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Origin of the name 'patchouli' and its history


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India is one of the few countries in the world that has rich cultural practices and health traditions. Its ancient practices still hold the key for many modern-day products and techniques. Patchouli essential oil is one such product that originated and was popularized from Indian indigenous practice. Though the patchouli herb had been used for many centuries in Asian countries, it came to be appreciated in Europe only in 1840s through its unique aroma associated with the exported Indian fabrics. This led to the popularization of patchouli and extraction of its essential oil. The name 'patchouli' also originated in India. Though some information regarding patchouli is already known, this note elucidates the plant's origin, correct nomenclature, its ancient uses, the origin of its name and its popularization in Europe.
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Origin of the name ‘patchouli’ and its history
R. Murugan and C. Livingstone
India is one of the few countries in the world that has rich cultural practices and health traditions. Its
ancient practices still hold the key for many modern-day products and techniques. Patchouli essential oil is
one such product that originated and was popularized from Indian indigenous practice. Though the patchouli
herb had been used for many centuries in Asian countries, it came to be appreciated in Europe only in 1840s
through its unique aroma associated with the exported Indian fabrics. This led to the popularization of
patchouli and extraction of its essential oil. The name ‘patchouli’ also originated in India. Though some
information regarding patchouli is already known, this note elucidates the plant’s origin, correct nomencla-
ture, its ancient uses, the origin of its name and its popularization in Europe.
The use of herbs to give fragrance in per-
fumes dates back to the dawn of civiliza-
tion. Perfumes were in use even before
4500 BC in the Egyptian culture. Many
aromatic essential oils such as cassia,
cinnamon, artemisia, marjoram, calamus,
juniper, frankincense, etc. were used in
ancient times for fragrance purposes,
frankincense being the most preferred
among them. Aromatic herbs were also
used in Chinese, Indian and other cul-
tures. In Ayurveda, aromatic herbs in
fresh, dried or juice form have been used
for healing. Although aromatic herbs
were used for many centuries in India, it
was the Arabs who introduced the prac-
tice of utilizing fragrance in the form of
essential oil. Their expertise in distilla-
tion paved the way for the genesis of
many essential oils such as rose oil, jas-
mine oil, sandalwood oil, etc. for making
attars1. However, the use of patchouli in
the form of essential oil was not reported
in any culture of the world, though
patchouli herb has been used as medicine
in China, and as medicine and insect
repellent in India from historic times.
Uses of patchouli herb
Patchouli herb (Figure 1) has been used
in the major medical systems of the
world, viz. traditional Chinese medicine
and Ayurveda for both external and
internal applications2. In Chinese medi-
cine, it has been used for centuries as de-
coction with other drugs for treating
cold, nausea, diarrhoea, dermatitis, vom-
iting, abdominal pain, headache, fever,
dampness and to stimulate appetite3–7. In
India, in the ancient times, leaves of the
patchouli plant had been primarily used
as insect repellent to keep insects away
from garments8–10.
Importance of patchouli
essential oil
Patchouli oil, extracted from the dried
leaves and young twigs of Pogostemon
cablin (Blanco) Benth. (Lamiaceae) is
one of the important essential oils exten-
sively used in perfumery. Apart from its
characteristic heavy, woody, earthy and
camphoraceous odour, it has long-lasting
and strong fixative properties. The main
and important chemical compounds
of patchouli oil are patchouli alcohol,
-bulnesene, seychelene,
-guaiene, norpatchoulenol,
-patchoulene and pogostol11,12.
The odour of patchouli oil is said to be
more powerful than any other essential
oil obtained from plants13,14. It blends
well with other essential oils and imparts
strength, alluring odour and long-lasting
qualities to other essential oils and per-
fumes and helps prevent rapid evapora-
tion of perfumes. Since it has strong
fixative and long-lasting properties, it is
widely used as an important base ingre-
dient in many fragrant products. It is also
used as a flavouring agent in low concen-
tration in alcoholic and non-alcoholic
beverages, baked food, candy and frozen
dairy desserts, gelatins, puddings, meat
and meat products3,4. In addition, patch-
ouli oil possesses anti-inflammatory,
antiseptic, antibacterial, antifungal, anti-
depressant and insect repellent proper-
Nomenclature of patchouli plant
Patchouli plant, P. cablin is indigenous
and native to the Philippines16. It was
first described in 1837 as Mentha cablin
Blanco from the Philippines by Francisco
Manuel Blanco in Flores de Filipinos
(Flora of Philippines). The word cablin
is derived from cablan, which is the ver-
nacular name of this species in the Philip-
pines16,17. Later, this plant was transferred
to its proper genus and renamed P.
cablin by Bentham in 1848. Patchouli
has been differently named by different
botanists. In 1845, Pelletier described
and illustrated this species grown in the
hothouse in France as P. patchouly. In
1847, Tenore described the patchouli
plant grown in Italy as P. suavis. In
1849, William Hooker13 also described
and illustrated patchouli grown in Botanic
Garden, Kew, as P. patchouli. It was also
described as P. javanicus Back. & Adelb.
by Backer and Adelbert in 1954. J. D.
Hooker described Indian patchouli plant,
Pogostemon heyneanus Benth., which is
indigenous to India (the Western Ghats)
and Sri Lanka, as P. patchouli in the
Flora of British India, where the patch-
ouli plant (P. cablin) is described as
P. patchouli var. suavis18. Since the
patchouli plant and Indian patchouli
plant have been described and referred
by the single name, P. patchouli, there is
confusion on the identity. P. heyneanus
is distinct and is different from P. cablin.
However, all the names such as
Figure 1. Pogostemon cablin (Blanco)
CURRENT SCIENCE, VOL. 99, NO. 9, 10 NOVEMBER 2010 1275
P. patchouly, P. patchouli, P. suavis,
P. patchouli var. suavis and P. javanicus
refer to a single plant, P. cablin, which is
patchouli of commerce.
Patchouli in ancient China
Although patchouli has been used in
Chinese medicine for centuries, the Flora
of China reveals that it is not indigenous
to China19. It is stated that patchouli was
introduced into China for medicinal uses
during AD 420–589 and later it was culti-
vated in the Guangdong Province of
southern China around the 11th cen-
tury2,5,20. However, it is not clear when
the Philippines plant reached China.
Lophanthus rugosus Fisch. & C.A. Mey.
[= Agastache rugosa (Fisch. & C.A.
Mey.) Kuntze] and Microtoena patch-
oulii (C.B. Clarke ex Hook.f.) C. Y. Wu
et Hsuan (Lamiaceae), which are indige-
nous to China, have been used in Chi-
nese medicine for many centuries for
various ailments5,6,16,21,22. As patchouli
looks similar and has odour similar to
those of these two species5,6,16, the Chi-
nese may have started using patchouli in
place of L. rugosus. Since patchouli was
initially cultivated in Guangdong Province,
in Chinese it has been called ‘Guang-
Huo-Xiang’ to differentiate it from L.
rugosus, which is called ‘Huo-Xiang’2,5,7.
Introduction of patchouli
(P. cablin) into India
Some researchers believe that the patch-
ouli plant originated in India5,23. But it is
not indigenous to India and it was intro-
duced here only in 1834. To a query in
1888, relating to the ‘actual’ source of
patchouli, the then Keeper of the Herbar-
ium of the Royal Gardens, Kew, Daniel
Oliver opined that the true patchouli of
commerce (P. cablin) was not indigenous
to any part of India. George King, the
then Superintendent (1871–1897) of the
Royal Botanic Garden, Calcutta (now the
Indian Botanic Garden, Howrah), also
affirmed that this plant was not indige-
nous to India, but it had been introduced
into the Royal Botanic Garden, Calcutta
from Straits Settlement14. This plant was
introduced in 1834 when Nathaniel Wal-
lich was the Superintendent of the Royal
Botanic Garden, Calcutta (1817–1842).
He received the patchouli plants from
G. Porter, the then in-charge of Botanic
Garden at Penang, Straits Settlements,
where it was cultivated16. Before botani-
cally describing this species, i.e. in 1837,
it was introduced into India in 1834 as
the ‘patchouli’ plant.
Origin of the name ‘patchouli’
P. heyneanus, the Indian patchouli plant,
was first described and illustrated as Cot-
tam by van Rheede in 1690 in Hortus
Malabaricus24. Bentham described
P. heyneanus in 1830 based on the
specimens collected by Heyne from
Ceylon (now Sri Lanka). This plant is
indigenous to peninsular India and Sri
Lanka. It is widely distributed in the
Western Ghats. Earlier, this species was
widely cultivated in home gardens for
medicinal purposes in peninsular
India16,24. Earlier, names such as
‘patcha’, ‘patchapat’ or patchouli were
invariably applied to any plant that had
the characteristic patchouli odour, in the
Indian markets. M. patchoulii and P. hey-
neanus were also sold as patchapat or
patchouli leaf in Calcutta and Bombay
markets respectively. These local names
were exclusively applied to P. heyneanus
in the western part of India16. Therefore,
the name patchouli was used in the
Indian markets even before the patchouli
plant, P. cablin, was described and intro-
duced into India. Further, this species has
never been named as or called patchouli
in the local languages in the Philippines,
China and South East Asian regions. The
name ‘patchouli’ appears to have phone-
tically evolved from ‘pacchilai’ in Tamil.
Since this word [pacchi (pacchai) means
green and ilai means leaf] has been used
for centuries for P. heyneanus25,26, the
name patchouli must have been derived
from Tamil2,10,15,22. The Oxford Advanced
Learner’s Dictionary (7th edn) also
affirms that the word ‘patchouli’ is
derived from the Tamil word ‘pacculi’,
this vernacular name was also used for
P. vestitus Benth27. P. heyneanus is also
called ‘kathir pacchai’ in Tamil28,29.
‘Kathir’ here refers to the spiked nature
of inflorescence that is similar to the
inflorescence of cereals. Therefore, the
name patchouli ought to have originated
from the Tamil name ‘pacchilai’.
Popularization of patchouli
It has been reported that the patchouli
herb was primarily used in India as
insect repellent to keep insects away from
garments2,8–10. However, the literature
mentions that patchouli was introduced
into India in 1834 (ref. 16). Further, no
cultivation of patchouli plant was
recorded in any part of India before its
introduction in 1834. Initially, P. heyne-
anus was sold in Bombay market as
patchouli or patchapat or pacha before
the patchouli plant was introduced into
India. It might be either P. heyneanus or
any other indigenous shrubby Pogoste-
mon species such as P. benghalensis
(Burm.f.) Kuntze, P. plectranthoides
Desf. and P. pubescens Benth., having
leaf aroma similar to that of patchouli
which could have been used as insect re-
pellent in ancient India.
Though the patchouli herb had been
used in China and India for many centu-
ries, it became familiar in Europe in the
1840s through imported Indian shawls
associated with the characteristic patch-
ouli odour13,14. Since Pogostemon species
have insect-repellent properties due to
the essential oil, the dried leaves or leaf
powder of any shrubby Pogostemon spe-
cies could have been used in packing
these fabrics during export to keep-off
insects. The French perfume manufactur-
ers at last discovered the secret odour of
the Indian shawls as due to the associa-
tion of Pogostemon species. Later, they
learned to perfume their homespun
shawls and other articles with the im-
ported patchouli leaves. There is evidence
that indigenous shrubby Pogostemon
species from India had also been taken to
Europe around 1800. For example, the
genus Pogostemon (including P. plec-
tranthoides type species of the genus)
was described by Desfontaines in 1815
based on the specimens collected from a
plant grown in the hothouse of Jardin des
plantes, Paris. This plant was believed to
be sourced from southern India (D.
Tirvengadum, pers. commun.). It is said
that the dried patchouli leaves were first
imported into London in 1844 from
China via New York13. After the Europe-
ans realized the importance of patchouli
in 1840s, they started looking for its
actual source (origin). At that time,
small-scale cultivation of patchouli (P.
cablin) was noticed in the Strait Settle-
ments (British Malaya) and it was almost
exclusively carried out by the Chinese
immigrants from southern China for
medicinal uses16. However, this plant is
not indigenous to the Malaysian re-
gion30,31. Hence, it is believed that this
plant could have been brought from
southern China by the Chinese people to
the Strait Settlements. Therefore, search
for the patchouli plant could have led to
the then British-controlled Strait Settle-
ments. Later, large-scale cultivation of
patchouli was started in the Strait Set-
tlements and subsequently it was intro-
duced into Java, Sumatra and other
Indonesian islands from Penang10. The
chief supply of patchouli leaf material to
Europe was initially from the Strait Set-
tlements14. The effort to introduce differ-
ent varieties of patchouli plant for
commercial cultivation in India was first
attempted by the Tata Oil Mills in 1942.
Later in 1962, systematic cultivation and
research was initiated by the Central
Institute of Medicinal and Aromatic
Plants at its Regional Centre in Banga-
lore4. Subsequently, patchouli has been
cultivated in some parts of India. How-
ever, large quantities of patchouli oil are
still being imported into India.
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K. V. Krishnamurthy, Department of Plant
Science, Bharathidasan University, Tiruchirap-
palli and Dr D. Narasimhan, Department of Bot-
any, Madras Christian College (MCC),
Chennai for valuable suggestions and Dr D.
Tirvengadum, Museum National d’Histoire
Naturelle, Paris, France for providing valu-
able information on P. plectranthoides. We
also thank Dr Sheeba J. Irwin, Department of
Botany, MCC, Chennai and Dr Xue-Jun Ge,
Laboratory of Molecular Ecology, South
China Botanical Garden, Chinese Academy of
Sciences, Guangzhou, China for providing
valuable information on patchouli.
R. Murugan* is in the Foundation for
Revitalisation of Local Health Traditions,
74/2, Jarakabande Kaval, Attur Post, Via
Yelahanka, Bangalore 560 106, India
and C. Livingstone is in the Department
of Botany, Madras Christian College,
Tambaram, Chennai 600 052, India.
Edited and published by P. Balaram, Current Science Association, Bangalore 560 080.
Typeset by WINTECS Typesetters (Ph: 2332 7311), Bangalore 560 021 and Printed at Lotus Printers, Bangalore (Ph: 2320 9909)
... P atchouli (Pogostemon cablin (Blanco) Benth.), a species in the Pogostemon genus and Lamiaceae family, is a valuable medicinal and aromatic herb ( Supplementary Fig. 1). Patchouli has been widely used in both traditional Chinese medicine and Ayurveda in India, which are major medical systems worldwide 1 . In China, patchouli was first documented in Ming Yi Bie Lu from AD 420 to 589 2 . ...
Full-text available
Patchouli (Pogostemon cablin (Blanco) Benth.), a member of the Lamiaceae family, is an important aromatic plant that has been widely used in medicine and perfumery. Here, we report a 1.94 Gb chromosome-scale assembly of the patchouli genome (contig N50 = 7.97 Mb). The gene annotation reveals that tandem duplication of sesquiterpene biosynthetic genes may be a major contributor to the biosynthesis of patchouli bioactivity components. We further phase the genome into two distinct subgenomes (A and B), and identify a chromosome substitution event that have occurred between them. Further investigations show that a burst of universal LTR-RTs in the A subgenome lead to the divergence between two subgenomes. However, no significant subgenome dominance is detected. Finally, we track the evolutionary scenario of patchouli including whole genome tetraploidization, subgenome divergency, hybridization, and chromosome substitution, which are the key forces to determine the complexity of patchouli genome. Our work sheds light on the evolutionary history of patchouli and offers unprecedented genomic resources for fundamental patchouli research and elite germplasm development. The ploidy level of patchouli, an aromatic plant in the Lamiaceae family, remain unclear. Here, the authors assemble a chromosome-level and haplotype-resolved genome for patchouli and reveal that it is tetraploid hybrid as well as compensated aneuploidy.
... The patchouli essential oil is highly valued in perfumery and aromatherapy because of its dominant aromatic spicy fragrance. Patchouli essential oil acts as a strong base and provides permanent fixative properties to prevent evaporation and promote tenacity 14 . Therefore, it is broadly applied in fragrance industries to manufacture various healthcare products such as soaps, detergents, body lotions and perfumes. ...
Patchouli (Pogostemon cablin Benth.) is an industrially valued aromatic and important medicinal plant currently having a huge demand for its essential oil. It is widely used in flavor and fragrance industries as well as in pharmaceuticals. The essential oil is mainly isolated from the dried leaf of patchouli by steam distillation. Patchoulol and α-patchoulene are the major constituents that regulate and control patchouli essential oil quality. The major compounds of this essential oil are patchouli alcohol, α-guaiene, α-bulnesene, β-caryophyllene, α-patchoulene, γ-curcumene and some of the minor compounds are pogostone, limonene, cedrene, viridiflorol, γ-himachalene, etc. The patchouli essential oil is highly valued in perfumery and aromatherapy and is known to have various pharmacological activities such as anti-inflammatory, antiseptic, astringent, diuretic sedative, antimutagenic, antiviral, etc. Realizing the importance and industrial value of the crop, farmers are showing interest in the plantation of patchouli at a commercial scale. In this review, a broad scientific literature were looked through which incorporates Sci-hub, Pub Med, Google Scholar, Pub Chem, NIST chemistry web book and NCBI. The purpose of the review is to summarize the information’s available includes Pogostemon cablin essential oil (EO) extraction and compositions, qualitative and quantitative analysis of the EOs, pharmacological importance, high essential oil yielding variety, adulteration, authentication, patchouli cultivation practices, and industrial demand of patchouli essential oil. An attempt has been made to enlighten the work of various researchers on patchouli carried out to date.
... 6 PEO is used commonly as a base note in cosmetic formulations, which grants strong fixative properties, enhancing the fragrance endurance. 7 Consequently, PEO has been used for the production of body lotions, soaps, detergents, and most importantly, perfumes. 6 In addition, it has many applications due to its numerous biological activities that include antioxidant, antidepressant, anti-inflammatory, analgesic, cytotoxic, and antimicrobial activities. ...
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Patchouli oil is a major ingredient in perfumery, granting a dark-woody scent due to its main constituent (−)-patchoulol. The growing demand for patchouli oil has raised interest in the development of a biotechnological process to assure a reliable supply. Herein, we report the production of patchouli oil sesquiterpenes by metabolically engineered Escherichia coli strains, using solid–liquid phase partitioning cultivation. The (−)-patchoulol production was possible using the endogenous methylerythritol phosphate pathway and overexpressing a (−)-patchoulol synthase isoform from Pogostemon cablin but at low titers. To improve the (−)-patchoulol production, the exogenous mevalonate pathway was overexpressed in the multi-plasmid PTS + Mev strain, which increased the (−)-patchoulol titer 5-fold. Fermentation was improved further by evaluating several defined media, and optimizing the pH and temperature of culture broth, enhancing the (−)-patchoulol titer 3-fold. To augment the (−)-patchoulol recovery from fermentation, the solid–liquid phase partitioning cultivation was analyzed by screening polymeric adsorbers, where the Diaion HP20 adsorber demonstrated the highest (−)-patchoulol recovery from all tests. Fermentation was scaled-up to fed-batch bioreactors, reaching a (−)-patchoulol titer of 40.2 mg L–1 and productivity of 20.1 mg L–1 d–1. The terpene profile and aroma produced from the PTS + Mev strain were similar to the patchouli oil, comprising (−)-patchoulol as the main product, and α-bulnesene, trans-β-caryophyllene, β-patchoulene, and guaia-5,11-diene as side products. This investigation represents the first study of (−)-patchoulol production in E. coli by solid–liquid phase partitioning cultivation, which provides new insights for the development of sustainable bioprocesses for the microbial production of fragrant terpenes.
... Another member of the Lamiaceae family, the patchouly plant, is the source of an essential oil with distinctive aromatic and flavoring properties. Patchouly is cultivated extensively in Malaysia, Indonesia and other tropical climates and its leaves were used in traditional medicine (Murugan and Livingstone, 2010;Swamy and Sinniah, 2015). Patchouly oil, produced from the steam distillation of the leaves of the plant, is used as both a perfumery and a flavor ingredient (Guenther, 1949;van Beek and Joulain, 2018). ...
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In 2015, the Expert Panel of the Flavor and Extract Manufacturers Association (FEMA) initiated a program for the re-evaluation of the safety of over 250 natural flavor complexes (NFCs) used as flavor ingredients. This publication, fifth in the series, evaluates the safety of NFCs containing linalool and/or other characteristic mono- and sesquiterpenoid tertiary alcohols and esters using the safety evaluation procedure published by the FEMA Expert Panel in 2005 and updated in 2018. The procedure relies on a complete chemical characterization of the NFC intended for commerce and organization of the chemical constituents of each NFC into well-defined congeneric groups. The safety of each NFC is evaluated using the well-established and conservative threshold of toxicological concern (TTC) concept in addition to data on absorption, metabolism and toxicology of both the constituent congeneric groups and the NFCs. Sixteen NFCs, derived from the Lavandula, Aniba, Elettaria, Daucus, Salvia, Coriandrum, Ribes, Guaiacum/Bulnesia, Citrus, Pogostemon, Melaleuca and Michelia genera, were affirmed as generally recognized as safe (GRAS) under their conditions of intended use as flavor ingredients based on an evaluation of each NFC and the constituents and congeneric groups therein.
... One of the components is patchouli alcohol (PA), an alcohol oxygenated group, with molecular formula of C15H26O and characterized as a natural tricyclic sesquiterpene [6]. Patchouli oil also acts as a strong base and provides permanent fixative properties to prevent evaporation and promote tenacity [7]. It has numerous pharmacological properties, such as anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, anti-tumor, antimicrobial agent, insecticidal, anti-atherogenic, antiemetic, whitening and sedative capabilities [8]. ...
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The synthesis of CaO/zeolite nanocomposite as a highly active and effective adsorbent for patchouli oil purification has been developed. This research aims to improve the quality of patchouli oil by synthesizing CaO/zeolite nanocomposites using a solid-state mixing method. The used mass ratios of zeolite:CaO were 0:100, 20:80, 40:60, 60:40, 80:20 and 100:0 (w/w), then nanocomposites with various zeolite-to-CaO ratios were then calcined at various temperature of 300°C, 400°C and 500°C. The zeolite, CaO and nanocomposites were characterized by using the Fourier-transform infrared (FTIR), X-ray fluorescence spectrometer (XRF) and surface area analyzer (SAA). The nanocomposites were then applied to patchouli oil and the assessment results of physical and chemical properties of patchouli oil were determined according to Indonesian National Standard (SNI) 06-2385-2006. After patchouli oil purification using ZECA nanocomposite, the acid number decreased from 5.42 to 0.39 mg KOH/g oil, the patchouli alcohol (PA) content increased from 33.08 to 34.27% and the Fe level decreased from 1.39 to 0.31 ppm.
... The genus Pogostemon (Lamiaceae) is scattered in Asia, Africa, and Australia, and South and South-east Asian regions account for higher diversity and endemism in this genus. Globally, the genus has been documented with 97 species from which 54 species are existent in India (Murugan and Livingstone 2010a). Amongst most of the discovered species, P. cablin is heavily explored for its EO; typically referred as patchouli EO (Suganya et al. 2015). ...
In an attempt to find an alternative and potent source of diosgenin, a steroidal saponin in great demand for its pharmaceutical importance, Helicteres isora suspension cultures were explored for diosgenin extraction. The effect of biotic elicitors on the biosynthesis of diosgenin, in suspension cultures of H. isora was studied. Bacterial as well as fungal elicitors such as Escherichia coli, Bacillus subtilis, Saccharomyces cerevisiae and Aspergillus niger were applied at varying concentrations to investigate their effects on diosgenin content. The HPLC based quantification of the treated samples proved that amongst the biotic elicitors, E. coli (1.5%) proved best with a 9.1-fold increase in diosgenin content over respective control cultures. Further, the scaling-up of the suspension culture to shake-flask and ultimately to bioreactor level were carried out for production of diosgenin. During all the scaling-up stages, diosgenin yield obtained was in the range between 7.91 and 8.64 mg l−1, where diosgenin content was increased with volume of the medium. The quantitative real-time PCR (qRT-PCR) analysis showed biotic elicitors induced the expression levels of regulatory genes in diosgenin biosynthetic pathway, the 3-hydroxy-3-methylglutaryl-CoA reductase (HMGR) and cycloartenol synthase (CAS), which can be positively correlated with elicited diosgenin contents in those cultures. The study holds significance as H. isora represents a cleaner and easy source of diosgenin where unlike other traditional sources, it is not admixed with other steroidal saponins, and the scaled-up levels of diosgenin achieved herein have the potential to be explored commercially.
... The genus Pogostemon (Lamiaceae) is scattered in Asia, Africa, and Australia, and South and South-east Asian regions account for higher diversity and endemism in this genus. Globally, the genus has been documented with 97 species from which 54 species are existent in India (Murugan and Livingstone 2010a). Amongst most of the discovered species, P. cablin is heavily explored for its EO; typically referred as patchouli EO (Suganya et al. 2015). ...
... The genus Pogostemon (Lamiaceae) is scattered in Asia, Africa, and Australia, and South and South-east Asian regions account for higher diversity and endemism in this genus. Globally, the genus has been documented with 97 species from which 54 species are existent in India (Murugan and Livingstone 2010a). Amongst most of the discovered species, P. cablin is heavily explored for its EO; typically referred as patchouli EO (Suganya et al. 2015). ...
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Essential oils (EOs) obtained from aerial parts of Pogostemon deccanensis were analyzed for GC–MS profiling, and evaluated for antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and anti-proliferative activities. GC–MS analysis revealed a total of 47 constituents, establishing the EOs rich in sesquiterpene with > 20 sesquiterpenes constituting around 77% of the total EO yield. Major constituents included Curzerene (Benzofuran, 6-ethenyl-4,5,6,7-tetrahydro-3,6-dimethyl-5-isopropenyl-, trans-) (26.39%) and epi-Cadinol (22.68%), Ethanone, 1-(2,4,6-trihydroxyphenyl) (6.83%, Acetophenones), and Boldenone (3.47%, anabolic steroid). EOs found to be rich in phytochemicals attributed for antioxidant potentials of aromatic/medicinal plants, viz., flavonoids (2.71 µg quercetin equivalents g⁻¹ EO), total phenols (3.94 µg gallic acid equivalents (GAE) g⁻¹ EO), carotenoids (14.3 µg β-carotene equivalents g⁻¹ EO), and ascorbic acid (2.21 µg ascorbic acid equivalents g⁻¹ EO). P. deccanensis EOs exhibited striking antioxidant activities assessed by wide range of assays including ferric reducing antioxidant potential (FRAP, 255.3 GAE at 2 µg mL⁻¹ EO), total antioxidant activity (TAA, 264.3 GAE at 2 µg ml⁻¹) of EO, DPPH (65% inhibition at 2 µg mL⁻¹), and OH (58% inhibition at 2 µg mL⁻¹) scavenging. Interestingly, EOs showed considerably higher anti-lipid peroxidation activity than the standard antioxidant molecule ascorbic acid, with 50% protection by 1.29 µg mL⁻¹ EO against 20.0 µg mL⁻¹ standard. EOs showed strong anti-inflammatory activity with 50% inhibition at 1.95 µg mL⁻¹ EO. The anti-proliferative activity of EOs was tested against mouse cancer cell line and the EOs proved a potent anti-proliferative agent with only 2.1% cell survival at 2 µg mL⁻¹ EO, whereas the EOs were largely non-toxic-to-normal (non-cancerous) cells with approximately 80% cell survival at the 2 µg mL⁻¹ EOs. This being the first attempt of phytochemical profiling and wide array of biological activities of P. deccanensis EOs holds significance as the striking activities were observed at very low concentrations, in some cases at lower than the commercial standards, and has, therefore, great potential for pharmaceutical or commercial exploration.
The essential oils extracted from the leaves, inflorescence, whole aerial-parts and root of patchouli [Pogostemon cablin (Blanco) Benth.] were analyzed and compared using GC-FID and GC-MS. Altogether thirty-four constituents, representing 86.9–97.7% of the total oil compositions, were identified. Major constituents of the oils of aerial-parts (leaves, inflorescence and whole aerial-parts) were patchouli alcohol (42.2–57.7%), α-bulnesene (9.0–15.2%), α-guaiene (6.4–17.9%), seychellene (3.4–6.9%), pogostol (0.3–5.0%) and (E)-caryophyllene (2.1–3.6%). However, the root oil was characterized by higher amount of pogostone (70.2%), norpatchoulenol (5.3%) and β-pinene (4.5%).
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The leaves of Pogostemon cablin (Blanco) Benth. (Lamiaceae) are the source of patchouli essential oil, which is – with an annual production of about 1300 tonnes – an important and unique commodity in the fragrance industry. All the literature pertaining to patchouli was critically reviewed with an emphasis on the qualitative and quantitative chemical analysis of the oil but also harvesting, fermentation, drying, distillation, used analytical techniques, sensory aspects including molecules responsible for the odour, adulteration and toxicological aspects, i.e., skin sensitisation, are discussed. In total 72 constituents have been convincingly identified in the oil and another 58 tentatively. The main constituent is the sesquiterpene patchoulol. For this review over 600 papers were consulted and in the supplementary information all patchouli-related references not relevant enough to be cited in the paper itself are listed.
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The study on the chemical constituents of an essential oil of Pogostemon cablin was carried out by hydrodistillation of leaf explants and the oil analysed by Gas Chromatography Mass Spectrometry (GC/MS). The oil yield was found to be 0.30 % (v/w) of fresh weight. Twenty two compounds were identified by GC/ MS as eighteen sesquiterpenes and three oxygenated sesquiterpenes. Among these, patchouli alcohol (60.30 %) was the major component, followed by germacrene A (11.73 %). In order to study the chemical constituents of the essential oil of plant cell cultures, leaves were surface sterilised and callus cultures initiated on MS media containing naphthaleneacetic acid (0.5 mg/l), and benzyladenine (1 mg/l), followed by incubation in suitable culture conditions. Cell suspension cultures were initiated by subculturing callus cultures into new liquid media and maintained in the same conditions. Chemical constituents of the essential oils produced by both callus and cell suspension cultures were extracted with dichloromethane and analysed by GC and GC/ MS. The results showed that essential oil obtained from these cultures contained the same major constituents, namely patchouli alcohol, as in the intact plant, but the level was low, and also contained a small amount of minor constituents. Feeding cis-farnesol, the precursor of patchouli alcohol, to cell suspension cultures resulted in the patchouli alcohol being increased from 19.5 mg/l to 25.5 mg/l.
In continuation of studying structure/activity relationships of odorous compounds, the influence of the bridgehead-bonded Me group of (+)-norpatchoulenol (1) and (−)-patchoulol (2) and the olfactory properties of the corresponding unsaturated and saturated derivatives (±)−3, (±)−4 and (±)−5, (±)−6, respectively, are studied. The key odour descriptors-wood, earth, and camphor-are used for classification.