Murva Marsdenia tenacissima: Benefits, Remedies, Research, Side Effects

Murva – Marsdenia tenacissima, is a plant mentioned in Ayurveda for its action in treating diseases due to impure blood, skin diseases, jaundice and fever. 

Latin name- Marsdenia tenacissima W & A
Family- Asclepiadaceae

Names in different languages:
Hindi name- Maruvabel, Chinhaur, Safed Nishoth
English name- White Nishoth
Marathi name- Morvel
Malayalam name- Perumkurumba
Kannada name- Koratige hambu, Halukaratige
Oriya name- Murva, Murga
Tamil name- Perunkurinjan
Telugu name- Penujittu, Chagaveru
Urdu name- Turbud safed
Nepali name- Bahuni Lahra

Sanskrit Synonyms:
Moorva, Murva- The roots are strong from which the bow string used to be made
Tiktavalli- The taste of the plant is bitter
Piluparnika, Snigdhaparni, Madhusrava, Madhulika, Gokarni
Murangika, Devi, Devashreni, Pruthak Twacha, Madhurasa, Atirasa, Peeluparnika, Triparni, Morata, Snigdharasa, Tejani, Sruva, Gokarni,  Gopavalli

Marsdenia tenacissima Morphology: Murva is an extensive twining shrub which is found all over India having milky exudate. The leaf is velvety in nature and 5- 7 inch in length and 3-5 inch in width. The flowers are greenish yellow. The fruits grow up to 5 inch long. The roots are cylindrical, yellow colored outside with dark brown patches and slightly bitter in taste.

Moorva medicinal properties:
Rasa (Taste) – Tikta (Bitter), Kashaya (Astringent)
Guna (Qualities) – Guru (Heavy for digestion), Ruksha (Dry in nature)
Veerya (Potency) – Ushna (Hot)
Vipaka – – Katu (Undergoes Pungent taste after digestion)
Karma (Actions) – Tridoshahara (Reduces all the three doshas)

Part used- Root
Dosage-
50 to 100 ml of decoction and 3 to 5 g of root powder

Chemical constituents:
The bark of the shoots contains milky juice containing caoutchouc. The root and seed contain pregnane glycosides. The stem of the plant contains glycoside called tenacissoides A-E. Apart from these, the plant also contains Marsdenin, D- Cymarose, Asclepobiose, D- Canarose and Cissogenin.

Uses of Murva:

  • The paste of the murva root is applied over the area affected with skin diseases.
  • The decoction of Marsdenia tenacissima is given in a dose of 50-60 ml to treat intestinal worm, lack of appetite, hyperacidity and jaundice.
  • The fresh juice of the plant is consumed regularly as blood purifier.
  • Cold infusion or the decoction of the root is given in a dose of 40-50 ml in condition related to deficiency of breast milk.
  • The decoction of the root is given in a dose of 30-40 ml to treat diabetes and improve the strength of cardiac muscles.
  • The exudate from the root is consumed to treat constipation.

marsdenia tenacissima moorva-uses

Indications of Moorva as per Ayurveda:
Kushta – skin diseases
Asra – blood disorders such as abscess, skin disorders, bleeding disorders such as menorrhagia, nasal bleeding etc.
Meda – obesity, cholesterol
Meha – diabetes, urinary tract disorders
Vami – vomiting
Jwara – fever
Mukhashosha – dryness of mouth
Krumi – worm infestation
Kandu – itching, pruritis
Trushna – excessive thirst
Pittasra – Raktapitta –Bleeding disorders such as nasal bleeding, heavy periods, etc
Hrudgada – Cardiac disorders
Shosha – emaciation, wasting
Kanda – rhizome is indicated in
Krumi – worm infestation
Gudakeela – Arsha – haemorrhoids
Visha – Toxic conditions, poisoning

Adverse effect: People suffering from Irritable Bowel Syndrome and diarrhea should not consume the root of Murva plant as it may worsen the condition.

Ayurvedic medicines containing Murva:
Lodhrasava: It is a formulation in liquid form given for the treatment of leucoderma, anemia, obesity, piles and digestive disorders.
Mahayogaraja guggulu:  This medicine is in tablet form and is useful to treat joint diseases, skin diseases, piles, sprue, diabetes, gout, fistula, bloating, emaciation, low digestion power, asthma, cold, cough, anorexia, male and female infertility etc.

Vasishta rasayana: This formulation is in lehya form and can be given to treat cough, cold and such other respiratory tract infections.

Ayaskriti: Ayaskriti is a liquid Ayurvedic medicine. It is mainly used in anemia, weight loss therapy, skin diseases, indigestion etc.

Sri Gopala Taila: It is an oil useful for the treatment of various neuro- muscular condition, improve the memory etc.

Kumaryasava: Kumaryasava is a liquid Ayurvedic medicine used in the treatment of gastritis, urinary tract disorders, abdominal distention, bloating, respiratory conditions like cough, cold, wheezing, piles etc.

Maha manjishtadi kashaya: This medicine is in decoction form useful to treat skin diseases, gout, syphilis, non -healing ulcers etc.

Kottakkal mahatiktaka lepa: This is a proprietary medicine useful to treat non healing wounds and skin diseases such as eczema.

Research articles about Marsdenia tenacissima:
Anti- angiogenic effect: In the present study, the effects of M. tenacissima extract (MTE) on human umbilical vein endothelial cell (HUVEC) proliferation, migration and capillary-like tube formation were investigated in vitro and using the chick embryo chorioallantoic membrane (CAM) assay in vivo. It was observed that MTE inhibited the proliferation of HUVECs by blocking the cell cycle progression from G1 to S. In addition, MTE inhibited the migration and tube formation of HUVECs. MTE treatment decreased the VEGF-A expression in human hepatoma cells (HepG2), as well as the expression of VEGF-A and VEGF receptor (VEGFR)-2 in HUVECs. MTE exposure in the CAM was able to reduce the formation of blood vessels in chick embryos.

Anti- tumor action: The article reviewed the progress in the research of antitumor activities and mechanisms of Marsdenia tenacissima. Its origin producing area and antitumor constituents were analyzed. The herb possessed extensive antitumor effects in experimental and clinical applications.

In vitro hypoglycemic activity: The present study aimed at evaluation of anti-hyperglycemic potential of two traditionally used plants – Marsdenia tenacissima, Sphaeranthus indicus, by in vitro methods. Both the plants possess hypoglycemic activity though the activity was more in Marsdenia tenacisima. The results of the study revealed that the hypoglycemic activity is more prominent in neutral and basic media as compared to acidic medium.

Substitute for Moorva:
In case of unavailability of Moorva, Twak (Cinnamon) or Jingini are used in its place.

Classical categorization:
Charaka- Sthanya sodhana
Sushruta- Aragvadhadi, Patoladi
Vagbhata- Aragvadhadi, Patoladi
Bhavaprakasha- Guduchyadi varga
Dhanvantari Nighantu- Guduchyadi varga
Kaiyyadeva Nighantu- Oushadhi varg
Raja Nighantu- Guduchyadi varga
Shodala Nighantu- Guduchyadi varga

Scientific classification
Kingdom: Plantae
Order: Gentianales
Family: Apocynaceae
Subfamily: Asclepiadoide
Genus: Marsdenia

Author: Dr.B.K.Prashanth M.D (Ayu), Ph.D
Email: drprashanthbk@gmail.com 


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