Phytosomes as Novel Drug Delivery System for Herbal Medicine –A Review
Phytomedicines, complex chemical mixtures prepared from plants, have been used for health maintenance since ancient times. But many phytomedicines are limited in their effectiveness because they are poorly absorbed when taken orally. The term “phyto” means plant while “some” means cell-like. Phytosomes are little cell like structure. This is advanced forms of herbal formulations which contains the bioactive phytoconsituents of herb extract surrounds and bound by a lipid. Most of the bioactive constituents of phytomedicines are water-soluble compounds like flavonoids, glycosides; terpenoids in which flavonoids are a major class of bioactive compounds possesses broad therapeutic activities. Because of water soluble herbal extract and lipophilic outer layer phytosomes shows better absorption and as a result produce better bioavailability and actions than the conventional herbal extracts containing dosage form. Phytosomes are produced by a process where by the standardized plant extract or its constituents are bound to phospholipids, mainly phosphatidylcholine producing a lipidcompatible molecular complex. This study reveals that phytosome exhibit better pharmacokinetic and pharmacodynamics profile than conventional herbal extracts.