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Title: Phytochemical diversity in Ashwagandha (Withania somnifera)
Authors: D H, Sukanya
A N, Lokesha
Gayatri, Datta
K, Himabindu
Keywords: Phytochemical
Issue Date: Nov-2010
Publisher: MAPAI, Anand
Citation: D.H. Sukanya, A.N. Lokesha.,Gayatri Datta and K. Himabindu. 2010. Phytochemical diversity in Ashwagandha (Withania somnifera). National conference on “Biodiversity of Medicinal and Aromatic plants: Collection, Characterization and Utilization”. November 24-25, 2010. p 47
Abstract: Ashwagandha (Withania somnifera Dunal) is an important commercial medicinal crop, which is considered as an alternate to Ginseng. It is a superior class herb with multiple benefits. Fruits, leaves and seeds of the plant have been used for ages in Ayurveda. The root has been used most frequently for therapeutic uses and is a constituent of over 200 formulations in Ayruvedha, Siddha and Unani medicines. The biologically active chemical constituents are withanolides with adaptogenic, aphrodisiac, diuretic, memory boosting and stress relieving properties. It is also protective towards arthritis, cartilage degradation, leprosy etc. Owing to its diverse therapeutic uses, there is renewed interest in phytochemistry of this crop. A large number of withanolides have been identified and different therapeutic activities are associated with different constituents viz., Withaferine A associated with anti-inflammatory activity and is a safe radiosensitizer/chemotherapeutic agent, Withanolide A and Withanoside IV known for treatment of neurodegenerative diseases and Withanone for anti-cancer and antiaging activities etc. The success of genetic improvement in this medicinal crop strongly depends on diversity of phytochemical content along with high potential for root yield. Though there are many reports on diversity for root yield and associated traits, systematic studies on chemical diversity are highly scarce and limited. Therefore efforts were made for systematic collection and evaluation of germplasm from diverse geographical locations in India (186) and 108 selected accessions were assessed for chemical diversity at Indian Institute of Horticultural Research, Bangalore, Karnataka. The accessions differed both quantitatively and qualitatively for withanolides estimated by HPLC method. The total withanolide content ranged from 0.066 to 0.588% on dry root basis in the accessions and as many as 13 accessions recorded more than 0.30%, which are considered as commercially viable. The analysis of withanolide profile in these accessions paved the way for identification of superior chemotypes, which recorded higher content of specific withanolides of therapeutic importance viz., Withaferine A (0.345%), Withanolide A (0.125%) & B (0.068%), Withnone (0.100%), Withanostromalide (0.048%) and Withanoside IV (0.227) & Withanoside V (0.042) and also absence of specific withanolides such as waithanostromalide, withanone, withanoside V and withanolide B, thus indicating considerable diversity in the collection for phyto-chemicals. These chemotypes with high content of specific compound are very important from pharmaceutical perspective.
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/123456789/257
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