Diosgenin belongs to class of Sapogenin.
i.e. Aglycone found in Steroidal Saponin Glycoside Dioscin.
It is used for synthesis of Steroidal hormones.
Diosgenin is commercially available from;
~ Dioscorea floribunda
~ Dioscorea compositae
~ Dioscorea deltoida
Generally it is collected from wild source, as for Cultivation correct Soil, proper Drainage, Freedom from Weed, Fungi is required.
Depending upon different species, it requires 3 – 5 years for development.
NO B.S SAPOGENIN %
D. deltoida Diosgenin 2 – 5% Growing well in Sub Himalayan region
D. floribunda Diosgenin 2 – 5% Central America
D. compositae Diosgenin 2 – 4% Mexico
D. prazeri Diosgenin 1 - 3% North Eastern India
Dioscorea Root, Rheumatism Root, Yam (Starchy Tubers)
Dioscorea Root is known as “Rheumatism Root”.
It is also called Yam (Starchy Tuber).
Dioscorea is cultivated by sowing Rhizome pieces with buds & is harvested after 18 – 24 months.
Plant contains about 4 – 6% of Diosgenin.
It is mainly present as Glycoside in plant.
Diosgenin occurs as the Rhamno – rhamno – glucoside, Dioscin, in the Rhizome of several species of Dioscorea.
CULTIVATION & COLLECTION:
In view of the Pharmaceutical significance of the drug, it is tried & successfully grown in various parts of India.
Commercially, it is grown in Tamil Nadu, West Bengal, Maharashtra, Karnataka & Jammu & Kashmir.
The crop can be raised from seeds, but variability in progeny & comparatively longer time for harvesting are the disadvantage with this method.
Therefore, Healthy Tubers of about 70 – 80 g in weight with crown are selected for cultivation.
For checking the Tuber, they are treated with Fungicide & sown in Nursery beds.
It takes about 30 – 40 days for their sprouting.
After 2 – 3 months of growth, tubers are transplanted in the field, which is treated with Insecticide earlier.
While planting, the Tubers are placed at a distance of 30360 cm.
Initially, the Veins are weak & tender& they need support for their optimum growth.
Trellis of 2.5 m in height are provided for this purpose.
Since the Tubers are very Exhaustive, a high dose of farmyard manure to the extent of 5 – 10 tones per hectare is applied in the beginning.
Organic fertilizers should be applied subsequently in equal doses at an interval of 1 month.
Irrigation should be done every 10 days
It is a Climber with Alternate Leaves.
~ Horizontally arranged
~ Very close to the Soil
Drug is covered with scattered Roots.
Weight è 20 – 50 gm
STRUCTURE OF DIOSGENIN:
DIOSGENIN è D5 25 a Spirostan b - ol
DIOSGENIN is Steroidal Saponin
Subtype è Spirostanol, since here all rings are fused.
Sugar is attached at 3 – position.
ISOLATION & DEGRADATION OF DIOSGENIN
(1) Hydrolyse Milled Root with Mineral acid.
(2) Filter, Neutralize & Dry the hydrolysed Root.
(3) Extract & Crystallize Diosgenin.
(1) Cleave Spiroketal ring with Ac2O to form 20 – 22.
(2) Oxidize to generate 20 – keto group.
(3) Split side chain to yield C – 21 steroid.
16 Dehydro Pregnenolone acetate is used for the synthesis of various steroidal hormones.
All 4 types of Hormones like;
NO. HORMONES TYPES
1. Corticosteroids Cortisone, Hydrocortisone, Prednisolone
2. Progestrene / Pregnenes Progesterone, 17 OH progesterone
3. Androstins Testosterone, Methyl Testosterone
4. Contraceptives / 19 – Nor steroids Estnone, 17 ethynyl estradiol, Norethisterone acetate
Such Hormones are produced from such natural sources only after 1980’s.
Before that they were produced from Cholesterol or Stigmasterol.
Such Hormones today cover 25% of market.
INDUSTRIES INVOLVED FOR SUCH HORMONE PRODUCTION IN INDIA
(1) REGIONAL RESEARCH LABORATORY (RRL)
Working on Dioscorea compositae.
(4)CHEMICAL, INDUSTRIAL & PHARMACEUTICAL LABORATORY LIMITED
Upto 1990, India was importing such hormones but, nowadays Diosgenin is not exported but different hormones prepared from it are exported widely.
Due to Development of Industrial companies like above in this field, Export gradually rises after 1998.
WORLD WIDE TRADE:
Much of the world’s production has come from MEXICO, where Tubers from D. compositae (Barbasco), D. mexicana, D. floribunda mainly harvested from wild plants, are utilized.
Other important sources of Dioscorea used commercially now include;
~ India (D. deltoida)
~ South Africa (D. sylvatica)
~ China (D. collettii, D. pathaicu, D. nipponica)
Demand for DIOSGENIN for Pharmaceutical is Huge, equivalent to 10,000 tones of Dioscorea Tuber per Annum.
DATA FOR 2005 – 2006
HORMONE AMOUNT (TONS) Rs. (CRORES)
Hydrocortisone 63 3.4
Prednisolone 2 0.5
Ethisterone & Derivative 2.2 7
Methyl Testosterone 17.5 1
Dexamethasone 7 1
Betamethasone 1.3 10
ALLIED SOURCES OF DIOSGENIN:
(!)COASTAL SPECIES TUBER
It gives 2 – 3 % Diosgenin.
Since Dioscorea is Climber & needs support, while this is a shrub so no support is needed.
(!!)BALENITE ROXBURGHII FRUIT
Xerophytic plant & can be cultivated in waste land also.
Good plant for Indian production.
Gives 1 – 2 % of Diosgenin.
Not used commercially.
B.S: Seeds of Trigonella foenum – graecum
1 – 2 % Sapogenin
Because of ease of cultivation of Fenugreek & its rapid growth make the plant potentially viable crop for Steroid production in Temperate countries.