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Andrographis paniculata is an herbaceous plant in the family Acanthaceae, native to India and Sri Lanka. Andrographis paniculata grows erect to a height of 30–110 cm in moist, shady places. The slender stem is dark green, squared in cross-section with longitudinal furrows and wings along the angles. The lance-shaped leaves have hairless blades up to 8 centimeters long by 2.5 wide. The small flowers are borne in spreading racemes. The fruit is a capsule around 2 centimeters long and a few millimeters wide. It contains many yellow-brown seeds. It is used to treat infections and some diseases, often being used before antibiotics were created. Mostly the leaves and roots were used for medicinal purposes.

Listing Details

Botanical Names
Andrographis paniculata
Indian Names
Sanskrit : Bhuinimba, Kirata Bengali : Kalmegh Gujarati : Kariyatu Hindi : Kirayat, Mahatita Malayalam : Nalavepu Marathi : Oli Kiryata Kannada : Nelabevu Tamil : Nilavembu Telugu : Nelaveemu
Chemical Constituents
Major constituents include Lactones- diterpene lactone andrographolide (0.5-0.9%). Other constituents include diterpene lactones viz., neoandrographolide and androraphiside and flavonols viz., oroxylin, wogonin, andrographidines A, B, C, D, E and F.
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, 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 a quantitative test procedure for the determination of the range or a minimum content by specifying a quantitative test procedure for the determination of the range or a minimum content of the marker substances or the ‘active’ ingredient. 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 herb is 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 gastro-intestinal 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 hypersentivity reactions which can be extremely harmful to human health.
Since ancient times, Andrographis peniculata is used in traditional Siddha and Ayurvedic systems of medicine as well as in tribal medicine in India and some other countries for multiple clinical applications. Kalmegh is reported to possess antihepatotoxic, antibiotic, antimalarial, antihepatitic, antithrombogenic, immunostimulatory, antiinflammatory, anti-snake venom, and antipyretic properties. The therapeutic value of Kalmegh is due to its mechanism of action which is perhaps by enzyme induction. The plant extracts exhibits antityphoid and antifungal activities. The ethanolic extract of A. paniculata not only possesses an antihyperglycaemic property, but may also reduce oxidative stress in diabetic rats which has been demonstrated by animal studies. Andrographolide is a bitter water-soluble lactone exhibiting protective effects in carbon tetrachloride induced hepatotoxicity in rats. The hepato protective action of andrographolide is related to activity of certain metabolic enzymes. Andrographolide, the major constituent of the extract, is implicated in its pharmacological activity. Andrographolide treatment inhibited the in vitro proliferation of different tumor cell lines, representing various types of cancers.
Health Benefits
In Siddha medicine, Andrographis Paniculata is used widely to treat fevers like chikenguinea, swine-flu, typhoid etc. Andrographis paniculata plant extract is known to possess a variety of pharmacological activities. Andrographis has been shown to be a safe traditional botanical for supporting upper respiratory tract health, Andrographolide, an active ingredient in Andrographis, has been shown to be responsible for the herb's inflammatory modulating actions, including the reduction of cytokine and peritoneal deposition of neutrophils, and modulation of lung inflammation in vivo. Extracts of Andrographis exhibit potent inflammatory modulating and antioxidant actions in mouse models. Andrographis paniculata extracts are also acts as mosquito repellent and can also be adulticidal to mosquitoes.
Research References
1) • Kulichenko LL, Kireyeva LV, Malyshkina EN, et al. A randomized, controlled study of Kan Jang versus amantadine in the treatment of influenza in Volgograd. J Herb Pharmacother 2003;3(1):77-93. • Raj RK. Screening of indigenous plants for anthelmintic action against human Ascaris lumbricoides: Part--II. Indian J Physiol Pharmacol 1975;19(1): • Rajagopal S, Kumar RA, Deevi DS, et al. Andrographolide, a potential cancer therapeutic agent isolated from Andrographis paniculata. J Exp Ther Oncol 2003;3(3):147-158. • Handa SS, Sharma A. Hepatoprotective activity of andrographolide from Andrographis paniculata against carbon tetrachloride. Indian J Med Res 1990; 92:276-283. 2) Abstract: Methanolic extracts of Andrographis paniculata and Aristolochia indica plants were tested for antivenom activity against Daboia russelli venom. ... 3) Pubmed, a wellknown site has listed important studies going on around the world in various universities. These include….. • Andrographolide Exhibits Anti-Invasive Activity against Colon Cancer Cells via Inhibition of MMP2 Activity.(Chao HP, Kuo CD, Chiu JH, Fu SL.Planta Med. 2010 Jun 10. [Epub ahead of print]PMID: 20539971). • Anticancer activity of andrographolide semisynthetic derivatives.(Menon V, Bhat S.Nat Prod Commun. 2010 May;5(5):717-20.PMID: 20521534). • Antibacterial Activity of Ethanol Extract of Andrographis paniculata.(Mishra US, Mishra A, Kumari R, Murthy PN, Naik BS.Indian J Pharm Sci. 2009 Jul;71(4):436-8.PMID: 20502551). • Neoandrographolide from Andrographis paniculata as a Potential Natural Chemosensitizer.(Pfisterer PH, Rollinger JM, Schyschka L, Rudy A, Vollmar AM, Stuppner H.Planta Med. 2010 May 5. [Epub ahead of print]PMID: 20446243). • Effects of andrographolide on sexual functions, vascular reactivity and serum testosterone level in rodents.(Sattayasai J, Srisuwan S, Arkaravichien T, Aromdee C.Food Chem Toxicol. 2010 May 10. [Epub ahead of print]PMID: 20435079). • Enhancing bioavailability and hepatoprotective activity of andrographolide from Andrographis paniculata, a well-known medicinal food, through its herbosome.(Maiti K, Mukherjee K, Murugan V, Saha BP, Mukherjee PK.J Sci Food Agric. 2010 Jan 15;90(1):43-51.PMID: 20355010). • Effect of an extract of Andrographis paniculata leaves on inflammatory and allergic mediators in vitro.(Chandrasekaran CV, Gupta A, Agarwal A.J Ethnopharmacol. 2010 May 27;129(2):203-7. Epub 2010 Mar 20.PMID: 20307638). 1. Indian Herbal Pharmacopoeia (Revised New Edition 2002). 2. Standardization of Botanicals, Volume 2- By Dr. V. Rajpal. 3.