Calendula officinalis Linn

Family ► Compositae; Asteraceae.

Habitat ► Throughout India; wild in Punjab.

English ► Pot-Marigold, Marigold; Calendula.

Siddha/Tamil ► Thulvkka Saamanthi.

Action ► Flowers—anti-inflammatory, antiseptic, stimulant, antispasmodic, emmenagogue, antihaemorrhagic, styptic. Used in gastric and duodenal ulcers and dysmenorrhoea; externally for cuts, bruises, burns, scalds. Plant—antiprotozoal. Flower— antimicrobial. Essential oil— antibacterial.

Key application ► In inflammation of the oral and pharyngeal mucosa, internally and externally. Externally, on poorly healing wounds, ul-cuscruris. (German Commission E, WHO, ESCOP.) Anti-inflammatory, vulnerary. (The British Herbal Pharmacopoeia.)

The flowers contain triterpenes, sterols, flavonoids, carotenes, bitter glycosides, resins, volatile oil, mucilage (do not contain tannins). Polysaccharides from flowers exhibited immuno-stimulating and antitumour activity in several in vitro test systems.

An alcoholic extract has been shown to have antitrichomonal activity.

Wound healing and antiinflammatory properties are attributed to Mn and carotene. An aqueous alcoholic extract of florets showed CNS inhibitory effect with marked sedative activity in experimental animals.

The extract of flower-heads exhibited estrogenic activity (reduces period pains and regulates menstrual bleeding).

Calephlone, the extract containing the total polyphenols of the inflores

112 Callicarpa macrophylla Vahl.

cence, has a marked cholagogic effect in rats and has been found helpful in the treatment of CCl4-induced hepatitis. A hypocholesterolaemic saponin has been extracted from the plant.

Dosage ► Dried inflorescences powder—1-3 g (API Vol. II); fruit powder—1-2 g. (API Vol. IV.)

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