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Karyotype analysis of a wild medicinal plant Urginea indica Kunth

Richa Sinhaa* & Kamini Kumara
a*University Department of Botany, Ranchi University, Ranchi – 834001
Received , 21th December, 2014; Revised: 25th January, 2015

Abstract : The planet earth is endowed with a variety of living creatures including floras and faunas. All the faunas are dependent upon floras for their nutritional requirements in one or the other way. Plants provide food and are used for medicinal purposes by human beings. Plants have been used for medicinal uses since time immemorial. Most of the local people and tribal of India are still dependent on medicinal plant resources for treatment of various ailments. Identification and utility of these plant resources not only help to keep them healthy but also fulfill their nutritional needs.

Urginea indica one such wild plant of family Liliaceae called as Van piyaz having high therapeutic value. It is an uncultivated bulbous herb and is distributed in Mediterranean region, Asia and Africa. In India, nine species of Urginea are seen commonly. It is commonly called Van piyaz. It is used chiefly as a powerful expectorant in the treatment of cough, especially in chronic bronchitis and asthma. The alcoholic extract of the bulbs possesses anticancer activity. They are used to cure dropsy, rheumatism, skin troubles and are used to remove warts and corns. Urginea indica is the medicinal plant with considerable morphological variations, although the chemical properties of the different varieties show minor variations. This species have been extensively studied cytologically, but the taxonomic identity of each of the species of Urginea needs reconsideration on the basis of cytology. The present investigation, therefore, deals with the detailed karyotype analysis of the two varieties of Urginea indica Kunth. collected from Ranchi, Jharkhand. The karyotype of Urginea indica under investigation was highly asymmetrical with 2n=20 chromosomes. The chromosome size ranged from very long to very short. The cytological characters of the two varieties of Urginea indica will be used to characterize the karyotype of plants and define the taxonomic difference between them.

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