PHYTOCHEMICAL SCREENING OF ANNONA SQUAMOSA (L.) SEED EXTRACTS: A POTENTIAL SOURCE OF ETHNOMEDICINE
Plant based medicines have been a part of traditional healthcare in most parts of the world for thousands of years. Its civilization is very ancient and the country as a whole has long been known for its rich resources of medical plants. In India, more than 7000 medicinal plant species are known. The medicinal plants find application in pharmaceutical, cosmetic, agricultural and food industry. Even today, the World Health Organization estimates that up to 80 percent of people still rely mainly on traditional remedies such as herbs for their medicines. There is an increasing demand for the herbal drug treatment of various ailments and many plant drugs from ayurvedic system are being explored globally. Studying the plants used in folklore medicine promises to yield commendable results as investigating their medicinal properties has led to a better understanding of the use of traditional medicines as potential drugs in addition to contemporary drugs. Annona squamosa L. is extensively studied for its medicinal properties by advanced scientific techniques and a variety of bioactive compounds have been isolated from the different parts of the plant and were analysed pharmacologically. In our present investigation, phytochemical screening of Annona squamosa seed extracts revealed the presence of various bioactive compounds. The results lend credence to the folkloric use of this plant and show that Annona squamosa seeds could be exploited therapeutically for novel potent drugs.