Camellia Sinensis (L) Kuntze
Botanical Name: Camellia sinensis (L.) Kuntze
Local Name: Chai
Sindhi Name: Chaa
English Name: Tea plant/chai
Part used: Leaves
Camellia senensis is an evergreen shrub or small tree that is usually trimmed to below 2 m (6.6 ft). Flowers are yellow-white, 2.5–4 cm (0.98–1.57 in) in diameter, with 7 to 8 petals. Leaves are 4–15 cm (1.6–5.9 in) long and 2–5 cm (0.79–1.97 in) broad. Fresh leaves contain about 4% caffeine.1 The young, light green leaves are preferably harvested for tea production, they have short white hairs on the underside. Older leaves are deeper green. Different leaf ages produce differing tea qualities, since their chemical compositions are different. Usually, the tip (bud) and the first two to three leaves are harvested for processing.1
Camellia senensis is founf in China, Russia, Africa, Italy, England South, and Southeast Asia and United States. The plant is cultivated across the world in tropical and subtropical regions.
Ethno medicinal Uses in Skin Diseases:
Camellia senensis (Tea) is used for the treatment of gastric and duodenal ulcers, cardiovascular disorders such as hypertension, arrhythmia, and hyperthyroidism in Districts Ghotki, Sukkur, Badin, Umerkot, Tharparkar, and Larkana.
Tea contains polyphenols alkaloids (caffeine, theophylline and theobromine), amino acids, carbohydrates, proteins, chlorophyll, volatile, fluoride, aluminum, minerals and trace elements.2Polyphenols found in tea are mostly flavonoids. 3 Major catechins are flavonoids, epicatechin, gallate, epicatechin, epigallocatechin and epigallocatechin gallate.
Medicinal Uses and Pharmacology/ Scientific studies
Leaves of Camellia senensis are used for the treatment of astringent, appetizer, psoriasis, fever, fatigue, wound, ulcer, bronchitis, burning sensation & joint pain.4 Using different animal model, many laboratories have shown that extract, taken orally or applied to the skin, inhibits skin tumour formation induced by chemical carcinogens or ultra-violet radiation. Medicinal Properties include antiaging, neurodegenerative diseases, 5 and anti Alzheimer activities. It is also active against cancer, parkinson’s, cardiovascular, antistroke, anticancer, antidiabetic, and skin disorders.6 It is also reported as anticaries, antiinflammatory, and neurodegenerative effects. 7
- Tariq, M., Naveed, A., & Barkat, A. (2010). Themorphology, characteristics and medicinal properties of Camellia sinensis Journao of Medicinal Plants & Research, 4(19), 2028-33.
- Cabrera, C., Gimene, R., & Lopez, M.C. (2003). Determination of tea components with antioxidant activity. Journal of Agricultural & Food Chemistry, 51(15), 4427-35.
- Mukhtar, H. & Ahmad, N. (2000). Tea polyphenols:Prevention of cancer and optimizing health. American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, 71(6), 1698-1702.
- Polidori, M.C. (2003). Antioxidant micronutrients in the prevention of agerelated diseases. Journal of Postgraduate Medicine, 49(3), 229-235.
- Smith, D.M. & Dou, Q. P. (2001). Green tea polyphenol epigallocatechin inhibits DNA replication and consequently induces leukemia cell apoptosis. International Journal of Molecular Medicines, 27(6): 645-52.
- Pullah, T. (2006), Encyclopedia of World Medicinal Plant, Vol. 1, p.413, published by regency publication, India.
- Duke, J. A. (2000), Handbook of Medicinal Herbs, Vol. 1, p. 353-354, CRC Press, Florida.