Herbal Drug Development and Pharmacological Potential of Some Herbs

About Authors: Amit Tamiya (M.Pharm), Dr. Gopal Rai,
Department of Pharmacology Shri Ram Institute of Technology,
Jabalpur (M.P.), India

Reference ID: PHARMATUTOR-ART-1078

In the recent time the science is proved the new aspects of herbal medicine, as therapy to treat disease, known as phytotherapy, is to be developed. It include the nutritional sciences, in it the phytochemicals that are ingested in the form of complex mixtures that are incompletely characterized in the past whose scientific study is being performed. The new methodologies developed in the area of nutritional sciences can inform phytotherapy research, opportunities for observational studies. Randomized clinical trials of single - herb interventions are relatively easy to justify its pharmacological effect. However, phytotherapy is the natural therapy, using lifestyle advice, nutrition and individually use of the combination of herbs, for the restoring the homeostasis. Now the clinical trial evaluated, this approach is useful in a wide range of conditions, Central nervous system, Hepatoprotective, mental disorder including chronic disease, associated with the human being.

Herbal medicine, is the natural system of medicine that has been practiced for more than 5000 years. Ayurveda is a Sanskrit word and its meaning is “science of life or practice of longevity” this system of health care was conceived and developed by the Rishis and natural scientist through centuries of observation, discussion and medications based on trial and error.

Herbs are the major components in all indigenous preparations of traditional medicine and common element in ayurveda, homoeopathic, naturopathic and native medicinal Indian herbal medicine emphasizes prevention of disease, rejuvenation of our body systems and it extends the life span and makes healthy life in balance and harmony. From ancient time to present, people through out the world have maintained a vast and intimate knowledge of native plants. The plant kingdom has provided an end less source of medicinal plants, first used in crude form then as herbal teas, syrups, infusions, ointments liniments, and powders.

Herbal Drug Development
It is an aspect of pharmacology to know how plants are used for their medicinal potential. From the point of view of drug development, the important  aspects are to justify  the correct part of the plant which have the active chemical constituent  essential for the pharmacological activity, Preliminary phytochemical screening, The selection of solvents, extraction process , an other methodology are the important aspect to evaluate the pharmacological activity of plant .

A quick look at the activities tested reveals a very wide spectrum. Such as, anti-diabetic activity, and anti-oxidant, anti-anxiety and anti-asthma to anti-malarial. Experimental model included, for behavioral study is  Elevated plus maze , Y –maze , light and dark test for CNS activity, For Anti inflammatory activity cotton palate induced paw edema, for CVS activity the isolated frog heart muscle, is most suitable animal model, All plants under investigation produced significant CNS activity.

This very brief analysis highlights the major activity that was reported in the various plants, and also gives information regarding the problem that arising during the drug development research. [1]

The plant itself is the source of the biggest challenge and the correct choice underpins the beginning of success. [2] From identification, to method and site of harvesting, the part being used, the processing, standardization, purity and the final formulation, all have to be taken into consideration. [3] Special attention must also be paid to standardization of the compound, using markers if possible, bio-active markers the extract should authenticated and standardized, the information is inadequate from a drug development point of view. Far more details are required to be furnished and generation of this information is crucial to further studies. This leads to successful drug development. [4]

In conventional drug development, the safety and toxicity, is of the chemical is influences the property of chemical substance to becomes a medicine. In the case of plants, especially those used in traditional medicine how much toxicity testing is required. According to ICMR Guidelines [5] the plants divided into three categories: Category I includes those plants or extracts about which a lot is known in ancient literature or the plant may actually be in use by physicians of the traditional system of medicine. In such cases, the extent of toxicity testing required is less. When an extract of a plant or a compound isolated from the plant has to be clinically evaluated for a therapeutic effect not originally described in the texts of traditional systems, or, the method of preparation is different from tradition, it is described as belonging to Category II. It is recommended that this type of extract has to be treated as a new substance or a new chemical entity and the same type of acute, sub acute and chronic toxicity data has to be generated as required .by the regulatory authority for synthetic products before it is cleared for clinical evaluation. Category III is new extracts and they are also treated as NCEs.  The LD50 studies by utilizing all resources on plants extracts must be appropriate.


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