Joshee, N. Patrick, R.
Mentreddy, and A. Skullcap: Potential medicinal crop. In: J. Janick and A. Whipkey eds.
Patrick, Rao S. The most extensively used and documented species is baical skullcap Scutellaria baicalensis although other species such as S. Baicalin, baicalein, and wogonin are major ingredients and have been studied in S. Scutellaria is a large genus, about species, growing from Siberia to Sri Lanka. It is well adapted to the North American climate where it has over 90 species. Plants are herbaceous, slender, rarely shrubby, scattered over temperate regions and tropical mountains around the globe.
They flourish under full sunlight, limited feeding, and well-drained soil. It grows in wet places in Canada and the northern and the eastern United States. Its generic name is derived from the Latin scutella lookinv dishfrom the lid of the calyx. The fibrous, womeb root system supports a branching stem 30 to 90 cm tall, with opposite, ovate, flr serrate leaves.
The root is a short creeper which supports hairy, square, and branched stems from 15 to 45 cm tall, or in small plants, nearly simple, with opposite leaves, heart-shaped at the base, 1 to 6 cm long with scalloped or toothed margins. The blue to lavender flowers are in racemes and grow from looling leaf axils.
The flowers are tube shaped, hooded, with two lips, the upper lip being the hood and the lower lip having two shallow lobes. Flowering generally occurs from May to August.
Above ground plant parts are collected during summer around bloom time, dried in shade and stored for later use as medicinal herb. Skullcaps are now becoming popular in southern gardens owing to their drought tolerance as well as bright and showy blooms Fig. McDowell, pers. Scutellaria ocmulgee.
Skullcap is also utilized in treating a wide range of nervous conditions including epilepsy, insomnia, hysteria, anxiety, delerium tremens, and withdrawal from barbiturates and tranquilizers. A medicinal infusion of this plant is used to promote menstruation. It should not be given to a pregnant woman since it can induce miscarriage.
Scutellaria infusion is also used for treating neuralgia, headaches in general as well as those arising from incessant coughing, without any unpleasant side effects. Normally, it should be used with extra caution since an overdose of this medicinal herb can cause giddiness, stupor, confusion, and twitching. Skullcap is well known among the Cherokee and other Native American tribes, as a strong emmenagogue and medicinal herb for females.
It is used in some tribes as a ceremonial plant to induct young girls into womanhood. Native Americans used skullcap to promote menstruation, and it was reputed to be effective against rabies, hence some of its common names.
Cherokee women use skullcap to maintain healthy menstrual cycles, and a root decoction is taken after the birth of to stimulate the reproductive system. Skullcap is also used in purification ceremonies if menstrual taboos are broken. The Iroquois use an infusion of the root to keep the throat clear. Other Native American tribes use closely related species as bitter tonics for the kidneys. The herb is used to induce visions and as a ceremonial plant to be smoked as tobacco by some Native Indians.
Wogon Scutellariae Radix, a well known ancient drug in the traditional Bonare medicine, is prepared from S.
It is one of the most widely used crude drugs for the treatment of bronchitis, hepatitis, diarrhea, and tumors. Chinese physicians use the root of S. In Nepal, S.
Scutellaria is a traditional treatment for epilepsy in European countries. Homeopaths have reported some success in the use of this plant to treat chronic fatigue syndrome. It is helpful for skin and urinary tract infections and is also used where hypertension is related to over-heated conditions. For example, misidentification wealthh a Chinese herb resulted in the loss of renal function in bonaore than patients Betz Potential problems with herbal preparations are: a contamination with bacteria, fungi, insects, and pollutants, b seasonal variation in bioactive compounds, c degradation of active ingredients in processing and storage of plant materials, and d a lack of understanding of the unique physiology of medicinal plants Li et al.
Wogonin is present only in small amounts in roots while baicalin, a flavone glycoside, pervades the entire plant Shibata et al. Upon acid hydrolysis, baicalin from roots yields glucuronic acid plus baicalein Fig. There are over 50 flavones isolated from S. Other Scutellaria phytochemicals include flavones, flavonoids, chrysin, iridoids, neo-clerodanes, scutapins, and isoscutellarein.
Shin and Leesuccessfully produced baicalin in georggia cultures of S. Using the hairy root culture system, Hirotaniisolated a brand new flavone glucoside, along with 15 known flavones and five phenylethanoids from S. Thus it is suggested that hairy root cultures could possibly be used in herbal medicine as a substitute for Scutellaria Radix Zhou et al.
Structure of compounds isolated wmoen S. Constituents were selectively toxic to Staphylococcus aureus, including both methicillin-resistant and sensitive strains. Flavones isolated from S.
Plant extracts of S. Akishiro et al. It has been suggested that baicalin may play a ificant role in lipid metabolism through lipogenic and lipolytic pathways of adipose cells Eun et al. Scutalpin C, one of the diterpenoids from Scutellaria, has shown strong insect antifeedant bioactivity against the Spodoptera littoralis larvae Munoz et al.
Studies have shown that reactive oxygen species ROS including superoxide, hydrogen peroxide, and hydroxyl radicals, contribute to myocardial ischemia-reperfusion injury Halpern et al. In vitro studies revealed that baicalein can directly scavenge ROS Shieh et al. Skullcaps used for ornamental purposes are established by seeds or cuttings in sunny garden locations with good drainage.
Seeds are sown in early spring when there is no more danger of late frosts.
Although there are no major insect-pests or diseases reported for Scutellaria, it is susceptible to two virus pathogens: tomato spotted wilt virus TSWV and impatiens necrotic spot virus INSV. Wealtuy seeds of S. Seeds of two species were planted for germination in the greenhouse but only S. Some success in micropropagation of Scutellaria has been reported Sinha et al. Shoot growth from the S. Scutellaria baicalensis and S. Since there are over Scutellaria species distributed all over the lopking other Scutellaria species need to be evaluated.
Some of these species are becoming rare or threatened because of population pressure, environmental pollution, and destruction of their natural habitat Patrick et al. Future feorgia are planned to include propagation, cultivation, and conservation of native Scutellaria germplasm. Many of ggeorgia skullcaps have showy, beautiful blooms and there is a great potential for these species as ornamentals. Table 1. Different species of Scutellaria that are native to and growing in and around the state of Georgia.