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Suran

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Amorphophallus campanulatus belongs to the family Araceae. The plant is widely distributed in Bangladesh, India and Africa. Amorphophallus campanulatus is commonly known as elephant root or suran etc. It consists of dried mature tubers of large perennial, subscandent shrub, found through out India and occasionally cultivated in gardens. The tuber is a flattened rough sphere weighing as much as 5-15 kg. Outer surface dark brown and inner surface is pale yellow and starchy.
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Botanical Names
Amorphophallus campanulatus
Indian Names
Sanskrit : Suran, Sooran, Kandanayak Hindi : Suranakanda, Suran Kannada : Suvarna gadde Marathi : Suran Tamil : Senai kizhangu, Telugu : Kanda dumpa, Malayalam : Chena
Chemical Constituents
The results of the phytochemical test carried out on the various extract, were preliminary photochemical screening revealed the presence of carbohydrates, alkaloids, saponins, steroids, coumarins. And the presence of active constitutents was found more in hydroalcholic extract. The proximate analysis was also carried out to identify the purity of the materials. The study of following extract were selected for the free radical scavenging activity in adjuvant induced arthritic rats by determining the Lipid peroxidation in liver and plasma (1, 3).
Pesticide Limits
A limit for pesticide is one of the major issues in standardization of medicinal plants and products in view of the worldwide widespread use of pesticides in cultivated plants. The presence of pesticides in extracts increase the health risk by many folds. The pesticides can be extremely irritant on skin as well as in the internal organs hence it is essential to monitor its concentration as a part of GMP. Various analytical methods for the quantitative determination of pesticides by gas chromatography coupled with mass-spectrophotometer are in use. Konark Research Foundation (KRF), a NABL certified lab is well equipped with the latest technology and instruments and monitors the pesticide limit as part of its GMP.
Chromatographic Profile
From the pharmacopoeial perspective, a better quality control of raw material can be achieved by specifying quantitative test procedure for the determination of the range or a minimum content of the active ingredient or marker substances. A chromatographic finger profile represents qualitative/ quantitative determination of various components present in a complex plant extract, irrespective whether or not their exact identity is known. Thin layer chromatographic technique is the simplest and least expensive method that provides plenty of information on the composition of raw herbs and its preparation. For quantitative analysis of active ingredients or marker substances with simultaneous separation and detection High Pressure liquid chromatography is the best technique. We use the latest model of HPLC for all its analysis.
Limits of Impurities
A test requirement for foreign organic matter would ensure the extent of contamination of extraneous matters such as filth and other parts of botanicals not covered by the definition of the herbal drug. Since sand and soil are predictable contaminants of botanicals, test requirements for ‘total ash’, water soluble ash’, ‘acid soluble ash’, residue on ignition and sulphated ash would be expected to limit such contaminants. Test requirement for heavy metals in botanical raw material are probably more relevant for parts of plants growing under ground than for the aerial parts of the plant. The presence of high levels of minerals interacts with the final product there by affecting its keeping quality.
Microbial Limits
If the raw herbs are to be used directly without boiling in water prior to consumption, restrictive limits on microbial contaminants are required for pathogens such as Salmonella sp. Enterobacter and E. coli which are causative agent for various gastrointestinal diseases. A lower level of yeasts and molds and a limit on total aerobes are considered appropriate in plant material for topical use. The presence of aflatoxins detected by chemical means is generally independent of the number of viable molds that are detected using microbiological methods. Aflatoxins in microgram quantity are capable of giving serious hypersensitivity reactions which can be extremely harmful to human health.
Pharmacology
The tuberous roots of Amorphophallus campanulatus plant have also been reported to possess tonic, stomachic and appetizer properties. Previously, we have reported the possible antibacterial, antifungal and cytotoxic activities of tuberous roots of Amorphophallus campanulatus. The tubers are anodyne, antiinflammatory, antihaemorrhoidal, haemostatic, expectorant, carminative, digestive, appetizer, stomachic, antihelmintic, liver tonic, aphrodisiac, emmenagogue, rejuvenating and tonic. They are traditionally used in arthralgia, elephantiasis, tumors, inflammations, hemorrhoids, hemorrhages, vomiting, cough, bronchitis, asthma, anorexia, dyspepsia, flatulence, colic, constipation, helminthiasis, hepatopathy, splenopathy, amenorrhea, dysmenorrhoea, seminal weakness, fatigue, anemia and general debility. The tuber is reported to have anti-protease activity, analgesic activity, and cytotoxic activity. Although amblyone, isolated from A. campanulatus showed activity against all tested bacteria, it was better against Gram-positive bacteria than Gram-negative bacteria. Highest activity against Bacillus megaterium and lowest activity against Pseudomonas aeruginosa was observed and it was supported by serial tube dilution technique. The antifungal activity seems to be clinically insignificant. Cytotoxicity of amblyone against brine shrimp nauplii indicated a moderate cytotoxicity of amblyone (1, 2).
Health Benefits
Several plants have been used for the treatment of piles, abdominal pain, tumours, enlarged spleen, asthma and rheumatism. Analgesic activity of Amorphophallus campanulatus tuber and inhibition of amylase, trypsin and chymotrypsin by Amorphophallus campanulatus tuber have also been determined. The antibacterial, antifungal and cytotoxic activities of tuberous roots of Amorphophallus campanulatus were also reported. The tuberous roots of the plant have been used traditionally for the treatment of piles, abdominal pain, tumours, and enlargement of spleen, asthma and rheumatism (4). Most of the studies showed that in Siddha medicine Amorphophallus campanulatus is used in the treatment of piles. Amorphophallus campanulatus is distributed in Bengal, Uttar Gujarat, Maharashtra, & Ceylon and North India.
Research References
1. Khan A, Rahman M, Islam MS. Antibacterial, antifungal and cytotoxic activities of amblyone isolated from Amorphophallus campanulatus. Indian J Pharmacol 2008, (40):41-44 2. Ragupathi G., Cheruth A. J. and Rajaram P. Leaf anatomical responses of Amorphophallus campanulatus to triazoles fungicides EurAsian Journal of BioSciences EurAsia J BioSci, 2008, (2):46-52 3. Seema F. and Parwez A. Short communication Phytochemical investigation of extract of Amorphophallus campanulatus tubers International Journal of Phytomedicine (2011), (3): 32-35 4. Tripathi A. S., Chitra V., Sheikh N. W., Mohale D. S. and Dewan A. P. Research Article Immunomodulatory Activity of the Methanol Extract of Amorphophallus campanulatus (Araceae) Tuber Tropical Journal of Pharmaceutical Research October 2010; 9 (5):451-454

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