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Concept: Charaka Samhita

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The practice of Ayurveda, the traditional medicine of India, is based on the concept of three major constitutional types (Vata, Pitta and Kapha) defined as “Prakriti”. To the best of our knowledge, no study has convincingly correlated genomic variations with the classification of Prakriti. In the present study, we performed genome-wide SNP (single nucleotide polymorphism) analysis (Affymetrix, 6.0) of 262 well-classified male individuals (after screening 3416 subjects) belonging to three Prakritis. We found 52 SNPs (p ≤ 1 × 10(-5)) were significantly different between Prakritis, without any confounding effect of stratification, after 10(6) permutations. Principal component analysis (PCA) of these SNPs classified 262 individuals into their respective groups (Vata, Pitta and Kapha) irrespective of their ancestry, which represent its power in categorization. We further validated our finding with 297 Indian population samples with known ancestry. Subsequently, we found that PGM1 correlates with phenotype of Pitta as described in the ancient text of Caraka Samhita, suggesting that the phenotypic classification of India’s traditional medicine has a genetic basis; and its Prakriti-based practice in vogue for many centuries resonates with personalized medicine.

Concepts: Genetics, Bioinformatics, Ayurveda, SNP array, Alternative medicine, Traditional medicine, Sanskrit words and phrases, Charaka Samhita

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Inclusion of Prameha among the eight major disorders in Charaka Samhita shows the significance of the disease given by ancient seers. The risk of development of blindness in diabetics increases by 20-25 times as compared to the normal population. High prevalence rate of Diabetic Retinopathy (34.6%), proliferative diabetic retinopathy (7%), diabetic macular edema (6.8%), and Vision threatening Diabetic retinopathy (10.2%) in diabetics was great concerns which led to search and analyze the disease process on the basis of modern pathogenesis and different Timirvyadhi mentioned in Ayurvedic authoritative texts. Thus the present study endeavors to discuss the similarities and differences among the various components of Prameha/Madhumehajanya Timir with Diabetic retinopathy and its stages. To establish a probable etiopathogenesis of the disease from Ayurveda prospective, all the important literature of both modern medicine and Ayurveda along with online sources were searched and analyzed. All the three dosha along with Raktadosha and Saptadhatu with four internal Dristipatals of eye are affected in Madhumehajanyatimir in different stages of the disease. Avarana and Dhatukshaya too have important role in development of diabetic retinopathy due to prolonged and uncontrolled hyperglycemia. Agnimandya related Ama formation has a role in pathology of diabetic retinopathy which is quite similar to oxidative theory of diabetic retinopathy explained in modern pathology. Urdhwagaraktapitta, Ojaskshaya, Raktavrittavata, and Pranavrittavyana are other causes in development of diabetic retinopathy.

Concepts: Medicine, Disease, Diabetes mellitus, Ayurveda, Ophthalmology, Diabetic retinopathy, Hyperglycemia, Charaka Samhita

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Over the past few decades, there have been significant scientific advances leading to improved understanding of asthma as a disease and treatment providing immediate relief. However, prevention of recurrent attacks, exacerbations and disease cure remains a challenge. Ayurveda refers to bronchial asthma as Tamaka Swasa and it is well explained in Charaka Samhita. Management of asthma in Ayurveda includes removal of vitiated Kapha through Shodhana, Shamana procedures, herbal and herbomineral formulations in addition to advising a healthy lifestyle and diet. Several clinical trials on Ayurvedic formulations for treatment of asthma are reported, however, whole system management of asthma has rarely been studied in the manner in which it is actually being practiced. The aim of this study was to explore biology of holistic Ayurveda management of Asthma.

Concepts: Medicine, Epidemiology, Clinical trial, Asthma, Ayurveda, Sanskrit words and phrases, Charaka Samhita, Charaka