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Studies of Ashwagandha (Withania somnifera Dunal)

Authors:
  • Dr D Y Patil college of Ayurved and Research
  • Institute of Teaching & Research In Ayurveda Jamnagar (Institute of National Importance)

Abstract and Figures

Withania somnifera Dunal member of Solanaceae family popularly known as Ashwagandha, Indian ginseng, or winter cherry has been used in Ayurveda, Indian system of traditional medicine. It is classified as a Rasayana (rejuvenation) and accepted to increase longevity and vitality. It is a reputed health food and herbal tonic and used for cardiovascular diseases in ethnomedicine. It is available for human use either as a single herb or an ingredient of polyherbal or herbomineral formulations. Thorough review of Ayurvedic literature and scientific research journals and articles were executed and presented in concise manner. The review includes various activities of Ashwagandha in experimental models and clinical evaluation of the drug in various dosage forms. The drug is reported with anti-inflammatory, anti-arthritic, caridoprotective, anti-stress, trainquillizers type sedative activity, hypoglycemic, thyroprotective activity and proved to be an effective remedy in cancer cells and the malignant growth of different organs. The drug is studied in all the scientific aspects and proven to be the broad spectrum remedy in various experimental studies. This review may help for the further evaluation of the drug for the cure of the ailments which are threat to human being.
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*Corresponding Author: Krutika Joshi, Email: vd.krutika@gmail.com
ISSN 0976 3333
REVIEW ARTICLE
Available Online at www.ijpba.info
International Journal of Pharmaceutical & Biological Archives 2016; 7 (1): 1- 11
Studies of Ashwagandha (Withania somnifera Dunal)
Krutika J1*, Swagata Tavhare2, Kalpesh Panara 3, Praveen Kumar A4, Nishteswar Karra5
1 MD (AYU), PhD (AYU) ,Dravyaguna Department, IPGT&RA, Gujarat Ayurved University, Jamnagar, Gujarat,
India
2 PhD scholar,Dravyaguna Department, IPGT&RA, Gujarat Ayurved University, Jamnagar, Gujarat, India
3Professor and X-HOD, Dravyaguna Department, IPGT&RA, Gujarat Ayurved University, Jamnagar, Gujarat,
India
Received 07 Nov 2015; Revised 04 Feb 2016; Accepted 18 Feb 2016
ABSTRACT
Withania somnifera Dunal member of Solanaceae family popularly known as Ashwagandha, Indian
ginseng, or winter cherry has been used in Ayurveda, Indian system of traditional medicine. It is
classified as a Rasayana (rejuvenation) and accepted to increase longevity and vitality. It is a reputed
health food and herbal tonic and used for cardiovascular diseases in ethnomedicine. It is available for
human use either as a single herb or an ingredient of polyherbal or herbomineral formulations. Thorough
review of Ayurvedic literature and scientific research journals and articles were executed and presented
in concise manner. The review includes various activities of Ashwagandha in experimental models and
clinical evaluation of the drug in various dosage forms. The drug is reported with anti-inflammatory, anti-
arthritic, caridoprotective, anti-stress, trainquillizers type sedative activity, hypoglycemic, thyroprotective
activity and proved to be an effective remedy in cancer cells and the malignant growth of different
organs. The drug is studied in all the scientific aspects and proven to be the broad spectrum remedy in
various experimental studies. This review may help for the further evaluation of the drug for the cure of
the ailments which are threat to human being.
Key words: Ashwagandha, Withania somnifera, Withaferin A, Rasayana
INTRODUCTION
W. somnifera Dunal (Solanaceae), also known as
Ashwagandha or winter cherry, is one of the most
valuable plants in the traditional Indian systems of
medicine. It is a small evergreen shrub that grows
to roughly four to five feet tall. In India, it is
cultivated, on a commercial scale, in the states of
Madhya Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh, Punjab, Gujarat
and Rajasthan [1]. This plant is used in more than
100 formulations in Ayurveda, Unani and Siddha
[2]. Ashwagandha is one of the prime drugs of
Ayurveda material medica. Acharya Charaka
included it in Balya and Brimhana-gana [3]. It is
attributed with Balya, Vrishya and Rasayana
properties and suggested as substitute of Kakoli
and Kshirakakoli.
The species name somnifera means ‘sleep-
inducing’ in Latin, indicating that to it are
attributed sedating properties, but it has been also
used for sexual vitality and as an adaptogen. Some
herbalists refer to Ashwagandha as Indian
ginseng, since it is used in Ayurvedic medicine in
a way similar to that ginseng is used in traditional
Chinese medicine. Ethno-medicinally, decoction
of the roots is used for colds and chills; and to
increase the tone of uterus after miscarriage or
birth. An infusion of the root bark has been used
for asthma, a use also common to traditional
herbal practices in India. In Ayurvedic medicine,
its root is used as an anti-inflammatory drug for
swellings, tumours, scrofula and rheumatism; and
as a sedative and hypnotic in anxiety neurosis.
Leaf possesses anti-inflammatory,
hepatoprotective, antibacterial properties. Fruits
and seeds are diuretic. The berries are used as a
substitute for rennet, to coagulate milk in cheese
making. Studies have proven that the activity of
the Withania extract was approximately equal to
the activity of the Panax ginseng extract.
Withania somnifera, however, has an advantage
over Panax ginseng in that it does not appear to
result in ginseng- abuse syndrome, a condition
characterized by high blood pressure, water
retention, muscle tension, and insomnia [4].
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Large numbers of experimental and clinical study
conducted on Ashwagandha to screen its safety
and efficacy on various biological systems but its
data are scattered. Many review papers are also
drafted but most of it is focused only on
pharmcognostic and pharmacological (in vivo or
in vitro) profiles. Keep this in view, attempt has
been made to review Ashwagandha with
Ayurvedic, experimental and clinical aspects.
Ayurvedic classical texts, compendia, lexicons,
databases, texts and research journals on
medicinal plants were reviewed critically and data
acquired were presented in concise form.
Indication described in Ayurvedic Medicine
In Ayurvedic classics, Ashwagandha is indicated
for Murchha (syncope), Apasmara (epilepsy),
Shosha(cachexia), Unmada (mania/psychosis),
Karshya (emaciation), Arsha (piles),
Pramehapidika (diabetic carbuncle), Arbuda
(tumour), Gandamala (cervical lymphadenitis),
Bhagandara (fistula-in-ano), Guhya-vrana (ulcer
in genitalia), Vatarakta (gout), Kushtha (diseases
of skin), Kilasa (vitiligo), Asthibhanga (bone
fracture), Katigraha (stiffness in lumbo-sacral
region), Gridhrasi (sciatica), Hanugraha (lockjaw),
Janustabdhata (stiffness of the knee), Hrudgraha
(cardiac failure), Yonidosha (disorders of female
genital tract) and Vidradhi (abscess) [5, 6].
Formulation
It is used as an ingredient many formulations such
as Shwagandhadi-churna, Ashwagandha-rasayana,
Ashwagandha-ghrita, Ashwagandha-rishta,
Ashwagandha-taila, Madhyamanarayana-taila,
Brihat Ashwagandha-ghrita, Brihachchhagaladya-
ghrita, Saraswata-churna, Pramehamihira-taila [7]
Nagabala-ghrita. Ashwagandha-taila,
Ashvagandha-rishata, Madhusnuhi-rasayana [8].
Major Chemical Constituents
Phytochemical contents
Ashwagandha has been found to contain steroidal
lactones called withanolides. Much of the
pharmacological activities are attributed to the
presence of these steroidal lactones [9]. In addition,
the roots provide 18 fatty acids, beta-sitesterol,
polyphenols and phytosterols. The root contains
several alkaloids, including withanine,
withananine, withananinine, pseudo-withanine,
somnine, somniferine, somniferinine. The leaves
of Indian chemotype contain withanolides,
including withaferin A [10]. Withanine is sedative
and hypnotic. The root extract contains an
ingredient which has GABA mimetic activity. The
free amino acids present in the root include
aspartic acid, glycine, tyrosine, alanine, proline,
tryptophan, glutamic acid and cystine [11].
Steroidal compound:
Withanolides glycol with anolides and alkaloids.
These include withaferin A, Withanolides G&D
sitoindosides IX&X and with asomnine. These
have been reported as active marker for
standardization [12]. Withaferin A,- a steroidal
lactone is the most important withanolide isolated
from the extract of the leaves and dried roots of
Withania somnifera. Anti-inflammatory activity
has been attributed to biologically active steroids,
of which withaferin A is a major component. The
activity is comparable to that of hydrocortisone
sodium succinate. Withaferin A also showed
significantly protective effect against CCl4
induced hepatotoxicity in rats. It was as effective
as hydrocortisone dose. The curative properties of
the leaves and roots are attributed to Withaferin A.
Withaferin A is antitumour, antiarthritic and
antibacterial.
Experimental Pharmacology
Large number of in vitro and in vivo experiments
has been conducted to evaluate it efficacy on
different biological systems. Activities screened
are presented in bellow tables.
Table 1: Activities screened on In vitro models
Effects/activity
Active constitutes
Author
Antioxidant
Withaferin –A A. Bhattacharya
et al,[13]
Methanolic extract
A.russo et al [14]
Immunomodulatory
Withanolides
V.Bahr, R.Hansel et al [15]
Aqueous extract
M.Gautam et al [16]
Glycowithanolides
V.Bahr, R.Hansel et al [17]
70% ethanolic extract
L.Davis, G.Kuttan et al [18]
Relaxant and antispasmodic effects and direct
musculotropic action.
The total alkaloids of Aswagandha
The WOI -1982 [19]
Chondroprotective
aqueous extracts of Withania somnifera root powder
Venil N Sumantran. [20]
Anti-inflammatory
Somasundaram S [21]
Table 2: Activities evaluated on In Vivo models
S. No
Effects /activity
Author
1
Depressant effect (tranquillizer-sedative type)
Rastogi RP [22]
2
Adaptogenic
S.K.Bhattacharya et al
[23]
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3
B.Singh et al [24]
4
S.K. Bhattacharya et al
[25]
5
Anabolic
S Sharma et al [26]
6
Analgesic effect(Hyperalgesia in DM neuropathy)
Mohsen khalili et al [27]
7 anti-inflammatory
Withaferin A (stainless steel implant induced inflammation)
S.Shivamani et al [28]
Root powder (1 g/kg suspended in 2% gum acacia) Anbalagan et al, [29]
Sathi N et al [30]
Begum et al [31]
Hindawi et al [32]
Agarwal et al [33]
8 Anti-depressant
Fat extract (Ashwagandha ghrutha)- in mice. Jayanthi MK
et al [34]
Bhattacharya A et al [35]
9 Antimicrobial activity Bioactive compounds from leaf Nabil Al Ani et al [36]
Alam et al [37]
10 Anti bacterial Ethanol root extract of WS
Mohamed El-Sayed
El-Boshy
[38]
11 Antiparkinson’s W. somnifera root extract Rajasankar S [39]
12 Antipyretic
CCRIMH
13 Cardioprotective WS root extracts
J.N.Dhuley [40]
I.Mohanty et al
[41]
14
Antistress activity to mice
(comparative study between finely powdered roots
of WS and Panax ginseng)
Root powder Grandhi A [42]
15
hypotensive, bradycardiac and respiratory
stimulant activities(in dogs.)
Total alkaloid fraction of root extract Rastogi RP [43]
16
Immunomodulatory
M.Suresh Gupta et al [44]
Aqueous extract(WS root)
Mohammad ziauddin et
al [45]
17 neuroprotective action
Sadhana Sharma et al [46]
Jain S.K [47]
Mahdeep Bhatnagar. [48]
18 Sedation in mice, dogs, monkeys rabbits, and rats. Ethanolic extract of the roots S.K.Bhattacharya [49]
19 Thyrotropic effect. Root extract of WS
Andallu B et al [50]
P d S l [51]
20
Hypoglycaemic and Hypolipidaemic
Hoda Q [52]
21
Anti-malarial
Dikasso D [53]
22 Nephroprotective
. Root extract Jeyanthi T
[54]
Table 3: Experiment carried out to screen anticancer activity
Activity
Part used
Author
Chemo protective
M.A. Akbarsha [55]
WS extract
Prakash J [56]
As an effective and a novel source of L-
asparaginase.
Root extracts
Oza V. [57]
Colon cancer
WS root extract(induced by azoxymethane and its immune dysfunction)
Muralikrishnan [58]
Withaferin-A (WA)
Koduru [59]
Cytotoxic properties against lung, colon, central
nervous system, and breast cancer cell lines Root extracts of WS
Jayaprakasha B
[60]
Dose dependent inhibition of metastatic lung
nodules in breast cancer metastasis mouse model, WFA Thaiparambil JT
et al [61]
Breast and colon cancer cell growth
Withaferin A,
Jayaprakasham B [62]
Lung cancer in mice (benzo(a)pyrene-induced)
The combination of paclitaxel with WS
Senthilnathan [63]
Control proliferative cells and nontoxic to
normal lymphocytes
Withanolide D; a pure herbal compound isolated from WS
Mondal S [64]
Skin Carcinogenasis in mice
Root of ws
Padmavathi B [65]
Skin carcinoma in rat induced by ultra violet
radiation Chemical constituent isolated from root of WS Mathur
[66]
Skin cancer (7,12-dimethylbenz a]anthracene
(DMBA)- induced) in Swiss albino mice
WS hydroalcoholic root extract (WSRE)
Prakash J [67]
Antiproliferative activity on MCF-7 (breast)
human tumor cell lines.
Leaf extract
Yadav B [68]
Fibrosarcoma tumours in Swiss albino mice
(20- methylcholanthrene induced)
Hydro-alcoholic extract of roots
Davis L [89]
Pancreatic cancer in vitro and in vivo
A steroidal lactone occurring in WS
Yu V [70]
Preclinical Safety Data
Acute toxicity:
Animal toxicity studies suggest that Ashwagandha
and its constituents are safe even when
administered in high doses. The approximate
LD50 was reported as 1750 ± 41 mg po in albino
mice (weighing 20- 25 g) [71]. Another study
reported no deaths of albino mice up to 1000
mg/kg po of sitoindosides IX and X
administration. LD50s of ip administrations of
these compounds were reported as 518 ± 34
mg/kg and 808 ± 68 mg/kg for sitoindosides IX
and X. [72] The acute toxicity study showed that all
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the extracts of W.somnifera were safe upto 200
mg/kg body weight. [73]
LD50 was recorded in rats - 465 mg/kg (332-651
mg/kg) and in mice - 432 mg/kg (299-626mg/kg)
in two-percent suspension of ashwagandholine
(total alkaloids from the roots of WS). [74] While
in alcohol extract from defatted seeds, LD50 in
albino mice was recorded 1750 +/- 41 mg (p.o).
[75]
Clinical Studies
Adaptogenic effect
Double blind clinical trial involving 60 healthy
children (8-12 years age), oral intake of 2 g/day of
root powder (in 100 ml milk) for 2months lead to
increase body weight, total protein and Mean
corpuscular hemoglobin. There was no toxic
effect of any kind even after 8 months of daily
consumption.[76] In a related clinical study, root
powder (3 gms. /day) was given to healthy male
volunteers (age 50-59 years) for one year. There
was a uniform significant increase in Hb, RBC
improvement in hair melanin and seated stature.
[77]
In a double-blind clinical trial, Ashwagandha root
powder was tested in a group of 101 healthy
males, 50-59 years old, at a dosage of 3 grams
daily for one year. A significant improvement in
haemoglobin, red blood cell count, hair melanin,
and seated stature was observed. Serum
cholesterol decreased and nail calcium was
preserved. ESR decreased significantly and 71.4
percent reported improvement in sexual
performance. [78]
In a double blind study shade dried roots of WS
were powdered and made as tablets of 0.5 gms
each and administered in the dose of 2 tabs 3
times a day with milk to healthy volunteers for a
period of one year. Results have shown significant
increase in haemoglobin, RBC, Hair melanin, and
in seated stature in the treated group as compared
to control group. Serum cholesterol and calcium
level of nails have also been decreased in treated
group.[79]
Analgesic effect
This study was done to evaluate the analgesic
effect and tolerability of single oral dose
(1000mg) of standardized aqueous extract of
Withania somnifera using Hot Air Pain model in
healthy human volunteers as per ICH GCP
Guidelines. Subjects were randomised to receive
either single oral dose of 1000mg standardized
aqueous extract of Withania somnifera or identical
placebo in a double blind manner. Mean Pain
Threshold Time at baseline and 3hrs after drug
administration were noted. Washout period of 10-
14 days was given for cross-over between the two
treatments. Safety assessments were conducted
before and at end of study in total twelve subjects
were enrolled. In the study, treatment with
standardised aqueous extract of Withania
somnifera produced significant increase in Pain
Threshold time compared baseline and placebo.
[80]
Antistress effect
The safety and efficacy of a high-concentration
full-spectrum extract of Ashwagandha roots to
reduce stress and anxiety was studied on 64
subjects for 60 days with prospective, double-
blind, randomized, placebo-controlled design. In
the study drug treatment group, each capsule
contained 300 mg of high-concentration full-
spectrum extract from the root of the
Ashwagandha. The treatment group exhibited a
significant reduction (P<0.0001) in scores on all
the stress-assessment scales compare to the
placebo group. The serum cortisol levels were
substantially reduced (P=0.0006) in the
Ashwagandha group, relative to the placebo
group. The study suggest that a high-concentration
full-spectrum Ashwagandha root extract safely
and effectively improves an individual’s
resistance towards stress and thereby improves
self-assessed quality of life.[81]
In another clinical trial, the effect of standardized
WS root and leaf extract (WSE) was evaluated in
chronically stressed humans Participants who
were randomly assigned to WSE (125 mg QD,
125 mg BD, or 250 mg BID) or placebo groups.
Stress levels were assessed at days 0, 30 and 60
using a modified Hamilton anxiety (mHAM-A)
scale. Biochemical and clinical variables were
measured at days 0 and 60. 130 subjects enrolled
98 completed the study. Between days o and 60
the WSE 125 mg QD group decreased
significantly more than placebo for mean mHAM-
A score, serum cortisole, serum C-reactive
protein, pulse rate and blood pressure. The
consumption of WSE significantly reduces
experiential and biochemical reduction of stress
without adverse effects.[82]
Rejuvenating Effect
A double-blind, placebo-controlled study was
conducted to evaluate the efficacy an ethanolic
extract of Aswagandha (Withania somnifera), in
patients with ICD-10 anxiety disorders comprised
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39 subjects, of whom 20 received the drug and 19
received placebo. At 6 weeks, significantly more
patients met a priori response criteria in the drug
group (88.2%) as compared with the placebo
group (50%). Results indicated that ethanolic
extract has useful anxiolytic potential. [83]
Adjuvant to chemotherapy
Fifty patients were recruited to each group, with a
median age of 51 years (range 36–70 years) in the
W. somnifera plus chemotherapy group and 50.5
years (range 3082 years) in the control group.
Eight patients had stage I, 33 stage II, 44 stage III,
and 15 stage IV breast cancer. Fifteen patients
were offered palliative chemotherapy and 85 were
offered adjuvant chemotherapy. Patients in the
group treated with W. somnifera root extract and
chemotherapy had less fatigue than did those in
the control group (PFS p < 0.001 and SCFS
p < 0.003). QoL was significantly better
(p = 0.0001) than in the control group. There was
no difference in the haematological parameters or
24-month overall survival for all stages [study
74% versus control 56% (p = 0.174)]; however,
there was a trend for longer survival in the
patients treated with W. somnifera root extract
plus chemotherapy. Addition of W. somnifera to
chemotherapy could have a positive effect on
fatigue and improve QoL in patients with breast
cancer. The effectiveness and toxicity of
chemotherapy were not altered. Thus further study
with a large sample size, uniform tumour criteria,
and risk stratified patients with breast cancer
could help to validate our preliminary outcome.[84]
Cardio vascular protection
Forty normal healthy subjects (either sex, mean
age 20.6 ± 2.5yrs and mean Body Mass Index
21.9 ± 2.2) of which 10 received standardized root
extracts of Withania somnifera, 10 received
standardized bark extract of Terminalia arjuna
and the rest of the 10 received standardized root
extract of Withania somnifera in addition to bark
extract of Terminalia arjuna. Both the drugs were
given in the form of capsules (dosage 500mg/day
for both the drugs). Ten participants received
placebo (capsules filled with flour). All the
subjects continued the regimen for 8 weeks. All
variables were assessed before and after the
course of drug administration. Withania somnifera
increased velocity, power and VO2 max whereas
Terminalia arjuna increased VO2 max and
lowered resting systolic blood pressure. When
given in combination, the improvement was seen
in all parameters except balance and diastolic
blood pressure. Withania somnifera may therefore
be useful for generalized weakness and to improve
speed and lower limb muscular strength and
neuro-muscular co-ordination. Terminalia arjuna
may prove useful to improve cardio-vascular
endurance and lowering systolic blood pressure.
Both drugs appear to be safe for young adults
when given for mentioned dosage and duration.
[85]
Hypoglycemic and hypocholesterolemic effect
Hypoglycemic, diuretic, and hypocholesterolemic
effects of Ashwagandha root were assessed in
human subjects, in which six type 2 diabetes
mellitus subjects and six mildly hyper-
cholesterolemic subjects were treated with a
powder extract for 30 days. A decrease in blood
glucose comparable to that of an oral
hypoglycaemic drug was observed. Significant
increases in urine sodium, urine volume, and
decreases in serum cholesterol, triglycerides, and
low-density lipoproteins were also seen. [86]
The growth-promoting effect
The growth-promoting effect of WS was studied
for 60 days in a double-blind study of 60 healthy
children, age 8-12 years, who were divided into
five groups of 12. Group 1 was given purified and
powdered WS 2 g/day fortified in 100 cc of milk
(no details about purification and powdering
methods were disclosed). Similarly, Group 2
received 2 g daily of a mixture of equal parts WS
and Punarnava (Boerhaavia diffusa), Groups 3
and 4 were given ferrous fumarate 5 mg/day and
30 mg/day, respectively, and Group 5 received
placebo. Group 1 experienced a slight increase in
haemoglobin, packed cell volume, mean
corpuscular volume, serum iron, body weight, and
hand grip, and significant increases in mean
corpuscular haemoglobin and total proteins
(p<0.01) at the end of 60 days when compared to
the initial level and the placebo group. Group 2,
treated with WS and Punarnava, showed a
significant increase in the level of haemoglobin at
the end of 30 days compared to the initial value.
Marked increases in the levels of haemoglobin,
packed cell volume, mean corpuscular volume,
mean corpuscular haemoglobin, serum iron, and
hand grip were also observed at the end of 60 days
when compared to initial levels. It was noted that
13 of 15 children had an increase in body weight,
10 children had an increase in haemoglobin and
packed cell volume, and 11 children had an
increase in serum iron. The study demonstrated
that WS may be useful as a growth promoter and
hematinic in growing children. [87]
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Anti-arthritic effect
In a double-blind, placebo-controlled cross-over
study, 42 patients with osteoarthritis were
randomized to receive a formula containing
Ashwagandha (Ashwagandha, turmeric, boswellia
and zinc complex) or placebo for three months.
The herbal formula significantly reduced the
severity of pain (p<0.001) and disability (p<0.05)
scores, although no significant changes in
radiological appearance or SED (Erythrocite
sedimentations) rate were noted.[88]
Rasayana effect
Randomized Placebo-Controlled Adjunctive
Study of an Extract of Withania somnifera for
Cognitive Dysfunction in Bipolar Disorder was
assessed. Sixty euthymic subjects with DSM-IV
bipolar disorder were enrolled in an 8-week,
double-blind, placebo-controlled, randomized
study of WSE (500 mg/d) as a precognitive agent
added adjunctively to the medications being used
as maintenance treatment for bipolar disorder.
Fifty-three patients completed the study (WSE, n
= 24; placebo, n = 29). Compared to placebo,
WSE provided significant benefits for 3 cognitive
tasks: digit span backward (P = .035), Flanker
neutral response time (P = .033), and the social
cognition response rating of the Penn Emotional
Acuity Test (P = .045). Mood and anxiety scale
scores remained stable, and adverse events were
minor. In preliminary level, WSE appears to
improve auditory-verbal working memory (digit
span backward), a measure of reaction time, and a
measure of social cognition in bipolar disorder.
Given the paucity of data for improving cognitive
capacity in bipolar disorder, WSE offers promise,
appears to have a benign side-effects profile, and
merits further study.[89]
Drug Interactions:
W. somnifera given in combination with a
diazepam produces an additive effect. The
combination when used in status epilepticus was
able to reduce significantly the effective dose of
diazepam to offer complete protection with no
subsequent mortality. Administration of W.
somnifera markedly alters the plasma levels and
pharmacokinetics of Amikacin resulting in the
modification of the dosage regimen of Amikacin
in healthy buffalo calves which clearly indicated
their safe and effective therapeutic use with
promising antimicrobial polypharmacy. [90]
Immunopotentiation on oral feeding of
standardized aqueous extract of Withania
somnifera (Linn. Dunal, Family Solanaceae) was
evaluated in laboratory animals immunized with
DPT (Diphtheria, Pertussis, Tetanus) vaccine.
Reduced mortality accompanied with overall
improved health status was observed in treated
animals after intracerebral challenge of B.
pertussis indicating development of protective
immune response. Present study indicates
application of the test material as potential
immunopotentiating agent possible applications in
immunochemical industry. The test material also
offers direct therapeutic benefits resulting in
reduced morbidity and mortality of experimental
animals. [91]
Caution: There are ethanomedicinal reports that
Ashwagandha may potentiate the effects of
barbiturates; therefore, caution should be used if
taking this combination.[92] Consumption with
alcohol, other drugs or natural health products
with sedative properties is not recommended. [93]
Consult a healthcare practitioner prior to use in
pregnant or breastfeeding mother. (Upton 2000)
CONCLUSION
In Ayurvedic classics Ashwaganhda is reported
having Shothahara, Vedanasthapana,
Mastishkashamaka, Deepana, Anulomana,
Shoolaprashmana, Krimighna, Raktashodhaka,
Kaphaghna, Shwasahara, Vajikarana,
Garbhashayashothahara, Yonishoolahara,
Mootrala, Kushthaghna, Balya, Brinhana,
Rasayana activities. Several experimental studies
are conducted on Ashwagandha and its
constituents providing the scientific bases for the
activities reported in Ayurveda. Significant
amount of investigations have been carried out on
anticancer and chemoprotective activities of
Ashwagandha indicate the drug is a potentially
useful adjunct for patients undergoing radiation
and chemotherapy The Ashwagandha was
evaluated in various experimental models for
assessment of activities of Ashwagandha. Clinical
trials carried out for Anti-inflammatory, sedative, ,
as adjuvant to chemotherapy, rejuvenating effect,
hypoglycemic and hypocholesterolemic,
Cardioprotective, Rasayan, growth-promoting
effect of Ashwagandha support and provid
scientific validations. The drug found safe in long
term usage and also in higher amount and can be
supportive with some modern medicine as its
proven significant antimicrobial activities with
amikacin and immunopotentiation with DPT
vaccine, increasing their therapeutic effects. In nut
shell, the drug can be a broad spectrum medicine
for the treatment of various disorders and also can
IJPBA, Jan - Feb, 2016, Vol. 7, Issue, 1
Joshi Krutika et al. / Study of Ashwagandha (Withania somnifera Dunal)
7
© 2010, IJPBA. All Rights Reserved.
be used by healthy individual for maintainance of positive health.
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Supplementary resource (1)

... Sharma et al. (2018) investigated the effectiveness of the extract of Ashwagandha root in subclinical hypothyroid patients and found that it may be helpful in normalising thyroid indices in these patients [15]. Krutika et al. (2016) [16] reviewed Ashwagandha for its activities in experimental models and performed clinical evaluation of the drug in various dosage forms, and described the reported roles of the drug, including anti-inflammatory, cardioprotective, anti-stress, anti-arthritic, and hypoglycemic activities and sedative activity and thyro-protective activity and an effective role in cancer cells remedy. It has been reported to enhance longevity and vitality and is a healthy herbal supplement. ...
... Sharma et al. (2018) investigated the effectiveness of the extract of Ashwagandha root in subclinical hypothyroid patients and found that it may be helpful in normalising thyroid indices in these patients [15]. Krutika et al. (2016) [16] reviewed Ashwagandha for its activities in experimental models and performed clinical evaluation of the drug in various dosage forms, and described the reported roles of the drug, including anti-inflammatory, cardioprotective, anti-stress, anti-arthritic, and hypoglycemic activities and sedative activity and thyro-protective activity and an effective role in cancer cells remedy. It has been reported to enhance longevity and vitality and is a healthy herbal supplement. ...
... It has been reported to enhance longevity and vitality and is a healthy herbal supplement. It is also effective in the cure of cardiovascular diseases in ethnomedicine [16]. ...
Chapter
In the present pandemic, demands for natural herbs and spices have been surprisingly enhanced, and the reason behind enhancements in the demands of these spices and herbs are genuine because they have super immunity boosting capability, and they strengthen the human body against various diseases and pathogenic microbes. In this direction, Withania somnifera, also popularly known as ‘Ashwagandha,’ is one of the popular herbs known for its different medicinal values and various biological functions. This Ayurvedic herb is known for its potential anti-inflammatory properties, fatigue reduction, stress reduction, anticancer properties, and it is also helpful for diabetic patients, arthritis pain, and others. Due to lack of research and scientific evidence, there is no concrete information on the direct medicinal importance and use of this plant, but it has a historical pharmaceutical role in Ayurveda as traditional Indian medicine, and its medicinal impacts have now been proved via various pieces of research. This chapter concisely describes the various recent clinical aspects and pieces of research on this medicinally valuable herb.
... It used to relieve bladder pain, burning sensation during urination and help in removal of kidney stone. 16,17 ...
Article
Full-text available
Urinary tract infection is one of the most common bacterial disease found in all age groups and has become a major health problem in developing countries. UTI’s are treated with various antibiotics but extensive and inappropriate use of antibiotics promotes the development of antibiotic resistance among uropathogenic bacteria and also responsible for emerging multidrug resistant strains. The development of drug resistance among uropathogens made treatment of UTI is difficult which has led to the search of new source of antimicrobial agent that act against these uropathogenic bacteria. The ethnomedicinal plants are natural resource and known as traditional healer, which can use for successful therapy of various infectious diseases. In present study, we observed antibacterial potential of methanolic root extract of two medicinal plants and against urinary tract infection causing uropathogens. For this 120 urine samples of suspected patients were collected from different hospitals of Ujjain and processed in SRL laboratory Ujjain Center. It was seen that 72 samples were positive and showing significant bacteriuria and prevalence of UTI was 60%. The major causal bacterial agent was , and and their frequency of occurrence was 37.5%, 25%, 15.2%, 13.8% and 9.7%. The antibacterial effect of methanolic plant extracts of both and was determined against isolated uropathogens by disc diffusion method. The effectiveness of both and was observed and it was found that they have effective antibacterial activity against uropathogens so they can be used as alternative drug against uropathogens.
... A double-blind clinical trial was performed by Joshi et al. to determine the adaptogenic effect of root powder. It was found that daily consumption of W. somnifera (in 100 mL milk) did not result in toxic effects, and there was an improvement in hemoglobin and red blood cell, as well as an improvement in hair melanin levels [81,82]. ...
... Hence the prepared herbal tea with these herbs may be found beneficial for patients with anxiety and stress. Literature findings indicate that Ashwagandha possesses antistress and minor tranquilizing property 28,29 . Vasicinone derived from adhatoda vasica have been found to have immunomodulatory and antistress effects 30,31 . ...
... Sharma et al. (2018) investigated the effectiveness of the extract of Ashwagandha root in subclinical hypothyroid patients and found that it may be helpful in normalising thyroid indices in these patients [15]. Krutika et al. (2016) [16] reviewed Ashwagandha for its activities in experimental models and performed clinical evaluation of the drug in various dosage forms, and described the reported roles of the drug, including anti-inflammatory, cardioprotective, anti-stress, anti-arthritic, and hypoglycemic activities and sedative activity and thyro-protective activity and an effective role in cancer cells remedy. It has been reported to enhance longevity and vitality and is a healthy herbal supplement. ...
Book
The Chemistry inside Spices & Herbs: Research and Development brings comprehensive information about the chemistry of spices and herbs with a focus on recent research in this field. The book is an extensive 2-part collection of 20 chapters contributed by experts in phytochemistry with the aim to give the reader deep knowledge about phytochemical constituents in herbal plants and their benefits. The contents include reviews on the biochemistry and biotechnology of spices and herbs, herbal medicines, biologically active compounds and their role in therapeutics among other topics. Chapters which highlight natural drugs and their role in different diseases and special plants of clinical significance are also included. Part II continues from the previous part with chapters on the treatment of skin diseases and oral problems. This part focuses on clinically important herbs such as turmeric, fenugreek, ashwagandha (Indian winter cherry), basil, Terminalia chebula (black myrobalan). In terms of phytochemicals, this part presents chapters that cover resveratrol, piperine and circumin. Audience: This book is an ideal resource for scholars (in life sciences, phytomedicine and natural product chemistry) and general readers who want to understand the importance of herbs, spices and traditional medicine in pharmaceutical and clinical research.
... The active chemical constituents of Withania somnifera are withaferin A, withanolide A, ashwagandhine, withasomniferin-A, isopelletierine, withasomidienone, tropine, withanone, cuscohygrine, β-sitosterol D glucoside, gallic acid, anaferine, hygrine, anahygrine, somniferine, rutin, mesoanaferine, etc (Saleem et al., 2020). It has life prolonging, rejuvenating effect & also used for the treatment of insomnia, anxiety, convulsion, skin disease, inflammatory conditions, nervous exhaustion, impotency, enhancing memory or cognitive and enhance insulin secretion and has been shown to be a successful treatment for cancer cells (Krutika et al., 2016) HPTLC is a prominent analytical method for quantification and fingerprinting of marker compounds in herbal medicines because of its simplicity, accuracy, sensitivity and applicability for high throughput screening of herbal medicine. The mobile phase of HPTLC has a high speed capillary flow range (Modi et al., 2016). ...
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Withania somnifera is the most valuable herbaceous plant, also known as Ashwagandha used in the traditional systems of Indian medicine having many therapeutic effects. It is obtained from the dried roots and stems of Withania somnifera belonging to family Solanaceae. The active chemical constituents of Withania somnifera are withaferin A, withanolide A, withasomniferin-A, isopelletierine, withasomidienone, tropine, withanone, cuscohygrine, anaferine, hygrine, anahygrine, somniferine, mesoanaferine, etc. It is used as a liver tonic, aphrodisiac, in asthma, emaciation, in bronchitis and ulcers. It has life prolonging, rejuvenating effect & also used for the treatment of insomnia, anxiety, skin disease, nervous exhaustion, impotency, enhancing memory and insulin secretion etc. Marketed formulations of Ashwagandha are Ashwagandharista, Himalaya Ashwagandha, Stresswin, Stresscom, Inlife Ashwagandha capsules, Himalaya massage oil, Ancient Apothecary, KSM 66 Ashwagandha, Vigomax, Baidyanath Ashwagandha Amrita 450 ml, Vital plus, Amrutha kasthuri and Brento etc. To maintain the quality of marketed formulations validation should be done. Different validation parameters such as LOQ, LOD, range & linearity, accuracy, ruggedness and specificity have been studied. Ashwagandha is in demand as a good health promoter is expanding in global market. Many efforts were undertaken to develop a better Withania somnifera variety with a specific chemotype. HPTLC (High performance thin layer chromatography) is most important in evaluating the quantity and quality of herbal drug. This technique is modern & effective form of TLC which is used for qualitative and quantitative analytical determination of analytes. It is the simple, rapid, precise, specific, robust and accurate technique. The effect of different extraction methods on marker compound Withaferin-A & other than Withaferin-A, effect of different climatic zones on phytochemical profile of Withania somnifera, different mobile ........
... In an animal model, W. somnifera extract was given for 28 days at oral doses of 0, 500, 1000, and 2000 mg/kg body weight, and data obtained suggest that the administration of W. somnifera extract up to 2000 mg/kg/day did not trigger adverse effect [118]. Several review articles broadly cover various human clinical trials suggesting that W. somnifera has no adverse health effects during long-term (≥one-year) administration [119]. For example, a group of 64 subjects aged from 18 to 54 received a 300 mg capsule of W. somnifera root extract for a period of 60 days [98]. ...
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The Withania genus comes from the Solanaceae family and includes around 23 species, spread over some areas of the Mediterranean, Asia, and East Africa. Widely used in traditional medicine for thousands of years, these plants are rich in secondary metabolites, with special emphasis on steroidal lactones, named withanolides which are used as ingredients in numerous formulations for a plethora of diseases, such as asthma, diabetes, arthritis, impotence, amnesia, hypertension, anxiety, stress, cancer, neurodegenerative, and cardiovascular diseases, and many others. Among them, Withania somnifera (L.) Dunal is the most widely addressed species from a pharmacological and agroindustrial point of view. In this sense, this review provides an overview of the folk uses, phytochemical composition, and biological activity, such as antioxidant, antimicrobial, anti-inflammatory, and cytotoxic activity of W. somnifera, although more recently other species have also been increasingly investigated. In addition, their health-promoting effects, i.e., antistress, anxiolytic, adaptogenic, antirheumatoid arthritis, chemoprotective, and cardiorespiratory-enhancing abilities, along with safety and adverse effects are also discussed.
... In the recent years multiple studies have been conducted in the field of Ayurveda on PEM and significant results have been found in terms of efficacy. Anabolic, bio availability enhancer, good source of energy and having micronutrients (Nutritive values are 200.6 cal/100 g) immunomodulator, anti-infective, nootropic appetizer and Rasayana and these pharmacological actions which are essential in breaking pathogenesis of PEM [24][25]. Ayurveda interventions are safe, cost effective, palatable with add on effect of appetizer as compared to only diet therapy. ...
Article
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Background: In India, Protein Energy Malnutrition (PEM)remains a significant and challenging public health issue despite implementing different nutritional policies over the period. It is also accompanying with aggravated risk of all-cause morbidity, as well as fatality Ayurveda mentions about various nutritional disorders such as karshya, balashosha, phakka, yakshma which are having similar symptomatology and treatment approach as that of the PEM. Several clinical studies have been conducted and some are under trial but systematic review is still pending to explore an effective treatment modality to combat PEM in Children. Aim: A systematic review to evaluate the efficacy of Ayurveda Interventions specifically on weight gain in the Management of Protein Energy Malnutrition in Children. Materials and Methods: A systematic review which will evaluate published clinical work of Ayurveda treatment modalities specifically for weight gain in the management of PEM in children that will involve “The randomized controlled trials (RCTs), multiple-arms clinical trials, quasi-experimental trials, observational studies (case series and case reports) through databases like PubMed, COCHRANE, AYUSH Research Portal, DHARA; Google Scholar; etc. and Ayurveda compendia to fetch complete available literature.” Observations and Discussion: The work of selection of the studies, data extraction, and synthesis will be taken up. Established guidelines for study selection, quality assessment, and narrative synthesis will be followed. Risk of bias assessment will be performed. A protocol will be designed that will ensure transparency for the completed review. Results of the study will be elaborately synthesized. The data will be presented in percentage, count and frequency; and if we find the data to be sufficiently homogeneous then meta-analysis will be carried out. Conclusion: The results obtained from this systematic review will be useful in identifying the evidence-based efficacy of Ayurveda interventions on weight gain in the Management of PEM. It will also provide substratum for future research studies for generating good-quality evidence that can be helpful to design new health policy to combat PEM effectively.
... It enhances the function of the brain and nervous system and improves memory 41,42 . Various Studies concluded that it also possesses the properties of antioxidant, anxiolytic, performance enhancer, memory boosting, antiparkinsonian, antidote, anti-inflammatory, anti-stress, immunomodulation, tranquilizers type sedative activity, hypoglycemic and proved to be an effective remedy in cancer cells and the malignant growth of different organs too 43 . Also, it is very much recommended that consuming Ashwagandha with cows' milk had the following effects on the human immune system: Through a survey, it is seen that increased inflammatory responses occur in the covid positive patients 44 . ...
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The Sanskrit term Ayurveda has translated knowledge of life. It is one of the world's oldest healing systems that originated in eastern culture and it includes numerous medical concepts and it’s a hypothesis for treatment and prevention of disease. In ancient times near to 3000 years ago in India when there are no synthetic medicines was developed then people used Ayurvedic plants to get cures for different diseases. Ayurveda is based on a belief that health and wellness depend on a delicate balance of mind, body, and spirit. Ayurvedic herbs are key components of Ayurveda. COVID-19 is an infectious disease found in December 2019 and it has now become a pandemic. The COVID-19 infection is produced by virulent severe acute respiratory syndrome-Coronavirus-2 (SARS-CoV-2) virus although various antiviral drugs are available for controlling the infection but sometimes, they lack in supply for treating the worldwide population. So, it has become imperative to develop an effective medical strategy for the management of COVID-19 which has become a major threat to humanity. Herbs exhibit various biological activities so; they can effectively help with managing the pandemic. This review discussed some herbs which have the potential for the treatment of COVID-19.
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Ayurveda is successfully implemented as a primary healthcare system in India, and it is flourishing in the promotion of health around the world. Ayurveda aims to create a society happily, healthy, and peaceful. In general, the simple regimes mentioned in Ayurveda texts are of immense use faced by the present world today regarding health pro- motion. Ashwagandha (Withania Somnifera) is usually referred to as 'Indian winter cherry' or 'Indian Ginseng'. It is a shrub grown in India and North America whose roots have been used by Ayurvedic practitioners for thousands of years. Ashwagandha is one of Ayurveda's most essential herbs, used as Rasayana for its wide range of health benefits for centuries. Chemicals constitute of Ashwagandha (Withania Somnifera)- The chemistry of Ashwagan- dha (Withania Somnifera) has been widely studied and numerous categories of chemical constituents have been described, extracted, and isolated, such as steroidal lactones, alkaloids, flavonoids, tannin, etc. More than 12 alka- loids, 40 withanolides and several sitoindosides have currently been isolated from the aerial parts, roots, and berries of the Withania species and have been recorded. The principal biochemical element of Ashwagandha (WS) root is withanolides, which are steroidal alkaloids and steroidal lactones. The pharmacological activity of Ashwagan- dha- It has been shown to have pharmacological importance as an Adaptogen, Antibiotic, abortifacient, aphrodisiac, Astringent, Anti-inflammatory, deobstructive, diuretic, narcotic, sedative, and tonic through centuries of Ayurvedic medicinal practice using Ashwagandha (Withania Somnifera). Along with these Ashwagandha acts as Anti-stress,Anticarcinogenic activity, Anti-inflammatory activity, Anti-aging activity, Cardioprotective activity, hypothyroid activity and Immunomodulatory activity. Keywords: Ashwagandha, Withania Somnifera, Alkaloids, Withanoids, sitoindosides
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Background: Pain affects millions of people worldwide, opioid analgesics have been used for chronic painful conditions. Due to their adverse effects, safer alternatives would be beneficial. Terminalia chebula, with proven analgesic action has been evaluated in the hot air pain model for its analgesic activity. Aim: To evaluate analgesic activity and safety of single oral dose of Terminalia chebula using hot air pain model in healthy human participants. Setting and Design: Randomized, Double blind, Placebo controlled, Cross over study. Materials and Methods: After taking written informed consent to IEC approved protocol, 12 healthy human participants were randomized to receive either single oral dose of two capsules of Terminalia chebula 500 mg each or identical placebo capsules in a double blinded manner. Thermal pain was assessed using hot air analgesiometer, to deliver thermal pain stimulus. Mean Pain Threshold time and Mean Pain Tolerance time measured in seconds at baseline and 180 minutes post drug. A washout period of two weeks was given for cross-over between the two treatments. Results: Terminalia chebula significantly increased mean pain threshold and tolerance time compared to baseline and placebo. Mean pain threshold time increased from 34.06±2.63 seconds to 41.00±2.99 seconds (p
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Context: Stress is a state of mental or emotional strain or tension, which can lead to underperformance and adverse clinical conditions. Adaptogens are herbs that help in combating stress. Ayurvedic classical texts, animal studies and clinical studies describe Ashwagandha as a safe and effective adaptogen. Aims: The aim of the study was to evaluate the safety and efficacy of a high-concentration full-spectrum extract of Ashwagandha roots in reducing stress and anxiety and in improving the general well-being of adults who were under stress. Settings and design: Single center, prospective, double-blind, randomized, placebo-controlled trial. Materials and methods: A total of 64 subjects with a history of chronic stress were enrolled into the study after performing relevant clinical examinations and laboratory tests. These included a measurement of serum cortisol, and assessing their scores on standard stress-assessment questionnaires. They were randomized to either the placebo control group or the study drug treatment group, and were asked to take one capsule twice a day for a period of 60 days. In the study drug treatment group, each capsule contained 300 mg of high-concentration full-spectrum extract from the root of the Ashwagandha plant. During the treatment period (on Day 15, Day 30 and Day 45), a follow-up telephone call was made to all subjects to check for treatment compliance and to note any adverse reactions. Final safety and efficacy assessments were done on Day 60. Statistical analysis: t-test, Mann-Whitney test. Results: The treatment group that was given the high-concentration full-spectrum Ashwagandha root extract exhibited a significant reduction (P<0.0001) in scores on all the stress-assessment scales on Day 60, relative to the placebo group. The serum cortisol levels were substantially reduced (P=0.0006) in the Ashwagandha group, relative to the placebo group. The adverse effects were mild in nature and were comparable in both the groups. No serious adverse events were reported. Conclusion: The findings of this study suggest that a high-concentration full-spectrum Ashwagandha root extract safely and effectively improves an individual's resistance towards stress and thereby improves self-assessed quality of life.
Article
Cognitive impairments contribute significantly to inadequate functional recovery following illness episodes in bipolar disorder, yet data on treatment interventions are sparse. We assessed the cognitive effects of a standardized extract of the medicinal herb Withania somnifera (WSE) in bipolar disorder. Sixty euthymic subjects with DSM-IV bipolar disorder were enrolled in an 8-week, double-blind, placebo-controlled, randomized study of WSE (500 mg/d) as a procognitive agent added adjunctively to the medications being used as maintenance treatment for bipolar disorder. Study enrollment and data analyses were completed between December 2008 and September 2012. Cognitive testing at baseline and 8 weeks assessed primary efficacy outcomes. Psychopathology and adverse events were monitored at scheduled visits. Fifty-three patients completed the study (WSE, n = 24; placebo, n = 29), and the 2 groups were matched in terms of demographic, illness, and treatment characteristics. Compared to placebo, WSE provided significant benefits for 3 cognitive tasks: digit span backward (P = .035), Flanker neutral response time (P = .033), and the social cognition response rating of the Penn Emotional Acuity Test (P = .045). The size of the WSE treatment effect for digit span backward was in the medium range (Cohen d = 0.51; 95% CI, 0.25-0.77). None of the other cognitive tasks showed significant between-group differences. Mood and anxiety scale scores remained stable, and adverse events were minor. Although results are preliminary, WSE appears to improve auditory-verbal working memory (digit span backward), a measure of reaction time, and a measure of social cognition in bipolar disorder. Given the paucity of data for improving cognitive capacity in bipolar disorder, WSE offers promise, appears to have a benign side-effects profile, and merits further study. ClinicalTrials.gov identifier: NCT00761761.
Article
Withania somnifera, herbal rejuvenative tonic widely used by Ayurvedic physicians in India, was tested for its adaptogenic properties. Pretreatment with this drug increased the swimming endurance in mice. It prevented gastric ulcers induced chemically or by stress in rats. Milk-induced leucocytosis was also prevented in mice. The drug prevented increase in adrenal weight and decrease in ascorbic acid and Cortisol content of adrenals during stress. It appears to induce a state of non-specifically increased resistance (SNIR) during stress. © 1982 Informa UK Ltd All rights reserved: reproduction in whole or part not permitted.
Article
Ayurvedic medicines prepared in India consist of Withania somnifera roots as one of the main ingredients. It is consumed as a dietary supplement around the world. The leaves of W. somnifera were used in the treatment of tumors and inflammation in several Asian countries. We have isolated twelve withanolides such as withaferin A (1), sitoindoside IX (2), 4-(1-hydroxy-2, 2-dimethylcyclpropanone)-2, 3-dihydrowithaferin A (3), 2, 3-dihydrowithaferin A (4), 24, 25-dihydro-27-desoxywithaferin A (5), physagulin D (1-->6)-beta-D-glucopyranosyl- (1-->4)-beta-D-glucopyranoside (6), 27-O-beta-D-glucopyranosylphysagulin D (7), physagulin D (8), withanoside IV (9), and 27-O-beta-D-glucopyranosylviscosalactone B (10), 4, 16-dihydroxy-5beta, 6beta-epoxyphysagulin D (11), viscosalactone B (12) from the leaves of this species. Compounds 1-12 and diacetylwithaferin A (13) were tested for their antiproliferative activity on NCI-H460 (Lung), HCT-116 (Colon), SF-268 (Central Nervous System; CNS and MCF-7 (Breast) human tumor cell lines. The inhibitory concentration to afford 50% cell viability (IC50) for these compounds was determined by MTT (3-[4,5-dimethylthiazol-2-yl]-2,5-diphenyltetrazolium bromide) assay. Withaferin A and its derivatives exhibited inhibitory concentrations (50%) ranging from 0.24 +/- 0.01 to 11.6 +/- 1.9 microg/mL. Viscosalactone B (12) showed the 50% inhibition at concentrations ranging from 0.32 +/- 0.05 to 0.47 +/- 0.15 microg/mL whereas its 27-O-glucoside derivative (10) exhibited IC50 between 7.9 +/- 2.9 and 17.3 +/- 3.9 microg/ml. However, Physagulin D type withanolides showed either weak or no activity at 30 microg/mL. Therefore, incorporation of withanolides in the diet may prevent or decrease the growth of tumors in human.
Article
The effects of daily administration of Withania somnifera root extract (1.4 g/kg body wt.) and Bauhinia purpurea bark extract (2.5 mg/kg body wt.) for 20 days on thyroid function in female mice were investigated. While serum triiodothyronine (T3) and thyroxine (T4) concentrations were increased significantly by Bauhinia, Withania could enhance only serum T4 concentration. Both the plant extracts showed an increase in hepatic glucose-6-phosphatase (G-6-Pase) activity and antiperoxidative effects as indicated either by a decrease in hepatic lipid peroxidation (LPO) and/or by an increase in the activity of antioxidant enzyme(s). It appears that these plant extracts are capable of stimulating thyroid function in female mice.
Article
Two new glycowithanolides, sitoindoside IX (1) and sitoindoside X (2), isolated from Withania somnifera Dun., were evaluated for their immunomodulatory and CNS effects (anti-stress, memory and learning) in laboratory animals, because the plant extract is used by practitioners of the Indian systems of medicine for similar purposes. The two compounds, in doses of 100–400 μg/mouse, produced statistically significant mobilization and activation of peritoneal macrophages, phagocytosis and increased activity of the lysosomal enzymes secreted by the activated macrophages. Both these compounds (50–200 mg/kg p.o.) also produced significant anti-stress activity in albino mice and rats and augmented learning acquisition and memory retention in both young and old rats. These findings are consistent with the use of W. somnifera, in Ayurveda, to attenuate cerebral function deficits in the geriatric population and to provide non-specific host defence.