Author: Aschalew Fikru
Department Of Chemistry, School Of Graduate,
Natural products are typically secondary metabolites, produced by plants and microorganisms in response to external stimuli such as nutritional changes. They are widely recognized in the pharmaceutical industry for their remarkable structural diversity and wide range of pharmacological activities1. Henna is a Persian word, which describes a small flowering shrub (Lawsoniainermis, also called mignonette tree) is a flowering plant which has been used since the Bronze Age to dye skin (including body art), hair, fingernails, leather, silk and wool. In several parts of the world it is traditionally used in various festivals and celebrations. The name is also used for dye preparations derived from the plant. Binomial name; Lawsoniainermis L. The trivial name of this compound was hennotannic acid. Interesting from the chemists’ point of view are the redox properties of naphthoquinones such as lawsone1. The henna plant is a tall flowering shrub or tree about 5 m in height, native to tropical and subtropical regions of Africa, southern Asia, and northern Australia in semi-arid zone and oases in the Sahara1. Henna shrubs need light and warmth and are regarded as rather pest resistant. It is glabrous; multi branched with spine tipped branch lets. Leaves are opposite, entire, glabrous, sub-sessile, elliptical, and broadly lanceolate (1.5–5.0 cm x 0.5–2 cm), acuminate, having depressed veins on the dorsal surface1. Henna is commercially cultivated in UAE, Morocco, Yemen, Tunisia, Libya, Saudi Arabia, Egypt, western India, Iran, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Afghanistan, Turkey, Somalia and Sudan. Presently the Pali district of Rajasthan is the most heavily cultivated henna production area in India, with over 100 henna processors operating in Sojat City1. Use of henna for body art has enjoyed a recent renaissance due to improvements in cultivation, processing, and the emigration of people from traditional henna-using regions for skin dyeing; a paste of ground henna (either prepared from a dried powder or from fresh ground leaves) is placed in contact with the skin from a few hours to overnight. Henna stains can last a few days to a month depending on the quality of the paste, individual skin type, and how long the paste is allowed to stay on the skin1. Henna also acts as an anti-fungal and a preservative for leather and cloth. Henna flowers have been used to create perfume since ancient times, and henna perfume is experiencing resurgence. Henna repels some insect pests and mildew. Henna’s coloring properties are due to lawsone, a burgundy organic compound that has an affinity for bonding with protein. Lawsone is primarily concentrated in the leaves, especially in the petioles of the leaf. Henna will not stain skin until the lawsone molecules are made available (released) from the henna leaf. Fresh henna leaves will stain the skin if they are smashed with a mildly acidic liquid. The lawsone will gradually migrate from the henna paste into the outer layer of the skin and bind to the proteins in it, creating a fast stain1. Henna stains are orange soon after application, but darken over the following three days to a reddish brown. Soles and palms have the thickest layer of skin and so take up the most lawsone, and take it to the greatest depth, so that hands and feet will have the darkest and most long-lasting stains. Steaming or warming the henna pattern will darken the stain, either during the time the paste is still on the skin or after the paste has been removed. Chlorinated water and soaps may spoil the darkening process: alkaline products may hasten the darkening process1.
Keywords: Phytochemical, Isolation Characterization, 2Hydroxy-1, 4-Naphthoquinone, Powdered Leaves, Henna