Common Name: Chota Chirayta, Mamajjaka
English Name: Indian Gentian
Botanical Name: Enicostemma littorale Blume
Description: E. littorale is a perennial herb attaining height of 5-20 inches. It produces yellow or white coloured flowers, which are arranged in clusters.
Chemistry: Bitter principle (swertimarine), Betulin, a triterpene sapogenin has been isolated. Monoterpene alkaloids like enicoflavin, gentiocrucine and seven different flavonoids were isolated from the alcoholic extract and the structures were identified as apigenin, genkwanin, isovitexin, swertisin, saponarin, 5-o glucosylswertisin and 5-o glucosylisoswertisin were also isolated by Goshal et al. The presence of catechins, saponins, steroids, sapogenin, triterpenoids, flavonoids and xanthones and a new flavone C-glucoside named as Verticilliside was isolated for the first time this species was reported by Jahan et al. Swertiamarin compound was isolated from E. littorale by using alcoholic extract.
Properties: Leaves, roots are used in traditional practice for treating several ailments like malaria, skin diseases, leprosy, diabetes etc. The leaf possesses hypoglycemic, antioxidant, hepatoprotective and hepatomodulatory properties and helps in reducing obesity.
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