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1.  Anti-diabetic formulations of Nāga bhasma (lead calx): A brief review 
Ancient Science of Life  2013;33(1):52-59.
Ayurvedic formulations usually contain ingredients of herbal, mineral, metal or animal in origin. Nāga bhasma (lead calx) is a potent metallic formulation mainly indicated in the treatment of Prameha (~diabetes). Until date, no published information is available in compiled form on the formulations containing Nāga bhasma as an ingredient, their dose and indications. Therefore, in the present study, an attempt has been made to compile various formulations of Nāga bhasma indicated in treating Prameha.
The present work aims to collect information on various formulations of Nāga bhasma mainly indicated in treating Prameha and to elaborate the safety and efficacy of Nāga bhasma as a Pramehaghna (antidiabetic) drug.
Materials and Methods
Critical review of formulations of Nāga bhasma is compiled from various Ayurvedic texts and the therapeutic efficacy of Nāga bhasma is discussed on the basis of available data.
Result and Conclusion:
Antidiabetic formulations of Nāga bhasma were discovered around 12th century CE. There are 44 formulations of Nāga bhasma mainly indicated for Prameha. Haridrā (Curcuma longa Linn), Āmalakī (Emblica officinalis), Guḍūci (Tinospora cordifolia) and Madhu (honey) enhance the antidiabetic action of Nāga bhasma and also help to prevent diabetic complications as well as any untoward effects of Nāga bhasma. On the basis of the reviewed research, it is concluded that Nāga bhasma possesses significant antidiabetic property.
PMCID: PMC4140024  PMID: 25161332
Antidiabetic formulations; efficacy; Nāga bhasma; safety
2.  A review on phyto-pharmacological potentials of Euphorbia thymifolia L. 
Ancient Science of Life  2013;32(3):165-172.
Euphorbia thymifolia L. (Euphorbiaceae) is a small branched, hispidly pubescent, prostate annual herb, commonly known as laghududhika or choti-dudhi. The leaves, seeds and fresh juice of whole plant are used in worm infections, as stimulant, astringent. It is also used in bowel complaints and in many more diseases therapeutically. The present work is an extensive review of published literature concerning phytochemical and pharmacological potential of E. thymifolia. Data was searched and designed using various review modalities manually and using electronic search engines with reference to all aspects of E. thymifolia and was arranged chronologically. Complete information of the plant has been collected from the various books and journals since the last 32 years, internet databases, etc., were searched. Compiled data reflects the safety and therapeutic efficacy of the plant. This will be helpful for researchers to focus on the priority areas of research yet to be explored and in scientific use of the plant for its wide variety of traditional therapeutic claims and also as to find out new chemical entities responsible for its claimed traditional activities.
PMCID: PMC3902538  PMID: 24501446
Anti-herpes simplex virus; antihyperglycemic; anti-inflammatory; antinociceptive; phytochemical
3.  Role of indigenous herbs in the management of Alzheimer's disease 
Ancient Science of Life  2014;34(1):3-7.
Ageing is a natural phenomenon and decline of physiological and structural changes are incurable in advancing years of human life. When such degenerative changes occur in the brain they may lead to dementia and other memory related conditions. The Ayurvedic classics identified the importance of higher faculties dealing with memory and introduced a separate group of drugs namely Medhya Rasayanas. Regular intake of such drugs will help to prevent the onset of degenerative changes in the brain prematurely. Ayurveda can play a useful role in the management of such geriatric conditions. The current review has been done with a view to update documented Ayurvedic therapeutic modalities for certain geriatric conditions suggested by Ayurvedic classics in the management of diseases called Vātavyādhi (nervous system disorders), which also include conditions related to memory functions. Recent studies have started validating the claims recorded in Ayurvedic texts. The pathogenesis and remedies for Vātavyādhi documented in Ayurvedic classics have been reviewed with special emphasis on disorders related to dementia. A review of recent researches on the herbs mentioned in management of vāta disorders including dementia have been done to understand their role in management of Alzheimer's disease (AD). There are many herbs of ethno-medicinal source studied experimentally for their potential in treatment of AD. A judicious combination of modern research methodology and Ayurvedic principles could go a long way in the management and care of AD which is going to be a heavy burden on the society in the future.
PMCID: PMC4342646  PMID: 25737604
Alzheimer's disease; cognitive disorders; memory enhancing drugs
4.  Proposed correlation of modern processing principles for Ayurvedic herbal drug manufacturing: A systematic review 
Ancient Science of Life  2014;34(1):8-15.
Quality Ayurvedic herbal medicines are potential, low-cost solutions for addressing contemporary healthcare needs of both Indian and global community. Correlating Ayurvedic herbal preparations with modern processing principles (MPPs) can help develop new and use appropriate technology for scaling up production of the medicines, which is necessary to meet the growing demand. Understanding the fundamental Ayurvedic principles behind formulation and processing is also important for improving the dosage forms. Even though Ayurvedic industry has adopted technologies from food, chemical and pharmaceutical industries, there is no systematic study to correlate the traditional and modern processing methods. This study is an attempt to provide a possible correlation between the Ayurvedic processing methods and MPPs. A systematic literature review was performed to identify the Ayurvedic processing methods by collecting information from English editions of classical Ayurveda texts on medicine preparation methods. Correlation between traditional and MPPs was done based on the techniques used in Ayurvedic drug processing. It was observed that in Ayurvedic medicine preparations there were two major types of processes, namely extraction, and separation. Extraction uses membrane rupturing and solute diffusion principles, while separation uses volatility, adsorption, and size-exclusion principles. The study provides systematic documentation of methods used in Ayurveda for herbal drug preparation along with its interpretation in terms of MPPs. This is the first step which can enable improving or replacing traditional techniques. New technologies or use of existing technologies can be used to improve the dosage forms and scaling up while maintaining the Ayurvedic principles similar to traditional techniques.
PMCID: PMC4342652  PMID: 25737605
Ayurvedic extraction principle; Ayurvedic herbal drug preparation; Ayurvedic separation principle; Modern processing principle
5.  Pharmacological and therapeutic effects of Mentha Longifolia L. and its main constituent, menthol 
Ancient Science of Life  2013;33(2):131-138.
Mentha longifolia (wild mint) is a popular folk remedy. Some parts of this plant have been used in traditional medicine of Iran and other countries. Many studies have shown various pharmacological and therapeutic effects of the plant. Our aim in preparing this study was to review the traditional uses of M. longifolia together with the pharmacological and therapeutic effects of its entire extract and major compounds. Mentha longifolia is an herb with a wide range of pharmacological properties such as antimicrobial, gastrointestinal, and nervous system effects. Pulegone is the main compound of the plant responsible for most of its pharmacological effects followed by menthone, isomenthone, menthol, 1, 8-cineole, borneol, and piperitenone. Moreover, the plant may dose-dependently exert toxic effects in different systems of the body. Based on the review of various studies, it can be concluded that M. longifolia is a potential natural source for the development of new drugs. However, further studies are required to determine the precise quality and safety of the plant to be used by clinicians.
PMCID: PMC4171855  PMID: 25284948
Mentha longifolia; menthol; pharmacological effects; traditional use
6.  Relevance of Vṛkṣāyurveda and other traditional methods for organic production of nursery seedlings of useful plants 
Ancient Science of Life  2013;33(1):60-70.
Plant propagation is critical to augment the resource and has been the main concern for farmers and planters through history. India has evolved the science of Vṛkṣāyurveda to address the above issue. An effort is made here to review Vṛkṣāyurveda literature related to nursery techniques. Different libraries were visited and relevant review material obtained by hand search and from databases. Interaction with Sanskrit scholars and eminent scientists working in the field of Vṛkṣāyurveda, as well as the efforts of the authors of this paper, helped in the selection of pertinent literature. In the absence of original texts, authentic translations of the publications were referred. A conscious decision was made to limit the search to the fields of seed storage, pretreatment and nutrition of seedlings. To have a comparative account recent trends and literature on nursery technology were also examined. This was supplemented by interviews with traditional organic farmers. Our survey revealed that the time period of the literature pertaining to Vṛkṣāyurveda ranges from BCE 1200 to the present times. The subject has evolved from morphological descriptions and uses of plants, in texts such as Ṛgveda and Atharvaveda, to treatises dedicated solely to the art of growing plants like Kṛṣi-Parāśara and Vṛkṣāyurveda. It is also evident that there were important periods when more works appeared across subjects such as water divining, soil types, seed collection and storage, propagation, germination and sprouting, watering regimen, pest, and disease control. The review revealed that valuable information pertaining to nursery techniques is available in Vṛkṣāyurveda, which can be used in the development of nursery protocol. This will not only help in effective organic nursery management, but also ensure the health and livelihood security of the communities involved and effective waste management.
PMCID: PMC4140025  PMID: 25161333
Nursery technique; seedlings; traditional agriculture; Vṛkṣāyurveda
7.  Significance of gingers (Zingiberaceae) in Indian System of Medicine - Ayurveda: An overview 
Ancient Science of Life  2013;32(4):253-261.
Family Zingiberaceae consists of the large number of medicinal plants and is well-known for its use in ethnomedicine and play a major role in Indian System of Medicine, Ayurveda.
The aim of this study is the documentation of Zingiberaceous plants used in Ayurveda, adding information to the systematics, vernacular names and chemistry with experimental data.
Materials and Methods:
The live plants were collected from wild and successfully conserved at Herbal Garden of Arya Vaidya Sala, Kottakkal. The experimental data of each species has been collected from the various sources. The photographs were taken and all relevant data documented.
Results and Conclusion:
A total of 13 species belonging to 7 genera of Zingiberaceae were documented. The work will be useful to students and researchers as it provides an easy access to Zingiberaceous plants used in Ayurveda.
PMCID: PMC4078479  PMID: 24991077
Ayurveda; Curcuma; Gingers; Indian System of Medicine; Zingiberaceae
8.  Botanical identity of plant sources of Daśamūla drugs through an analysis of published literature 
Ancient Science of Life  2012;32(1):3-10.
Daśamūla (DM) is a top-traded group of medicinal plants used by the Ayurvedic industry. Through literature survey and analysis, this article has enlisted the botanical sources of DM, as correlated by several scholars. Such a list is not available from any single, earlier publication. It brings to light the confusion that exists in terms of botanical sources correlated to Ayurvedic entities. There is quite a bit of difference in the botanical correlation, parts, and substitutes reported in the different scholarly works, particularly for Pṛṣṇiparṇī, and Agnimantha. For e.g., is Uraria picta the original intended Pṛṣṇiparṇī, as the Ayurvedic Formulary of India (AFI) stipulates or is it U. lagopoidiodes or Desmodium gangeticum as other scholars report? While AFI provides two botanical correlations to Agnimantha in its two editions, namely Premna integrifolia and Clerodendrum phlomidis, other scholars correlate it to other Premna and Clerodendrum species. Why has AFI provided stem bark and whole plant as substitutes for roots of DM? Are substitutes recommended by AFI only for ecological or practical convenience or is there an Ayurvedic or pharmacological explanation for the same?
There are many species used in the name of Daśamūla,, in this article all the species are listed out to find the differences in the usage of the drugs.
Materials and Methods:
Ayurveda texts and lexicons along with the texts which have done correlation work were considered to arrive at a list of various species used as Dasmula.
Results and Conclusion:
Since neither the methodology nor the logic behind the correlation have been discussed in these scholarly works, including the AFI, the same is not available for analysis or scrutiny. Such a list as provided in this article can form an essential base for a much needed systematic approach at etymological analysis, botanical correlation, and further scientific work to establish legitimacy of substitutes prescribed.
PMCID: PMC3733204  PMID: 23929986
Ayurveda; botanical name correlation; Daśamūla; medicinal plants; substitutes
Ancient Science of Life  1997;17(2):144-150.
Gokhshura (Tribulus Linn) of Family Zygophyllaceae is an indigenous plant which has been mentioned in Ayurveda with several clinical properties. The plant finds use in one form or the other in various ayurvedic preparations and this has been made it necessary to review the various studies carried out in its chemistry as well as pharmacology.
PMCID: PMC3331096  PMID: 22556836
Ancient Science of Life  1995;14(3):168-180.
The control over diabetes mellitus depends upon the availability of insulin. Various efforts have been made in the recent past to control / check it. There is an increasing demand to use the natural antidiabetic agents. The literature pertaining to antidiabetic herbs is scattered. The present article is a conglomeration of available indigenous literature. It gives an additional information of list of antidiabetic plants which have not been discussed by Nagarajan et al76 and Handa et al45. It also presents some common plants used in diabetes, and the future of hypoglycaemic herbal drugs.
PMCID: PMC3331230  PMID: 22556695
Ancient Science of Life  1994;13(3-4):326-331.
The immunomodulatory property of plants is being studied with greater interest in recent years. This is more so because of the growing awareness regarding the need to modulate the immune system to achieve the desirable effects of preventing an infection rather than treating it at an advanced state. The recent advances in this field are summarized in this article.
PMCID: PMC3336526  PMID: 22556667
Ancient Science of Life  1993;13(1-2):57-88.
Licorice (Glycyrrhizaglabra L) is an important herb used in almost all systems of medicine. The author tries to present in this article a comprehensive review on all aspects of Licorice.
PMCID: PMC3336539  PMID: 22556632
Ancient Science of Life  1993;12(3-4):394-398.
Several diseases of polyuric nature were described in Ayurveda. Collectively called Prameha, this group includes an entity called Madhumeha which is the equivalent of diabetes mellitus. The medical history of the two diseases is described in the article.
PMCID: PMC3336561  PMID: 22556618
Ancient Science of Life  1985;5(2):104-112.
A detailed review on Guggulu, covering its botanical, Chemical Pharmacological and Ayurvedic aspects, is presented here.
PMCID: PMC3331448  PMID: 22557508
15.  A new paradigm of DNA synthesis: three-metal-ion catalysis 
Cell & Bioscience  2016;6(1):51.
Enzyme catalysis has been studied for over a century. How it actually occurs has not been visualized until recently. By combining in crystallo reaction and X-ray diffraction analysis of reaction intermediates, we have obtained unprecedented atomic details of the DNA synthesis process. Contrary to the established theory that enzyme-substrate complexes and transition states have identical atomic composition and catalysis occurs by the two-metal-ion mechanism, we have discovered that an additional divalent cation has to be captured en route to product formation. Unlike the canonical two metal ions, which are coordinated by DNA polymerases, this third metal ion is free of enzyme coordination. Its location between the α- and β-phosphates of dNTP suggests that the third metal ion may drive the phosphoryltransfer from the leaving group opposite to the 3′-OH nucleophile. Experimental data indicate that binding of the third metal ion may be the rate-limiting step in DNA synthesis and the free energy associated with the metal-ion binding can overcome the activation barrier to the DNA synthesis reaction.
Electronic supplementary material
The online version of this article (doi:10.1186/s13578-016-0118-2) contains supplementary material, which is available to authorized users.
PMCID: PMC5012070  PMID: 27602203
16.  Regulatory Roles of MAPK Phosphatases in Cancer 
Immune Network  2016;16(2):85-98.
The mitogen-activated protein kinases (MAPKs) are key regulators of cell growth and survival in physiological and pathological processes. Aberrant MAPK signaling plays a critical role in the development and progression of human cancer, as well as in determining responses to cancer treatment. The MAPK phosphatases (MKPs), also known as dual-specificity phosphatases (DUSPs), are a family of proteins that function as major negative regulators of MAPK activities in mammalian cells. Studies using mice deficient in specific MKPs including MKP1/DUSP1, PAC-1/DUSP2, MKP2/DUSP4, MKP5/DUSP10 and MKP7/DUSP16 demonstrated that these molecules are important not only for both innate and adaptive immune responses, but also for metabolic homeostasis. In addition, the consequences of the gain or loss of function of the MKPs in normal and malignant tissues have highlighted the importance of these phosphatases in the pathogenesis of cancers. The involvement of the MKPs in resistance to cancer therapy has also gained prominence, making the MKPs a potential target for anti-cancer therapy. This review will summarize the current knowledge of the MKPs in cancer development, progression and treatment outcomes.
PMCID: PMC4853501  PMID: 27162525
MAPK; MKPs; Cancer; Chemoresistance
17.  The Role of Cytokines and Chemokines in Filovirus Infection 
Viruses  2015;7(10):5489-5507.
Ebola- and marburgviruses are highly pathogenic filoviruses and causative agents of viral hemorrhagic fever. Filovirus disease is characterized by a dysregulated immune response, severe organ damage, and coagulation abnormalities. This includes modulation of cytokines, signaling mediators that regulate various components of the immune system as well as other biological processes. Here we examine the role of cytokines in filovirus infection, with an emphasis on understanding how these molecules affect development of the antiviral immune response and influence pathology. These proteins may present targets for immune modulation by therapeutic agents and vaccines in an effort to boost the natural immune response to infection and/or reduce immunopathology.
PMCID: PMC4632400  PMID: 26512687
Filovirus; Ebola; Marburg; cytokine; chemokine; immunopathology
18.  [No title available] 
PMCID: PMC4293745  PMID: 25593398
19.  Disease and Stem Cell-Based Analysis of the 2013 ASNTR Meeting 
Cell Medicine  2013;6(3):129-133.
A wide diversity of subjects are presented at the annual American Society of Neural Therapy and Repair meeting every year, and 2013 was no exception. An insight into the current research trends in regenerative medicine was provided, including studies to elucidate disease mechanisms and the means to treat them. Different methods featured in 2013 included stem cell and tissue transplantation, gene therapy, dietary supplementation, and hydrogels as scaffold systems for the growth of stem cells. Diseases ranged from Parkinson’s disease, spinal cord injury, and stroke to traumatic brain injury, pain, and epilepsy. Traumatic brain injury was an increasingly popular topic, highlighting the concerns of soldiers returning from duty overseas. A number of studies looked at ways to treat or elucidate mechanisms for more than one disorder. The studies including stem cells predominantly involved human-derived cells being transplanted, and the most common recipient of stem cells were rodents. Only one autologous transplant study, which featured mouse bone marrow cells being transplanted into mice for the treatment of stroke, was presented this year. The most popular stem cell studied was the neural stem cell, which in some instances was predifferentiated from induced pluripotent stem cells or embryonic stem cells. Other stem cells included the mesenchymal stem cell and adipose, amniotic fluid, and umbilical cord blood-derived cells. Many studies also looked at more than one stem cell type. Combinational studies, such as gene therapy and transplantation, were also commonly explored as well as studies using fetal ventral mesencephalon or spinal cord tissue rather than stem cells. Numerous studies also featured the use of “drugs”—some naturally derived or naturally occurring as well as drug cocktails. A number of possible treatments, including physical therapy and socialization, were explored for a number of different diseases, as well as reports on the current status of four gene therapy clinical trials for the treatment of Parkinson’s disease. Other studies assessed possible causes of specific disorders. In this way, the ASNTR provides an important snapshot of developments in the field of regenerative medicine.
PMCID: PMC4733834  PMID: 26858887
Regenerative medicine; Neurodegenerative diseases; Stem cell therapies; Combinational studies/therapies

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