Bombax ceiba Linn.: Pharmacognosy, Ethnobotany and Phyto-pharmacology

Pankaj H. Chaudhary,1 Somshekhar S. Khadabadi1
1Dept. of Pharmacognosy, Government College of Pharmacy, Kathora Naka, Amravati (Maharashtra) – 444604.

Pharmacognosy Communications,2012,2,3,02-09
DOI: 10.5530/pc.2012.3.2
Published:July 2012
Type: Review Article


Plants have been an important source of medicines since the beginning of cultivation. There is a growing demand for plant-based medicines, health products, pharmaceuticals, food supplements, cosmetics etc. Bombax ceiba Linn. (Bombacaceae) is a tall tree buttressed at the base that is widely distributed throughout India, Ceylon and Malaya, upto 1500 m of altitude. Many parts of the plant (root, stem bark, gum, leaf, prickles, flower, fruit, seed and heartwood) are used by various tribal communities and forest dwellers for the treatment of a variety of ailments. The plant literature survey shows the plant possesses astringent, cooling, stimulant, diuretic, aphrodisiac, demulcent, and tonic effects and also helps in dysentery. It also possesses important pharmacological activity such as aphrodisiac, anti-inflammatory and hepatoprotective activity in addition to anticancer and anti-HIV activity, anti-Helicobacter pylori, antiangiogenic, analgesic and antioxidant activity and hypotensive, hypoglycemic and antimicrobial activity. It is reported to contain important phytoconstituents such as naphthol, naphthoquinones, polysaccharides, anthocyanins, shamimin and lupeol.

Key Words: Bombax ceiba, simbal, simul, ethnobotanical uses, phytochemistry, pharmacological activities.

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