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Journal of Integrative Medicine ›› 2015, Vol. 13 ›› Issue (6): 368-379.doi: 10.1016/S2095-4964(15)60208-4

• Review • Previous Articles     Next Articles

Phytochemistry and pharmacology of ornamental gingers, Hedychium coronarium and Alpinia purpurata: A review

Wei Chiang Chan Erica, Kuin Wong Siub   

  1. a Faculty of Applied Sciences, UCSI University, Cheras 56000, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
    b School of Science, Monash University Sunway, Petaling Jaya 46150, Selangor, Malaysia
  • Received:2015-05-07 Accepted:2015-08-01 Online:2015-11-10 Published:2015-11-15

In this review, the phytochemistry and pharmacology of two ornamental gingers, Hedychium coronarium (butterfly ginger) and Alpinia purpurata (red ginger), are updated, and their botany and uses are described. Flowers of H. coronarium are large, showy, white, yellow or white with a yellow centre and highly fragrant. Inflorescences of A. purpurata are erect spikes with attractive red or pink bracts. Phytochemical investigations on the rhizomes of H. coronarium generated research interest globally. This resulted in the isolation of 53 labdane-type diterpenes, with little work done on the leaves and flowers. Pharmacological properties of H. coronariumincluded antioxidant, antibacterial, antifungal, cytotoxic, chemopreventive, anti-allergic, larvicidal, anthelminthic, analgesic, anti-inflammatory, anti-urolithiatic, anti-angiogenic, neuro-pharmacological, fibrinogenolytic, coagulant and hepatoprotective activities. On the contrary, little is known on the phytochemistry of A. purpurata with pharmacological properties of antioxidant, antibacterial, larvicidal, cytotoxic and vasodilator activities reported in the leaves and rhizomes. There is much disparity in terms of research effort within and between these two ornamental gingers.

Key words: Herbal drugs, Plant extracts, Molecular mechanisms of pharmacological action, Pharmacology, Zingiberaceae, Ginger, Review

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