The plant Argemone mexicana traditionally used as a potent diuretic agent. Along with the plant shows anti-helmintic, anti inflammatory, wound healing, anti bacterial, and anti fungal properties. The plant is bitter, acrid, cooling, vulnerary, and expectorant, aphrodisiac, emetic, depurative, anodyne, anti-helmintic, antipyretic, ophthalmic, stomachic and sedative in action. Traditionally, the plant is reported to be used as diuretic, purgative, anti-inflammatory, analgesic and believed to destroy worms, cure itching, various skin diseases and an antidote to various poisons.
In homeopathy; the tincture of the entire plant is reported to be used orally for bronchitis and whooping cough. The alkaloid sanguinarine has been reported to prolong ventricular refractoriness and this property may be useful in treatment of ventricular arrhythmias. The ethanol extract of the entire plant is reported to possess antiviral, hypotensive and smooth muscle stimulant activity. The plant possess good antibacterial activity and found to be active against Proteus vulgaris, Sarcina lutea, Staphylococcus aureus, Candida albicans, Escherichia coli, Pseudomonas aeruginosa, Salmonella newport, Shigella flexneri, Staphylococcus albus and Serratia marcescens. Aqueous extract of leaves have been reported to possess anti-inflammatory activity. The alkaloid fractions of the roots are reported to possess anti inflammatory activity and strong uterine stimulant effect (1, 2).
Argemone maxicana has been investigated in terms of modern pharmacology for its anti-malarial activity, molluscicidal and nematocidal activity, anticancer activity, anti-bacterial, antifungal and hepatoprotective activity, anti-stress and anti-allergic activity, anti-cataleptic activity, anti-HIV activity, neuropharmcological study. In the present study A. mexicana was evaluated for its analgesic, anxiolytic and sedative activities (3).