this herb is perennial, more or less hairy. Stem is hard; leaves have teeth-like margin, round at the top and 5-10 cm in length. Roots are 15-25 cm in length. When dried, the outer skin of the root is brown and it remains loose. The pith of the root is black. Roots available in the market are 1-2 inch long and very bitter in taste. Flowers and fruits appear in the summer.
Distribution: Rocky slopes, gravelly areas, shrublands; 3500-4800m, WCE Nepal. Also distributed in N India, Bhutan, S Tibet, China and Myanmar.
Parts used: dried rhizome.
Its constituents are Flavone, saponin, alkaloids and sterols. Root contains a glucoside called 'Picrorrhizin" and kutkin, a fairly large percentage of soluble bitter substance with an acid reaction. Androsin isolated from the plant, acts as active compound which prevents allergies and platelet activating factor-induced bronchial obstruction in guinea pigs in vitro. The herb also contains other substances such as glucose, wax, cathartic acid etc.
stomachic, laxative, cathartic, cholagogue, antiperiodic (acting against the periodic recurrence of a disease), emmenagogue, emetic and abortifacient. Liver and related diseases, skin diseases, constipation, bronchial asthma, dyspepsia and fever. It improves eye sight.
Powder: 1 teaspoonful three times a day (5gm).
Decoction: 1 teaspoonful three times a day (5ml).
Arogyabardhini wati, Katukadya lauha. Tiktadi kwath etc.