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Product Details

Air potato, Varahi Kanda, Genthi

Dioscorea bulbifera is one of the medicinal plants whose genetic resources in the world are getting into extinction due to habitat loss, climate change, overexploitation and poor natural regeneration since it is dioecious and chances of finding a fertile seed are automatically reduced (Otoo et al., 2015). Dioscorea bulbifera preparation has been used for memory enhancement, anti-aging, constipation and fever (Odugbemi, 2008), and has also been used as an infusion to apply to cuts and sores due to its high composition of the tannin that is used to hasten healing of wounds in a flamed membrane (Anona, Ezeabara, & Regina, 2018). In Cameroon and Madagascar, the pounded bulbils are applied to abscesses, boils and wound infections (Cogne, 2002). The bulbil of D.bulbifera has also been identified to contain saponin steroidal phytochemical called diosgenin that possess anti-fertility activity (Shajeela, Mohan, Louis Jesudas, & Tresina Soris, 2011) in addition to many other medicinal uses such as contraceptives, sexual vigour remedy and treatment of piles, dysentery, syphilis, ulcers, tuberculosis, leprosy, cough and diabetes (Table 1). The clinical significance varies greatly depending on the mode of preparations and the administration, hence the need for its conservation.

Uses:- Whole pulse is boiled and given to horses. Seed is good food for bullock. For scrofula, the decoction of the grain with pepper powder is given and for diarrhoea one tola of the expressed juice of the fresh plant and 1/4 tols of catechu mixed together is given thrice a day. A decoction of this grain is given to females during parturition to promote discharge of the lochia ; also used in leucorrhoea and menstrual derangements. With asafoetida, ginger powder and bidalone added to decoction is given in colic. A soup is a diet in sub-acute cases of enlarged liver and spleen ; also a diet in piles. Pulse is a demulcent in calculus affections, coughs, etc.


Family Dioscoreaceae Odour Characteristic odour
Latin Name Dioscorea bulbifera Herb Extract Ratio5:1
Sanskrit Name Varahikanda Water solubility
Common Name Air potato, Varahi Kanda, Genthi Alkaloid 75% ethanol
Solvent Used Water Taste Bitter in Taste
Storage Condition Store in a Dry and cool place in double PP bag with container.Appearance Brown Powder

Total heavy metal NMT 10 ppm

Heavy Metal- Total heavy metal NMT 10 ppm Arsenic – NMT 3 ppm
Lead- NMT 10 ppm
Cadmium – NMT 0.3 ppm
Mercury – NMT 1 ppm
Microbial Profile – Total Plate Count NMT 1000 CFU/G
Yeast & Moulds NMT 100 CFU/G
E-Coli Absent
Salmonella Absent
Staphylococcus aureus Absent/G
Pseudomonas Absent/G


Phytochemical analysis of D. bulbifera reveals the presence of saponins, tannins, flavonoids, sterols, polyphenols, glycosides (Ghosh, 2015) and steroidal saponins (Tapondjou, Jenett-Siems, Böttger, & Melzig, 2013). The phytochemicals present vary according to the geographical location, parts of a plant and the extraction solvents used. For example, extraction using Ethyl acetate soluble fraction of 75% ethanol extract of Dioscorea bulbifera from China has indicated the presence of flavonol aglycones, namely kaempferol-3, 5-dimethyl ether, caryatin, and catechin. It also contains flavonol glycosides, namely,quercetin-3-O-galactopyranoside,myricetin-3-O-galactopyranoside, and myricetin-3-O-glucopyranoside (Kuroyanagi et al., 2002).

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