Paniculate Andrographis (Andrographis paniculata Nees.), Acanthus family (Acanthaceae). A perennial herb that grows across the plains of India and Vietnam is cultivated in the southern regions of China.
The stalk is tetrahedral, strongly branching strongly opposite, up to 0.4-1 m high.
Leaves are opposite, short-leaved, elliptical or lanceolate, whole-marginal.
Inflorescences are apical or axillary brushes.
The flowers are white, zygomorphic, with pinkish-purple dots.
Pancled Andrographis (Andrographis paniculata) – Kalmegh (Kalmegh, Bhunimba, Kirata) in Sanskrit, which translates as “King of bitterness” – an herbaceous plant cultivated in India, China and Ceylon, and traditionally used in Ayurvedic medicine to treat various infectious diseases before antibiotics.
The extremely bitter taste of the plant gave various oriental colorful names, translated as “bile of the earth.”
The Andrographis family has 28 different species, of which only a few, in particular Andrographis paniculata, are used for medical purposes. In the past 10 years, Andrographis paniculata has become very popular in the USA and Scandinavia under the name “Indian Echinacea,” where it is used in preventive measures against seasonal colds and flu.
As raw materials, dried leaves collected in early summer are used.
The main chemical compounds of Andrographis paniculata are diterpenoids, (more than 20 compounds) and more than a dozen flavonoids, which are attributed to the main types of biological activity of the plant. The main diterpenoid lactones of the aerial parts of the plant are andrografide, (called the king of bitterness for its taste) deoxyandrographolide, neoandrographolide and deoxydehydroandrographolide, paniculide, andropanoside. Plant flavonoids are represented by 7-O-methylvogonin, andrographidin C, trihydroxyflavone flavonoid glycosides, apigenin 7.4-dimethyl ether, and other compounds. Recently, two new flavonoid glycosides, a new diterpenoid andrographic acid and andrographidin, were found in the plant. A very interesting component of andrographis are arabinogalactan proteins.
The use of panicled Andrographis in traditional medicine has a century of history. In Indian medicine, andrographis has long been used to treat intestinal infections, dysentery, dyspepsia, various disorders of the liver and general exhaustion of the body. For the same purpose, as a natural antibiotic, Andrographis is currently used in the Chinese army.
In England and some Asian medicines, they are used as a bitter gastric and tonic, for dysentery, laryngitis, pharyngitis, tonsillitis; in case of liver diseases, antipyretic, general strengthening, choleretic, hepatoprotective, immunostimulating, anti-inflammatory, antipyretic, anthelmintic.
In oriental medicine it is used as a bitter gastric and tonic. Plant preparations are used for influenza, tonsillitis, mouth or tongue ulcers, acute or chronic cough, colitis, dysentery, urinary tract infections with difficult and painful urination, carbuncles, wounds, and poisonous snake bites.