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Variation in pharmacognostic characters and polyphenolic contents among four species of medicinal plants from the genus spermacoce (rubiaceae)

Author(s): GM Ankad1, RT Konakeri2, HV Hegde1, S Roy1
1Regional Medical Research Centre, Nehru Nagar, Belgaum - 590 010, India 2Department of Dravya Guna, Shri C. B. Guttal Ayurvedic Medical College, Dharwad - 580 008, India

Correspondence Address:
H V Hegde Regional Medical Research Centre, Nehru Nagar, Belgaum - 590 010 India E-mail:

Spermacoce hispida L. is one of the important medicinal plants used in traditional systems of medicine. It is observed that, several times it is difficult to differentiate the plant from the other allied species from the same genus, Spermacoce, especially, when they are in drug form. Therefore, the present study aims to document the differences in the pharmacognostic characters, preliminary phytochemical analysis and polyphenolic contents from the leaves of four species belonging to the genus Spermacoce, viz. S. hispida L., S. mauritiana O. Gideon, S. stricta L. and S. ocymoides Burm. Transverse section passing through the midrib with lamina on either sides, epidermal characters, leaf constants, organoleptic characters, physicochemical analysis, extractive values and preliminary phytochemical analysis were carried out for all these species. Total phenolic content by Folin-Ciocalteu method and total flavonoids by AlCl3 method were also estimated from the leaves of all these species. The results indicated that S. hispida can be clearly differentiated from the other selected species on the basis of size and number of epidermal cells, size of trichomes, leaf constants, physicochemical analysis and extractive values. However, it is also found that S. hispida possess total phenolic content at 6.88±0.34 mg CAE/g and 9.17±0.46 mg TAE/g. Total flavonoids was at 5.98±0.30 mg QE/g. The study will provide information with respect to identification and differentiation amongst selected species of genus Spermacoce.

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