Feb 12, 2014
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DIOSPYROS KAKI

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Linn. f.

Habitat ► Native to China; now grown in Himachal Pradesh, Kumaon, the Nilgiris and West Bengal for edible fruits.

English ► Japanese Persimmon.

Ayurvedic ► Tinduka (var.).

Action ► Hypotensive, hepatopro- tective, antidote to poisons and bacterial toxins. Calyx and peduncle of fruit—used in the treatment of cough and dyspnoea. Roasted seeds—used as a substitute for coffee.

The fruit, in addition to sugars, glucose, fructose, ascorbic acid, citric acid, contains (% of fresh weight) 0.20-1.41 tannins, 0.21-10.07 total pectins, 0.67 pentosans and 0.16-0.25 polyphenols. The fruit also contains 2.4 mg/100 g carotenoids; carotene expressed as vitamin A 2200-2600 IU. The carote- noids identified in the pulp include cryptoxanthine, zeaxanthin, antherax- anthin, lycopene and beta-carotene. (Many carotenoids originally present in the fruit decompose during ripening.

The fruit pulp is an antidote to bacterial toxins and is used in the preparation of a vaccine for pertussis.

Condensed tannins from the fruits effectively inhibited 2-nitrofluorene mutagen.

The immature leaves contain a ster- oidal saponin, lignin and phenolic compounds. Eugenol and dihydroac- tinidiolide are reported from fresh leaves.

The leaves are reported to exhibit hepatoprotective activity. Leaves also contain hypotensive principles. Astra- galin and isoquercitrin have been isolated from leaves.

Article Categories:
Indian Medicinal Plants

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