Ethnobotany, Phytochemistry and Pharmacology of Palash (Butea monosperma (Lam.) Taub.): a Systematic Review

Poonam Kumari, Kirti Raina, Sunil Thakur, Rohit Sharma, Natália Cruz-Martins, Pardeep Kumar, Kalyan Barman, Swati Sharma, Dileep Kumar, Pradeep Kumar Prajapati, Rohit Sharma, Ashun Chaudhary

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations


Purpose of Review: Butea monosperma (Lam.) Taub. is an Indian traditional medicinal tree, aka “flame of forest,” “palash,” “bastard teak,” and “dhak.” The family comprises 630 genera and 18,000 species distributed throughout Asian countries. It is traditionally used since the Vedic era for different therapeutic purposes in various parts of India. This review is aimed to provide updated report on ethnobotany, phytochemistry, and pharmacological activities of B. monosperma that have been revealed till now. Recent Findings: This plant exhibits various pharmacological properties such as anti-helminthic, anti-conceptive, anti-stress, anti-estrogenic, antifertility, antimicrobial, chemopreventive, hypoglycemic, antioxidant, and anti-cancer effects because of specific metabolites present in its parts. Some of the most renowned phytochemicals present in it include flavonoids, alkaloids, terpenoids, proteins, lipids, and sterols. Earlier phytochemical studies have underlined several metabolites, including 3,4,2’,4’-tetrahydrochalcone-3,4-diglucoside (isobutrin), 7,3’,4’-trihydroxyflavanone-7,3’-diglucoside (butrin), cajanin, isoformononetin, stigmasterol, butein, medicarpin, and butinas responsible for their excellent pharmacological activities. Summary: Compelling evidence support the traditional ethnomedicinal claims of B. monosperma and its wide range of bioactivities are attributed to the rich phytocompounds present in this botanical. Further investigations are warranted to elucidate the mechanistic role of its bioactive compounds coupled with drug development processes and to explore the potential at clinical levels.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)188-204
Number of pages17
JournalCurrent Pharmacology Reports
Issue number3
StatePublished - 1 Jun 2022
Externally publishedYes


  • Antioxidant
  • Ayurveda
  • Butea monosperma
  • Ethnobotany
  • Flame of the forest
  • Pharmacology
  • Phytochemicals
  • Traditional medicine

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Genetics
  • Pharmacology
  • Drug Discovery


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