OBJECTIVE To carry out a comparison between the cortexes and the roots of Polygala tenuifolia, and to supply references for developing scientific processing method of P. tenuifolia. METHODS A comprehensive comparison was made by comparing the chemical constitution and pharmacological activities of the cortexes and the roots of P. tenuifolia, i. e. , multi-components determination and fingerprint analysis were used to analyze their chemical constituents, and the traditional pharmacological actions of P. tenuifolia, such as cough-relieving, sputum-removing and sedative effects were used to evaluate their efficacy. RESULTS The chemical constitution of the cortexes, roots and heartwoods of P. tenuifolia was similar, but the contents of the various effective components in the cortexes were more than those in the roots and heartwoods. The pharmacological results revealed that there was no obvious difference between the cortexes and the roots of P. tenuifolia for their activities of cough-relieving, sputum-removing and sedative actions. The roots of P. tenuifolia showed a better tendency than the cortexes for cough-relieving and sputum-removing activities. CONCLUSION In order to avoid the waste of crude drugs, and to save the cost during heartwood-discarding, the heartwoods of P. tenuifolia are suggested to be kept.
Chinese Pharmaceutical Journal