carried out to collect information on the use of medicinal plants in Southern Western Ghats of India (Madurai district, Tamil Nadu). Information presented in this paper was gathered from the paliyar tribes using an integrated approach of botanical collections, group discussions and interviews with questionnaires in the years 1998 – 1999. The informants interviewed were 12 among whom 4 were tribal practitioners.
A total of 60 ethnomedicinal plant species distributed in 32 families are documented in this study. The medicinal plants used by paliyars are listed with Latin name, family, local name, parts used, mode of preparation and medicinal uses. Generally, fresh part of the plant was used for the preparation of medicine.
We observed that the documented ethnomedicinal plants were mostly used to cure skin diseases, poison bites, stomachache and nervous disorders. The results of this study showed that these tribal people still depend on medicinal plants in Madurai district forest areas.
The unreported medicinal uses of these plants from kolli hills, Salem District of Tamil Nadu are presented in this paper.
The present paper represents the results of an ethnobotanical survey conducted in Mundakunnu village of Gudalur taluk, Nilgiri district of Tamil Nadu, India. It has been observed that the plant species are used to various ailments of analgesic, antidiarrhoeal, piles, antidiabetic, gynecological problems, vermifuge, antidandruff, venereal diseases, bone fracture and as vegetables. A total of 52 plants species belonging to 51 genera (33 dicot & 6 monocot) have been discussed.
Mundakunnu; Gudalur Taluk; Paniya Tribes; the Nilgiris; Tamilnadu; ethnobotany
Nilgiri District, Tamil Nadu is one of the most botanised areas of Southern India. In spite of it a number of wild plants had been missed by earlier collectors. Moreover, many exotics and ornamentals having importance in alternative systems of medicine have not been collected and preserved. The present paper lists 34 species of plants used in homeopathy belonging to 31 genera under 23 families.
The dynamics of physico-chemical factors and their effects on caddisfly communities were examined in 29 streams of southern Western Ghats. Monthly samples were collected from the Thadaganachiamman stream of Sirumalai Hills, Tamil Nadu from May 2006 to April 2007. Southwest and northeast monsoons favored the existence of caddisfly population in streams. A total of 20 caddisfly taxa were collected from 29 streams of southern Western Ghats. Hydropsyche (Trichoptera: Hydropsychidae) were more widely distributed throughout sampling sites than were the other taxa. Canonical correspondence analysis showed that elevation was a major variable and pH, stream order, and stream substrates were minor variables affecting taxa richness. These results suggested that habitat heterogeneity and seasonal changes were stronger predictors of caddisfly assemblages than large-scale patterns in landscape diversity.
diversity; habitat; seasonality
Medicinal plants play an important role in health care. The use of medicinal plants for treatment is growing in view of cost and non-compliance of modern
medicine as in case of non-communicable diseases. Plants such as Boswellia, ovalifoliolata, Cycas beddomei, Pimpinella tirupatiensis, Pterocarpus santalinus,
Shorea thumbuggaia, Syzygium alternifolium, Terminalia pallida are endemic to Tirumala hills of seshachalam range falling under the Eastern Ghats of India.
These plants species have medicinal properties such as anti-tumorogenic, anti-microbial, purgative, hypoglycemic, abortificient, analgesic, anti-septic,
anti-pyretic and anti-inflammatory. We created a database named DEPTH in an attempt to communicate data of these plants to the scientific community. DEPTH
contains data on scientific name, vernacular name, family name, morphological description, economic importance, known medicinal compounds and medicinal importance.
Tirumala hills; endemic plants; economic importance; medicinal importance
This present study describes 11 species under 11 generate and 10 families of rare Homoeopathic Medicinal Plants introduced and cultivated in the Nilgiri district, Tamil Nadu, South India. The original citation, description, distribution and their medicinal uses are given.
Banana bunchy top disease (BBTD) caused by Banana bunchy top virus (BBTV) is one of the most devastating diseases of banana and poses a serious threat for cultivars like Hill Banana (Syn: Virupakshi) and Grand Naine in India. In this study, we have cloned and sequenced the complete genome comprised of six DNA components of BBTV infecting Hill Banana grown in lower Pulney hills, Tamil Nadu State, India. The complete genome sequence of this hill banana isolate showed high degree of similarity with the corresponding sequences of BBTV isolates originating from Lucknow, Uttar Pradesh State, India, and from Fiji, Egypt, Pakistan, and Australia. In addition, sixteen coat protein (CP) and thirteen replicase genes (Rep) sequences of BBTV isolates collected from different banana growing states of India were cloned and sequenced. The replicase sequences of 13 isolates showed high degree of similarity with that of South Pacific group of BBTV isolates. However, the CP gene of BBTV isolates from Shervroy and Kodaikanal hills of Tamil Nadu showed higher amino acid sequence variability compared to other isolates. Another hill banana isolate from Meghalaya state had 23 nucleotide substitutions in the CP gene but the amino acid sequence was conserved. This is the first report of the characterization of a complete genome of BBTV occurring in the high altitudes of India. Our study revealed that the Indian BBTV isolates with distinct geographical origins belongs to the South Pacific group, except Shervroy and Kodaikanal hill isolates which neither belong to the South Pacific nor the Asian group.
Banana bunchy top virus; Babuvirus; Nanoviridae; South Pacific; PCR; Hill Banana
The aim of the study is to evaluate the antibacterial activity of Pistacia integerrima, Cedrus deodara and Gymnema sylvestre against seven different microorganisms such as Escherichia coli, Salmonella typhi, Klebsiella pneumoniae, Proteus vulgaris, Pseudomonas, Bacillus subtillis and Staphylococcus aureus by using disc diffusion method. Preliminary studies with ethanol extract and water extract of plants indicated that the growth of test organism was markedly inhibited by ethanol extract of Pistacia integerrima and Gymnema sylvestre. But in case of Cedrus deodara, water extract was more effective. Efficacy of plant extract which showed variable inhibitory activity against each bacteria was compared to standard antibiotic (tetracyclin). The two extracts were subjected to qualitative analysis to find out phytoconstituents present . Results showed that Pistacia integerrima contained all the phytochemicals, so exhibited higher antibacterial activity.
Anti bacterial activity; Pistacia integerrima; Cedrus deodara; Gymnema sylvestre; phytochemical activity
An ethnobotanical survey was undertaken to collect information from traditional healers on the use of medicinal plants in Kancheepuram district of Tamil Nadu during October 2003 to April 2004. The indigenous knowledge of local traditional healers and the native plants used for medicinal purposes were collected through questionnaire and personal interviews during field trips.
The investigation revealed that, the traditional healers used 85 species of plants distributed in 76 genera belonging to 41 families to treat various diseases. The documented medicinal plants were mostly used to cure skin diseases, poison bites, stomachache and nervous disorders. In this study the most dominant family was Euphorbiaceae and leaves were most frequently used for the treatment of diseases.
This study showed that many people in the studied parts of Kancheepuram district still continue to depend on medicinal plants at least for the treatment of primary healthcare. The traditional healers are dwindling in number and there is a grave danger of traditional knowledge disappearing soon since the younger generation is not interested to carry on this tradition.
High-valued medicinal plants Achillea millefolium, Acorus calamus, Arnebia nobilis, Fumaria indica, Gymnema sylvestre, Origanum vulgare, Paeonia emodi, Peganum harmala, Psoralea corylifolia, Rauwolfia serpentina, and Vetiveria zizanioides were identified with the help of taxonomical markers and investigated for characterization and palynological studies. These parameters are used to analyze their quality, safety, and standardization for their safe use. Botanical description and crude drug description is intended for their quality assurance at the time of collection, commerce stages, manufacturing, and production. For this purpose the detailed morphology was studied and compared with the Flora of Pakistan and other available literatures. Here we reported the pollen grain morphology of Origanum vulgare, Paeonia emodi, Psoralea corylifolia, and Rauwolfia serpentina for the first time. Similarly the crude drug study of Gymnema sylvestre (leaf), Origanum vulgare (aerial parts), Paeonia emodi (tubers), and Peganum harmala (seeds) was also carried out for the first time.
Plants have always been a source of drugs for humans since time immemorial. The Indian traditional system of medicine is replete with the use of plants for the management of diabetic conditions. According to the World Health Organization, up to 90% of population in developing countries use plants and its products as traditional medicine for primary health care. There are about 800 plants which have been reported to show antidiabetic potential. The present review is aimed at providing in-depth information about the antidiabetic potential and bioactive compounds present in Ficus religiosa, Pterocarpus marsupium, Gymnema sylvestre, Allium sativum, Eugenia jambolana, Momordica charantia, and Trigonella foenum-graecum. The review provides a starting point for future studies aimed at isolation, purification, and characterization of bioactive antidiabetic compounds present in these plants.
This paper presents an account of 25 species used by the Irulas of Coimbatore district, Tamil Nadu, as medicinal plants. In addition to scientific name and uses, local name are also given, Medicinal plants and uses hitherto unreported for this tribe alone are given in this paper.
The present report deals with 34 plants of ethno botanical significance used s food and medicine by the Kotas of Nilgiri District, Tamil Nadu. Dietary and medicinal applications of plants re briefly summarized and presented.
Tamalaki is a herbacious medicinal plant, described in Ayurvedic texts in many occurrences with different properties, actions, uses and synonyms, supposed to indicate more than one species commonly used in practice. Modern scholars mostly suggest Phyllanthus fraternus Webster (syn. P. niruri Linn.), P. amarus Schum. and Thonn. and P. urinaria Linn. as the source plants of Tamalaki. In this study, an attempt has been made to designate P. fraternus as the source plant of Tamalaki used in the treatment of Tamaka-svasa (Bronchial asthma) and other respiratory disorders by analyzing therapeutic uses, actions, properties, taste, synonyms as well as pharmacognostical characters. Smooth capsule, six tepals, less and short fibrous root, pentagonal outline with wing-shaped young stem are some of the specific characters observed in this species.
Ayurveda; pharmacognosy; phyllanthus; synonyms; tamalaki
Many plants have been used for the treatment of diabetes mellitus in Indian system of medicine and in other ancient systems of the world. Out of these only a few have been evaluated as per modern system of medicine. From many such plants only extracts have been prepared and their usefulness evaluated in experimental diabetes in animals. In some plants likeAllium cepa, Allium sativum, Ficus bengalensis, Gymnema sylvestre, Pterocarpus marsupium etc. active hypoglycemic principles have been isolated and their mechanism of action studied. Most of them seem to act directly on pancreas (pancreatic effect) and stimulate insulin level in blood. Some have extra pancreatic effect also by acting directly on tissues like liver, muscle etc. and alter favourably the activities of the regulatory enzymes of glycolysis, gluconeogenesis and other pathways. Since the plant products have less side effects, they have the potential as good hypoglycemic drugs. They may also provide clues for the development of new and better oral drugs for diabetes.
Medicinal plants; Hypoglycemic agents; Diabetes mellitus
The study was carried out to evaluate community pharmacists’ and drug retailers’ knowledge and perceptions about generic medicines. A cross-sectional descriptive study, with a questionnaire, was conducted to survey community pharmacists and drug retailers working in 39 randomly selected private pharmacies from two towns of Tamil Nadu, India. Among 66 respondents (pharmacists and drug retailers), 39 (59.1%) were drug retailers; 52 (78.8%) were self-employed; majority in the age group 31-40 (31.8%); and mostly males (83.3%). Overall, 21 respondents (31.8%) did not know what generic medicines were. About 30% of the respondents thought that generic medicines are of inferior quality compared to branded medicines. Only 63.6% of the surveyed pharmacists and drug retailers agreed that generic medicines can be considered therapeutically equivalent with the branded ones. A higher level of education had a direct relationship having correct knowledge of generic medicines (P<0.01). The majority of the respondents (80%) did not support generic substitution, even in case of prescribed medicines are not available. Many community pharmacists and drug retailers have misconceptions regarding generic medicines. Lack of knowledge may negatively affect the community pharmacists’ support towards generic medicines in India. This issue should be addressed by academicians and other relevant bodies.
Community pharmacists; drug retailers; generic medicines; perceptions
Plants used for curdling of milk practiced by kollimalayalis, the tribes of kolli, hills, Salem District, Tamil Nadu are discussed.
This paper presents an account of 25 species used by Kollimalayalis of Kolli hills, Salem District, Tamil Nadu, as wild edibles in detail, including vernacular name and plant parts used.