Pharmacognostical study on the leaf of  Tricosanthes Cucumerina Linn 

By Sandhya S, Chandrasekhar J, David Banji, Rao KNV 

ABSTRACT

Tricosanthes cucumerina belongs to the family cucurbetaceae is a monoecious annual herb climbing by 2–3-branched tendrils upto 5 to 6 meters high or less. The genus Trichosanthes is native to Southern and Eastern Asia, Australia and Islands of the western Pacific. Trichosanthes cucumerina is found wild throughout these areas. It was probably domesticated in ancient times in India. It is consumed as vegetable. It has gained scientific importance for its nutritional value and cytotoxic activity, anti-diabetic, hypoglycaemic, anti-inflammatory, hepatoprotective, anti-fertility and gastroprotective activites. Apart from its pharmacological standardization, the plant needs pharmacognostic standardization. In the present work the leaf part of the plant was subjected to various microscopical and physical evaluations. In the microscopical studies, the cytomorphological parameters were studied. The powder microscopy showed the presence of annular, spiral and scalariform xylem vessels. Various leaf constants were obtained. In physic chemical evaluation the ash values and extractive values were studied. Fluorescence analysis performed showed the wide range of fluorescence colours for the crude powder as well as the extracts. The powdered leaf was extracted with petroleum ether, chloroform, ethanol and water. The extract obtained were concentrated and subjected to chemical tests. From the preliminary chemical tests presence of carbohydrates, alkaloids and saponins were observed. 

Keywords: Trichosanthes cucumerina, nutritional value, microscopy, xylem vessels, preliminary chemical tests

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