Trichosanthus cucumerina has a prominent place in alternative systems of medicine like Ayurveda and Siddha due to its various pharmacological activities like antidiabetic, hepatoprotective, cytotoxic, anti inflammatory and larvicidal effects.
T. cucumerina is acts as an abortifacient, vermifuge, refrigerant, purgative, malaria, laxative, hem agglutinant, emetic cathartic, bronchitis, and anthelmintic. A novel isoflavone glucoside, 5, 6, 6-trimethoxy-3, 4-methylene-dioxyisoflavone 7-O-beta-D has been chased from the seeds of Trichosanthes. The positive effects of the plant are observed with the dried seeds which are used for its anti-helminthic and anti-diarrhoeal properties. Seeds have anti bacterial, anti spasmodic and insecticidal properties. It sis used as abortificient, , aphrodisiac, astringent, bitter, febrifuge, purgative, toxic, trichogenus. Hot aqueous extract of root tubers of Trichosanthes cucmerina exhibited significant anti inflammatory activity. Crude ethanolic extract of Trichosanthes cucumerina showed significant blood glucose lowering activity in alloxan diabetic albino rats. The acetone extract of leaves Trichosanthes cucumerina has noted to improve glucose tolerance and tissue glycosaaan, in non insulin dependent diabetes mellitus induced rats (2).
The root extract of Trichosanthes cucumerina and fruit juice tested cytotoxicity against four human breast cancer cell lines and lung cancer cell lines and colon cancer cell lines. The root extract of Trichosanthes cucumerina and bryonolic acid, its main constituent, as well as the fruit juice and cucurbitacin B, its main constituent, were tested for cytotoxicity against four human breast cancer cell lines (SKBR3, MCF7, T47D, and MDA-MB435), two lung cancer cell lines , and one colon cancer cell line (Caco-2). The root extract had higher IC50 values than bryonolic acid against three breast cancer cell lines and one lung cancer cell line. Cucurbitacin inhibited human cancer cell lines, much more strongly (3, 4).