Frankincense (Olibanum / Boswellia)

Frankincense Oil is extracted from the gum or resin from Frankincense or Olibanum trees, whose scientific name is Boswellia Carteri.

Boswellia are moderate-sized flowering plants, including both trees and shrubs, and are native to tropical regions of Africa and Asia. The distributions of the species are primarily associated with the tropics.[4] The greatest diversity of species presently is in Africa and India.[4]

Punjab - Region of Availability

The plants are dioecious.[5] The flowers may have 4-5 faintly connate but imbricate sepals with an equal number of distinct, imbricate petals.[5] Also, the stamens, that may contain nectar discs, have distinct glabrous filaments that come in 1-2 whorls and in numbers equaling or twice the number of petals; the tricolporate pollen is contained within 2 locules of the anthers that open longitudinally along slits.[5] The gynoecium contains 3-5 connate carpels, one style, and one stigma that is head-like to lobed.[5] Each locule of the superior ovary has 2 ovules with axile placentation that are anatropous to campylotropous.[5] The 1-5 pitted fruit is a drupe that opens at maturity.[5] The endosperm is usually lacking in the embryo.[5]

Scientifically known as Boswellia serrata, this is not only the name of the herb but also of the large tree native to India and parts of Pakistan. This tree is most famous for producing Indian frankincense,the common name of the herb, which may also be known as salai or shallaki. The entire Boswellia genus is referred to as frankincense, but this particular species has been praised for the resin it produces. When this gum resin is removed from the tree, it is often burned for aromatic purposes or used in medical applications. Boswellia serrata is legendary in Ayurvedic medicine, as it is associated with powerful benefits. For more formal applications, the resin of the tree is allowed to harden and is then processed into various supplements, beverages, cosmetics, and soaps, all of which have the efficiency to deliver notable benefits for regular users. This herbal concoction can be found in natural health stores and from trained herbalists. Boswellia serrata is a rich source of boswellic acid, as well as various types of terpenes, which have a range of effects on the body: anti-inflammatory properties and a wide variety of other health benefits.

Ref. 1.Takada.,Ichikawa,H.,Badmaev,V.,& Aggarwal,B.B.(2006).Acetyl-11-keto-Boswelic acid potentiates apoptosis, inhibits invasion, and abolishes Osteoclastogenesis by suppressing NF-B & NF-B regulated Gene Expression. The Journal of Immunology,176(5),3127-3140. 2.Suhail,M.M.,Wu,W.,Cao, A.,Mondalek,F.G.,Fung,k.,Shih,P.,...Lin,H.(2011). Boswellia Sacra essential oils induces tumor cell-specific apoptosis & suppresses tumor aggressiveness in cultured human breast cancer cells. BMC Complementary and Alternative Medicine II.

Sengupta K,Alluri KV,Satish AR,MishraS, Goakoti T,Sarma KV, et al.A double blind, randomized, placebo-controlled study of the efficacy and safety of 5-Loxin(R) for treatment of osteoarthritis of the knee. Arthritis res There 2008;10:R85.
4.Gerhardt H, Seifert F, Buvari P, Vogelsang H, Reges R. Therapy of active Crohn disease with Boswellia serrata extract H15.[German] Z Gastroenterol 2001;39:11-7.
5. Madish A, Miehlke S,Eichele O, Mrwa J,Bethke B, Kuhlisch E,et al. Boswellia serrata extract for the treatment of collagenous colitis. A double-blind, randomized, placebo-controlled, multi center trial. Int J Colorectal Dis 2007; 22: 1445-51.