Alpinia calcarata Roscoe: A Rich Source of Phytopharmaceuticals in Sri Lanka

Author(s): Liyanage D.A.M. Arawwawala, Lakshmi S.R. Arambewela, Wanigasekara D. Ratnasooriya

Journal Name: The Natural Products Journal

Volume 2 , Issue 4 , 2012

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Objective: Alpinia calcarata Roscoe (F. Zingiberaceae) rhizomes are often used in Sri Lankan traditional systems of medicine as a remedy for bronchitis, cough, respiratory ailments, diabetics, asthma and arthritis. Present review summarizes chemical, pharmacognostical, pharmacological and toxicological investigations carried out on A. calcarata of Sri Lankan origin.

Methods: Composition of A. calcarata essential oil was analyzed by capillary GC and GC/MS. Pharmacognostical evaluation was carried out using physico-chemical parameters and TLC – densitometric and HPLC fingerprints. In vitro and in vivo experiments were used to investigate pharmacological and toxicological investigations.

Key Findings: Eighteen volatile constituents have been identified in essential oil of Sri Lankan grown A. calcarata rhizomes, leaves and roots. Moreover, A. calcarata exerts strong effects on antiinflammatory, antinociception, diabetes, gastroprotection and reproductive competence of male rats, validating the claims in traditional medicinal systems of Sri Lanka. In addition, hitherto unreported bioactivities such as antioxidant, insecticidal and antifungal activities were also discovered. Further, A. calcarata extracts did not produce any serious overt signs of toxicity.

Conclusions: The above findings indicate the vast potential of A. calcarata yet to be harnessed for the benefit of mankind.

Keywords: Alpinia calcarata, bio-activities, chemical composition, pharmacognosy, toxicity, Zingiberaceae, Srilanka, antioxidant activity, antifungal activity, volatile constituent.

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Article Details

Year: 2012
Published on: 25 October, 2012
Page: [263 - 269]
Pages: 7
DOI: 10.2174/2210315511202040263
Price: $25

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