ICMR provides comprehensive view of phytochemical reference standards of selected medicinal plants

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ICMR is offering a comprehensive view of phytochemical reference standards of selected Indian medicinal plants. It highlights the isolation and complete characterization of PRS from commonly used selected medicinal plants.

The 4th volume of the book released by medicinal plants division of ICMR presents monographs of 30 phytochemical reference standard compounds. It helps the stakeholders to develop pharmacopoeial standard further to provide quality raw material.

As the importance of natural products continue to increase, so will the need of reference substances for herbal products, phytochemical markers or the phytochemical reference standard (PRS), said Dr. DBA Narayana, chairman, Ayurvidye Trust, Bengaluru who reviewed the book.

“This volume presents the isolation and complete characterization of PRS from commonly used selected India medicinal plants. Compilation presents generic and IUPAC name, structure of PRS, photographs of the parts used, occurrence of the PRS in other plants as reported in literature have also been included. Information on simple method for isolation of PRS and any modification done in the methods available in the literature has been reported,” he added.

Quantification of PRS in the selected plant part has been illustrated. Characterization using physico-chemical and spectral data including UV-Vis, C NMR, IR, H NMR has been presented extensively. Original spectra and their interpretation have been included. TLC, HPLC, HPTLC, Gas Chromatography studies have been performed and are given along with their representative chromatograms. Chromatographic finger printing of plant material with reference PRS have been given. Adequate bibliographic references have been provided which are useful, he noted.

With this 4th volume being published monographs of 120 PRS from commonly used Indian medicinal plants have been characterized. This volume includes in the appendices materials and methods, extraction methods, separation techniques used. Additionally this volume lists 90 monographs from the earlier volumes, indices on chemical constituents and botanical names of plants. Spectral data required for correct identification and characterization are illustrated in a methodical manner.

ICMR and its medicinal plants division needs to be complimented for bringing this 4th volume. With more and more herbs and their extracts getting used in products either as drugs or supplements/ nutraceuticals or used in cosmetic products on the increase need for globally acceptable quality standards will become centre of discussions and regulatory requirement, said Dr. Narayana.

This book serves a great purpose as it provides rich scientific information and methodologies for innovators and manufacturers to develop such specifications. The TLC profile information in this book can itself provide a simple tool in this direction. Adoption of these methods can add value to generate claims support data demonstrating addition of herbal materials into various products. Both industrial R&D in this sector and academic institutions must own this series of ICMR publications.

The Council in future editions may consider using good quality map-litho or sunlit bond type of papers and avoid using art papers to reduce the weight of this book and make them easy to handle. In addition ICMR should also consider digitizing such publications so that online search is possible, said Dr. Narayana. The hard bound with jacket, 415 pages, is priced for Inland at Rs.1,750 and Foreign at US$ 76.

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