Acacia nilotica Lam (Mimosaceae) indigenously known as ‘Babul’ or ‘Kikar’ is a proverbial, medium sized tree and is broadly scattered in tropical and subtropical countries. It has an inspiring range of medicinal uses with potential anti-oxidant activity. This plant contributes a number of groups among which are alkaloids, volatile essential oils, phenols and phenolic glycosides, resins, oleosins, steroids, tannins and terpenes. A. nilotica is a medicinal plant acknowledged to be rich in phenolics, consisting of condensed tannin and phlobatannin, gallic acid, protocatechuic acid, pyrocatechol, (+) -catechin, (-) epi- gallocatechin-7-gallate and (-) epigallocatechin-5, 7-digallate. Different parts of this plant such as the leaves, roots, seeds, bark, fruits, flowers, gum and immature pods act as anti-cancer, antimutagenic, spasmogenic, vasoconstrictor, anti-pyretic, anti-asthamatic, cytotoxic, anti-diabetic, anti-platelet agregatory, anti-plasmodial, molluscicidal, anti-fungal, inhibitory activity against Hepatitis C virus (HCV) and human immunodeficiency virus (HIV)-I and antioxidant activities, anti-bacterial, anti-hypertensive and anti-spasmodic activities, and are also engaged for the treatment of different ailments in the indigenous system of medicine. This review spotlights on the detailed phytochemical composition, medicinal uses, along with pharmacological properties of different parts of this multipurpose plant.
Key words: Acacia nilotica, phytomedicine, multipurpose plant, different parts, medicinal uses, pharmacological properties.
HIV, Human immunodeficiency virus; DMBA, 7,12– dimethylbenz(a)anthracene; HCV, hepatitis C virus; PR, protease; DNA, deoxyribonucleic acid.
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