Development of Quality Standards of a Single Unani Drug - Habb-eBalsan

S. Mageswari, Rampratap Meena, D. Ramasamy, P. Meera Devi Sri, Shamsul Arfin, Aminuddin, Kabiruddin Ahmed and Syed Jameeluddin Ahmed

Hippocratic Journal of Unani Medicine

Hippocratic Journal of Unani Medicine October - December 2013, Vol. 8 No. 4, Pages 161-170


Habb-e-Balsan consists of dried fruits of Commiphora opobalsamum (L.) Engl. belongs to family Burseraceae. Unani medicines are prepared using different parts of the plant materials such as seeds, fruits, flowers, stems, bark, wood, leaves, roots and gums etc., The dried fruits of the drug in Unani System of Medicine are used as expectorant and emmenagogue and also to cure diseases of the urinary tracts and neurological disorders. The present study deals with pharmacognostical (to identify), physico-chemical (purity) and WHO parameters (safety) of the samples of Habb-e-Balsan procured from Chennai and Hyderabad. Pharmacognostical studies show the presence of epidermal cells with occasional anomocytic stomata, mesocarpic parenchyma cells, stone cells up to 100μ, druses of calcium oxalate crystals up to 35μ and cotyledonary parenchyma cells. Physico-chemical data obtained included moisture content (8.68% & 7.95%), total ash (8.52% & 8.31%), acid in-soluble ash (1.37% & 1.41%) and solubility in alcohol (10.08% & 9.93%) and water (20.01% & 20.43%). TLC studies of chloroform and alcohol extracts showed identical spots at 254nm, 366nm and in visible light (Vanillin Sulphuric acid reagent). WHO parameters such as microbial content (TBC, TFC, Enterobacteriaceae, Salmonellae and Staphylococcus aureus) and the heavy metals (As, Cd, Pb and Hg) were found within the permissible limit. The aflatoxins B1, B2, G1 and G2 were not detected from the drug samples Habb-e-Balsan.

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