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The present investigation was carried out to review and highlight the potential phytochemicals and medicinal phenomena of the critically endangered medicinal plant, Gentiana kurroo Royle of the western and north-western Himalayas. The medicinal plant is heavily exploited for root and rhizome. Due to its endemic nature and the high rate of exploitation from its natural habitat, this species had become critically endangered. The phytochemical screening of the plant revealed that the plant contains some vital phyto-constituents (iridoids, xanthones, C-glucoxanthone mangiferin, and C-glucoflavones) that have a medicinal value for various acute and chronic diseases. Several researchers have carried out experimental work to validate the folkloric use of the medicinal plant for different ailments like antibacterial, antioxidant, anti-arthritic, anti-inflammatory, analgesic activities and anti-diabetic activity. However, it is yet to be confirmed the antifungal activity of the same plant. Because of endemic nature and high rate of exploitation there is need for alternative method called bio-prospecting of Endophytes from the plant, to carry out the production and characterization of bioactive metabolites for pharmacological uses and can become a conservative tool for the medicinal plant.
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medicines
Review
Scientific Study of Gentiana kurroo Royle
Bhat Mohd Skinder 1, *ID , Bashir Ahmad Ganai 1and Abdul Hamid Wani 2
1Centre of Research for Development (CORD)/Department of Environmental Science, University of
Kashmir Srinagar, Srinagar 190006, Jammu and Kashmir (J&K), India; bbcganai@gmail.com
2Department of Botany, University of Kashmir Srinagar, Srinagar 190006, Jammu and Kashmir (J&K), India;
ahamidwani@yahoo.com
*Correspondence: mskbhat@gmail.com; Tel.: +91-946-949-7746
Academic Editor: James D. Adams
Received: 9 September 2017; Accepted: 30 September 2017; Published: 12 October 2017
Abstract:
The present investigation was carried out to review and highlight the potential phytochemicals
and medicinal phenomena of the critically endangered medicinal plant, Gentiana kurroo Royle of the
western and north-western Himalayas. The medicinal plant is heavily exploited for root and rhizome.
Due to its endemic nature and the high rate of exploitation from its natural habitat, this species had
become critically endangered. The phytochemical screening of the plant revealed that the plant contains
some vital phyto-constituents (iridoids, xanthones, C-glucoxanthone mangiferin, and C-glucoflavones)
that have a medicinal value for various acute and chronic diseases. Several researchers have carried
out experimental work to validate the folkloric use of the medicinal plant for different ailments like
antibacterial, antioxidant, anti-arthritic, anti-inflammatory, analgesic activities and anti-diabetic activity.
However, it is yet to be confirmed the antifungal activity of the same plant. Because of endemic
nature and high rate of exploitation there is need for alternative method called bio-prospecting of
Endophytes from the plant, to carry out the production and characterization of bioactive metabolites
for pharmacological uses and can become a conservative tool for the medicinal plant.
Keywords:
Gentiana kurroo Royle; medicinal plant; phytoconstituent; antimicrobial; anti-arthritic;
analgesic; anti-diabetic; bioactive molecule and bio-prospecting
1. Introduction
The common name of Gentiana has been derived from “Gentius”, a king of Illyria (Europe), who
is believed to have discovered the medicinal value of the Gentian root. In fact, the specific name
of G. kurroo Royle (Figure 1) is from the local name for the root of the plant, “Karu” meaning bitter.
G. kurroo Royle commonly known as “Indian Gentian” in English or Himalayan Gentian, “Karu” in
Hindi, “Traayamaana” in Sanskrit [13], however in Kashmir Himalaya it is called as “Nilkanth” but
Bakarwals (high-altitude goatherds/shepherds) living in the area of Sinthon top (asl-3800 m) and
Daksum (asl-2438 m), named it “Tazakhzand” in their local language. G. kurroo Royle is rosette-forming
perennial herb and a critically endangered medicinal plant [4].
Medicines 2017,4, 74; doi:10.3390/medicines4040074 www.mdpi.com/journal/medicines
Medicines 2017,4, 74 2 of 14
Medicines 2017, 4, 74 2 of 14
Figure 1. G. kurroo Royle collected from the Khrew village in the district of Pulwama, J&K.
2. Habitat and Distribution of G. kurroo Royle
G. kurroo Royle belongs to the family Gentianaceae (family of flowering plants). The
Gentianaceae family is represented by more than 90 genera and 1650 species; they are annual and
perennial herbs or shrubs, native to northern temperate areas of the world. Nearly 360 species of
genus Gentiana have been recorded [5–8], 62 species with 16 genera out of the total number are
observed in temperate regions of India [9,10]. The species is distributed in the Himalayan region
across India, Pakistan and Nepal [11]. It is endemic to the north-western Himalayas [12] and
commonly grows in Kashmir, Himachal Pradesh, and adjoining hills of the north-western
Himalayas at an altitude of 1500–3000 m asl [8,10,13,14] In Kashmir, it is usually found on south
facing steeper slopes along dry and rocky sloppy grasslands and sparsely shrubby scrubs [15],
whereas, in Himachal Pradesh (1700–2000 m), it has become intermittent in subalpine to alpine
meadows [10,16]. More than 80% of the population decline of the species has taken place in India in
a time period of ten years [17,18]. Therefore, the species is assessed as critically endangered [19].
India has the majority of the geographical range (80%) and therefore, situation in India is
considered as the representative of the global population of the species.
The Gentiana family is characterized by six genera and 55 species in the Kashmir Himalaya, an
important domain of the Himalaya hotspot [20]. The genus Gentiana has high diversity in this
province with 35 species. Out of these species, 31 reach alpine or sub-alpine levels [21]. G. kurroo
Royle was described by [22] as a new plant species on the basis of specimens collected from the
areas of the north-western Himalayas (Mussooree, Kuerkoolee, Budraj and Shimla). G. kurroo was
first reported in the Kashmir Himalaya by [23] at an altitude of 1850–2000 m (a.s.1) from the
Pahalgam area, followed by [24] from the localities of Kangan and Wangat. In many floristic works
dealing with Kashmir Himalaya, the plant species has been included, not based on the author’s
personal collections but by citing the pre-1943 collections ([21,25–27]. Due to the large scale
exploitation the plant extinct from the Dachigam National Park, however, G. kurroo Royle has been
rediscovered in November, 2004, on the floristic expedition to the Dachigam National Park in
Kashmir Himalaya after more than sixty years since it was reported earlier [14]. G. kurroo Royle
known to be adulterated/substituted with roots of Gentiana tenella, Picrorrhiza kurroa, Gentiana
decumbens, Exacum bicolor [28–31] for its high demand in international market and limited supply
Figure 1. G. kurroo Royle collected from the Khrew village in the district of Pulwama, J&K.
2. Habitat and Distribution of G. kurroo Royle
G. kurroo Royle belongs to the family Gentianaceae (family of flowering plants). The Gentianaceae
family is represented by more than 90 genera and 1650 species; they are annual and perennial herbs or
shrubs, native to northern temperate areas of the world. Nearly 360 species of genus Gentiana have
been recorded [
5
8
], 62 species with 16 genera out of the total number are observed in temperate
regions of India [
9
,
10
]. The species is distributed in the Himalayan region across India, Pakistan
and Nepal [
11
]. It is endemic to the north-western Himalayas [
12
] and commonly grows in Kashmir,
Himachal Pradesh, and adjoining hills of the north-western Himalayas at an altitude of 1500–3000 m
asl [
8
,
10
,
13
,
14
] In Kashmir, it is usually found on south facing steeper slopes along dry and rocky
sloppy grasslands and sparsely shrubby scrubs [
15
], whereas, in Himachal Pradesh (1700–2000 m),
it has become intermittent in subalpine to alpine meadows [
10
,
16
]. More than 80% of the population
decline of the species has taken place in India in a time period of ten years [
17
,
18
]. Therefore, the
species is assessed as critically endangered [
19
]. India has the majority of the geographical range
(80%) and therefore, situation in India is considered as the representative of the global population of
the species.
The Gentiana family is characterized by six genera and 55 species in the Kashmir Himalaya,
an important domain of the Himalaya hotspot [
20
]. The genus Gentiana has high diversity in this
province with 35 species. Out of these species, 31 reach alpine or sub-alpine levels [
21
]. G. kurroo
Royle was described by [
22
] as a new plant species on the basis of specimens collected from the areas
of the north-western Himalayas (Mussooree, Kuerkoolee, Budraj and Shimla). G. kurroo was first
reported in the Kashmir Himalaya by [
23
] at an altitude of 1850–2000 m (a.s.1) from the Pahalgam
area, followed by [
24
] from the localities of Kangan and Wangat. In many floristic works dealing with
Kashmir Himalaya, the plant species has been included, not based on the author’s personal collections
but by citing the pre-1943 collections ([
21
,
25
27
]. Due to the large scale exploitation the plant extinct
from the Dachigam National Park, however, G. kurroo Royle has been rediscovered in November, 2004,
on the floristic expedition to the Dachigam National Park in Kashmir Himalaya after more than sixty
years since it was reported earlier [
14
]. G. kurroo Royle known to be adulterated/substituted with roots
Medicines 2017,4, 74 3 of 14
of Gentiana tenella, Picrorrhiza kurroa,Gentiana decumbens,Exacum bicolor [
28
31
] for its high demand in
international market and limited supply from natural systems. However, the purity and authenticity
of crude drugs can be performed by macroscopic, microscopic and anatomical observation besides
chemical and ash analysis [3234].
3. Life Cycle of G. kurroo Royle
G. kurroo shows propagation through rhizome cuttings, seeds, somatic embryogenesis and micro
proliferation of shoot nodal segments. The shoot system of the G. kurroo is represented by flowering
branches only with culine leaves. The stem is a modified rhizome whereas the root system consists of
the rhizome and adventitious root. Flowering starts from the third week of August to first week of
November with the peak from 15 September to 20 October. On an average a plant produces 20 flowers,
and the ideal time for seed harvest is the first fortnight of November [10,35].
4. Rationale of the Study
Traditionally, a number of plants and their preparations have been in use for the treatment of
different diseases. Awareness of plant-based medications and therapeutics are continuously increasing
worldwide, hence the recognition and demand. However, very few of these have been validated
scientifically through rigorous
in vivo
animal studies and clinical trials. Most of the available scientific
data confirming the disease curing potential of traditionally used plants but lacks systematic studies
on their mode of action, efficacy, stability, toxicity and safety. In-depth scientific validation studies
are required to validate the traditional medications as alternative and complementary drugs for the
treatment of various diseases.
Although little work has been carried out regarding G. kurroo Royle, maximum efforts have still
been put in to compile all the research work in the present comprehensive review. The experimental
work carried out by scientists to investigate the promising phytochemicals and to validate the folkloric
use of G. kurroo Royle through different activities; for example, antimicrobial, antioxidant, anti-arthritic,
anti-inflammatory, analgesic and anti-diabetic activities have been highlighted in this review paper.
5. Phytochemistry
The family Gentianaceae have taxonomically useful types of compounds and pharmacological
actions. The various compounds like iridoids, xanthones, C-glucoxanthone mangiferin, and
C-glucoflavones have been recorded. The iridoids (mostly secoiridoid glucosides) appear to be present in
all species studied [
36
], whereas 90 different compounds of iridoids have been reported from 127 species
in 24 genera. Although Xanthones are not commonly present in Gentianaceae, about 100 different
compounds have been reported from 121 species in 21 genera. However, the C-glucoxanthone
mangiferin has a more limited distribution than the iridoids and the normal xanthones, although
it has been reported from 42 species in seven genera. Similarly, only nine different compounds of
C-glucoflavones have been reported so far from a total of 78 species in bube genera and are much less
variable than the iridoids and the xanthones [
37
]. The family contains most bitter compounds; even at
a dilution of 1:58,000,000, one tastes bitter, known as Amarogentin (Chirantin) (Figure 2), a glycoside,
and is used as a scientific basis for measuring bitterness [
38
41
]. Bitter products have been traditional
remedies for loss of appetite and fever and are still included in many “tonic” preparations [
42
,
43
].
In the present case, it is not possible to document the phytochemistry of all species of the family
Gentianaceae; therefore only one species (G. kurroo Royle) of genus Gentiana will be taken into detailed
consideration because of its nature as a critically endangered species in the Kashmir Himalayas, as it is
mostly extracted for the different ailments of human diseases.
Medicines 2017,4, 74 4 of 14
Medicines 2017, 4, 74 4 of 14
Figure 2. Structure of Amarogentin—a secoiridoid glycoside. Amarogentin consists of three
essential subgroups, the iridoid group, the glucose moiety and the biphenyl-triol rings (Source
[44,45]).
The phytochemical screening of G. kurroo Royle revealed various vital phytoconstituents as
depicted in Table 1. The quantitative estimation (%) of chemical constituents and fraction of
flavonoids of flower tops of G. kurroo Royle has been depicted in Table 2, whereas the total
flavonoid and phenolic content of the leaf and root extract are given in Table 3. However, besides
flavonoid and phenolic content, there are other constituents present in the root extract, as depicted
in Table 4. The critically endangered drug herb is mostly extracted from its natural habitat for root
and rhizome. The roots and rhizomes of G. kurroo Royle have been recorded in the Indian
pharmaceutical codex [8]. The root and rhizome are source of Iridoid glycosides-gentiopicrine,
gentiamarin, amaroswerin, and the alkaloid gentianine [46–48]. The dried roots contain 20% of a
yellow, transparent, and brittle resin [23,29,48], aucubin, catalpol, 6-O-vanilloyl catalpol,
6-O-cinnamoyl catalpol, [49,50]. However, the leaves also contain some of the important bitter
compounds; noticeably moreso than the roots [51]. Leaves contain iridoid glycoside
2-(2,3-dihydroxybezoyloxy)-7-ketologanin [52] and about 16 volatile aroma compounds [53]. Some
of the principal components in the leaf extracts of G. kurroo Royle are dimethyl sulphide (14.7%),
2-ethylfuran (17.5%), 1,8-cincole (7.8%), a-terpinyl acetate (23.5%) and methandriol (12.6%). The
other chemical components with lesser percentage are 1,3-propanediol (2.1%), 2-methyl sulphide
(2.1%), 3-methyl butanol (4.4%), pentanal (3.2%), hexanal (2.7%) and 7-oxabicyclo (4,1,0)-heptane
(2.0%) ([53]). Some other components isolated are morroniside and gentiopicroside [54].
Figure 2. Structure of Amarogentin—a secoiridoid glycoside. Amarogentin consists of three essential
subgroups, the iridoid group, the glucose moiety and the biphenyl-triol rings (Source [44,45]).
The phytochemical screening of G. kurroo Royle revealed various vital phytoconstituents as
depicted in Table 1. The quantitative estimation (%) of chemical constituents and fraction of flavonoids
of flower tops of G. kurroo Royle has been depicted in Table 2, whereas the total flavonoid and
phenolic content of the leaf and root extract are given in Table 3. However, besides flavonoid and
phenolic content, there are other constituents present in the root extract, as depicted in Table 4.
The critically endangered drug herb is mostly extracted from its natural habitat for root and rhizome.
The roots and rhizomes of G. kurroo Royle have been recorded in the Indian pharmaceutical codex [
8
].
The root and rhizome are source of Iridoid glycosides-gentiopicrine, gentiamarin, amaroswerin, and
the alkaloid gentianine [
46
48
]. The dried roots contain 20% of a yellow, transparent, and brittle
resin [
23
,
29
,
48
], aucubin, catalpol, 6-O-vanilloyl catalpol, 6-O-cinnamoyl catalpol, [
49
,
50
]. However,
the leaves also contain some of the important bitter compounds; noticeably moreso than the roots [
51
].
Leaves contain iridoid glycoside 2
0
-(2,3-dihydroxybezoyloxy)-7-ketologanin [
52
] and about 16 volatile
aroma compounds [
53
]. Some of the principal components in the leaf extracts of G. kurroo Royle are
dimethyl sulphide (14.7%), 2-ethylfuran (17.5%), 1,8-cincole (7.8%), a-terpinyl acetate (23.5%) and
methandriol (12.6%). The other chemical components with lesser percentage are 1,3-propanediol (2.1%),
2-methyl sulphide (2.1%), 3-methyl butanol (4.4%), pentanal (3.2%), hexanal (2.7%) and 7-oxabicyclo
(4,1,0)-heptane (2.0%) ([
53
]). Some other components isolated are morroniside and gentiopicroside [
54
].
Medicines 2017,4, 74 5 of 14
Table 1. Phytoconstituents of G. kurroo Royle.
Root and Rhizome References
Tannins
Alkaloids
Saponins
Glycosides (Gentiopicrine, Gentianine)
Terpenes
Flavonoids
Phenolics
Carbohydrates
Genianic Acid
Pectin
[29]
[50]
[46]
[36]
[47]
[55]
[48]
[56]
[57]
[58]
[59]
[60]
Flower Tops
Alkaloids
[61]
[62]
[63]
Flavonoids ( Robinetin-0, Luteolin, Apigenin, Kaempferol, Kaempferid)
Glycosides
Free Phenols
Terpense/Sterols
Leaves
Iridoid Glycoside
[53]
[51]
[52]
20-(2,3-Dihydroxybezoyloxy)-7-Ketologanin
Volatile Aroma Compounds
Dimethyl Sulphide
2-Ethylfuran
1,8-Cincole
A-Terpinyl Acetate
Methandriol
1,3-Propanediol
2-Methyl Sulphide
3-Methyl Butanol
Pentanol
Hexanal
7-Oxabicylo(4,1,0)-Heptanes
Table 2.
Quantitative estimation (%) of chemical components and name of fraction of Flavonoids of
flower tops of G. kurroo Royle.
Flower Tops % Name of Flavonoid Reference
Phenols 2.91 ±0.07 Robinetin-0
[63]
Alkaloids 0.33 ±0.02 Luteolin
Sterols/Terpenes 1.35 ±0.01 Apigenin
Flavonoids 0.31 ±0.01 Kaempferol & Kaempferid
Table 3.
Total flavonoid (aluminium chloride colorimetric method by [
64
] and phenolic content
(Folin–Ciocalteu reagent method by [65] of root and leaf extracts of G. kurroo Royle.
Extracts Total Flavonoid Content bTotal Phenolic Content aReference
Leaf extract 20 ±1.5 34 ±1.8 [59]
Root extract 41 ±2.2 68 ±2.4
Each value is a mean of three biologicalreplicas.
a
mg gallic acid equivalent (GAE)/g DW;
b
mg rutin equivalent/g DW.
Medicines 2017,4, 74 6 of 14
Table 4. Phytochemical screening of methanolic extract of G. kurroo Royle root.
Phytoconstituents Test Reference
Flavonoids ++
[58]
Tannins ++
Phenolics ++
Alkaloids +
Saponins +
Cardiac glycosides
++
Terpenes ++
Carbohydrates +
++: strong presence; +: moderate presence.
6. Ethno-Pharmacology
G. kurroo Royle has been found to have enormous medicinal properties reported by several
researchers. The medicinal values date back to when human beings first got to know natural
cures for different diseases from natural products. In folkloric treatment, leaf powder of G. kurroo
(Neilkanth) is mixed with oil and is applied on ulcer and fungal infection [
66
]. However, the
root of G. kurroo is used in stomach-ache and in urinary infections [
67
]; the root with ginger root
powder is also used for curing high fevers [
68
]. The roots were also used as bitter tonic, and
as an antiperiodic, expectorant, astringent, stomachic, anti-inflammatory, antipsychotic, sedative,
anthelmintic and antibacterial [
69
]. Gentianine (alkaloid) in G. kurroo possesses anti-infammatory,
analgesic, anticonvulsant, hypotensive, antipsychotic, sedative, diuretic, antimalarial, anti-amoebic
and antibacterial properties and Amaroswerin acts as gastro-protective [
48
], whereas some traditional
doctors use the whole plant against cough, fever, headache, liver ailments and as a blood purifier [
70
].
The drug obtained from G. kurroo is very helpful in removing all kinds of weakness and overtiredness
of body from prolonged illness, recovers digestive system and lack of appetite [71]. In the Ayurvedic
(Unani) system of medicine, the flower tops (Gule-Ghafis) are used for treatment of inflammation,
pain, antipyretic and hepatitis [
61
,
62
] and in the preparation of tonics for stomachic [
72
]. It is also
curative for the skin disease leucoderma, leprosy, dyspepsia, colic, anorexia, flatulence, helminthiosis,
anti-inflammatory, amenorrhea, dysmenorrhoeal, haemorrhoids, strangury, constipation, urinary
infections as an antiseptic, bitter tonic, cholagogue and bronchial asthma [
46
,
73
,
74
]. However, there
are some scientific validations of the folkloric uses of the critically endangered medicinal plant
G. kurroo Royle.
7. Antibacterial Activity
The recent study has revealed the antibacterial and antioxidant activity of the extracts of
Gentiana kurroo, as the extracts prevented the growth of both Gram positive and Gram negative
bacteria. The extracts of roots and leaves of G. kurroo possessed relatively higher antibacterial activity
against Gram positive bacteria than the Gram negative. The possible reason for antibacterial activity is
due to high content of flavonoids, involved in the inhibition of nucleic acid biosynthesis and metabolic
processes [
75
77
]. The antibacterial activity of root extract was found to be comparatively higher than
that of leaf extract and it was highest against Micrococcus luteus (0.15 mg/mL) and lowest activity
against Salmonella enteritidis (0.75
±
0.05). Leaf extract also exhibited a similar trend as shown in
Table 5, whereas the minimal inhibitory concentration (MIC) values were higher than those of the root
extract [
59
]. However, the study does not find out the peculiar bioactive molecule that specifically
regulates the growth of bacteria, but has successfully proved that G. kurroo could be a potential source
of broad spectrum antibacterial agents and can be used as preservatives in food and non-food systems;
thus, further phytochemical analysis is required for the isolation of bioactive molecules from the plant
that may show a broad spectrum of pharmacological activities.
Medicines 2017,4, 74 7 of 14
Table 5.
Antimicrobial activity of G. kurroo extracts (minimal inhibitory concentration (MIC) value
expressed in mg/mL).
Microorganism Leaf Extract Root Extract Streptomycin Source
Proteus mirabilis 0.27 ±0.01 0.24 ±0.04 0.055 ±0.002
[59]
Streptococcus faecalis 0.29 ±0.02 0.22 ±0.04 0.025 ±0.002
Escherichia coli 0.75 ±0.01 0.67 ±0.06 0.055 ±0.001
Salmonella enteritidis 0.90 ±0.02 0.75 ±0.05 0.020 ±0.003
Micrococcus luteus 0.22 ±0.08 0.15 ±0.04 0.020 ±0.004
Enterobacter cloacae 0.60 ±0.04 0.55 ±0.03 0.015 ±0.001
Each value is a mean of three biological replicas.
8. Antioxidant Activity
The methanolic extracts of leaves and roots of G. kurroo showed high phenolic and flavonoid
content. Phenolic compounds are important plant constituents for their free radical scavenging ability,
enabled by their hydroxyl groups, and the total phenolic concentration might be used as a source
for rapid screening of antioxidant activity [
78
] and are also involved in the oxidative stress tolerance
of plants. Flavonoids are highly effective scavengers of most oxidizing molecules concerned with
several diseases [
79
,
80
]. On the other hand, flavonoids suppress reactive oxygen formation, chelate
trace elements involved in free-radical production, scavenge reactive species, up-regulate and protect
antioxidant defences [
81
]. The methanolic extracts of root as compared to the methanolic extract of
leaves showed comparatively high antioxidant activity, which could be related to the total flavonoid
and phenolic content of the two extracts [59,80] (Table 6) (Figures 3and 4).
Table 6.
The DPPH scavenging and superoxide scavenging activity determined by DPPH [
82
] and
NBT assay [83].
Extracts (600 µg/mL) DPPH Assay (%) NBT Assay (%) Source
Leaf 53 51
[59]
Root 72 63
Control
Vitamin C/Ascorbic acid *
91 91.7
DPPH (1,1-Diphenyl-2-picrylhydrazyl) & NBT(nitroblue tetrazolium); * Ascorbic acid taken as a positive control.
Figure 3.
Free radical scavenging activity of methanolic extracts of leaves and roots of G. kurroo Royle
(Source: [59]).
Medicines 2017,4, 74 8 of 14
Medicines 2017, 4, 74 8 of 14
Figure 4. Superoxide scavenging activity of methnolic extracts of leaves and roots of G. kurroo Royle
(Source: [59]).
9. Anti-Arthritic and Anti-Inflammatory Activity
The recent study [84] and [60] has shown positive results from the extracts of G. kurroo
regarding acute and chronic anti-Inflammatory test. To determine the acute inflammatory effect, rat
carrageenin-induced paw edema model was used. Different plant extracts were screened for
anti-inflammatory activity at a dose of 250 mg/kg body weight. The maximum potential for
suppressing the inflammatory response was shown by methanolic extract of G. kurroo. The
observed inhibitory effect in the paw edema of Wistar rats was 47.62% and it was found to be
significant (p < 0.05) as compared to control group (55.24%). However, a dose of 750 mg/kg body
weight has shown maximum activity (67.27%) which was even found to be higher than that of the
standard drug (56.36%). The results were found to be statistically significant compared to control
group but non-significant with standard group at p < 0.05.
Chronic Anti-Inflammatory Test: For this study, mycobacterium-induced adjuvant arthritis as
a model of chronic inflammation was used. Male Wistar rats were taken in seven groups, with each
group having the same number of animals (݊ = 5). The results revealed that the methanolic extract
has a dose as well as time-dependent inhibitory effect on the edema formation (Figure 5). The
increased activity with increased doses may be due to high concentration of bioactive agent/s in the
extract. Methanolic extract of G. kurroo has more pronounced effect as compared to other extracts
and consequently indicates the inhibition of chemical mediators of inflammation. The results were
found to be very significant as related to arthritic control at p < 0.05. It may be due to the incidence
of more bioactive agent(s) in the extract [60,85]. Anti-inflammatory property of G. kurroo could be
related to secondary metabolites such as terpenoids or flavonoids; monoterpenoids such as
camphene, borneol, and β-pinene have similar properties [55,56], and flavonoids such as
6-methoxytricin show anti-inflammatory and analgesic activities [57]. This could also be because of
the inhibition of proinflammatory cells [60,85]. Although the study related to the anti-inflammatory
drug obtained from a methanolic extract of G. kurroo against rheumatoid arthritis is prolific, it has
the limitation of the possible mechanism and the identification of the bioactive compound from the
extract of Gentiana kurroo; however, it is confirmed that the G. kurroo serves as a drug source against
inflammation and rheumatoid arthritis.
Figure 4.
Superoxide scavenging activity of methnolic extracts of leaves and roots of G. kurroo Royle
(Source: [59]).
9. Anti-Arthritic and Anti-Inflammatory Activity
The recent study [
84
] and [
60
] has shown positive results from the extracts of G. kurroo regarding acute
and chronic anti-Inflammatory test. To determine the acute inflammatory effect, rat carrageenin-induced
paw edema model was used. Different plant extracts were screened for anti-inflammatory activity at a
dose of 250 mg/kg body weight. The maximum potential for suppressing the inflammatory response
was shown by methanolic extract of G. kurroo. The observed inhibitory effect in the paw edema of
Wistar rats was 47.62% and it was found to be significant
(p< 0.05)
as compared to control group
(55.24%). However, a dose of 750 mg/kg body weight has shown maximum activity (67.27%) which
was even found to be higher than that of the standard drug (56.36%). The results were found to be
statistically significant compared to control group but non-significant with standard group at p< 0.05.
Chronic Anti-Inflammatory Test: For this study, mycobacterium-induced adjuvant arthritis as
a model of chronic inflammation was used. Male Wistar rats were taken in seven groups, with
each group having the same number of animals (n= 5). The results revealed that the methanolic
extract has a dose as well as time-dependent inhibitory effect on the edema formation (Figure 5).
The increased activity with increased doses may be due to high concentration of bioactive agent/s in
the extract. Methanolic extract of G. kurroo has more pronounced effect as compared to other extracts
and consequently indicates the inhibition of chemical mediators of inflammation. The results were
found to be very significant as related to arthritic control at p< 0.05. It may be due to the incidence
of more bioactive agent(s) in the extract [
60
,
85
]. Anti-inflammatory property of G. kurroo could be
related to secondary metabolites such as terpenoids or flavonoids; monoterpenoids such as camphene,
borneol, and
β
-pinene have similar properties [
55
,
56
], and flavonoids such as 6-methoxytricin show
anti-inflammatory and analgesic activities [
57
]. This could also be because of the inhibition of
proinflammatory cells [
60
,
85
]. Although the study related to the anti-inflammatory drug obtained
from a methanolic extract of G. kurroo against rheumatoid arthritis is prolific, it has the limitation
of the possible mechanism and the identification of the bioactive compound from the extract of
Gentiana kurroo; however, it is confirmed that the G. kurroo serves as a drug source against inflammation
and rheumatoid arthritis.
Medicines 2017,4, 74 9 of 14
Medicines 2017, 4, 74 9 of 14
Figure 5. Inhibition of paw edema in adjuvant arthritis with different concentrations of methanolic
extract of G. kurroo Royle (Dose and time dependent) (Source: [85]).
10. Analgesic Activity
The study being carried out by [58] on the analgesic activity of G. kurroo was based on two
tests: an acetic acid-induced writhing test was used for detecting both central and peripheral
analgesia, whereas the hot plate test is most sensitive to centrally-acting analgesics. In the acetic
acid-induced writhing test, the methanolic extract of G. kurroo root at a dose of 250 and 500 mg/kg
body weight revealed a significant (p < 0.05) decrease in number of writhings (63.38% and 73.70%
inhibition) provoked by acetic acid in a dose-dependent manner, and the results were comparable
with the standard drug diclofenac sodium (71.61% inhibition). It could be possible that extracts
produced analgesic effect due to the inhibition of synthesis or action of prostaglandin [86].
However, in the case of Eddy’s hot plate test, the extract showed a significant (p < 0.05) rise in
reaction time (increase threshold potential of pain) in a dose-dependent manner to the thermal
stimulus at different time of observation (0–120 min) in comparison with control. Thus, results
revealed that G. kurroo Royle possesses potent analgesic effect against different stimuli. The possible
mechanism was found to be due to an inhibition of both peripherally and centrally-mediated
nociceptive.
11. Anti-Diabetic Activity
The plant is also used against diabetes [87]. There is no literature available in support of the
scientific validation of anti-diabetic activity of G. kurroo Royle; however, the recent study held in
2017 confirmed the counter-diabetic capability of G. kuroo Royle. The experiments carried out on
rats, shown the extracts of G. kurroo Royle were found to improve the glycaemic control in oral
glucose tolerance tests as it was observed even in normal rats; the glucose load is quickly cleared by
the plant extracts. The methanolic and hydroethanolic extracts (each at the dose level of 500 mg/kg of
body weight) were found to overcome the main symptoms of the diabetes, i.e., polyphagia,
polydipsia and polyuria. It was also observed the weight loss to lessen in diabetic rats. It has a
controlling power in hyperglycaemia and can viably work against other metabolic deviations
created by diabetes in rats. The possible reason for the antidiabetic activity of G. kurroo Royle are
due to bioactive principles like Swertiamarin, swertisin and lupeol [88]. The systematic study is
required for the understanding of suitable mechanism of hypoglycaemic potential of the plant
extracts of G. kurroo Royle.
Figure 5.
Inhibition of paw edema in adjuvant arthritis with different concentrations of methanolic
extract of G. kurroo Royle (Dose and time dependent) (Source: [85]).
10. Analgesic Activity
The study being carried out by [
58
] on the analgesic activity of G. kurroo was based on two tests: an
acetic acid-induced writhing test was used for detecting both central and peripheral analgesia, whereas
the hot plate test is most sensitive to centrally-acting analgesics. In the acetic acid-induced writhing
test, the methanolic extract of G. kurroo root at a dose of 250 and 500 mg/kg body weight revealed a
significant (p< 0.05) decrease in number of writhings (63.38% and 73.70% inhibition) provoked by
acetic acid in a dose-dependent manner, and the results were comparable with the standard drug
diclofenac sodium (71.61% inhibition). It could be possible that extracts produced analgesic effect due
to the inhibition of synthesis or action of prostaglandin [
86
]. However, in the case of Eddy’s hot plate
test, the extract showed a significant (p< 0.05) rise in reaction time (increase threshold potential of
pain) in a dose-dependent manner to the thermal stimulus at different time of observation (0–120 min)
in comparison with control. Thus, results revealed that G. kurroo Royle possesses potent analgesic
effect against different stimuli. The possible mechanism was found to be due to an inhibition of both
peripherally and centrally-mediated nociceptive.
11. Anti-Diabetic Activity
The plant is also used against diabetes [
87
]. There is no literature available in support of the
scientific validation of anti-diabetic activity of G. kurroo Royle; however, the recent study held in
2017 confirmed the counter-diabetic capability of G. kuroo Royle. The experiments carried out on rats,
shown the extracts of G. kurroo Royle were found to improve the glycaemic control in oral glucose
tolerance tests as it was observed even in normal rats; the glucose load is quickly cleared by the plant
extracts. The methanolic and hydroethanolic extracts (each at the dose level of 500 mg/kg of body
weight) were found to overcome the main symptoms of the diabetes, i.e., polyphagia, polydipsia and
polyuria. It was also observed the weight loss to lessen in diabetic rats. It has a controlling power in
hyperglycaemia and can viably work against other metabolic deviations created by diabetes in rats.
The possible reason for the antidiabetic activity of G. kurroo Royle are due to bioactive principles like
Swertiamarin, swertisin and lupeol [
88
]. The systematic study is required for the understanding of
suitable mechanism of hypoglycaemic potential of the plant extracts of G. kurroo Royle.
Medicines 2017,4, 74 10 of 14
12. Conservation Strategy
Traditional extraction of medicinal plants on a large scale could be minimized so as to save
these from becoming critically endangered. This could be achieved through the exploration of new
ecological niches having prospective sources of natural bioactive agents for diverse pharmaceutical,
agriculture and industrial applications and should be renewable, eco-friendly and easily obtainable [
89
].
The discovery of novel bioactive molecules played major role in the search for new drugs and are the
most potent sources for the innovation of novel bioactive molecules. The most prominent producers
of natural products (compounds derived from living organisms) can originate within different
groups of organisms including plants and microorganisms (fungi, bacteria, and actinomycetes) [
90
].
The techniques involved in the discovery of natural products are isolation, structural elucidation
and establishing the bio-synthetic pathway of the secondary metabolites. The area is of substantial
interest to scientists due to the structural diversity, complexity and various bioactivities of isolated
compounds [
91
] such as, bio-prospecting of endophytes from medicinal plants is one of the techniques
to obtain the bioactive potential metabolites for the preparation of new medicines. Bio-prospecting of
endophytes from medicinal plants will be the innovative method for drug discovery which has least
environmental consequences and can play significant role in conservation of critically endangered
medicinal plants.
13. Conclusions
The review highlights the important vital phytochemicals of the medicinal plant G. kurroo
Royle, and various experiments have shown scientifically the potential of antibacterial, antioxidant,
anti-arthritic, anti-inflammatory, analgesic activities and anti-diabetic activity. The outcome of the
study validates the folkloric use of the medicinal plant; however, the antifungal activity of the same
plant is yet to be confirmed. The traditional extraction of medicinal plants on a large scale could
be minimized by adopting modern techniques, called the bio-prospecting of endophytes, from the
medicinal plant for the production and characterization of bioactive metabolites for pharmacological
uses that may show a broad spectrum of pharmacological activities and can become a conservative
measure for the critically endangered medicinal plant.
Acknowledgments: We are very thankful to all the authors whose work has been cited in this paper.
Author Contributions:
B.M.S. searched out different research papers through different databases online and
framed the whole manuscript. B.A.G. contributed his own work in the paper and checked the whole manuscript.
A.H.W. cross check the manuscript and made some necessary corrections. All the authors read and approved the
final manuscript.
Conflicts of Interest:
We wish to confirm that there are no known conflicts of interest associated with this
publication and there has been no significant financial support for this work that could have influenced its outcome.
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... The species is also used for improving appetite, served as a tonic, dissolve the stones in the stomach, treating diabetes, renal troubles and a remedy for fattening the horses. The rhizomes are a good source of bitter glycosides including Gentiopicrin and Gentianin, alkaloids like Gentiomarin, phenols, and sterols/terpenes (Bhat et al., 2017). The species is valued for its expectorant, antiperiodic, astringent, antibilious, stomachic, blood purifier, diaphoretic, anti-inflammatory, sedative, antithelmintic and carminative properties (Bhat et al., 2017). ...
... The rhizomes are a good source of bitter glycosides including Gentiopicrin and Gentianin, alkaloids like Gentiomarin, phenols, and sterols/terpenes (Bhat et al., 2017). The species is valued for its expectorant, antiperiodic, astringent, antibilious, stomachic, blood purifier, diaphoretic, anti-inflammatory, sedative, antithelmintic and carminative properties (Bhat et al., 2017). Despite the species being in the negative list of Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES), it is widely exploited and overharvested usually through illegal means. ...
Chapter
Gentiana kurroo Royle from the family Gentianaceae is an endemic species of the Northwestern Himalaya, growing on south-facing open slopes between 1500 and 3500 m asl. It has immense medicinal and pharmaceutical importance hence it is widely used in the traditional medicinal system and modern pharmaceutical industry. Owing to its habitat destruction and overexploitation, it is facing many challenges for survival in natural habitats. The IUCN has inferred an 80% decline in its wild population and has classified it as a Critically Endangered species. Though the species is on the brink of extinction, our efforts are not yet adequately established to make a tangible difference when it comes to keeping this species safe. Hence the current work was carried out to establish a database for its ecology, habitat, phenology and threats which are prerequisite for development of its conservation and restoration plans. Along with the ecological and conservation implications, the propagation protocols and global potential distribution zones are also discussed.
... Gentiana kurroo Royle, generally referred to as the Indian or Himalayan Gentiana belongs to the family Gentianaceae and is included in the Indian medicinal codex. 1,2 It grows naturally in the high-altitude regions of the western and northwestern Himalaya mountains. 3 The roots of G. kurroo have been reported to contain gentiopicroside (GPD). ...
... Gentiana kurroo Royle commonly known as Indian Gentian, is a small medicinal herb of the family Gentianaceae that grows in Western and North-western parts of the Himalaya between altitudes of 1500-3000 m above sea level (Skinder et al., 2017). It is traditionally used to cure fever and urinary complaints, leukoderma, syphilis and alleviate coughing and congestion induced by the common cold, bronchitis, and other respiratory illnesses . ...
Article
Gentiopicroside (GPD) is one of the vital bioactive molecules present in the rhizomes, roots and aerial parts of Gentiana kurroo Royle. In this study, callus and in vitro shoots cultures of G. kurroo were treated with different doses of gamma radiation to assess its effect on the concentration of GPD. The callus was established on MS media fortified with Indole-3-butyric acid (IBA) and Indole-3-acetic acid (IAA) and exposed to variable radiation doses (0, 10, 20, 30, 40, 50, or 60 Gy ⁶⁰Co gamma rays). Similarly, in vitro shoots raised in MS media supplemented with 6-Benzylaminopurine (BAP) and IAA were irradiated at (0, 10, 20, 30, 40, 50, 60, or 70 Gy ⁶⁰Co gamma rays). In vitro cell growth and GPD content were assessed during M1V1, M1V2, M1V3, and M1V4 (Mutation and Vegetative) generations. The lethal dose (LD50) for both callus and shoots were observed at 35 Gy. The results revealed that low radiation doses favored growth and showed increased GPD content in the callus cultures during M1V1 generation, but both parameters were reduced in the M1V2, M1V3 and M1V4 generations. However, shoots irradiated at low doses boosted the growth and GPD level during M1V2, M1V3 and M1V4 generations. This is the first report that used gamma radiation to show the effect of GPD elicitation in the genus Gentiana.
... Gentiana kurroo Royale is a critically endangered plant of Western and North Western Himalaya. This drug plant is critically endangered and is at high risk category as far as its survival is concerned due to its over exploitation habitat destruction and unscrupulous collection [1]. To establish such plants in new environ- ...
... Similarly, Gentiana scabra Bunge root extract is also prescribed as an anti-diabetic internal remedy in traditional Korean medicine (Suh et al., 2015). Gentiana kurroo Royle, commonly known as "Indian gentian", is used as a bitter tonic, antiperiodic, expectorant, anti-bilious, astringent, stomachic, anti-helminthic, blood purifier and carminative (Skinder et al., 2017). Besides, Gentiana lutea L. also has a long tradition of use in the treatment of gastrointestinal disorders in central and southern Europe (Kusar et al., 2006). ...
Article
Ethnopharmacological relevance: As the largest genus of Gentianaceae family, the Gentiana genus harbors over 400 species, widely distributed in the alpine areas of temperate regions worldwide. Plants from Gentiana genus are traditionally used to treat a wide variety of diseases including easing pain dispelling rheumatism, and treating liver jaundice, chronic pharyngitis and arthritis in China since ancient times. In this review, a systematic and constructive overview of the traditional uses, phytochemistry, molecular mechanisms, toxicology and pharmacological activities of the researched species of genus Gentiana is provided. Materials and methods: The used information in this review is based on various databases (PubMed, Science Direct, Wiley online library, Wanfang Data, Web of Science) through a search using the keyword "Gentiana" in the period of 1981 to 2019. Besides, other ethnopharmacological information was acquired from Chinese herbal classic books and Chinese pharmacopoeia 2015 edition. Results: The plants from Gentiana genus have a long tradition of various medicinal uses in Europe and Asia. Phytochemical studies showed that the main bioactive components isolated from this genus includes iridoids xanthones and flavonoids. These compounds and extracts isolated from this genus show a wide range of protective activities including hepatic protection, gastrointestinal protection, cardiovascular protection, immunomodulation, joint protection, pulmonary protection, bone protection and reproductive protection. Molecular mechanism studies also indicated several potential therapeutic targets in the treatment of certain diseases by plants from this genus. Besides, natural products from this plant show no significant animal toxicity, cytotoxicity or genotoxicity. Conclusion: This review summarized the traditional medicinal uses, phytochemistry, pharmacology, toxicology and molecular mechanism of genus Gentiana, providing references and research tendency for plant-based drug development and further clinical studies.
... It was found that the medications given were vāta, kapha and pitta hara in nature [2,3]. Most of the drugs in the medications mentioned in pāchana medicine and Table 2 are found useful in various skin disorders, anti-ulcerous property, anti-itching and having the anti-inflammatory property [4][5][6][7][8][9]. Also, certain drugs in the combination contain large amounts of alkaloids, flavonoids, glycosides, phenols, saponins, and tannins, compounds which are keratolytic in action [5]. ...
Article
Objectives: Keratosis pilaris (KP) is the condition of the skin with extensive keratin follicular plugging. It may be associated with the erythema. The upper arm extensor area, shoulders, back of neck and thighs, as well as face and the upper trunk are the areas of presentation. Available medications for KP give only symptomatic relief, while some produce serious side effects. There is no proven universal treatment for the disease that can provide complete recovery. Āyuṛveda management of KP is not yet reported. Case presentation: A 26-year-old male patient, presented with main complaints started with papular lesions over his right shoulder, chest and upper back along and later with pustular lesions in the past 2 weeks. The condition was associated with redness, mild swelling and itching. The case was diagnosed as Keratosis pilaris based on its presentation , site, and pathogenesis. Also by analyzing the extent of vitiation of doṣas (morbidities), the Vata kapha pitta hara line of treatment was adopted, which was accomplished in two phases i. e. Śodhana Cikitsa and Śamana Cikitsa. Conclusion: Both internal and external treatments along with diet restrictions were found effective in arresting the pathogenesis and recovery in a short period. All the symptoms associated with the condition were completely cured with no signs of re-occurrence.
... It was found that the medications given were vāta, kapha and pitta hara in nature [2,3]. Most of the drugs in the medications mentioned in pāchana medicine and Table 2 are found useful in various skin disorders, anti-ulcerous property, anti-itching and having the anti-inflammatory property [4][5][6][7][8][9]. Also, certain drugs in the combination contain large amounts of alkaloids, flavonoids, glycosides, phenols, saponins, and tannins, compounds which are keratolytic in action [5]. ...
Article
Objectives Keratosis pilaris (KP) is the condition of the skin with extensive keratin follicular plugging. It may be associated with the erythema. The upper arm extensor area, shoulders, back of neck and thighs, as well as face and the upper trunk are the areas of presentation. Available medications for KP give only symptomatic relief, while some produce serious side effects. There is no proven universal treatment for the disease that can provide complete recovery. Āyuṛveda management of KP is not yet reported. Case presentation A 26-year-old male patient, presented with main complaints started with papular lesions over his right shoulder, chest and upper back along and later with pustular lesions in the past 2 weeks. The condition was associated with redness, mild swelling and itching. The case was diagnosed as Keratosis pilaris based on its presentation, site, and pathogenesis. Also by analyzing the extent of vitiation of doṣas (morbidities), the Vata kapha pitta hara line of treatment was adopted, which was accomplished in two phases i. e. Śodhana Cikitsa and Śamana Cikitsa. Conclusion Both internal and external treatments along with diet restrictions were found effective in arresting the pathogenesis and recovery in a short period. All the symptoms associated with the condition were completely cured with no signs of re-occurrence.
Article
Gentiana is an important genus of around 360 medicinally important species, majority of which are not well characterized. Despite its importance, very few genomic resources are available for Gentiana L. Till date, the number of informative and robust simple sequence repeat (SSR)-based markers is limited and very few efforts have been made for their development. A set of robust, freely accessible and informative SSR markers for Gentiana is a pre-requisite for any molecular systematic as well as improvement studies in this group of pharmacologically valuable plants. In view of the importance of these plants, Expressed Sequence Tag (EST) sequences of 18 Gentiana species were surveyed for the development of a large set of non-redundant SSR markers. A total of 5808 perfect SSR with an average length of 17 bp and relative abundance of 214 loci/Mb were identified in the analysed 47,487 EST sequences using Krait software. Mapping of the ESTs resulted in gene ontology annotations of 49.14% of the sequences. Based on these perfect SSRs, 2902 primer pairs were designed, and 60 markers were randomly selected and validated on a set of Gentiana kurroo Royle accessions. Among the screened markers, 39 (65%) were found to be cross-species transferable. This is the first report of the largest set of functional, novel genic SSR markers in Gentiana, which will be a valuable resource for future characterization, genotype identification, conservation and genomic studies in the various species of this group of important medicinal plants. Supplementary information: The online version contains supplementary material available at 10.1007/s13205-021-02969-4.
Article
Gentiana kurroo Royle is a critically endangered medicinal herb of the Indian Himalaya. It has bioactive seco-iridoid glycosides, notably gentiopicroside, in the rhizome and roots. In this study, we report on the in vitro production of gentiopicroside (GPD) from adventitious (AD) roots induced directly from the leaf, nodal, and suspension cell cultures of G. kurroo. Murashige and Skoog (MS) media fortified with Indole-3-butyric acid (IBA) 2 mg L−1 + Naphthaleneacetic acid (NAA) 0.5 mg L−1 and IBA 2 mg L−1 + Indole-3-acetic acid (IAA) 1 mg L−1 produced the maximum number of roots. Suspension cell cultures derived AD roots showed a 1.41-fold higher biomass production than adventitious roots induced from leaf and nodal explants. Among the various concentrations of MS media salts evaluated, half-strength MS suspension media favored the higher biomass and GPD accumulation. The maximum accumulation of GPD (2.58 mg g –l dry weight (DW)) and AD root biomass (18.96 g L−1 DW) was observed on the 48th day. Furthermore, GPD produced from AD root cultures were separated by using TLC, characterized using Nuclear Magnetic Resonance (NMR) and High-Resolution Liquid Chromatograph-Mass Spectrometer (HR LC-MS) and quantified with High-Performance Liquid Chromatography (HPLC).
Article
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Gentiana kurroo Royle, a potent temperate Indian bitter drug, is valued as bitter tonic, antiperiodic, expectorant, antibilious, astringent, stomachic, anthelmintic, blood purifier and carminative. Because of high demand and limited supply from natural resource, it is known to be adulterated with the roots of Picrorrhiza kurroa, Gentiana tenella, G decumbens etc. A perusal of literature reveals that no pharmacognostic tool is available for proper diagnosis of crude drugs of karru. Keeping this in view the present study was carried out in the Department of Forest Products, College of Forestry, Dr YS Parmar university of horticulture and forestry, Solan, HP. On macroscopic study, it was observed that after secondary growth, rhizome splits anomalously into four parts at a distance of 2.02+0.435 cm near collar region. Leaf was found to be dorsiventral, stomata anamocytic, and present only on the lower surface. Stomatal index ranged between 24.26 and 25.78 and pallisade ratio was 5.68. Xylem elements in roots were polyarch and radialy arranged. The air dried rhizome after incerneation gave 4.06 per cent of total ash (cremish colour), 2.78 per cent of acid soluble ash and 8.03 per cent of sulphated ash. Calcium content was 0.28 per cent. These paramerters can be used as identification tool for testing the purity of raw material of G kurroo.
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Kutki is an important Ayurvedic drug native to the Himalayan region, and its official source is Picrorhiza kurroa Royle ex Benth., belonging to the family Scrophulariaceae. The plant is a small, hairy perennial herb with creeping and woody rhizome and used in various Ayurvedic medicines. It is useful as a laxative, liver-stimulant, galactogouge, and appetite-stimulant and is beneficial in bronchial asthma. Due to its high demand, the plant is often adulterated/substituted with the roots of Trayamana ( Gentiana kurroo Royle), as one of the source of the Kutki . The present study has focused to establish the identity of Picrorhiza kurroa Royle ex Benth through microscopical investigations and comparison of the genuine drug with its substitute Gentiana kurroo Royle. Powder of the rhizomes of Picrorhiza kurroa Royle ex Benth. and roots of Gentiana kurroo Royle were subjected to microscopic characterization and physicochemical analysis, which would not only serve in the identification of both the drugs, but also contribute toward establishing pharmacopoeial standards. How to cite this article Mangal AK, Rath C, Tewari D, Dutta S, Srikanth N, Dhiman KS. Microscopical and Preliminary Physicochemical Studies of Two Important Endangered Ayurvedic Medicinal Plants Kutki and Trayamana to establish their Identity. J Drug Res Ayurvedic Sci 2017;2(1):18-22.
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Background In ayurvedic traditional medicine Gentiana kurroo Royle (family; Gentianaceae) is used to treat several metabolic diseases. This plant is rich in various compounds belonging to flavonoids and glycosides. Till now little work has been carried out on immunomodulatory and anti-inflammatory potential of this plant. This study confirms the presence of bioactive compounds and evaluates the anti-inflammatory and immunomodulatory effect of this plant. Methods To carry out this work, the methanol extract was investigated in different doses using in vivo and in vitro models. In vivo study involved haemagglutination titre and DTH methods, and in vitro study was done using splenocyte proliferation assay and LPS stimulated macrophage culture. TNF-α, IL-6 and NO were assayed using ELISA kit methods, while NF-κB was evaluated by western blotting. LC-ESI-MS/MS was used for the characterization of the methanol extract. ResultsThe results showed suppression of both humoral and cell mediated immunity in vivo. This effect was also observed by inhibition of B and T cell proliferation in splenocyte proliferation assay. TNF-α, IL-6 and NO concentrations were also less in extract treated macrophage cultures. The NF-κB expression was also lowered in treated macrophages as compared to untreated macrophages. All these observations were found to be dose dependent. LC-MS characterization of this extract showed the presence of known compounds which are glycosides, alkaloids and flavonoids in nature. Conclusion The methanol extract of this plant was found to be rich in glycoside, alkaloid and flavonoid compounds. These compounds are probably responsible for the suppression of immune response and anti-inflammatory activity. The extract as such and identified bioactive compounds can be useful for the treatment of inflammatory disorders.
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The methanolic extract of roots of Gentiana kurroo Royle (Gentianaceae) an important and endemic medicinal plant of Kashmir Himalaya was screened for the presence of various bioactive plant metabolites and analgesic activity (using Eddy's hot plate method and acetic acid-induced writhing test in Swiss albino mice at an oral dose of 250 and 500 mg/kg body weight). Diclofenac sodium (10 mg/kg b.w) was used as standard drug, whereas the vehicle (0.9% normal saline) was used as negative control. The phytochemical analysis revealed the Presence of tannins, alkaloids, saponins, cardiac glycosides, terpenes, flavonoids, phenolics, and carbohydrates. The extract showed stastically significant (P<0.05) analgesic activity in a dose-dependent manner, which were comparable with standard analgesic drug. In acetic acid-induced writhing test, the doses of 250 and 500 mg/kg b.w produced 63.38% and 73.70% inhibition of writhing reflex respectively as compared with the standard drug, which showed 71.61% inhibition. In eddy's hot plate method the extract showed significant (P<0.05) increase in reaction time at different time of observation (0-120 min) in comparison with control. The study clearly indicate that the crude methanolic root extract of Gentiana kurroo posses potent analgesic activity, which has provided some justification for the folkloric use of the plant as stomach-ache, pain, and anti-inflammatory.
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Reproductive biology studies in Gentiana kurroo, an important endangered medicinal plant of temperate/subtemperate regions, revealed its flowers to be dichogamous due to protandry. The stigmatic lobes remain adpressed till almost complete anther dehiscence. The stigma becomes receptive to pollen germination about 6 days after initiation of anther dehiscence. The flowers are cross-pollinated and about 70-75% seeds germinated.
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The iridoids and secoiridoids form the largest class of naturally­ occurring monoterpenes. They are well represented in the Gentianaceae, a family of annual and perennial herbs, and are responsible for their bitter taste. A number of species have reputed medicinal properties; the biological and pharmacological activities of the constituent iridoids and secoiridoids include cardiovascular, stomachic, choleretic, antihepatotoxic activities and insect attractant and repellant properties. Reference is given to the analytical techniques used for iridoids, with special emphasis on hyphenated techniques involving HPLC. Different categories of iridoids, secoiridoids and their glycosides are also enumerated and their distribution within the Gentianaceae is given.
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Background Royle is a medicinally important plant of north-western Himalayas used for various ailments. In the present study, the plant extracts were investigated for the antidiabetic effects in streptozotocin-induced diabetic rats. Methods The impact of the extracts on serum glucose levels of diabetic rats was compared with reference drug – glibenclamide-treated diabetic rats. Streptozotocin injection was used to induce diabetes in fasted rats. Various biochemical, physiological and histopathological parameters in diabetic rats were observed for assessing the antidiabetic activity. Results The serum glucose concentrations in diabetic rats were significantly lowered by the extracts (methanolic and hydroethanolic at the doses of 250 and 500 mg/kg body weight). Several related biochemical parameters like creatinine, low-density lipoproteins, triglycerides, cholesterol, alkaline phosphatase, serum glutamate oxaloacetate transaminase and serum glutamate pyruvate transaminase were likewise decreased by the concentrates. The extracts also showed reduction in feed and water consumption of diabetic rats when compared with the diabetic control. The extracts were found to demonstrate regenerative/protective effect on β-cells of pancreas in diabetic rats. The methanolic and hydroethanolic extracts also exhibited hypoglycaemic effect in normal glucose-fed rats (oral glucose tolerance tests). LC-MS characterization of this extract showed the presence of these compounds – Swertiamarin, swertisin, lupeol, etc. Conclusions The current study demonstrated the counter diabetic capability of
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Exacum bicolor Roxb. is a perennial herb with attractive flowers and medicinal properties. The plant is endemic to Peninsular India and now it is placed under endangered species. Its ornamental value and medicinal properties are yet to be fully exploited; non-lodging nature of plant, bi-coloured flower bunches with a long flowering period and good field life offer great future for this plant. In present paper field observations and cultivation trials on this plant are reported for its proper utilization, conservation and cultivation as a beautiful medicinal herb in tropical regions.