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 Table of Contents  
ORIGINAL ARTICLE
Year : 2020  |  Volume : 13  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 42-45

Effect of season on quantity and quality of latex of rakta snuhi (Euphorbia caducifolia Haines): An analytical study


1 Department of Dravyaguna, IPGT and RA, Gujarat Ayurved University, Jamnagar, Gujarat, India
2 SRF, NMPB Project, IPGT and RA, Gujarat Ayurved University, Jamnagar, Gujarat, India
3 Head, Pharmaceutical Chemistry Laboratory, IPGT and RA, Gujarat Ayurved University, Jamnagar, Gujarat, India

Date of Submission09-Apr-2019
Date of Acceptance31-Dec-2019
Date of Web Publication23-Jan-2020

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Shashi Gupta
Institute for Postgraduate Teaching and Research in Ayurveda, Gujarat Ayurved University, Jamnagar, Gujarat
India
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None


DOI: 10.4103/kleuhsj.kleuhsj_84_19

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  Abstract 


Introduction: Ayurveda recommends standardization of different useful parts of herbal drug, either organized or unorganized, starting from its collection. The latex of snuhi is said to be collected at the end of Shishira ritu. This article highlights the result of scientific study on effect of season on collection of latex of Euphorbia caducifolia Haines. (EC), one of the botanicl source of Snuhi.
Materials and Methods: The fresh crude latex of EC was collected in clean glass vials in all the six ritu, i.e. Hemanta-S1 (November–December), Shishira-S2 (January–February), Vasanta-S3 (March–April), Grishma-S4 (May–June), Varsha-S5 (July–August), and Sharada-S6 (September–October). The collection was done for 4 days in each ritu and 3 times in a day, i.e. before sunrise, 3 h after sunrise, and 6 h after sunrise (6AS), by incision of branch, incision of main stem, and Plucking of branch. The observations regarding volume, girth of plant parts, pH, viscosity, and specific gravity along with preliminary phytochemical analysis of latex were carried out in samples of crude latex collected in six seasons. The seasonal similarity and diversity was assessed by applying principal component analysis using Unscrambler software 9.7 version.
Results and Conclusion: Rakta Snuhi latex collected during Hemanta ritu (November–December) was well differentiated from other ritu, with regard to volume and girth. Highest volume of latex was collected by plucking of branch. Data shows that the latex is having highest pH (5.29) in Varsha ritu (July–August), specific gravity (1.034) in Vasanta ritu (March–April), and the relative viscosity (2.444) in Shishira ritu (January–February)

Keywords: Euphorbia caducifolia, kshara sutra, latex, rakta snuhi, ritu, seasonal variation, snuhi and time


How to cite this article:
Gupta S, Acharya R, Roy S, Shukla VJ. Effect of season on quantity and quality of latex of rakta snuhi (Euphorbia caducifolia Haines): An analytical study. Indian J Health Sci Biomed Res 2020;13:42-5

How to cite this URL:
Gupta S, Acharya R, Roy S, Shukla VJ. Effect of season on quantity and quality of latex of rakta snuhi (Euphorbia caducifolia Haines): An analytical study. Indian J Health Sci Biomed Res [serial online] 2020 [cited 2020 Apr 5];13:42-5. Available from: http://www.ijournalhs.org/text.asp?2020/13/1/42/276633




  Introduction Top


Medicinal plants possess various bioactive compounds which are responsible for various therapeutic actions. According to Ayurveda, these Guna (active principles) and karma (Action) of a drug of a natural origin differ according to Desha (habitat), Kala (time), etc.[1] WHO while recommending good agriculture and collection practices[2] has also advocated that medicinal plants should be harvested during the optimal season or time period. Many researches have established the relevance of time factor in deciding the quality of drugs of natural origin and plants in particular.[3]

Ksheera (latex) of Snuhi has been extensively attributed with many pharmaceutical and therapeutic values and has been used extensively used in as an ingredient in many classical pharmaceutical preparations,[4],[5] including Ksharasutra (medicated thread) prepration.

Among the six seasons in a year, classical Pharmacopoeia of Ayurveda recommends the collection of latex of Snuhi at the end of Shishira ritu (January–February).[6] Further, review of recent literature reveals that no scientific studies have been conducted and reported for the collection of the rakta snuhi latex w.r.t different Season, time and part. No systematic study has been reported to establish the truth, in a scientific way. Taking this into consideration, the present study was planned to collect the data of Euphorbia caducifolia (EC) latex, one of the botanical source of Rakta Snuhi[7] regarding the amount (volume) of obtained latex w.r.t. season, time and part along with its physicochemical parameters and preliminary qualitative tests.


  Materials and Methods Top


Identification and authentication

The source plant of Snuhi viz. Euphorbia caducifolia Haines. naturally growing in the surrounding area of Jamnagar city, was identified and authentified by the Pharmacognosist of the Institute, Gujarat Ayurved University, Jamnagar. Wet preservation (in AAF solution) of Euphorbia caducifolia Haines. was deposited to institute's pharmacognosy Laboratory (SPECIMEN NO- PHM/2015-2016/6213) for future reference.[8]

Collection of latex

The crude latex of E caducifolia (EC) was collected in all the six ritu i.e Hemanta (Nov-Dec), Shishira (Jan-Feb), Vasanta (Mar-Apr), Grishma (May-June), Varsha (July-Aug) and Sarada (Sep-Oct). The collection was made for four days in each ritu and three times in a day i.e. before sunrise (BS), 3 hrs. after sunrise (3AS) and 6 hrs. after sunrise (6AS) from main stem, branch by incision and by plucking methods from branch tip. The latex was collected in graduated and labelled vials for measuring the volume. The observations were recorded in terms of volume and girth of each part, every time during collection. The seasonal, diurnal, part and process similarity and diversity of all obtained data were assessed by applying PCA (principal component analysis) using Unscrambler software 9.7 version. PCA finds a few orthogonal linear combinations of the original variables with the largest variances; these linear combinations are the PCs that would be retained for subsequent analysis.

Considering the toxic nature of the latex precautions were made during collection of latex such as use of sterile gloves and masks to protect eyes and body parts.

Physicochemical analysis

Procedure for collection

The crude latex of EC was subjected for pH, Specific gravity and relative viscosity following the procedures recommended by Ayurvedic Pharmacopoeia of India (API) and other text.[9],[10]

Preliminary phytochemical analysis

The freshly collected latex of EC was exposed individually to centrifugation at 15,000 rpm for 30 min in the centrifuge SIGMA 3 30K with relative centrifugal force 22,891 at 24°C in all ritu in the morning time. The rubbery residue amounted to approximately 10–12 ml after centrifugation of 80 ml crude latex of each sample. The supernatant layer was decanted, and the samples (approx. 70 ml) were further used on the same day for preliminary phytochemical investigation. The samples was then subjected to various qualitative tests[11],[12],[13] in each season to assess the presence of tannins and phenolic acid (using ammonia test), reducing sugar (using Fehling's test), glycosides (using Baljet test), amino acid (using ninhydrin test), terpenoids (using Salkowski reaction), flavonoids (using vanillin HCl, lead acetate test), alkaloids (using Dragendorff reagent), and carbohydrate (using Molish test) following standard parameters. The chemicals used were of analytical grade purchased from Merck chemicals Pvt. Ltd., Mumbai.


  Results Top


Seasonal variation

It was observed that in case of seasonal variation, S1 (Hemanta ritu) is well differentiated from other ritu with regard to volume and girth [Figure 1].
Figure 1: Principal component analysis of seasonal variation in Euphorbia caducifolia latex (S1-hemanta, S2-Shishira, S3-Vasanta, S4-Grishma, S5-Varsha, and S6-Sarada)

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Partwise variation

Here, in parts used, the plucking of branch tip is seen to be clearly differentiated from incision on main stem and incision on branch. Highest volume of latex was observed from plucking of stem [Figure 2].
Figure 2: Principal component analysis of partwise variation in six seasons in Euphorbia caducifolia latex (Branch - incision on branch, Stem - incision on stem, P - plucking of branch)

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Diurnal variation

Here, all the diurnal readings are near to similar and hence not differentiated neatly with respect to volume and girth [Figure 3]. Thus, the diurnal variation did not affect the volume of the latex.
Figure 3: Principal component analysis of diurnal variation in Euphorbia caducifolia latex (SR - before sunrise, SR3-3 h after sunrise, SR6-6 h after sunrise)

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Physicochemical analysis

Physicochemical analysis showed that, latex is having highest pH (5.29) in Varsha ritu (July–August), the specific gravity is highest (1.034) in Vasanta ritu (March–April) and the mean viscosity is highest (2.444) in Shishira ritu (January–February) [Table 1] and [Table 2].
Table 1: The average pH of Euphorbia caducifolia latex collected in Hemanta, Shishira, Vasanta, Grishma, Varsha, and Sarada

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Table 2: The mean specific gravity and mean viscosity of Euphorbia caducifolia latex

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Sunrise plays an important role in quality and quantity of latex; thats why collection was made BS, AS, and 3 h AS.

Preliminary phytochemical analysis

Data pertaining to the observed result of preliminary phytochemical analysis are tabulated in [Table 3]. Preliminary phytochemical analysis of centrifuged and decanted latex samples of EC revealed the presence of terpenoids, carbohydrates in all the six ritus. Reducing sugar was found in all ritus except – Grishma. Presence of flavonoids was found in Vasanta ritu whereas amino acids was present in Vasanta and Varsha ritu. Tannins, phenolic acid, glycosides and alkaloids were not detected in any of the ritus.
Table 3: Preliminary phytochemical analysis of Euphorbia caducifolia latex

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  Discussion Top


Classical texts recommend to collect latex in sharad ritu (September–October), but for the collection of latex of snuhi, it has been specifically recommended for collection at the end of shishra ritu (January–February). Hence, to have a scientific validation, the latex was collected in all seasons.

To assess the effect of sun, latex was collected three different times, i.e. before sunrise, 3hrs after sunrise and 6hrs after sunrise. Further to assess the role of the plant parts and different process of collection, latex was collected from main stem and branches through incision and also from tip of branch through plucking. Collections were made from different parts by plucking and incision methods. It was found that collection hampers the growth of that part from where it is plucked, incision on the main branch, kills the plants while incision on the branch neither hamper the growth nor kill the plants.

Terpenoids play an important role in antibacterial action of Snuhi whereas flavonoids play an important role in antioxidant of Snuhi.[14] Thus, a wide seasonal variation in the presence of flavonoids, amino acids, and reducing sugar was seen.


  Conclusion Top


Rakta Snuhi latex collected during Hemant ritu (November–December) is well differentiated from other ritu, with regard to volume and girth. Highest volume of latex was collected by plucking of branch. Diurnal variation does not affect volume of latex. Latex is having highest pH (5.29) in Varsha ritu (July–August), the specific gravity is highest (1.034) in Vasanta ritu (March–April), and the mean viscosity is highest (2.444) in Shishira ritu (January–February).

Acknowledgment

Authors are thankful to staffs of dravyaguna department, pharmaceutical chemistry laboratory, IPGT & RA, Gujarat Ayurved University.

Financial support and sponsorship

This study was funded by Institute for Postgraduate Teaching and Research in Ayurveda, GAU, Jamnagar and NMPB, New Delhi, Ministry of Ayush.

Conflicts of interest

There are no conflicts of interest.



 
  References Top

1.
Ranade AV, Acharya R. Influence of time factor on phytoconstituents in certain ayurvedic medicinal plants: A comprehensive review. J Pharm Sci Innov 2015;4:235-41.  Back to cited text no. 1
    
2.
Anonymous, WHO Guidelines on good Agricultural and Collection Practices (GACP) for Medicinal Plants (PDF), Geneva: World Health Organization; 2003.  Back to cited text no. 2
    
3.
Acharya RN, Ranade AV. Fostering the concept of Kāla-the relevance of time factor in augmenting crude drug quality. Dhiman KS. Padhi MM. Mangal AK. Srikanth N, editors. Recent trends in good agricultural and collection practices for medicinal plants. First edition. New Delhi: CCRAS. Ministry of Ayush; 2015. p. 323-44.  Back to cited text no. 3
    
4.
Gupta S, Acharya R. Internal applications of Snuhi (Euphorbia neriifolia L.): A comprehensive ayurvedic review: Ayurpharm Int J Ayur Alli Sci 2017;6:100-15.  Back to cited text no. 4
    
5.
Gupta S, Acharya RN. Canvassing the external applications of snuhi: A classical memoir. Int J Res Ayurveda Pharm 2017;8:45-57.  Back to cited text no. 5
    
6.
Kalpasthana A, Acharya JT. editor. Charaka Samhita. 1st ed. Varanasi: Chaukhambha Prakashana; 2011. p. 653.  Back to cited text no. 6
    
7.
Gupta S, Acharya R. An appraisal on ethno-medicinal claims of Euphorbia caducifolia Haines. – A source drug of ayurvedic medicinal plant 'Rakta-Snuhi': Global J Res Med Plants Indigen Med 2017;6:54-63.  Back to cited text no. 7
    
8.
Johnson AD. Plant Micro techniques, Macgrow Hill Book Company. 1st ed. New York: London; 1940. p. 105.  Back to cited text no. 8
    
9.
Ujvári MZ. Lecture Delivered on 6 November, 2014. Available from: Electro.chem.elte.hu: 5080/BSc08/Viscosity_2014BSc1_eng.pdf. [Last assessed on 2017 Mar 10].  Back to cited text no. 9
    
10.
Government of India, Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, Department of AYUSH. The Ayurvedic Pharmacopoeia of India. Part-II. Vol. 2. 1st ed. New Delhi: Government of India, Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, Department of AYUSH; 2008.  Back to cited text no. 10
    
11.
Khandelwal KR. Practical Pharmacognosy Techniques and Experiments. 19th ed. Pune: Nirali Prakashan; 2008. p. 137-82.  Back to cited text no. 11
    
12.
Shukla VJ, Bhatt UB. Methods of qualitative testing of some Ayurvedic formulations. Jamnagar: Gujarat Ayurvedic University; 2001. p. 5-12.  Back to cited text no. 12
    
13.
Shah B, Seth A. Textbook of Pharmacognosy and Phytochemistry. Ch. 16. 1st ed. New Delhi: Elsevier; 2010. p. 232-89.  Back to cited text no. 13
    
14.
Sharma V, Janmeda P. Chemopreventive role of Euphorbia neriifolia (Linn) and its isolated flavonoid against N-nitrosodiethylamine-induced renal histopathological damage in male mice. Toxicol Int 2013;20:101-7.  Back to cited text no. 14
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    Figures

  [Figure 1], [Figure 2], [Figure 3]
 
 
    Tables

  [Table 1], [Table 2], [Table 3]



 

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