MYRISTICA FRAGRANS: A COMPREHENSIVE REVIEW
Myristica fragrans is a spreading tree, growing 9-12 m high, chiefly cultivated in Maluku region of Indonesia, known as the Spice Islands in earlier times. Caribbean islands of Grenada and Trinidad are also influential in growing this aromatic tree commercially. It belongs to Myristicaceae family and is the source of two spices, nutmeg (Jaiphal) and mace (Javitri). Nutmeg is the seed kernel inside the fruit and mace is the fleshy red, net-like skin covering (aril) on the kernel. Further, studies divulge the occurrence of different chemical constituents like Myristicin, Macelignan and Eugenol (4-allyl-2-methoxyphenol). Nutmeg possesses various pharmacological activities like hepato protective activity, anti-oxidant activity, memory enhancing activity, cytotoxicity, aphrodisiac activity, anti-diabetic activity, anti-depressant activity, hypolipidemic and hypocholesterolemic effect, anti-microbial activity, antibacterial, anti-inflammatory, anti-carcinogenic activity, flavouring properties and pesticidal activity. This article reviews various pharmacological properties of this medicinal plant.
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