Zingiber cassumunar Roxb

Synonym ► Z. montanum (Koen.) Link ex. A. Dietr. Z. purpureum Rose.

Family ► Zingiberaceae.

Habitat ► Wild throughout India, also cultivated in tropical parts of India.

English ► Cassumunar Ginger.

Ayurvedic ► Vanardraka, Peja, Peyu, Aardikaa, Shringaberikaa.

Folk ► Adarakhi, Bana-adarakhi.

Action ► Rhizome—carminative, stimulant, antispasmodic. Used for diarrhoea and colic.

The occurance of an active diastase in the rhizome has been reported.

The enzyme resembles in its activity with alpha-amylase of Aspergillus oryzae. The rhizome gave an essential oil consisting of terpinen-4-ol (about 35%); other constituents are alpha-and beta-pinene, sabinene, myrcene, terpinene, limonene, p-cymene and terpinolene. The fresh rhizomes contain phenyl butenoic dimers, along with cyclohexane derivatives. Hex-ane extract of the rhizome contained (E)-4-(3'4'-dimethoxyphenyl)-but-3-en-l-ol, known as compound D. Compound D showed antispasmodic effect on guinea-pig ileum and tracheal smooth muscle, also a dose-related uterine relaxant effect in situ in non-pregnant rats; in pregnant rats the response varied with the period of pregnancy. Aqueous extract of the rhizome showed smooth muscle relaxant and anti-inflammatory activity. Antioxi-dant activity was found to be more intense than that of known curcum-inoid antioxidants. It is attributed to cassumunin A.

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