Paramedical training in Tunisia. The
Avicenna Professional School of Public Health in Tunis
Ben Yedder W.
Tunis Med 1981;:874-5
Patient origins and usage of a Unani clinic in Aligarh Town, India.
Soc Sci Med 1990;:1139-41
Cases exist in India, and elsewhere, of the coexistence of both traditional and modern
allopathic medical systems. A survey of patients, practitioners and staff at a Unani
clinic in Aligarh Town, India, suggests that utilization of Unani medicine is widespread
among people of various ages and socio-economic strata.
Porci habent squinantiam (Ibn Sina)--a contribution to the history of swine therapeutics
in the Middle Ages
DTW Dtsch Tierarztl Wochenschr 1993;:211-8
In the Middle Ages and in the early modern ages the knowledge of the diagnosis and therapy
of porcine diseases mostly based on an ancient body of thought that was adopted in a more
or less mutilated form. This fact is not only reflected in the books of the scholars, but
also in the written records of the public animal medicine. The traditional magic medicine
with its rich drug supply as well as with its prayers, blessings for the animals and
emergency fires as they are called holds an important role among this public animal
medicine. Only in a few cases it is possible to make a historical diagnosis due to the
lack of the description of symptoms. Besides, it is difficult to judge the drugs that were
used for prophylaxis and therapy with regard to the possible effects. On the basis of
Latin, English and German sources from the 9th to 15th century comments are revealed on
the early diagnosis, prevention and treatment of febrile general diseases and parasitic
infestations of pigs. In a review it is tried to discuss the basic problems of
Possible hepatotoxicity of Nigella sativa seeds and Dregea volubilis leaves.
Tennekoon KH, Jeevathayaparan S, Kurukulasooriya AP, Karunanayake EH.
J Ethnopharmacol 1991;:283-9
Aqueous extracts of the seeds of Nigella sativa and mature leaves of Dregea volubilis were
administered orally under light ether anaesthesia to male Sprague-Dawley rats for 14 days.
Key hepatic enzyme concentrations and histopathological changes in the liver in both
treatment groups at the end of 14 days were compared with a control group which received
distilled water under identical conditions for 30 days and with a group of normal animals.
Serum gamma-glutamyl transferase concentrations were significantly increased in both
extract groups while serum alkaline phosphatase concentrations were significantly
increased following administration of only D. volubilis when compared with either the
control or the normal group. Serum alanine aminotransferase concentrations were
significantly increased in both extract groups when compared with the normal group but not
with the control group. Degenerative changes in hepatocytes were seen following
administration of D. volubilis while consistent significant histopathological changes were
not evident following administration of N. sativa.
Post-coital contraceptive efficacy of the seeds of Nigella sativa in rats.
Keshri G, Singh MM, Lakshmi V, Kamboj VP.
Indian J Physiol Pharmacol 1995;:59-62
Hexane extract of the seeds of Nigella sativa L. prevented pregnancy in Sprague-Dawley
rats treated orally at 2 g/ kg daily dose on days 1-10 post-coitum. Significant
anti-fertility activity was also observed in its column fractions and subfractions. At
contraceptive dose, the active hexane extract exhibited only mild uterotropic activity
comparable almost to 0.002 mg/kg dose of 17 varies; is directly proportional
to-Ethynylestradiol, but was devoid of any estrogenicity in the immature rat bioassay.
Problems of public health in the "Canon" of Ibn-Sina ( on the millennium of his
Gig Sanit 1980;:22-5
Problems of traumatology in the works of Ibn-Sina (Avicenna)
Ortop Travmatol Protez 1979;:68-70
Problems of urology in the works of Abu Ali Ibn-Sina
Mukhtarov AM, Bolgarskii IS.
Urol Nefrol (Mosk) 1980;:52-5
Protective effect of cysteine and vitamin E, Crocus sativus and Nigella sativa extracts on
cisplatin-induced toxicity in rats.
el Daly ES.
J Pharm Belg 1998;:87-93
Cisplatin [cis-dichlorodiammineplatinum (II)] is a widely used chemotherapeutic drug that
is toxic to the kidney. Concurrent administration of cysteine together with vitamin E,
Crocus sativus and Nigella sativa reduced the toxicity of cisplatin in rats. When
administered i.p. for 5 alternate days with 3 mg/kg cisplatin, cysteine (20 mg/kg)
together with vitamin E (2 mg/rat) an extract of Crocus sativus stigmas (50 mg/kg) and
Nigella sativa seed (50 mg/kg) significantly reduced blood urea nitrogen (BUN) and serum
creatinine levels as well as cisplatin-induced serum total lipids increases. In contrast,
the protective agents given together with cisplatin led to an even greater decrease in
blood glucose than that seen with cisplatin alone. The serum activities of alkaline
phosphatase, lactate dehydrogenase, malate dehydrogenase, aspartate aminotransferase and
alanine aminotransferase of cisplatin-treated rats were significantly decreased, whereas
the activities of glutathione reductase and isocitrate dehydrogenase were significantly
increased. Addition of cysteine and vitamin E, Crocus sativus and Nigella sativa in
combination with cisplatin partially prevented many changes in the activities of serum
enzymes. In cisplatin-treated rats, the liver activities of isocitrate dehydrogenase and
aspartate aminotransferase were significantly increased, whereas much greater changes were
found in the kidneys, with increased activity of glucose-6-phosphate dehydrogenase and
decreased activities of alkaline phosphatase, isocitrate dehydrogenase, malate
dehydrogenase, aspartate aminotransferase, alanine aminotransferase, sorbitol
dehydrogenase and gamma-glutamyl transferase, as well as a decreased phosphorylation to
oxidation ratio in the mitochondria, indicating reduced adenosine triphosphate production.
Also, administration of cysteine and vitamin E, Crocus sativus and Nigella sativa together
with cisplatin partially reversed many of the kidney enzymes changes induced by cisplatin.
Cysteine together with vitamin E, Crocus sativus and Nigella sativa tended to protect from
cisplatin-induced falls in leucocyte counts, haemoglobin levels and mean osmotic fragility
of erythrocytes and also prevented the increase in hematocrit. The results of this study
indicate a basis for the toxic effects of cisplatin, and suggest a possible way of
counteracting the toxicity by introducing protective agents such sulfhydryl compounds,
other antioxidants and extracts of natural products. It also appears that cells adapt to
the effects of cisplatin through the induction of systems that produce NADPH, which in
turn compensates the decrease of free sulfhydryl groups. We conclude that cysteine and
vitamin E, Crocus sativus and Nigella Sativa may be a promising compound for reducing
cisplatin-toxic side effects including nephrotoxicity.
Razi's report about seasonal allergic rhinitis (hay fever) from the 10th century AD.
Bungy GA, Mossawi J, Nojoumi SA, Brostoff J.
Int Arch Allergy Immunol 1996;:219-24
Seasonal allergic rhinitis (hay fever) is considered a disease of the postindustrial
revolution era. Clinical reports of patients are readily available from the 19th century
starting with John Bostock's description of his own summer symptoms. Also patients with
"rose catarrh' are described in the 16th and 17th century. Although asthma is well
described by Maimonides, clear descriptions of diagnosis, prevention and treatment of hay
fever are rare in the first millennium. This report by Razi (prior to 925 AD) is perhaps
the earliest such report yet. It is contained in a compendium written by Ibn Sharabeyun
ben Ibrahim in the 13th or 14th century AD. The volume also contains work by Avicenna (Abu
Ali-Sina; a friend of Razi) and other contemporary writers. Some of the treatments
suggested in this early report may not be so acceptable to modern sufferers.
Rhazes and Avicenna
Ann Intern Med 1989;:691-2
Rhizosphere fungi of five plants in Egypt.
El-Hissy FT, Abdel-Hafez SI, Abdel-Kader MI.
Z Allg Mikrobiol 1980; 20(3;:177-84
75 species which belong to 25 genera were collected during this investigation. All of
these fungi were previously isolated from Egyptian soils and other sources. The total
count and the number of genera and species in the rhizosphere soil of the 5 plants were
regularly higher than in non- rhizosphere soil. The composition of the rhizosphere fungus
flora was considerably influenced by the type and the age of the plant. The most prevalent
fungi in the rhizosphere of the test plants after 45, 90, and 150 days were as follows: in
Helianthus annuus, Stachybotrys atra and Aspergillus niger; in Chrysanthemum coronarium,
Cladosporium herbarum, A. sydowii and Penicillium funiculosum; in Nigella sativa, Fusarium
moniliforme and A. sydowii; in Datura innoxia, A. fumigatus and A. terreus; in Hyoscyamus
muticus, C. herbarum and A. sydowii; and in soil, P. funiculosum, A. terreus and A. niger.
The counts of total fungi and most of the common fungal species, except in the case of
Datura innoxia, reached their maxima after 90 days and sharply declined after 150 days.
Role of Avicenna in the development of otolaryngology
Iskhaki IuB, Kal'shtein LI.
Vestn Otorinolaringol 1980;:81-5
Search for anti-cancer drugs from Indian medicinal plants (Ayurvedic, Unani, etc.).
Pal S, Chakraborti SK, Banerjee A, Mukerji B.
Indian J Med Res 1968;:445-55
Significance of the creativity of Abu Ali Ibn Sina for modern dermatology
Klin Med (Mosk) 1985;:140-3
Standardization of Jawarish Jalinoos (an Unani medicine).
Planta Med 1971 Jul; 20(1;:60-6
Sterols in the seed oil of Nigella sativa.
Planta Med 1973;:375-7
Stomatologic subjects in the "Canon of Medical Science" of Avicenna
Stomatologiia (Mosk) 1980;:69-70
Studies on the activity of individual plants of an antidiabetic plant mixture.
Al-Awadi FM, Gumaa KA.
Acta Diabetol Lat 1987;:37-41
A blood glucose lowering extract of a mixture of five plants in use by Kuwaiti diabetics
was studied for the identification of its active component(s). Only the extracts of myrrh
and aloe gums effectively increased glucose tolerance in both normal and diabetic rats.
The remaining components, gum olibanum, Nigella sativa seeds and gum assafoetida were
Studies on the antimicrobial activity of Nigella sativa seed (black cumin).
Hanafy MS, Hatem ME.
J Ethnopharmacol 1991;:275-8
Filter paper discs impregnated with the diethyl ether extract of Nigella sativa seeds
(25-400 micrograms extract/disc) caused concentration-dependent inhibition of
Gram-positive bacteria represented by Staphylococcus aureus. Gram-negative bacteria
represented by Pseudomonas aeruginosa and Escherichia coli (but not Salmonella
typhimurium) and a pathogenic yeast Candida albicans. The extract showed antibacterial
synergism with streptomycin and gentamicin and showed additive antibacterial action with
spectinomycin, erythromycin, tobramycin, doxycycline, chloramphenicol, nalidixic acid,
ampicillin, lincomycin and sulfamethoxazole-trimethoprim combination. The extract
successfully eradicated a non- fatal subcutaneous staphylococcal infection in mice when
injected at the site of infection.
Teachers of Abu Ali Ibn-Sina
Klin Med (Mosk) 1978;:142-5
Teachings of "calor innatus" in the Latin Canon medicinae of Avicenna
Sudhoffs Arch Z Wissenschaftsgesch 1993;:33-53
This contribution examines the natural philosophy behind Avicenna's treatment of the basic
physiological concepts of "innate heat", "innate spirit" and
"natural moisture" in his famous "Canon medicinae" and in the short
tractate "De medicinis cordialibus" usually appended to it in its Latin
editions. Contrary to current belief, these concepts, far from being concisely
systematized, fulfill a range of differing explicatory functions within the
"Canon", which can only with great difficulty be assembled to form a
homogeneous, non-contradictory theory. Furthermore, Avicenna differs in essential points
from orthodox aristotelian-galenist teaching, particularly regarding the celestial origin
of the unrenewable, life-preserving faculties of the "innate heat". It is
suggested that the "Canon's" unparalleled popularity may have been due not so
much to its systematic form, but to the need of scholarly (re)interpretation, as witnessed
by many contemporary commentaries, which offered ample opportunity to academic physicians
to show their learning and wit.
The anti-stress activity of a gem-containing Unani formulation against diverse stressors.
Ahmad G, Amin KM, Khan NA, Tajuddin.
J Ethnopharmacol 1998;:187-93
Drugs of mineral origin, especially gems, are extensively used in Tibb-e-Unani (Unani
Medicine), both as single drugs and as compound formulations. But such drugs have not yet
been adequately studied scientifically. Jawahir Mohra ( JM) is one such, as yet unstudied,
anti-stress Unani preparation, containing a few herbal and animal ingredients also.
Therefore in the present study, a modified JM preparation was investigated for its
anti-stress activity against physical, chemical and metabolic stimuli. The non-gem
complement (NGC) of JM was also studied for action against physical stress. In albino rats
stressed by swimming and subsequently tested for motor function by Rota rod (muscle
coordination), activity wheel (forced motor activity) and photoactometer (spontaneous
motor activity), JM treatment for 7 days produced a striking and significant increase in
activity. The NGC also increased the activity significantly which was however less than
JM. JM also produced a striking increase in cold swimming endurance and in the latency of
post-anoxia convulsions, while pentylenetetrazol (PTZ)-induced defecation and urination in
an open field arena under continuous stimulation by intense light and sound was
significantly decreased. Therefore, the present investigation indicates that the
gem-containing Unani compound JM has significant anti-stress activity of a non-specific
type against diverse stressors. This could be due to adipogenic activity of the
preparation. The study also shows that the gems in JM contribute significantly to its
The Arabic triad (Hunain ibn Ishak, Rhazes, Avicenna)
Orv Hetil 1981;:1595-600
The art of therapy in Islamic medicine
Med Arh 1997;:5-8
History is a witness of the great importance and influence of Islamic science from the
period of "Golden Age of Arabic Civilisation". A famous scientist said:
"Sciences has no country, it is international; we all share in fruits of
investigations of people from different traditions and all ages." Scientists from the
early period of Islamic era had set fire of a stream of man's thought and progress,
observation, experiments and tradition, that have become a weapon of modern science. All
of that was based upon Quran and Hadiths, that have been their guidelines when setting
free human mind from taboos. Medieval Arabian scientists have followed the words of Holly
Prophet Mohammad s.a.v. s., saying that searching for knowledge have had to be the most
important task for people, and that ink more saint than blood of the saints. These
attitudes of Holly Prophet have awaken desire for studying with Muslim scientists. The
result of that desire became a key of scientific progress. There are many worldwide famous
Arabian scientists: El- Kindi, Er-Razi, Ibn Sina, El-Biruni, Ibu Hajsem, Ez-Zahravi,
El-Farabi, Ibn Zuhr, Ibn Ruzd etc. These names, among several hundreds of Arabian
physicians, attribute "Golden Age" of Islamic science. That period was
characterised by movements, reprocessing of ideas. That reprocessing of ideas has gained
the great minds together, and that process is continuous. That is why we have to be
grateful to them. Famous Muslim physicians defined medicine as skill that dealt in keeping
good health, coped with ills and health recovering. They have also modified many Greek
writings and established basic principles of the art of medicine. What is significant is
that, regardless of historical past and modern technical and technological presence, these
principles are still accurate for understanding of medical science. These principles are
what the author is discussing in detail in this paper about.
The cardiovascular actions of the volatile oil of the black seed (Nigella sativa) in rats:
elucidation of the mechanism of action.
el Tahir KE, Ashour MM, al-Harbi MM.
Gen Pharmacol 1993;:1123-31
1. The effects of the volatile oil (V.O.) of the black seed (Nigella sativa) on the
arterial blood pressure and heart of urethane-anaesthetized rats were investigated and the
effects were compared with those of its constituent thymoquinone (T.Q.). 2. Intravenous
administration of V. O. in the dose range (4-32 microliters kg.-1) or T.Q. ( 0.2-1.6 mg
kg-1) to rats decreased the arterial blood pressure and the heart rate in a dose-dependent
manner. 3. The effects of V.O. were significantly antagonized by treatment of the animals
with cyproheptadine, hexamethonium atropine and by spinal pithing. 4. Treatment of the
animals with reserpine (5 mg kg- 1 day-1 for 2 days) significantly antagonized the
cardiovascular depressant effects induced by 4 and 8 microliters of V.O. kg-1 but not
those induced by the larger doses. 5. T.Q.-induced cardiovascular depressant effects were
significantly antagonized by atropine and cyproheptadine but not by reserpine. 6. The
results suggested that V.O.-induced cardiovascular depressant effects were mediated mainly
centrally via indirect and direct mechanisms that involved both 5-hydroxytryptaminergic
and muscarinic mechanisms. The direct mechanisms may be due to the presence of T.Q. in the
V.O. The V.O. seemed to possess the potential of being a potent centrally acting
The effect of a plants mixture extract on liver gluconeogenesis in streptozotocin induced
al-Awadi F, Fatania H, Shamte U.
Diabetes Res 1991 Dec; 18(4;:163-8
We have previously reported on plant mixture extract comprising of Nigella sativa, Myrrh,
Gum Olibanum, Gum Asafoetida and Aloe to have a blood glucose lowering effect. The present
study with streptozotocin diabetic rats is focussed on the mechanism of action,
specifically on a) hepatic gluconeogenesis b) activity of key gluconeogenic enzymes,
pyruvate carboxylase (PC) and phosphoenol-pyruvate carboxykinase (PEPCK). Similar studies
using a biguanide, phenformin, have been conducted to compare the mode of action of these
two compounds. The blood glucose levels (mean +/- SEM) before and after treatment with the
plants extract were (16.7 +/- 1.7 mmol/L and 8. 5 +/- 1.3 mmol/L) and with phenformin
(15.1 +/- 1.3 mmol/ L and 10.7 +/- 1.5 mmol/L). The rate of gluconeogenesis in isolated
hepatocytes as well as activity of PC and PEPCK in liver homogenates is significantly
lowered following treatment with the plants extract. Although phenformin also lowers blood
glucose, it does not affect hepatic gluconeogenesis under stated experimental conditions.
It is concluded that the anti-diabetic action of the plants extract may, at least partly,
be mediated through decreased hepatic gluconeogenesis. The extract may prove to be a
useful therapeutic agent in the treatment of non-insulin dependent diabetes mellitus
The father of medicine, Avicenna, in our science and culture. Abu Ali ibn Sina (980-1037)
Cas Lek Cesk 1980;:17-23
The forging of the Renaissance physician: a philosophic and historic perspective. Part II:
The philosophic basis for pre-Renaissance medical knowledge.
Faria MA Jr.
J Med Assoc Ga 1992;:124-6
The great Abu Ali Ibn-Sina (Avicenna) and the lie detector
Sud Med Ekspert 1990;:5l-2
The history of sports medicine. Part I.
Am J Sports Med 1984;:252-4
It is clear that sports medicine is a very old and honorable medical specialty from the
early Hindu and Chinese writings through the age of Hippocrates and Galen. From the
contributions of Avicenna and Paré to Hitchcock and physicians of our own time, the
specialist in sports medicine has played an important role in the development of medical
techniques to promote health and fitness and to ensure the safety and well-being of
everyone who participates in athletic competition.
The in vitro anti-tumor activity of some crude and purified components of blackseed,
Nigella sativa L.
Worthen DR, Ghosheh OA, Crooks PA.
Anticancer Res 1998 May-Jun; 18(3;:1527-32
A crude gum, a fixed oil and two purified components of Nigella sativa seed, thymoquinone
(TQ) and dithymoquinone (DIM), were assayed in vitro for their cytotoxicity for several
parental and multi-drug resistant (MDR) human tumor cell lines. Although as much as 1% w/v
of the gum or oil was devoid of cytotoxicity, both TQ and DIM were cytotoxic for all of
the tested cell lines (IC50's 78 to 393 microM) . Both the parental cell lines and their
corresponding MDR variants, over 10-fold more resistant to the standard antineoplastic
agents doxorubicin (DOX) and etoposide ( ETP), as compared to their respective parental
controls, were equally sensitive to TQ and DIM. The inclusion of the competitive MDR
modulator quinine in the assay reversed MDR Dx-5 cell resistance to DOX and ETP by 6- to
16-fold, but had no effect on the cytotoxicity of TQ or DIM. Quinine also increased MDR
Dx-5 cell accumulation of the P-glycoprotein substrate 3H-taxol in a dose-dependent
manner. However, neither TQ nor DIM significantly altered cellular accumulation of
3H-taxol. The inclusion of 0.5% v/v of the radical scavenger DMSO in the assay reduced the
cytotoxicity of DOX by as much as 39%, but did not affect that of TQ or DIM. These studies
suggest that TQ and DIM, which are cytotoxic for several types of human tumor cells, may
not be MDR substrates, and that radical generation may not be critical to their cytotoxic
The medical legacy of Ibn-Sina
Sov Zdravookhr 1980;:53-6
The place of acupuncture in the management of psychogenic impotence.
Yaman LS, Kiliç S, Sarica K, Bayar M, Saygin B.
Eur Urol 1994;:52-5
Successful sexual functioning is a complex process involving psychological and social
responses as well as neurological, biochemical and vascular processes. Today it is
believed that more than 50% of the sexual dysfunction cases have an organic etiology.
Reflecting the controversy over the management of psychogenic impotence, there are several
different methods which are currently in clinical use. In this prospective study we aimed
to evaluate the curative effects of acupuncture therapy in men with purely psychogenic
impotence. Of the 29 patients treated with this procedure 20 patients demonstrated
successful erections following a varying number of acupuncture sessions. In the light of
our findings we may conclude that acupuncture may be an effective alternative in the
management of purely psychogenic impotence.
The portrait of Ibn Sina (Avicenna)
Med Welt 1983;:682-4
The professionalization of ayurvedic and Unani medicine.
Trans N Y Acad Sci 1968;:559-72