Convulvus (Shank Pushpi)

Scientific name: Convolvulus pluricaulis, Satavari, Tephrosia purpurea

Common names:

Ayurvedic names: Shankhpushpi

Chinese names: Nah troi

Bangladesh names: Dankuni, Bannilgach, Bonnil 

Arabic names:     لَبْلاب (lublaab)

Rain Forest names:

Family: Fabaceae

Approximate number of species known:

Common parts used: Whole plant


Annual/Perennial: Perennial



Known Constituents:

Constituents Explained:


Native to India.

Traditional Use:

Commonly thought of in Indian medicine as an Ayruvedic herb.  Commonly thought of as a brain tonic and for the nerves, insomnia, fatigue, anxiety and memory loss.  It has also been used for digestion and liver function. Also used with the intention of reducing cholesterol and triglycerides.

Clinical Studies:

Convolvulus pluricaulis Choisy is a perennial wild herb commonly found on sandy & rocky areas under xerophytic conditions in northern India. It is a reputed drug of ayurveda and reported to posses antioxidant, brain tonic, nervine tonic, laxative and has been used in anxiety, neurosis, epilepsy, insomnia, burning sensation, oedema and urinary disorders. 

In the present study, methanolic extract of whole plant of Convolvulus pluricaulis Choisy was evaluated for antioxidant activity by using DPPH free radical scavenging model and anticonvulsant activity by using maximal electroshock seizure model.

In antioxidant activity, ascorbic acid was used as standard agent while results of anticonvulsant studies were compared with phenytoin. Results of antioxidant activity have demonstrated significant free radical scavenging effect for methanolic extract of Convolvulus pluricaulis Choisy.

Methanolic extract of C. pluricaulis was evaluated for anticonvulsant activity at 250, 500 and 1000mg/kg. Experimental results have shown that at the dose of 500 and 1000mg/kg, C. pluricaulis didn’t abolish the hind limb extension, but reduced the mean recovery time from convulsion.

Another study evaluated the in vitro anti-Helicobacter pylori activity profile of the plant extract (Tephrosia Pupurea) and its fractions with a view to examining its therapeutic potential, if any.

Employing clinical isolates and standard strains of Helicobacter pylori, the extract and fractions were bioevaluated in terms of MIC and MBC values, acid stability, time-kill kinetics, drug resistance, and synergistic potential.

The methanolic extract showed promising activity against clinical isolates and standard strains of Helicobacter pylori, including metronidazole-resistant strains. Fractionation of the extract revealed the n-hexane and chloroform fractions to possess marked activity.

The extract and the less polar fractions remained functionally active in acidic condition similar to stomach environment, exhibited consistent bacteriostatic activity during repeated exposure, and demonstrated synergism, complete or partial, even with antibiotic-resistant strains.

Apolar fractions of Tephrosia purpurea may have therapeutic potential in combating Helicobacter pylori mediated gastroduodenal disorders.


Verma S, Sinha R, Kumar P, Amin F, Jain J, Tanwar S. “Study Of Convolvulus Pluricaulis For Antioxidant And Anticonculsant Activity.” 2012 March

Chinniah A, Mohapatra S, Goswami S, Mahapatra A, Kar SK, Mallavadhani UV, Das PK. “On The Potential Of Tephrosia Purpurea As Anti-Helicobacter Pylori Agent.” 2009 July