AN UPDATE ON AYURVEDIC HERB HENNA (LAWSONIA INERMIS L.): A REVIEWHTML Full Text
Received on 29 September, 2013; received in revised form, 29 October, 2013; accepted, 16 January, 2014; published 01 February, 2014
AN UPDATE ON AYURVEDIC HERB HENNA (LAWSONIA INERMIS L.): A REVIEW
Parul Agarwal*1, Shashi Alok 1 and Amita Verma2
Department of Pharmacognosy, Institute of Pharmacy, Bundelkhand University 1, Jhansi, Uttar Pradesh, India
Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Faculty of Health Sciences, Sam Higginbottom Institute of Agriculture, Technology and Sciences-Deemed University 2, Allahabad, Uttar Pradesh, India
ABSTRACT: Lawsonia inermis L. is a much branched glabrous shrub or small tree, cultured for its leaves although stem bark, roots, flowers and seeds have also been used in traditional medicine. It has been traditionally reported in use of headache, hemicranias, lumbago, bronchitis, boils, ophthalmia, syphilitis, sores, amenorrhea, scabies, diseases of the spleen, dysuria, bleeding disorder, skin diseases, diuretic, antibacterial, antifungal, anti-amoebiasis, astringent, anti-hemorrhagic, hypotensive and sedative effect. The plant is reported to contain Lawsone, Esculetin, Fraxetin, Isoplumbagin, Scopoletin, Betulin, Betulinic acid, Hennadiol, Lupeol, Lacoumarin, Laxanthone, Flavone glycosides, two pentacytic triterpenes. The plant is reported to contain carbohydrates, proteins, flavonoids, tannins and phenolic compounds, alkaloids, terpenoids, quinones, coumarins, xanthones and fatty acids. The plant has been reported to have analgesic, hypoglycemic, hepatoprotective, immunostimulant, anti-inflammatory, antibacterial, antimicrobial, antifungal, antiviral, antiparasitic, antitrypanosomal, antidermatophytic, antioxidant, antifertility, tuberculostatic and anticancer properties. It is now measured as a valuable source of exclusive natural products for growth of medicines against various diseases and also for the development of industrial products. This review gives a bird’s eye vision mainly on the pharmacognostic characteristics, traditional uses, phytochemistry and pharmacological actions of the plant.
Lawsonia inermis,pharmacognosy, microscopy, macroscopy, phytochemistry, pharmacology
INTRODUCTION:Medicinal plants are part and parcel of human society to combat diseases, from the dawn of civilization 1. There exists a plethora of knowledge, information and benefits of herbal drugs in our ancient literature of Ayurvedic (Traditional Indian Medicine), Siddha, Unani and Chinese medicine.
According to the World Health Organization, 2003 about 80 % of the population of developing countries being unable to afford pharmaceutical drugs rely on traditional medicines, mainly plant based, to sustain their primary health care needs 2. Herbal medicines are in great demand in the developed as well as developing countries for primary healthcare because of their wide biological and medicinal activities, higher safety margins and lesser costs 3.
The traditional medicinal methods, especially the use of medicinal plants, still play a vital role to cover the basic health needs in the developing countries. In recent years there has been a phenomenal rise in the interest of scientific community to explore the pharmacological actions of herbs or to confirm the claims made about them in the official books of Ayurveda 4. Lawsonia inermis Linn (Family: Lythraceae) is a muchbranched glabrous shrub or small tree (2-6m in height), cultivated for its leavesalthough stem bark, roots, flowers andseeds have also been used in traditionalmedicine. This plant is a worldwideknown cosmetic agent used to stain hair,skin and nails 5.
The present attempt is to review and compile updated information on various aspects of L. inermis Linn. a plant used all over the world. This plant is commonly known as Henna and abundantly available in tropical and subtropical areas. Ancient history of India describes its diverse uses and also plays appreciable role in Ayurvedic or natural herbal medicines 6.
FIG. 1: LAWSONIA INERMIS LINN.
Synonym: Lawsonia alba Lam.
Vernacular names 7:
English: Henna, Samphire, Cypress shrub.
Sanskrit: Mendhi, Mendika, Timir.
Arabic: Alhenna, Hinna.
French: Alcana d’ orient.
Hindi: Hena, Mhindi.
Marthi: Mendhi, Mendi.
Tamil: Alvanam, Aivani.
Telugu: Goranta, Kormmi.
Scientific classification 8:
Description: It is much branched, deciduous, glabrous, sometime spinescent shrub or small tree with grayish brown bark, attaining a height of 2.4-5 m. It is cultivated as a hedge plant throughout India, and as a commercial crop in certain states of India for its dye. Leaves are 1.3-3.2 by 0.6-1.6 cm, elliptic or broadly lanceolate, acute or obtuse, often mucronulate, base tapering; petioles very short. Flowers are numerous, less than 1.3 cm. across fragrant, white or rose-colored, in large terminal pyramidal panicled cymes; pedicels short, slender. Calyx 3-5 mm, long broadly campanulate; lobes 2.5-3 mm, long, suborbicular or subreniform, undulate. Stamens 8, inserted in pairs on the calyx-tube. Capsules 6 mm, diameter; hlobose, slightly veined outside, supported by the persistent calyx and tipped with the style. Seed capsules are red, globose, about the size of a pea, with numerous tiny pyramidal, brown pitted seeds 9.
Habitat: Henna, a traditional product with religious associations, has been widely used over the centuries for medical and cosmetic purposes in Africa, Asia, the Middle East and many other parts of the world. Henna is a finely ground brown or green powder originating from dried leaves of the plant Lawsonia inermis which is grown in dry tropical and subtropical zones, including North Africa, India, Sri Lanka, and the Middle East 10.
Propagation: by seeds 11.
Chemical constituents: Table 1 12.
TABLE 1: CHEMICAL CONSTITUENTS
|S no.||Plant Parts||Chemical constituents|
|Leaves||2-Hydroxy-1,4-napthoquinone, 1,4dihydroxynaphthalene, 1,4-naphthoquinone, 1,2-dihydroxy-glucoyloxynaphthalene, luteolins, apigenin, and their glycosides, esculetin, fraxetin, scopletin, β-sitosterol, tannin, gallic acid, glucose, mannitol, fat, resin and mucilage.|
|Barks||napthoquinone, isoplumbagin, triterpenoids-Hennadiol, aliphatics (3-methylnonacosan-1-ol)|
|Flowers||essential oil (0.02 %) rich in ionones (90 %), β-ionones.|
|Seeds||Linoleic acid, Arachidic acid, Stearic acid, Palmitic acid|
|Whole plant||Laxanthone I, Laxanthone II, Laxanthone III, n-Triacontanol,|
Traditional uses 13, 14, 15:
- It is used for the treatment of epilepsy and jaundice, and for dyeing grey hair.
- It is used as a remedy for malignant ulcers.
- The Ayurvedic Pharmacopoeia of India indicated the use of leaves in dysuria, bleeding disorder, prurigo and other obstinate skin diseases.
- The leaf is used in vulnerary, diuretic, headache, hemicranias, lumbago, bronchitis, boils, ophthalmia, syphilitis, sores, amenorrhoea, scabies, and spleen diseases and favours the growth of the hair.
- The bark is given in jaundice and enlargement of the spleen, also in calcalous affections and as an alternative in leprosy and obstinate skin diseases.
- It is used as medicinal plant because of its attributed antibacterial, antifungal, antiamoebiasis, astringent, antihemorrhagic, hypotensive and sedative effect.
Medicinal importance 16:
- It is used for antidiarrheal.
- It is used for antidysenteric.
- It is used for astringent.
- It is used for emmenagogue.
- It is used for liver tonic.
- It is used for antifungal.
Ethnobotanical Uses 17:
- Henna leafhas an orange-red dye and leaf paste or powder iswidely used for decorating hands, nails and feet withpatterns.
- Flowers are very fragrant and used toextract a perfume, which is used as base for local scents. 3. Aninfusion of the flowers is a valuable application to bruises.Decoction of the flowers is describes as an emmenagogue.
- Seeds are deodorant. Powered seeds with real ghee (clarifiedbutter) are effective against dysentery.
- The barkis applied in the form of a decoction toburns and scalds. It is given internally in a variety ofaffections, such as jaundice, enlargement of the spleen,calculus, as an alternative in leprosy and obstinate skinaffections.
- Root is considered as a potent medicine forgonorrhoea and herpes infection. Root is astringent may bepulped and used for sore eyes. Pulped root may also beapplied to the heads of children for boils.
- The root is supposed to be useful in treatment of hysteria and nervous disorders.
TABLE 1: PRELIMINARY PHARMACOLOGICAL ACTIVITIES OF ALCOHOLIC EXTRACTS OF L. INERMIS L.
|S No.||Activity||Plant part/ Extract||Dose/ Model||Standard drug||Result|
|Antiviral Activity||Fruits / Ethanol||swiss mice and chick embryo models||Sembiki forest virus||It exhibiting 100 to 65 %activities after 10 to 25 days of virus challenge 18|
|2.a.||Wound Healing Activity||Leaves / Ethanol||200 mg/kg/day / excision, incision and dead space wound models.||Topical application, Oral treatment||The extract-treated animals showed 71% reduction in the wound area when compared with controls which was 58% 19|
|2.b.||Wound Healing Activity||Leaves / Chloroform||200 mg/kg/day / excision, incision and dead space wound models.||Topical application, Oral treatment||The effects of chloroform extracts against the primary invaders of burnt wounds was investigated 20|
|Protein Glycation Inhibitory Activity||Leaves / Ethanol||1500μg/mL,1000μg/mL and 1000μM / the model systemof bovine serum albumin and glucose.||AGE fluorescence intensity||The alcoholic extract,showed significant inhibition of Advanced Glycated EndProducts (AGEs) formation .|
|4.a||Anti Diabetic Activity||Leaves / Ethanol||800 mg/kg / alloxan induced model||Glimepride||The extract decreased the glucose concentration after the 14th day and decreased total cholesterol and triglyceride concentration 22.|
|4.b||Anti Diabetic Activity||Leaves / Methanol||800 mg/kg / alloxan induced model||Glimepride||It show the inhibitory effect of glucose utilization, and use as hypoglycemic agents 23.|
|Nootropics activity||Leaves / Acetone||Elevated plus maze and passive shock avoidance paradigms.||Haloperidol||The leaves of Lawsonia inermis possess a potential for exploring a nootropic principle 24.|
|6.a||Antimicrobial Activity||Leaves / Methanol||Staphylococcus aureus Staphylococcus epidermidis||Tetracycline, Ampicillin||The presence of anthraquinones in the plant leaves are commonly known to possess antimicrobial activity 25.|
|6.b||Anti-Microbial Activity||Leaves / Alcoholic||Staphylococcus aureus Staphylococcus epidermidis||Tetracycline, Ampicillin||Alcoholic extracts had the highest antibacterial activity against ß-hemolytic streptococci 26|
|6.c||Anti-Microbial Activity||Leaves, Seeds / Ethanol||Staphylococcus aureus, Escherichia coli and Pseudomonas aeruginosa.||Tetracycline, Ampicillin||Omani henna does possess in-vitro antibacterial activity against a wide spectrum of bacterial strains and C. albicans 27.|
|7.a||Antibacteria-l Activity||Leaves / Ethyl acetate||E.coli ATCC 8739, S.aureus 6538 / Cup plate Model||Tetracycline||Ethyl acetate extract of Lawsonia inermis was found to be the most active one against all bacteria in the test system 28.|
|7.b||Antibacteria-l Activity||Leaves, seed / Ethanol||Pseudomonas aeruginosa (NCTC 10662)||Tetracycline||The highest susceptibility was against P. aeruginosa with henna samples obtained from Al-sharqyia region 29.|
|Trypsin Inhibitory Activity||Leaves / Ethanol||Aralast||Lawsonia inermis alcoholic extract and lawsone have shown a significant Trypsin inhibitory effect 30.|
|9.a.||Cytotoxic Activity||Leaves / Chloroform||microculture tetrazolium salt assay||Escherichia coli||It displayed the cytotoxic effects against liver (HepG2) and Human breast (MCF-7) with IC50 values of 0.3 and 24.85 μg/ml 31.|
|9.b.||Cytotoxic Activity||Leaves / Ethanol||Ames mutagenicity assay||Escherichia coli||Lawsone exposure inhibited the growth of both Csa and Csb strains in a dose-dependent manner 32.|
|10.a.||Antioxidant Activity||Leaves / Ethanol||200 and 400 mg/kg / 1, 1-diphenyl-2-picryl- hydrazyl model.||Ascorbic acid||The doses were effective in increasing the hepatic glutathione reductase, superoxide dismutase and catalase activities 33.|
|10.b.||Antioxidant Activity||Leaves / Methanol||200 and 400 mg/kg / 1, 1-diphenyl-2-picryl- hydrazyl model.||Ascorbic acid||In effect of different concentrations of methanolic extract of henna in comparison with synthetic antioxidant 34.|
|10.c||Antioxidant Activity||Leaves / Methanol||200 and 400 mg/kg / 1, 1-diphenyl-2-picryl- hydrazyl model.||Ascorbic acid||It was shown extraction method has significant effect on phenolic compound and antioxidant activity of Henna extract 35.|
|10.d||Antioxidant Activity||Leaves / Methanol||free radicalscavenging assay||Ascorbic acid||It resulted in the isolation of seven compounds;three have been isolated for the first time from the genus, namely p-coumaric acid 36.|
|Anticorrosi-n Activity||Leaves / Ethanol||SEM/EDS||Maximum inhibition efficiency (92.06 %) is obtained at 1.2 g/l henna extract 37.|
|Anti-Inflammatory, Analgesic And Antipyretic Activity||Leaves / Chloroform||500 mg/kg||Ibuprofen||The isolated compound was found to possess significant anti-inflammatory, analgesic, and antipyretic activity 38|
|Tuberculost-atic Activity||Leaves / Ethanol||5 mg/kg||Mycobacterium tuberculosis||The growth of Tubercle bacilli from sputum and of Mycobacterium tuberculosis H37Rv was inhibited by 6 μg/ml of the herb 39.|
|14.a||Hepatoprote-ctive Activity||Bark / Alcohol||carbon tetrachloride induced model||Silymarine||Pretreatment of rats with the extract also inhibited the peroxidation of microsomal lipids in a dose-dependent manner 40|
|14.b||Hepatoprote-ctive Activity||Leaves / Ethanol||CCl4-induced liver toxicity.||Silymarine||The effects of the extract on hexobarbitone-induced sleep, BSP clearance, and on certain biochemical parameters indicated its protective role 41.|
|Immunomo-dulatory Activity||Leaves / Methanol||mice lethality test, indirect hemagglutination test.||Levamisole||The immuomodulatory profile was studied using an in vitro immunoassay, the lymphocyte transformation assay 42.|
|Anticarcino-genic Activity||Leaves / chloroform||microculture tetrazolium salt (MTT) assay||Sulforaphane||The extract displayed the cytotoxic effects against HepG2 and MCF-7 with IC50-value of 0.3 and 24.85 μg ml-1 43.|
|Molluscicid-al Activity||Seed / ethanol||Biomphalaria alexandrina snails||indomethacin||Highest toxicity was observed in the seed of Lawsonia inermis 44.|
|Antifungal Activity||Bark / Ethanol||Microsporum gypseum and Trichophyton mentagrophytes||Voriconazole||The extract was found to possess fungistatic nature at its maximum inhibitory dilution of 1:30 (W/V) against both the test pathogens 45|
|Antitrypano-somal Activity||Leaf/ Methanolic extract||invitroactivity against Trypanosoma brucei||Trypanosoma brucei / 8.3 mg/ml of blood in mice||The treatment tends to ameliorate the disease condition, but did not affectthe level of parasitaemia and pack cell volume 46|
|Antisickling Activity||Leaves/ Aqueous extract||sickle cells counting||pentoxifylline||It found to inhibit sickling and to increase the oxygen affinity of HbSS blood 47|
|Abortifacie-nt Activity||Roots / Methanol extract||Ovariectomized rats.||The methanol extract effectiveness as an abortant due to its maternal and foetaltoxic effects 48|
Chemical Review 49: The principal colouring matter of henna is lawsone, 2- hydroxy-1:4 napthaquinone (C10H6O3, m.p.190º decomp.) besides lawsone other constituents present are gallic acid, glucose, mannitol, fats, resin (2 %), mucilage and traces of an alkaloid. Leaves yield hennatannic acid and an olive oil green resin, soluble in ether and alcohol. Flowers yield an essential oil (0.01-0.02 %) with brown or dark brown colour, strong fragrance and consist mainly of α- and β- ionones; a nitrogenous compound and resin. Seeds contain proteins (5.0 %), carbohydrates (33.62 %), fibers (33.5 %), fatty oils (10- 11 %) composed of behenic acid, arachidic acid, stearic acid, palmitic acid, oleic acid and linoleic acid. The unsaponified matter contains waxes and colouring matter. The root contains a red colouring matter. Phytochemicals reported in L. inermis L. are listed in Table 2 with their structures.
TABLE 2: PHYTOCHEMICAL STRUCTURES PRESENT IN L. INERMIS L.
TABLE 3: PHYSICAL ANALYSIS OF L. INERMIS L. 50 – 53
|Alcohol soluble extractive value||3.8 % w/w|
|Aqueous extractive value||5.0 % w/w|
|Loss on drying||4.5 % w/w|
|Total ash||14.60 % w/w|
|Acid insoluble ash||4.50 % w/w|
|Water soluble ash||3.0 % w/w|
|Foaming Index||Less than 100|
|Ph 1% solution||7.22|
|Ph 10% solution||7.53|
|Extractive value||Hot Extraction (w/w)|
TABLE 4: PRELIMINARY PHYTOCHEMICAL TEST OF ALCOHOLIC EXTRACTS OF L. INERMIS L. 54 – 55
|Test for Alkaloids||-|
|Test for Glycosides||+|
|Test for Carbohydrates||+|
|Test for Saponins||-|
|Test for Fats & oils||-|
|Test for Volatile oils||-|
|Test for Tannis & phenolic compounds||+|
|Test for Protein||-|
|Test for Gums & mucilage||+|
|Test for Steroids||-|
Morphological characters: The leaf of Lawsonia inermis L. is short, smooth, compound, ovate-lanceolate, acute, symmetrical, entire, pinnate, opposite, sweet smelling, characteristics or bitter in taste and varies in length, Lawsone is mainly present in the marginal vein or petiole in large quantity 56, 57, 58. Fig. 1 shows a photograph of Lawsonia inermis L.
- The leaf of Lawsonia inermis L. is short and smooth. The midrib is distinct from the lamina. It is broadly shallow on the adaxial side and convex on the abaxial side.
- It also consists of unicellular covering trichome. Diacytic stomata are present on both the surface.
- The leaf of Lawsonia inermis L. is dorsiventral as oblong palisade cells are present below the upper epidermis and absent on lower epidermis.
- Tannin is seen in some of the cells. The vascular strand is single, small, collateral and hemispherical in shape.
- It consists of a thick horizontal band of xylem and a fairly wide band of phloem. Xylem elements are narrow, angular, thin walled and somewhat diffuse.
- The lamina is uniformly flat with even surface. Both adaxial and abaxial epidermal layers are thin and distinct.
- The mesophyll tissue is differentiated into palisade and spongy parenchyma.
- Some of the epidermal cells are smaller and have dark tannin content. The stomata are present on both surfaces.
- Stomata are abundant. The stomata are Dicytic type. Each stoma is surrounded by two subsidiary cells the long axis of which is perpendicular to the long axis of stoma pore. The stomata are elliptical with wide opening.
- The surface of the petiole is even and smooth. The epidermal layer is thin and very distinct.
- The ground tissue is homogeneous and parenchymatous, the cells are thin walled and compact 59. Figure 2 shows a photograph of T.S of Lawsonia inermis L. leaf.
FIG. 2. PHOTOGRAPH OF T.S OF LAWSONIA INERMIS L. LEAF
CONCLUSION: The widespread survey of literature exposed that L. inermis L. is highly regarded as a universal solution in the herbal medicine with diverse pharmacological activity range. This versatile medicinal plant is the unique resource of various types of chemical compounds, which are responsible of the various activities of the plant. Hence extensive investigation is needed to develop their therapeutic utility to combat diseases. As the global scenario is now altering towards the use of non-toxic plant products having traditional medicinal use, development of modern drugs from L. inermis should be emphasized for the organize of various diseases. Further evaluation needs to be carried out on L. inermis L. in order to discover the concealed areas and their practical clinical applications, which can be used for the benefit of the mankind.
ACKNOWLEDGEMENT: The authors are thankful to the authorities of Bundelkhand University Jhansi for providing support to the study and other necessary facility like internet surfing, library and other technical support to write a review article.
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How to cite this article:
Agarwal P, Alok S and Verma A: An update on Ayurvedic herb henna (Lawsonia inermis L.): a review. Int J Pharm Sci Res 2014; 5(2): 330-39.doi: 10.13040/IJPSR.0975-8232.5(2).330-39
All © 2013 are reserved by International Journal of Pharmaceutical Sciences and Research. This Journal licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.
Parul Agarwal*, Shashi Alok and Amita Verma
Department of Pharmacognosy, Institute of Pharmacy, Bundelkhand University, Jhansi, Uttar Pradesh, India
29 September, 2013
29 October, 2013
16 January, 2014
01 February, 2014