Thymoquinone (TQ), the main chemical constituent of Nigella Sativa (NS) plant, has been extensively explored, and revealed an array of therapeutic benefits, in different in vitro, and in vivo conditions. This review provides brief outline of the diverse therapeutics actions of TQ, and NS, viz. anti-oxidant, anti-inflammatory, anti-cancer, anti-diabetic, gastroprotective, hepato-protective, anti-microbial and anti-histaminic. Besides, a special emphasis has given on the use of colloidal drug delivery systems exploited hitherto, for the effective delivery of TQ and NS.

Objective: The main objective of the review was to include an intensive patent literature, available on TQ and NS, for its usefulness in different therapeutic conditions.

Methods: We embarked an organized search of bibliographic databases for peer-reviewed research literature and patent databases. The characteristics of screened papers were described, and a rational qualitative content analysis approach was applied to analyze the interventions and findings of included studies using a theoretical framework.

Results: In the past, various studies have carried out which undoubtedly vouch for the multifarious therapeutic roles of TQ in an array of different diseases. More than 670 research papers and around 50 review articles are available on TQ and NS in PubMed database until now, suggesting its high significance. Around 12 review articles published only on the anticancer potential, while the others on its anti- inflammatory and anti-oxidant potential. Around 120 papers included in the review revealed the therapeutic benefits of TQ. In addition to this, an intensive patent literature is also available on TQ and NS, for its usefulness in different therapeutic conditions.

Conclusion: The findings of this review confirm the effectiveness of TQ in various pathologies viz. inflammation, cancer, diabetes, gastric, hepatic, microbial and allergies. However, the complete clinical benefit of TQ has not yet been realized, owing to its poor biopharmaceutical properties. Nevertheless, colloidal drug delivery carrier systems, could be impending in bringing forth this potential molecule to reality.

Identification of potential sources of thymoquinone and related compounds in Asteraceae, Cupressaceae, Lamiaceae, and Ranunculaceae families. December 2012Central European Journal of Chemistry 10(6)

In this study, forty-seven plant species belonging to seven families were analysed by GC and GC-MS for the contents of pharmacologically effective quinones: dithymoquinone (DTQ), thymohydroquinone (THQ), and thymoquinone (TQ). The results showed that detectable amounts (≥1 mg kg−1) of at least one of these compounds have been found in three species of both Monarda (M. didyma, M. media, and M. menthifolia) and Thymus (T. pulegioides, T. serpyllum, and T. vulgaris) genera, two Satureja (S. hortensis and S. montana) species, and in single representatives of Eupatorium (E. cannabinum), Juniperus (J. communis), and Nigella (N. sativa) genera. The maximum contents of THQ and TQ were found in M. media aerial parts and M. didyma inflorescences (2674 and 3564 mg kg−1 of dried weight, respectively) in amounts significantly exceeding their maximum contents in N. sativa seeds (THQ = 530 mg kg−1 and TQ = 1881 mg kg−1), which are generally considered as the main natural source of both of these compounds. As a conclusion, M. didyma (bergamot) and M. media (purple bergamot) can be recommended as new prospective natural sources of THQ and TQ for pharmaceutical or food industries.