Berberis aristata DC

Family ► Berberidaceae.

Habitat ► Northwestern Himalayas, Nilgiris, Kulu and Kumaon.

English ► Indian Barberry.

Ayurvedic ► Daaruharidraa, Daaru, Daarvi, Daarunishaa, Daarura-jani, Vrahitaphala, Valliphala, Sthirphala. Pushpaphala, Somakaa, Parjanyaa, Parjani, Kantkateri, Taarthya, Pachampachaa. Kaaliyaka is now equated with Pita Chandana (Coscinium fenestratum (Gaertn.) Colebr., Menispermaceae). Extract—Rasaanjana.

Unani ► Daarhald. Rasaut (extract). Zarishk (fruit).

Siddha/Tamil ► Marmanjal.

Action ► Rasaut, Rasasranjana (extract)—bitter, cholagogue, antidiarrhoeal, stomachic, laxative, diaphoretic, antipyretic, antiseptic. Used externally in opthalmia,conjunctivitis, ulcers, sores, swollen gums. Root bark— anti-inflammatory, hypoglycaemic

Berberis vulgaris Linn. 89

hypotensive, antiamoebic, anticoagulant, antibacterial. Bark— used in liver complaints, diarrhoea, dysentery, cholera, gastric disorders, enlargement of spleen and for regulating metabolism. Berries— antiscorbutic, laxative.

Berberine hydrochloride and sulphate help in the diagnosis of latent malaria by releasing the parasites into the blood stream.

Alkaloid berberine possesses antibacterial and anti-inflammatory activities. It is used as an intestinal antiseptic and bitter stomachic. It also exhibits antineoplastic properties. (Its synthetic derivative dihydroberberine is used in brain tumour.)

Berberine has been found to inhibit the activity of enzymes trypsin (32%) and chymotrypsin (60%) in in-vitro studies.

B. asiatica Roxb.ex Dc. is found in the Himalaya at 900-3,000 m, Assam and Bihar.

See B. vulgaris.

Dosage ► Extract—1-3 g (CCRAS.); dried stem—5-10 ml decoction. (API Vol. II.)

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