Substances & Homeopatic Remedies

Ocimum canum

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A new strain Ocimum canum Sims, named RRL-Oc-11, is a rich source of linalool useful in perfumes , cosmetics and flavour. It yields 0.5 to 0.7 %oil with 70-72 % linalool therein. The strain thrives well on a variety of soils ranging from rich loam to poor. Moderately acidic, saline and alkaline soils (pH 6-8) are also suitable. Well-drained sandy loam soils are however, preferred. It has wide climate adaptability. Subtropical regions of northern Indian and NE states are equally congenial for cultivation,. This is a 7 month crop which gives 48-50 t of fresh herbage equivalent to 225-0330 kg valuable oil per ha.
RRL-Oc-12 is a recently released variety of Ocimum canum containing 75-78% methylcinnamate. It is also a 7 month crop containing 4-6 %oil.

Uses : Her pounded with stem bark of Azadirachta indica (neem), fried with Foeniculum vulgare and orally ingested by Malayalis for body pain daily in the morning for three days

Vascul Pharmacol. 2002 Dec;39(6):273-9.
Aqueous extract of Ocimum canum decreases levels of fasting blood glucose and free radicals and increases antiatherogenic lipid levels in mice.
Nyarko AK, Asare-Anane H, Ofosuhene M, Addy ME, Teye K, Addo P.
Noguchi Memorial Institute for Medical Research, University of Ghana, P.O. Box LG 581, Legon, Accra, Ghana.

The basis for managing diabetes mellitus with aqueous extract of Ocimum canum Sim (Lamiaceae), in Ghana was investigated in diabetic and normoglycemic mice. In the diabetic mice, fasting blood glucose decreased by 60% compared to 10% in control mice after 13 weeks of extract administration. Body weight, serum total cholesterol (TC) and low-density lipoprotein cholesterol (LDL-C) decreased while serum high-density lipoprotein cholesterol (HDL-C) increased in the extract-treated group. In vitro hydroxyl (OH) and superoxide (O2) radical formation, and lipid peroxidation of isolated human LDL and mouse liver homogenates decreased in extract-treated experimental systems. These findings justify the use of O. canum extract as an antidiabetic folk medicine.

Phytomedicine. 2002 May;9(4):346-51.
Extract of Ocimum canum lowers blood glucose and facilitates insulin release by isolated pancreatic beta-islet cells.
Nyarko AK, Asare-Anane H, Ofosuhene M, Addy ME.
Noguchi Memorial Institute for Medical Research, University of Ghana, Legon.

Aqueous extract of Ocimum canum Sim, (Lamiaceae) is used by some Ghanaians to manage diabetes mellitus. In vivo modulation of levels of fasting blood glucose by 0. canum extract was evaluated in type-II diabetes mellitus using the C57BL/KsJ db/db genetically diabetic animal model, and its effects on glucose-stimulated insulin release in vitro were monitored using isolated rat pancreatic beta-islet cells. The results showed that fasting blood glucose levels and body weight decreased significantly (p < 0.05) in diabetic and non-diabetic C57BL/KsJ mice, which were administered aqueous extract of 0. canum. In vitro, the 0. canum extract significantly enhanced insulin release from isolated rat pancreatic beta-islet cells. Insulin release was found to be dependent on glucose concentration and increased with increasing O. canum concentration in the incubation medium up to an optimum extract concentration of 0.03 mg/ml. Release of the hormone decreased beyond this concentration of extract in the medium. Addition to the medium of Desmodium adscendens, a plant preparation used to manage inflammatory disorders, did not increase but rather inhibited insulin secretion by the pancreatic beta-islet cells. These results could explain the use of 0. canum in Ghanaian folk medicine to manage diabetes mellitus.

J Ethnopharmacol. 1989 Jun;26(1):57-63.
Antimicrobial activities of some Ocimum species grown in Rwanda.
Janssen AM, Scheffer JJ, Ntezurubanza L, Baerheim Svendsen A.
Division of Pharmacognosy, Leiden University, The Netherlands.

The essential oils of four Ocimum species grown in Rwanda, i.e. O. canum, O. gratissimum, O. trichodon and O. urticifolium (synonym O. suave) including some chemotypes, were screened for antimicrobial activities. Escherichia coli, Bacillus subtilis, Staphylococcus aureus and Trichophyton mentagrophytes var. interdigitale were used as test organisms. Different techniques were applied in the screening, such as the biogram and agar overlay techniques and a dilution technique yielding maximum inhibitory dilution (MID) values. Also some growth curves were determined. Although the results obtained by the diffusion techniques were rather different for some of the oil samples, all samples were found to be antimicrobially active.