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Therapeutics, Phytochemistry and Pharmacology of an Important Unani Drug Qurtum (Catharanthus tinctorius L.) - A Review

Wasim Ahmad, 2Ghufran Ahmad, N.A. Khan and Shamshad Ahmad

Hippocratic Journal of Unani Medicine
Hippocratic Journal of Unani Medicine April - June 2015, Vol. 10 No. 3, Pages 53-74


Unani drug Qurtum is comprised of the seeds of a plant Carthamus tinctorius Linn. It is one of the most ancient crops cultivated in Egypt as a dye yielding herb. Now it is cultivated as an oil seed plant and regarded as substitute for sunflower.The seeds are white, somewhat flat, angular, smooth and shining like little conch shells, broad at the base and pointed towards the apex. Fixed oil is obtained from the ripe and dry seeds. The plant has shown diverse biological and pharmacological activities. It has been used in Unani Medicine (Tibb-e-Unani) and other Traditional Systems of Medicine from time immemorial. Keeping in view the high medicinal importance of the drug in Unani Medicine, the present review provides available information on traditional uses, phytochemistry and pharmacological properties of the unani drug Qurtum.

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