Feb 12, 2014
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FUMARIA OFFICINALIS

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Linn.

Family ► Fumariaceae.

Habitat ► Native to Europe and North America. Found at high altitudes in Nilgiris and Salem (Tamil Nadu).

English ► Fumitory.

Ayurvedic ► Parpata (related species).

Unani ► Shaahtaraa.

Action ► Antispasmodic and amphicholeretic. Stimulant to liver and gall bladder; used for eczema and other skin diseases. Also diuretic and mild laxative.

Key application ► In spastic discomforts in the area of gallbladder and bile ducts, as well as the gastrointestinal tract. (German Commission E, The British Herbal Pharmacopoeia.)

The herb contains indenobenzaze- pine alkaloids—fumaritrin and fu- marofine.

Other alkaloids include (-)-scou- lerine, protopine, fumaricine, (+)-fu- mariline. The plant also contain rutin, fumaric acid and hydroxycinnamic acid derivatives.

Protopine exhibits antihistaminic, hypotensive, bradycardic and sedative activity in small doses, but excitation and convulsions in large doses. (Natural Medicines Comprehensive Database, 2007.)

The seed oil contains myristic 4.2, palmitic 17.6, stearic 2.7, oleic 19.6, linoleic 55.7 and linolenic acid 0.2%.

The upper flowering part of the herb is used for biliary disorders, various skin diseases and fevers. The herb can also treat arteriosclerosis by helping in lowering blood cholesterol level and improving the elasticity of arterial wall.

Article Categories:
Indian Medicinal Plants

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