Dalchini

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Dalchini    
Latin NamesCinnamomum verum Presl syn. Cinnamomum zeylanicum Blume (Lauraceae)
English NamesCinnamon, Ceylon cinnamon
Sanskrit NameTvak
Local NameDalchini
Distribution: 
The tree is native to Sri Lanka and is cultivated in South India for its aromatic bark. It is also found to a limited extent in eastern India. Habit:
It is a moderate sized tree. The bark is smooth, light pinkish brown and thin, with a strong, pleasant smell and spicy, burning taste. The leaves are opposite or sub-opposite, glabrous, thinly to stiffly coriaceous and oval to lanceolate; the flowers are yellowish green, in axillary panicles; the fruits are ellipsoid to oblong-ovoid and dark purple. The bark constitutes the Cinnamon of commerce. Phytochemistry:
It contains a significant amount of a mucilaginous substance, which consists mainly of a water extractable L-arabino-D-xylan and an alkali-extractable D-glucan. The bark also contains the diterpenes, cinnzeylanin and cinnzeylanol besides tannins1 (1Chugtai & Khan, 18; Gowda & Sarthy, Carbohydrate Res , 1987, 166, 263; Kya & Min, Union Burma J Life Sci , 1970, 3, 197; Isogai et al , Agric biol Chem , 1976, 40, 2305; 1977, 41, 1779). Pharmacology:
The bark is reported to have shown mutagenic activity in rec -assay in Bacillus subtilis (Ehrenb.) Cohn strains H17 and M45. Thus it may have associated carcinogenic action. The dried bark in the crude form, its water-heated and water-macerated residues, and petroleum ether and chloroform extracts, showed mutagenic activity, whereas water-heated and water-macerated filtrates did not show the activity. In another study, the petroleum ether and chloroform extracts showed a cytotoxic effect on the stable monolayer cell lines from a human mouth carcinoma, and also on the stable suspension cell lines from a mouse lymphoid leukemia2. (2Ungsurungsie et al, Food chem Toxicol, 1982, 20, 527; 1984, 22, 109; Chulasiri et al, Int J Crude Drug Res, 1984, 22, 177). Clinical studies:   Toxicity:   Indications:
Externally the bark is used in neuralgia, rheumatism and toothache. It is aromatic, astringent, stimulant, expectorant and carminative. The oil from the bark shows potent anti-bacterial and anti-fungal activity. Product range:
Rumalaya, Menotab, Cough Syrup.

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