An overview of advances in the standardization of herbal drugs

Journal of Pharmaceutical Education and Research 01/2011; 2:55-70.

ABSTRACT Herbal formulations have reached extensive acceptability as therapeutic agents for several diseases. The
development of authentic analytical methods which can reliably profile the phytochemical composition, including
quantitative analyses of marker/bioactive compounds and other major constituents, is a major challenge to
scientists. Standardization is an important step for the establishment of a consistent biological activity, a consistent
chemical profile, or simply a quality assurance program for production and manufacturing of herbal drugs. WHO
specific guidelines for the assessment of the safety, efficacy and quality of herbal medicines as a prerequisite for
global harmonization are of utmost importance. An overview covering various techniques employed in extraction
and characterization of herbal medicines as well as herbal nanomedicines standardization is reported. In
addition, phytosomes increased bioavailability, bhasma as a metal nanocarrier drug delivery system, potential of
metabolomics in the development of improved phytotherapeutic agents, DNA based molecular markers in
distinguishing adulterants, and SCAR markers for authentication and discrimination of herbs from their
adulterants are reported. The extraction of high-valued herbal compounds using microwave–assisted extraction
and supercritical phase extraction technology followed by the standardization utilizing various spectroscopic,
chromatographic and thermogravimetric techniques individually and/or in combination has been discussed in
relation to herbal drugs. Capillary electrophoresis and polarographic techniques contributions towards
standardization of herbal drugs is also reported. Nanotechnology based Chinese herbal drugs possess improved
solubility and enhanced bioavailability.

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  • Letters in Drug Design &amp Discovery 01/2011; 8(3):284-291. · 0.85 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Standardizations of medicinal plants used in traditional medicine is becoming important today in view their safety and efficacy. Their medicinal importance and taxonomic classification, morphology and microscopy, physico-chemical parameters, fluorescence analysis, preliminary phytochemical screening and quantitative estimation should be studied to establish the salient diagnostic characters which will provide referential information for identification of these crude drugs and standardization. Tukhme Karafs (seeds of Apium graveolens Linn) is a Unani drug possessing various pharmacological activities is subjected for physicochemical screening in the present study. Keywords: Standardization; Tukhme Karafs; Physicochemical; Unani drug.
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    ABSTRACT: Medicinal plants have been a major source of treatment for human diseases since time immemorial. The physicochemical evaluation of the plant material is an important parameter in detecting adulteration or improper handling of drugs. The present study was planned to compare the phyto-physicochemical analysis of Enicostemma littorale Blume (Whole plant) with Withania somnifera (L) Dunal (root). Both plants are medicinally important and used as anti-arthritic, anti-inflammatory, antioxidant and hepatoprotective. These plant materials were phyto, physico-chemically standardized according to the methods recommended by the World Health Organization and standard laboratory procedures. The highest percentage of hot water and ethanol extractable matter; total ash and acid insoluble ash (37.21±1.27% & 24.92±0.64%, 8.16± 0.1% & 1.89±0.1%) were found in E. littorale when compared with W. somnifera (30.82±1.09% & 10.0±0.21%, 5.76± 0.1% & 0.63±0.04%). Percentage of loss on drying was found in W. somnifera (9.12±0.10%) and it was slightly lower than E. littorale (10.25±0.33%). Preliminary phytochemical screening of these both plant materials revealed that presence of alkaloids, saponins, flavonoids, steroids, tannins, proteins, reducing sugar, fat and fixed oils and coumarins. This comparative information provides immense potential for studying their activities for arthritis and other disease conditions, both in pre-clinical and clinical stages, which lead to the preparation of useful pharmaceutical products. The present study has authenticated the usefulness of the identified plants for medicinal purposes. These species could also be seen as potential source of useful drugs due to their rich contents of phytochemical. INTRODUCTION Medicinal plants have been used for years in daily life to treat diseases all over the world. Interest in medicinal plants reflects the recognition of the validity of many traditional claims regarding the value of natural products in healthcare [1]. The medicinal value of these plants lies in some chemical substances that produce a definite physiological action on the human body [2]. Plants, besides providing nutrition, have always formed an important source of chemical compounds as secondary metabolites, which can be used for medicinal purposes [3]. The pharmacognostical parameters are major and reliable criteria for confirmation of the identity and determination of quality and purity of the crude drugs [4]. Pharmacognosy is a simple and reliable tool, by which complete information of the crude drug can be obtained [5]. The process of standardization can be achieved by stepwise pharmacognostic studies. These studies help in identification and authentication of plant material. Correct identification and quality assurance of the starting materials are an essential prerequisite to ensure reproducible quality of herbal medicine which will contribute to its safety and efficacy [6]. Enicostemma littorale Blume (Gentianaceae) is a glabrous perennial herb. It grows throughout India up to 1.5 feet height and more frequently near the sea [7]. It is called as Mamajaka"
    International Journal of Medicinal Chemistry & Analysis. 11/2013;


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