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Justicia adhatoda
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Plantae
(unranked): Angiosperms
(unranked): Eudicots
(unranked): Asterids
Order: Lamiales
Family: Acanthaceae
Genus: Justicia
Species: J. adhatoda
Binomial name
Justicia adhatoda
L.

Justicia adhatoda L. (Adulsa, Malabar Nut); syn. Adhatoda vasica Nees , is a medicinal plant native to Asia. The plant grows wild in abundance all over Nepal, India, and the Pothohar region of Pakistan, particularly in the Pharwala area, within Pakistan it is the Provincial flower of the Punjab (Pakistan).

Contents

Botanical Description

Adhatoda consists of the fresh or dried leaves of Adhatoda Vasica, Nees (N.O. Acanthaceae), a shrub growing in India. The leaves vary from 10 to 15 centimeters in length, and are about 4 centimeters broad; they are opposite, entire, lanceolate, and shortly petiolate, tapering towards both apex and base. When dry they are of a dull brownish-green colour; odour, characteristic; taste, bitter. They possess well-marked histological features, which can easily be seen in fragments of the leaf cleared by chloral hydrate. The stomata are elongated-oval in shape and surrounded by two crescent-shaped cells, the long axes of which are at right angles to the ostiole. The epidermis bears simple one- to three-celled warty hairs, and small glandular hairs with a quadricellular secreting gland. Cystoliths occur beneath the epidermis of the under surface. Both hairs and cystoliths vary in number in different specimens

Chemical Composition

Several alkaloids are present in the leaves and the chief principle is a quinazoline alkaloid, vasicine; the yield of the alkaloid from different samples in India ranged from 0.541 to 1.105 per cent on dry basis. Vasicine is accompanied by l- vasicinone., deoxyvasicine and maiontone, Some minor alkaloids viz. Vasicol, adhatodinine and vasicinol also present.

Pharmacology and Action

The pharmacological activities of vasicine and vasicinone are well known. The /-forms of vasicine and vasicinone are more active than their racemic forms. Recent investigations on vasicine showed bronchodilatory activity (comparable to theophylline) both in vitro and in vivo. Vasicinone showed bronchodilatory activity in vitro but bronchoconstrictory activity in vivo; it is probably biotransformed in vivo, causing bronchoconstriction. Both the alkaloids in combination (1:1) showed pronounced bronchodilatory activity in vivo and in vitro. Vasicine also exhibited strong respiratory stimulant activity, moderate hypotensive activity and cardiac-depressant effect; vasicinone was devoid of these activities. The cardiac-depressant effect was significantly reduced when a mixture of vasicine and vasicinone was used. Vasicinone (dl-form) showed no effect on the isolated heart, but probably the l-form is a weak cardiac stimulant. Clinical trials of a commercial drug containing vasicinone and vasicinone have not revealed any side effects while treating bronchial asthma. The drug is known to possess abortifacient activity and hence should not be used during pregnancy.

External links


Wikispecies

Up to date as of January 23, 2010

From Wikispecies

Taxonavigation

Classification System: APG II (down to family level)

Main Page
Cladus: Eukaryota
Regnum: Plantae
Cladus: Angiospermae
Cladus: Eudicots
Cladus: core eudicots
Cladus: Asterids
Cladus: Euasterids I
Ordo: Lamiales
Familia: Acanthaceae
Subfamilia: Acanthoideae
Tribus: Ruellieae
Subtribus: Justiciinae
Genus: Justicia
Species: Justicia adhatoda

Name

Justicia adhatoda L.

References

  • Species Plantarum 1:15. 1753
  • USDA, ARS, National Genetic Resources Program. Germplasm Resources Information Network - (GRIN) [Data from 07-Oct-06]. [1]







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