Modern Phytomorphology

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Evaluation of pharmacognostic and phytochemical profile of Spigelia anthelmia linn leaves


Olamilekan Lanre Awotedu, Paul Oluwatimilehin Ogunbamowo

The medicinal credence of Spigelia anthelmia suggests the plant as an important herbal remedy in the treatment of asthma and helminthiasis. A valid pharmacognostic assessment is done to give a standard and quality identification of the medicinal plant. A fresh leaf and a powdered form were evaluated. The foliar micro-morphology (qualitative and quantitative), microscopy, chemo-microscopy, and phytochemical composition were assessed using standard methods. The result indicates that for micromorphology, the cells are rectangular to polygonal with very large cells for both abaxial and adaxial epidermis. It has a straight anticlinal wall. stomata type is anomocytic for both the epidermis which means the leaf is amphistomatic. Trichomes present on the abaxial and adaxial are uniseriate and non-glandular, while they are absent on the adaxial epidermis. The stomata index for abaxial is (10.42%), while for adaxial is (5.88%). The cell length for abaxial (84.55 μm) and adaxial is (81.92 μm), while the cell width for abaxial is (58.15 μm) and for adaxial is (57.85 μm). The cell density is higher on the abaxial with (43.0 μm) and lesser on the adaxial with (32.0 μm). Mean Stomata number on the lower epidermis is (5), while on the adaxial is (2). The macroscopic features identified shows that the leaves are opposite, simple and entire, having a cylindrical shape with horny texture, the bark is coarse and the surface is smooth with a spot of brown nodules. The trunk is simple, without thorns but hairy. The leaf epidermis is straight with numerous starch grains and the crystals of calcium oxalate are present on the abaxial epidermis and absent on the adaxial. It has a granular fracture surface; its color is greyish green with a faint characteristic odor. The chemo-microscopic analysis shows that Starch, calcium carbonate crystals and cellulose are present while lignin, fats, calcium oxalate crystals, and mucilage were absent. The phytochemical screening shows that flavonoid, alkaloid, saponin, phenols, and tannin are present except, cardiac glycoside and anthraquinone. The foliar micromorphology, the macroscopy and phytochemical composition of S. anthelmia have provided proper information for its identification and authentication which can enable it to be included in the official pharmacopeia of Nigerian medicinal plants.


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