Shilajit: A Himalayan Herbomineral Wonder

Aliefia Yusuf Lehri 1

8th WCPSDM.2021. APR.Published Online 18 APR 2021

Abstract : Traditional medicine systems have been significantly important since centuries and continue to play a role in treatment of diseases alone or supplementing modern medicinal agents. Shilajit, an important Ayurvedic rasayana is a brown to blackish brown substance, of herbomineral origin obtained as an exudate in many mountainous areas of the world, especially the Himalayas. Shilajit which is known by various names including Asphalt, Hajar ul Musa, Salajit, Mumie or Mummiyo has been used to treat a myriad of conditions such as bone fractures, arthritis, wound healing, tendon restorative, cardiovascular to name a few. It generally consists of a complex mixture of organic humic substances and traces of plant and microbial metabolites. Humic acid and fulvic acid which are important constituents of Shilajit are responsible for prevention of cancer.Shilajit has been used as a rejuvenator and an adaptogen for millenniums as part of traditional systems of medicine globally. The current research aims at improving the bioavailability and therapeutic efficacy of Shilajit by formulating the drug as a phytosome while simultaneously working to conserve natural mineral resources by significantly decreasing the dose required. The research also involves the challenging task of standardising Shilajit which is an unorganised drug of variable consistency . Formulation was optimised, and characterized using parameters such as particle size and zeta potential evaluation as well as HPLC analysis. Diffusion studies as well as an SRB assay carried out indicate better biological activity of the phytosome as compared to the extract thus indicating a significantly improved anticancer activity.