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Senniappan P*, Srinivas K., Balakrishnan B.R., Venkatarathinakumar T.,
Periyanayagam K., Karthikeyan V.


Vernonia anthelmintica (L.) Willd. (Syn: Centratherun anthelminticum, Family: Asteraceae) is a tall, robust, stout, erect annual herb, 60-90cm in height with pubescent branches. Seed is traditionally used as stomachic, anti-asthmatic, anthelmintic and treatment of various skin infections like leucoderma and psoriasis. Micromorphology and physicochemical analysis of the seeds of V.anthelmintica to be performed as per WHO and Pharmacopoeial methods. Seeds of Vernonia are actually one-seeded fruit. The pericarp of the fruit and the seed with the embryo are fused to form a single unit called cypsela also called achene. Fruits are achenes (pericarp fused with seed embryo) very small, truncate, oblong and cylindrical in shape. Microscopic evaluation of the fruit is circular in shape with prominent thick ridges and deep furrows. The ridges are wide and semicircular; there are about 10 ridges alternating the equal number of furrows. The epidermal cells of pericarp are dilated, spherical bulbous bodies at regular intervals. Powder microscopy showed the presence of mesocarp cells, fibre, pollen- grains, pappus scales and calcium oxalate crystals. Preliminary phytochemical screening of appropriate solvent extracts showed the presence of sterols, tannins, proteins and amino acids, flavonoids, fixed oil, terpenoids, saponin, carbohydrates and absence of alkaloids, mucilages, glycosides and volatile oil. Microscopic analysis and other parameters were informative and provide valuable information in the identification, standardization of V.anthelmintica seed.

Keywords: Vernonia anthelmintica, Centratherum anthelminticum, Asteraceae, Microscopical evaluation.

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