Quantitative Ethnomedicinal Status and Phytochemical Analysis of Berberis lyceum Royle
Berberis lyceum Royle has such pronounced medicinal values that it is used as cure of many diseases and has exhibited great therapeutic effects among the local communities throughout the world. The present research was carried out to evaluate the quantitative ethnobotanical status and phytochemical analysis of B. lyceum. Regular field trips were arranged to the study area (Shangla District) in August 2017 to October 2019 and interviews with 100 residents (age range: 30 to 50 years) were
... d. The approach adopted for ethnobotanical data was semi-scientific as the inhabitants were not aware about the modern names of some diseases and therefore physician prescriptions were also consulted. Ethnobotanical data were examined using relative frequency of citation and % use value. The % use value of B. lyceum indicates that the people of District Shangla mostly used it for curing of different diseases. In spite of tremendous uses the plant still survived in this area mainly due to the non-accessibility for humans of the mountain tops; otherwise, increase in anthropogenic activities even in these hilly areas poses a threat of the eradication of this plant. To correlate the folkloric uses with its phytochemical composition, HPLC (high performance liquid chromatography) analysis was performed and a total of six phenolic compounds (quercetin, chlorogenic acid, berberine, rutin, mandellic acid, and hydroxy benzoic acid) were identified in its root. As most of the health complications are correlated to oxidative stress therefore in vitro antioxidant activity were also performed using DPPH (2, 2- diphenyl-1-picrylhydrazyl) and ABTS (2, 2′-azinobis-3-ethyl benzo thiazoline -6- sulfonic acid) assays. The observed antioxidant potential may most probably be due to berberine and chlorogenic acid that were present in highest concentration in the analyzed extract. The effectiveness of the selected plant as remedy for a number of diseases (that were pointed out by the local community) may be due to its phytochemical composition especially berberine and chlorogenic acid as oxidative stress is the root cause of many diseases. The plant extract exhibited high antioxidant potential (DPPH IC50 = 165µg/mL; ABTSIC50 = 110µg/mL) in relation to the detected concentration of berberine and chlorogenic acid. It can be inferred from experimental results that the ethnopharmacological efficacy of this endangered species may be due to its phytochemical composition and antioxidant activities. This case study helps to revive the importance of B. lyceum in local communities and emphasizes the need for its conservation.