Int J Pharm Pharm Sci, Vol 7, Issue 8, 30-34Review Article


A PHARMACOLOGICAL COMPREHENSIVE REVIEW ON ‘RASSBHARY’ PHYSALIS ANGULATA (L.)

NAVDEEP SHARMA1, ANISHA BANO1, HARCHARAN S. DHALIWAL1, VIVEK SHARMA1*

1Akal College of Agriculture, Eternal University, Baru Sahib 173101 (H. P.) India
Email: vivek03sharma@rediffmail.com

Received: 06 May 2015 Revised and Accepted: 15 Jun 2015


ABSTRACT

The present review article reveals the importance of species Physalis angulata (L.) of the genus Physalis (L.) distributed worldwide including India. Physalis species are perennial, erect and variously having toothed or lobed leaves. Physalis angulata (L.) belongs to the family Solanaceae, includes about 120 species with different and specific herbal characters. On the basis of these herbal characters, the plant is traditionally used as medicine to cure various disorders like asthma, kidney, bladder, jaundice, gout, inflammations, cancer, digestive problems and diabetes etc. P. angulata is a source of the variety of phytoconstituents like phytosteroles, withangulatin A, a variety of physalins and flavonol glycoside etc. The plant extracts from the different parts having different pharmacological activities such as anti-cancerous, immunomodulatory, anti-diabetic, diuretic and anti-bacterial. In this article cytomorphological, phytochemical, biological activities and ethnobotanical inputs have been extensively recorded for P. angulata (L.).

Keywords: Physalis angulata (L.), Cytomorphology, Phytochemistry, Ethnobotany, Biological activities.


INTRODUCTION

From the ancient time plants have been used in preparation of medicines for treatment of various human and animal diseases. Reduced efficacy of synthetic preparations due to various reasons leads the global interest in the preparation of therapeutic medicines from the plants [1]. Physalis angulata (L.) is a plant of the family Solanaceae, widely distributed throughout tropical and sub-tropical regions of the world [2]. It is distributed as a weed in gardens, waste lands, along roads, in the forest along creeks near sea levels and in cultivated fields [3]. All over the world this plant is used for the herbal medicine and for the treatment of various human ailments like malaria, hepatitis, asthma, dermatitis and rheumatism [4]. Plant leaf infusions are being used for earache and to treat postpartum infections. P. angulata is reported for CNS depressant action and it also possesses the anti-tumor activity [5-7]. Physalin A, B, D,F and glycosides namely myricetin-3-o-neohesperidoside have been isolated from the plant and shows the anti-tumor activities [8].

Botanical classification Vernacular name
Kingdom: Plantae
Order: Solanales
Family: Solanaceae
Subfamily: Solanoideae
Tribe: Physaleae
Subtribe: Physalinae
Genus: Physalis (L.)

Trade and common name

Winter cherry, Cape gooseberry, Hogweed, Balloon cherry, Coqueret, Strawberry tomato, Cutleaf ground cherry, Wild tomato, Winter tomato, Winter cherry, Cow pops, Chinese lantern, Mullaca, Koropo, Camapu.

Morphological description

P. angulata (L.) is an annual, erect and branching herb having much branched stems grows up to 1m height. Plant leaves are approximately 9 cm long, ovate to elliptic, having 1-2 nodes with pointed tips. Flower of the plant is up to 6 mm long and white or pale yellow in color, solitary in the leaf axis, produces small, orange edible berries surrounded by an inflated balloon like and ovoid calyx to about 3-5 mm long. Seed is 1.0 to 1.5 mm having the shape of a disc with pale yellow color [9, 10].

Cytological inputs

The second Indian species P. angulata (L.) was cytologically well studied and reported 2n=4x=48 [11-15].

Chemical constituents

The different phytosteroles, carbohydrates, vitamins, minerals and lipids are possessed by the species Physalis (L.) which leads to form the Withanolide type structures. Withanolides are first isolated from genus Withania (L.) which contains a group of C28 ergostan type steroids with a C-22, 26 δ-lactone group [16, 17].

Various physalins namely B, E, F, G, H, I and with angulatin A are present in P. angulata (L.). Withangulatin A and withaferin A, the chemical compounds which are related structurally to one another. A flavonal glycoside viz. myricetin 3-O-neohesperidoside present in the plant [18, 19, 8]. The physalins B and F are responsible to reduce the Leishmania infected macrophages and the intracellular parasite number in-vitro at low concentrations [20].

Pharmacological and biological activities

Physalis genus is not economically important only as a food supplier, but also very important for its chemical compounds. The tropine alkaloids and physalins are two major groups of chemical compounds which are responsible for the various medicinal properties. The tropanes shows the anti-muscarinic activity by inhibiting the activity of neurotransmitter acetylcholine adhering to muscarinic receptors of the parasympathetic nervous system.

These present chemical compounds are important and useful to treat of gastrointestinal and muscular spasms and Parkinson disease [21-29]. Due to anti-tumor and cytotoxic activities, physalins are under attention. Physalis has a broad spectrum of biological activities viz. anti-bacterial, abortifacient, molluscicidal, anti-protozoal, anti-cancer, anti-septic, and cytotoxic and immunomodulatory activities [30-38]. Unfortunately, these medicinal properties are not used commercially. P. angulata is used in traditional and folk medicine as anti-diuretic and cures the stomach troubles, analgesic and anti-rheumatic. It is also considered as antinociceptive, antipyretic, anti-inflammatory for hepatitis and cervicitis [39]. Few most important and well defined biological activities of the Physalis angulata of the genus Physalis (L.) are extensively compiled and discussed.

Table 1: Morphological features of P. angulata (L.)

Part Macroscopic features
Herb An erect and branching herb with branched stems, acquires the height up to 1m.
Leaves Ovate to elliptic, up to 9 cm long, 1-2 nodes with pointed tips
Flowers White or pale yellow colored, solitary in the leaf axis, up to 6 mm long
Fruits Produces small, orange edible berries with balloon-like ovoid calyx, about 3-5 mm long.
Seeds Disc-shaped pale yellow, 1.0 to1.5 mm long.

Anti-inflammatory, Anti-arthritic and immuno modulatory activity

The aqueous, ethanolic and methanolic extracts of P. angulata (L.) leaves were analyzed against Anti-inflammatory and anti-arthritic activities by various workers. They analyzed the anti-inflammatory and in-vitro anti-arthritic activity by HRBC membrane stabilization and protein denaturation method respectively in different concentrations and found a positive response from all used extracts [40]. In another research work P. angulata (L.) lyophilized root extract (aqueous) was used to control the inflammatory response induced by 1% carrageenan injection into subcutaneous rat’s air pouches. The inflammatory mediators action was evaluated by adenosine deaminase (ADA) activity, nitrite level, and prostaglandin E (2) level. Inimmuno modulatory response, tumor growth factor-beta level was used as a bio-indicator. Powerful anti-inflammatory and immunomodulatory activities were shown by the aqueous extract [9]. Immunomodulatory activities of physalins B, F or G from P. angulataca used a reduction in nitric oxide production by macrophages stimulated with lipopolysaccharide and interferon-g. The mice treated with the physalin B had lower levels of serum TNF-α than control mice after lipopolysaccharide challenge. Mice injected with physalins B, F or G survived after a lethal polysaccharide challenge. These results demonstrate that seco-steroids are potent immunomodulatory substances and act through a mechanism distinct from that of dexamethasone [41]. For investigating immunomodulatory activity the different Physalis angulata (L.) extracts fraction (PA-VII, PA-VII-A, PA-VII-B and PA-VII-C) prepared [39]. The results obtained were, PA-VII and PA-VII-C strongly enhance sblastogenesis response, PA-VII-B had moderate activity, and PA-VII-A exerted only slight effect on cell proliferation. PA-VII and PA-VII-C possessed stimulatory activity on B-cells and have very little effect on T-cells. The antibody responses were also shown by PA-VII, PA-VII-B and PA-VII-C, but not by PA-VII-A.

Aminociceptive activity

The aminociceptive activities of the P. angulata aqueous extract from the roots were analyzed by Bastos and co-workers. Aqueous extract inhibits the abdominal contractions is given by half or an hour before the acetic acid treatment which causes the abdominal contractions. Mice treatment with extract or with morphine produced a significant increase in reaction time in the hot plate test. The results showed the aqueous extract produce marked aminociceptive against the acetic acid induced visceral pain and inflammatory pain responses induced by formalin in mice [33].

Anti-diabetic activity and acute toxicity

In another experiment Sateesh and co-workers reported the anti-diabetic activity (in-vitro) on the P. angulata fruit. Solvents namely, n-hexane, chloroform, ethyl acetate, acetone and methanol were used for the extract preparation of powdered fruit material by the sequential maceration method. The anti-diabetic activity was shown using inhibition of α-amylase and α-glucosidase enzymes. The results showed that the methanol extracts of powdered fruit were more effecting in inhibiting both the enzymes in-vitro [42]. P. angulata aqueous, methanolic extracts and column fraction of whole plant analyzed against the anti-diabetic activity by Abo and Lawal. The positive significant results were shown by the extract by lowering blood glucose level in the alloxan induced diabetic rats. The fraction shows the significant reduction of the blood glucose level when compared to crude extracts [43]. In another experiment anti-diabetic potential of ethanolic root extract of P. angulata using alloxan induced diabetes mellitus in rats was also checked by analyzing their fasting blood glucose and lipid profile. The extract was prepared which shows the significant results by reducing the blood glucose, cholesterol, triglycerides and low density lipoproteins, while increases the high density lipoproteins [44].

Anti-cancerous activity

The researchers concluded that the physalin-F induces cell apoptosis in human carcinoma cells by targeting NF-kappa B cells and generating oxygen species in P. angulata. Results showed that physalin-F was very promising anti-cancer agent and useful for further clinical development [45].

Anti-microbial activity

The anti-microbial activity of zinc oxide ointment and P. angulata crude extracts against Pseudomonas aeruginosa and Staphylococcus aureus were checked by Donker and co-workers. The un formulated crude extract showed the highest inhibitory activity against S. aureus. Due to these results it has been clear that plant fruit extract is useful against the S. aureus infections [46]. The anti-microbial activity of essential oils from aerial and root parts of P. angulata studied against various stains viz. on Bacillus subtilis, Pseudomonas aeruginosa, Klebsiella pneumonia and Staphylococcus aureus. Candida torulopsis, Candida albicans and Candida stellatoidea were the fungal species used in the experiment.

The results showed the minimum inhibitory concentrations ranging between 3.75 mg/ml and 4.0 mg/ml for Bacillus subtilis, Klebsiella pneumoniae by the aerial and root extracts. The fungal strains were susceptible to the essential oils from the aerial and root part of the plant. This study justified the use of the plant for treatment of cuts, sores, and some skin diseases often reported in folkloric medicine. Leaf and callus extracts prepared in chloroform were found to be more effective against the pathogenic bacteria and fungi [47].

Anti-leishmaniasis activity

In this experiment, the physalins purified from P. angulata was evaluated against the anti-leishmanial activity by Elisalva and co-workers. Intracellular amstigotes of Leishmania amazonensis (MHOM/BR88/BA-125) and Leishmania major (MHOM/RI/-/WR-173) were tested against the physalins B, D and F. The in-vivo study was done in the BALB/c mice infected with Leishmania amazonensis subcutaneously. The results showed that the physalin-F is significantly potent against the Leishmania and can be used for the development of new therapeutic drugs for cutaneous leishmaniasis [20].

Anti-asthmatic activity

The anti-asthmatic activity of the P. angulata alcoholic root extract was checked by the researchers in albino mice. The asthma was induced with ovalbumin in rats. The extract results inhibited ovalbumin induced asthma by decreasing the release of inflammatory mediators. The anti-asthmatic activity is due to the reduction in inflammatory mediator release [48].

Molluscicidal activity

Santos and co-workers studied the molluscicidal activity of P. angulata (L.) extracts, fractions, and the physalin modified steroids present in this plant species. The results showed the ethyl acetate and acetone extract from the whole plant, the ethanolic extracts of roots and the physalins extracted from the stem and leaves were active against Biomphalaria tenagophila [49].

Diuretic activity

In this experiment diuretic activity of the P. angulata (L.) methanolic extract was tested in rats, using furosemide as a positive control. The diuretic effect was measured by urine volume and extraction of sodium, potassium and chloride ion contents. It had been concluded from the results that significant diuretic activity shown by P. angulata [50].

Anti-malarial activity

Anti-plasmodial and cytotoxic activity of methanolic and dichloromethane extracts of P. angulata in-vivo and in-vitro against the Plasmodium berghei infected mice were checked. The extract showed the significant anti-plasmodial and anti-malarial activity [51].

Anti-oxidant and cytotoxic activities

P. angulata methanolic extracts from stem, leaves, fruit and roots were evaluated using DPPH, superoxide, nitric oxide, hydrogen peroxide and hydroxyl radical. The fruit and leaf extracts were found to be more effective than the stem and root extracts. The total content of phenols and flavonoids were found high in leaves and fruit extracts [52].

Table 2: Part basis details of pharmacological activities of P. angulata (L.)

Pharmacological activities Parts Extraction/possible chemical constituents Screening method Possible mechanism of action/Result
Anti-inflammatory activity, anti-arthritic and immunomodulatory activity

Leaves

Roots

Whole plant

Methanolic, ethanolic extracts

Lyophilized aqueous extract

Physalins B, F or G

HRBC membrane stabilization method, protein denaturation activity

Carrageenan and

Adenosine deaminase (ADA) activity, nitrite level, and prostaglandin E (2) level lipopolysaccharide and interferon-G

Shows the positive results for anti-inflammatory and anti-arthritic activity [40].

Aqueous exerts showed powerful anti-inflammatory and immuno-modulatory activities [9].

Seco-steroids are potent immunomodulatory substances[41].

Aminociceptive activity Roots Aqueous extract Acetic acid treatment Marked aminociceptive [33].
Anti-diabetic activity and acute toxicity

Fruits

Whole plant

Roots

Sequential maceration method

Aqueous, methanolic extracts

Ethanolic extract

Alpha amylase and alpha glucosidase enzymes

Alloxan induced diabetic rats

Alloxan induced diabetes mellitus

Extracts of fruits inhibited both of the enzymes in-vitro [42].

Fraction shows the significant reduction of blood glucose level [43].

Shows the significant results by reducing the blood glucose, cholesterol, triglycerides and low density lipoproteins, while increases the high density lipoproteins [44].

Anti-cancerous activity Whole plant Physalin-F Physalin-F appears to be a very promising anti-cancer agent [45].
Anti-microbial activity

Fruits

Aerial and root part

Crude extract

Essential oil

Inhibitory activity

Minimum inhibitory concentration

The plant fruit extract is useful against the S. aureus infections [46].

Chloroform extracts found effective against bacteria and fungi [47].

Anti-leishmanial
activity
Whole plant Physalins B, D and F Intracellular amstigotes of Leishmania amazonensis (MHOM/BR88/BA-125) and Leishmania major (MHOM/RI/-/WR-173) Results showed that the physalin-F is significantly potent against the leishmanial [20].
Anti-asthmatic activity Roots Alcoholic extracts Ovalbumin Activity is due to the reduction in inflammatory mediator release [48].
Molluscicidal activity Whole plant Ethyl acetate, acetone extract (whole plant), ethanolic extracts of roots and the physalins extracted from stem and leaves Physalins Active against Biomphalaria tenagophila [49]
Diuretic activity Whole plant Methanolic extract Furosemide Significant diuretic activity [50].
Antimalarial activity Whole plant Methanolic and dichloromethane extracts In-vivo and in-vitro against the Plasmodium berghei infected Showed the significant anti-plasmodial and anti-malarial activity [51].
Anti-oxidant and cytotoxic activities Leaves, stem, fruit and root Methanol extract DPPH, superoxide, nitric oxide, hydrogen peroxide and hydroxyl radical Fruit and leaf extracts were found to be more effective [52].

Ethnobotanical aspects

P. angulata leaves and whole plant used to reduce spleen, liver and bladder inflammations and in baths for inflammatory processes like rheumatism respectively [53]. In Amazon valley the plant juice is used as sedative, depurative, anti-rheumatic and for earache [10]. A plant used in the medicinal preparation of diabetes, malaria and asthma in Taiwan [54]. The Peruvian Amazon rural people use the leaves for problems related to malaria, liver and hepatitis [55, 56]. In Western Africa the herb is used to treat cancer, traditionally [57]. The aerial parts and fruits of the plant are used in the treatment of boils, sores or wounds, constipation and digestive problems [58].

CONCLUSION

Physalis angulata is widely available as a weed and is cultivated for different purposes like, medicinal, food, forage, ornamental and other usages. The manifestations can be made on the basis of this comprehensive perusal of literature, that the Physalis angulata used traditionally, due to immense therapeutic potential to treat/cure various diseases. The plant is a rich source of bioactive compounds like, physalins, secosteroids, and withanolides etc. with a wide range of health benefits. Cytomorphological data reveal that there is an immense need to find out new cytomorphotypes for further germ plasm maintenance and evaluation, because till today no one is working on these important aspects. As per the phyto chemical data, it is concluded that there is a need to identify the chemo types for further herbal and allopathic drugs formations. There is a huge need and possibilities to isolate new active components from this species from India. Many studies demonstrated significant anti-inflammatory, anti-cancer, anti-asthmatic, anti-diabetic and anti-bacterial activities, etc., which are reported in the extracts of different parts and from its phyto-constituents. As per the recorded data it is clear that this species have been extensively studied on different parameters, but needs to do further extensive bioactivities on this species. The various existed therapeutic methods to treat rheumatoid arthritis and other immunological disorders, having lots of future possibilities. Different studies and investigations showed that, these plant species, mainly involved in the immunological effects. Thus, evidences promising drug therapy for immunological disorders. These pharmacological activities and identified compounds provide solid scientific evidence for some of the traditional therapeutic claims. A variety of phytoconstituents have been isolated from different parts of various species. Thus, there remains a very wide scope for further scientific exploration of Physalis angulata to establish their therapeutic efficacy and commercial exploitation.

ACKNOWLEDGEMENT

The authors are grateful to His Holiness Baba Iqbal Singh Ji, President, The Kalgidhar Trust & Founder Chancellor of Eternal University (H. P.), Hon’ble Vice Chancellor, Eternal University, Baru Sahib (Himachal Pradesh) India and former Head, Dr. R. C. Gupta, Department of Botany, Punjabi University, Patiala (Punjab) India for providing necessary facilities and logistic support for carrying out the study.

CONFLICT OF INTERESTS

Declared None

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About this article

Title

A PHARMACOLOGICAL COMPREHENSIVE REVIEW ON ‘RASSBHARY’ PHYSALIS ANGULATA (L.)

Keywords

Physalis angulata (L.), Cytomorphology, Phytochemistry, Ethnobotany, Biological activities

Date

15-06-2015

Additional Links

Manuscript Submission

Journal

International Journal of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences
Vol 7, Issue 8, 2015 Page: 30-34

Online ISSN

0975-1491

Statistics

463 Views | Downloads

Authors & Affiliations

Navdeep Sharma
Akal College of Agriculture, Eternal University, Baru Sahib 173101 (H. P.) India
India

Anisha Bano
Akal College of Agriculture, Eternal University, Baru Sahib 173101 (H. P.) India
India

Harcharan S. Dhaliwal
Akal College of Agriculture, Eternal University, Baru Sahib 173101 (H. P.) India
India

Vivek Sharma
Akal College of Agriculture, Eternal University, Baru Sahib 173101 (H. P.) India
India


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