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Title: Biological activities of Ocimum sanctum L. fixed oil—An overview
Authors: Singh, Surender
Taneja, Manish
Majumdar, Dipak K
Keywords: Antiinflammatory;Analgesic;Dual-inhibitor;Antiulcer;Anticoagulant;Antioxidant;-Linolenic acid;ω-3 Fatty acid
Issue Date: May-2007
Publisher: CSIR
Abstract: Seeds of Ocimum sanctum L. (Labiatae; popularly known as ‘Tulsi’ in Hindi and ‘Holy Basil’ in English) contain a pale yellow colored fixed oil. The oil possesses antiinflammatory activity due to dual inhibition of arachidonate metabolism supplemented by antihistaminic activity. The antiinflammatory activity is not dependent on the pituitary adrenal axis. The oil possesses antipyretic activity due to prostaglandin inhibition and peripherally acting analgesic activity. The oil has been found to be effective against formaldehyde or adjuvant induced arthritis and turpentine oil induced joint edema in animals. Lipoxygenase inhibitory histamine antagonistic and antisecretory activities of the oil contribute towards antiulcer activity. The oil can inhibit enhancement of vascular capillary permeability and leucocyte migration following inflammatory stimulus. The LD50 of the oil is 42.5 ml/kg and long-term use of oil at 3 ml/kg dose does not produce any untoward effects in rats. The oil contains -linolenic acid, an ω-3 fatty acid which on metabolism produces eicosapentaenoic acid and the same appears to be responsible for the biological activity. The oil has hypotensive anticoagulant and immunomodulatory activities. Antioxidant property of the oil renders metabolic inhibition, chemoprevention and hypolipidaemic activity. Presence of linolenic acid in the oil imparts antibacterial activity against Staphylococcus aureus. The oil alone or in combination with cloxacillin a β-lactamase resistant penicillin has been found to be beneficial in bovine mastitis an inflammatory disorder resulting from staphylococcal infection. Existence of anti-inflammatory analgesic and antibacterial activities in single entity i. e.fixed oil appears to be unique.
Page(s): 403-412
ISSN: 0975-1009 (Online); 0019-5189 (Print)
Appears in Collections:IJEB Vol.45(05) [May 2007]

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