Author(s): Paul JH, Seaforth CE, Tikasingh T
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Abstract Eryngium foetidum L. is a biennial herb which is used extensively as a medicinal plant in most tropical regions. It is of increasing importance as a spice plant cultivated in India, Vietnam, Australia and elsewhere with well documented procedures for maximum yield. It also possesses a wide range of ethnomedicinal uses including treatment for burns, earache, fevers, hypertension, constipation, fits, asthma, stomach ache, worms, infertility complications, snake bites, diarrhea and malaria. Chemical evaluation of the leaves indicated the presence of flavonoids, tannins, a saponin and several triterpenoids; but no alkaloids were reported. A significant constituent of the essential oil of the plant is E-2-dodecenal ("eryngial"), with isomers of trimethylbenzaldehyde being present in lesser proportions. Variability in the composition of essential oil was clearly dependent on the geographic location of the growing plant. Pharmacological studies of the aerial plant parts have demonstrated anthelmintic activity due to eryngial, anti-inflammatory action due to the phytosterol fractions, anti-convulsant activity in the respective models, and selective antibacterial activity against Salmonella species and the Erwinia genus of bacteria. A fraction of the essential oil rich in eryngial is the subject of a US patent application for its effectiveness against parasitic trypanosomes, nematodes, fungi and bacteria in humans and other mammals. These findings suggest the need for further research of this herb and its products. Copyright © 2010 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
This article was published in Fitoterapia
and referenced in Journal of Nanomedicine & Nanotechnology