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Year : 2020  |  Volume : 16  |  Issue : 68  |  Page : 193-198

The toothache plant (Acmella oleracea) exhibits anthelmintic activity on both parasitic tapeworms and roundworms

Department of Life Sciences, Pachhunga University College, Aizawl, Mizoram, India

Correspondence Address:
Kholhring Lalchhandama
Department of Life Sciences, Pachhunga University College, Aizawl - 796 001, Mizoram
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/pm.pm_321_19

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Background: Among its many uses, Acmella oleracea (L.) R. K. Jansen as an anthelmintic agent for general intestinal helminthiasis is remarkable because of its indigenous usage in the Mizo traditional medicine. However, the rationale has not been established. Objectives: The objective of this study is to perform chemical analysis of the plant extract using gas chromatography-mass spectrometry (GC-MS) and to test the anthelmintic activity on intestinal helminths. Materials and Methods: Methanol extract of the whole plant was prepared and volatile compounds were analyzed using GC-MS. Anthelmintic activity was studied by survival test on the cestode Raillietina echinobothrida and the nematode Ascaridia galli. Anthelmintic effects were examined using scanning electron microscopy. Results: Thirteen compounds were detected, with methyl n-hexadecanoate (palmitic acid) as the major constituents. N-Alkylamides such as N-isobutyl-(2E,4Z,8Z,10E)-dodecatetraenamide and N-(2-phenylethyl) non-2(E)-en-6, 8-diynamide were present. The plant extract was significantly effective (P < 0.05) at all concentrations tested on both the parasites and showed dose-dependent activity similar to that of albendazole. On the cestode, tegumental shrinkage, erosion of microtriches, and destruction of suckers with clumping of the spines were observed. The nematode was also extensively deformed with its lips collapsed, warty surface on the head, and contracted cuticle on the main body. Conclusion: A. oleracea contains bioactive compounds that have broad-spectrum activity on cestode and nematode parasites.

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