Iris germanica; Inula recemosa
herb, up to 5 ft. tall, found in north-western Himalayas at altitudes of
5000-14000 ft. Fresh roots of of Inula racemosa have a strong aromatic
odour resembling orris and camphor, dried roots have a weak order. They
are used in Kashmir as adulterant of Kuth (Roots of Saussurea lappa).
Roots contain Inulin and essential oil. Alantolactone is the chief
constituent of Essential oil. Alantolactone has been used as an
anthelmintic and is also antiseptic, expectorant and diuretic. The
essential oil also exhibits antibacterial activity against several Gram
positive and Gram negative bacteria.
1,2In Ayurveda the roots are given in cough, dyspnoea,
asthma, pleurisy, tuberculosis and chest pain, especially precordial
pain. The aqueous extract of roots is given orally in rheumatic pain and
liver problems. The root possesses anti-anginal, hypoglycaemic
properties and blood pressure lowering activity. The roots extract shows
anti allergic activity in mice. Pushkarmool is given singly or in
compound formulations for heart diseases. Pushkarmool in combination
with Commiphora mukul is used in different problems like ischemic heart
disease, reduction in cholesterol and triglyceride and total lipid
levels. The root powder has been found to possess beta blocking
activity. It enhanced prostaglandin E2-like activity in isoproterenol
induced myocardial ischemia in rabbits. It has proved to be an
anti-platelet and hypolipidaemic agent both in vivo and in vitro
3Isoalantolactone from Inula helenium protects against
Staphylococcus aureus pneumonia. 4A study findings
demonstrate the cardioprotective effect of I. racemosa and support the
pharmacological relevance of its use and cardioprotection mechanism in
ischemic heart disease as well as substantiate its traditional claim.
1. The Wealth of
India, Raw Materials, Vol. 5, 236, 2001
2. The Wealth of India, First Supplement Series (Raw Materials)
Vol. 3: D-I, page, 337 2005
3. PMID: 22092816, FEMS Microbiol Lett. 2011 Nov; 324(2):147-55.
doi: 10.1111/j.1574 6968.2011.02397.x. Epub 2011 Sep 15.
4. PMID: 21469598, Indian J Biochem Biophys. 2011 Feb;