Emblica officinalis (Amla): A review of potential therapeutic applications

Prasan R. Bhandari, Mohammad Ameeruddin Kamdod

Abstract


Emblica officinalis Gaertn. or Phyllanthus emblica Linn, commonly known as Indian gooseberry or Amla, is perhaps the most important medicinal plant in the Indian traditional system of medicine, the Ayurveda. Several parts of the plant are used to treat a variety of diseases, but the most important is the fruit. Many ailments are treated by the fruit which is used either alone or in combination with other plants. These include common cold and fever; as a diuretic, laxative, liver tonic, refrigerant, stomachic, restorative, alterative, antipyretic, anti‑inflammatory, hair tonic; to prevent peptic ulcer and dyspepsia, and as a digestive. E. officinalis possesses antipyretic, analgesic, antitussive, antiatherogenic, adaptogenic, cardioprotective, gastroprotective, antianemic, antihypercholesterolemic, wound
healing, antidiarrheal, antiatherosclerotic, hepatoprotective, nephroprotective, and neuroprotective properties as demonstrated in numerous preclinical studies. Furthermore, experimental studies have reported that E. officinalis and some of its phytochemicals also exhibit anticarcinogenic properties. E. officinalis is also reported to possess radiomodulatory, chemomodulatory, chemopreventive, free radical scavenging, antioxidant, anti‑inflammatory, antimutagenic and immunomodulatory activities. These properties are efficacious
in the treatment and prevention of cancer. This review summarizes the results related to these properties and also emphasizes the aspects that warrant future research establishing its activity and utility as a cancer preventive and therapeutic drug in humans.
Key words: Amla, Emblica officinalis, Phyllanthus emblica, therapeutic applications

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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.22377/ijgp.v6i4.272

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