Ethno-Veterinary medicine plays a significant role in management of livestock health

Dr Kalyan Sarma and Dr H Prasad
Contd from previous issue
In contrast to modern medicines, herbal medicines are frequently used to treat chronic diseases, include: common cold (66%), flu (38%), digestive and/or intestinal diseases (25%), headache (25%), insomnia (25%), stomach ulcer (34%), nervousness (21%), circulatory disorders (15%), bronchitis (15%), skin diseases (15%), and fatigue and exhaustion (12%). However, so far, relatively few herbal drugs have been evaluated scientifically to prove their safety, potential benefits and effectiveness.
Active Ingredients in Herbs
Herbs are very much like foods (indeed in many cases they are indistinguishable from them). They have many constituents including vitamins and minerals and active ingredients that have a variety of medicinal benefits. In general, the three major groups of active ingredients recognizedare : nitrogen-containing substances, terpenes and phenolics.
1. Alkaloids : These vary from one plant to another in their components and actions however they all contain nitrogen. They tend to have potent effects and in some cases they are toxic in large amounts. These are usually found in herbs that are restricted to qualified herbalists and doctors.
Different type of alkaloids
They include
1. Pyrrolidine alkaloids; Eg.nicotine (in tobacco), act as a CNS stimulant
2. Pyrrolizidine alkaloids: eg Heliotrine, senecionine
3. Tropane alkaloids: e.g. L-hyoscyamine, L-scopolamine, (as spasmolytic, hallucinogenic activity in CNS ), Cocaine ( act as CNS stimulant, Na+ channel blocker with local analgesic )
4. Piperidine alkaloids: e.g., Pelletierine (cause  skeletal muscles paralysis), Sedamine (analgesic), lobeline (CNS stimulant), Ammodendrine (cause fetal malformation), Arecoline (analgesic), coniine (poison)
5. Quinolizidine alkaloids: e.g. Sparteine(use as antiarrhythmic and uterotonic medicine), Anagyrine (cause fetal malformation)
6. ß-Carboline alkaloids: e.g.Harmaline (CNS stimulant and hallucinogenic activity)
7. Indolealkaloids : e.g. Physostigmine (analgesic)
8. Quinoline alkaloids: e.g. Quinine (antimalaria), Quinidin (antiarrhythmic), Camptothecine (tumer therapy)
10. Ergot alkaloids: e.g. Ergotamine, Ergometrine
11. Indole alkaloids: eg yohimbine, Ajmalicine (antiarrhythmic) ,Reserpine,Vinblastine (tumer therapy), C-toxiferineI (muscle relaxant) Strychine (antiarrhythmic)
12. Phenylethylamines : eg Ephedrine, Nor-ephedrine (Cardiac stimulant)
13. Amaryllidaceae alkaloids : eg galanthamine (used in the therapy of alzheimer,s disease), Lycorine (inhibit protein synthesis)
14. Colchicum alkaloids: e.g. Colchicine (gout)
15. Benzylisoquinoline alkaloids : e.g. Papaverine (inhibits cAMP-phosphodiesterase), Tubocurarine (muscle relaxant)
16. Aporphine alkaloids: e.g. Bulbocapnine (antagonist at dopamine receptor), Aristolochic acid I (mutagenic and carcinogenic), Boldine (anti –inflammation. Nurogenic)
17. Morphinane alkaloids: e.g. Morphine (analgesic), Codeine (cough expectorant, analgesic)
18. Protoberberine alkaloids: Berberine, Sanguinarine (nurogenic)
19. Purine alkaloids: e.g. Caffeine, Theobromine, Theophylline (inhibitors of phosphodiesterease)
20. Imidazole alkaloids: e.g. pilocarpine (antiinflammation)
(To be contd)