Ayurvedic drug's effectiveness confirmed

NEW DELHI: An extract from a shrub found in India can help reduce cholesterol, American scientists confirm. The extract, called guglipid, comes from the guggal tree and has been used in Ayurvedic medicines for centuries. It received regulatory approval in India in 1987 and is used to treat a range of conditions, including obesity and lipid disorders. Experts from UT Southwestern Medical Center at Dallas and Baylor College of Medicine in Houston, found that the extract blocks the body’s Farnesoid X Receptor (FXR). This receptor plays a key role in managing cholesterol levels by triggering the process in which the body converts cholesterol to bile acids. The herbal preparations made from this plant extract is traditionally known as Guggulu in Ayurveda.

Medicinal Plant: GUGGULU
Sanskrit Name: Guggulu
Botanical Name: Commiphora mukul Engl.
Family: Burseraceae
English Name: Gum guggulu, Indian bedellium
Part used: Gum resin

Pharmacodynamics: -

Guggulu is an oleo-resin obtain from the plant commiphora mukul and is very much used in indian system of medicine as astringent, antiseptic, expectorant, aphrodisiac, demulcent, carminative, antispasmodic and useful in rheumatism. Oleoresin gum of C.mukul has been proved to be a potent hypocholesterolemic, hypo-lipidaemic, anti-atherosclerotic agent both in clinical as well as in experimental studies. A steroidal compound isolated from the petroleum ether extract of the plant possessed significant anti-inflammatory activity on rat paw edema produced by carrageenin. The steroidal fraction had a significant effect on the primary as well as the secondary inflammation induced by Freud's adjuvant, the activity being less than that of hydrocortisone acetate in primary inflammation but it is more effective than hydrocortisone in reducing the severity of secondary lesions (Arora et al, 1971, 1972). Clinical studies with shunthi guggulu or rheumatoid arthritis on 63 patients showed much improvement in age group of 11-40 years (Prem Kishore et. al: 1982).

Source: Hindustan Times, India. (Author Unknown)