Feb 12, 2014
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MATRICARIA CHAMOMILLA

Written by

Linn.

Family ► Compositae; Asteraceae.

Habitat ► Native of Europe; grown in Jammu & Kashmir, Himachal Pradesh and Uttar Pradesh.

English ► German Chamomile, Chamomile. German chamomile flower is equated with Matricaria recutita L. (synonym Chamomilla recutita L.) and Roman Chamomile flower with Anthemis nobilis L. (synonym Chamamaelum nobilis L.)

Unani ► Baabunaa.

Action ► Sedative, anticonvulsant, carminative, antispasmodic, analgesic, anti-inflammatory, antiseptic. See also Anthemis nobilis.

Key application (German Chamomile) ► In inflammatory diseases of the gastrointestinal tract and gastrointestinal spasm. Externally, in skin, mucous membrane and ano-genital inflammation and bacterial skin diseases. (German Commission E, The British Herbal Compendium.) As anti-inflammatory and anti- spasmodic. (The British Herbal Pharmacopoeia.)

The flowers of German chamomile gave volatile oil up to about 2%, containing alpha-bisabolol up to 50%, azu- lenes including chamazulene, guiazu- line and matricine; flavonoids including apigenin and luteolin and their glycosides, patuletin and quercetin; spiroethers; coumarins; polysaccha- rides.

The flowers are used as herbal tea for cough and cold and for promoting the flow of gastric secretion and bile. In chamomlile extracts, chamazulene has been found responsible for anti- inflammatory activity. Matricine and (-)-alpha-bisabolol also show anti- inflammatory and analgesic activity. Bisabolol exhibits ulceroprotective effect. Natural (-)-alpha-bisabolol has been shown to be significantly effective in healing burns; (-)-alpha-bisabolol, spiroethers and apigenin exhibit spasmolytic effect comparable with that of papaverine.

The polysaccharides are immunos- timulating and activate macrophages and B lymphocytes; play an important role in wound healing.

Crude aqueous extract of the plant has been reported to significantly delay the onset of convulsions and reduce mortality rate produced by picrotoxin experimentally.

Article Categories:
Indian Medicinal Plants

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