A Pharmacognostical study on Fumaria parviflora Lamk.
Fumaria parviflora Lamk., is a valued herb in Ayurvedic medicine and is used as Parpata by majority of Ayurvedic practitioners amongst the other plant sources mentioned under the same common name. It is found in many parts of India from Indo-Gangetic plain and Nepal down to the Nilgiri Mountains. The whole plant is diuretic, diaphoretic, aperient, laxative and anthelmintic. It is used as antipyretic, blood purifier and in skin disorders. In the present study, physico-chemical parameters were established for identification of the drug. Protopine and β-sitosterol were quantified by validated HPTLC method, developed using precoated silica gel plates as a stationary phase and toluene: ethyl acetate: diethyl amine (7: 2: 1) and toluene: methanol (9.4: 0.6) as a mobile phase respectively. It is a diffuse, annual herb with thin winged stem; alternate leaf finely divided into small, linear lanceolate segments, small white or pink flowers with purplish tips. Microscopically root can be characterized by the presence of centrally located diarch primary xylem encircled by wide secondary xylem occupying major area and a narrow cork; stem by collenchymatous hypodermis, vascular bundle capped with lignified pericyclic fibres and hollow pith; leaf by vascular bundles with groups of sclerenchyma underneath the phloem and narrow spongy parenchymatous lamina. Powder can be typified by xylem vessels with varied thickening, lignified and thick walled testa and spherical pollen grains. The plant was found to be rich in alkaloids. The amount of protopine and β-sitosterol were found to be 0.47 – 0.50% w/w and 0.23 – 0.26% w/w. The quality parameters and HPTLC method developed would serve as useful gauge in standardization of Fumaria parviflora.
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