New Plant Species ‘Andrographis theniensis’ Discovered in Tamil Nadu’s Theni District

New Plant Species ‘Andrographis theniensis’ Discovered in Tamil Nadu’s Theni District

A research student from Wanaparthy has recently discovered a new plant species in the Theni district of Tamil Nadu, located in the Western Ghats. The plant has been named ‘Andrographis theniensis’ after the location where it was found.

Discoverer and Background:

The discovery was made by P Bharath Simha Yadav, a PhD scholar from Kalvarala village in Veepangandla mandal. He is currently conducting research on the ‘Plant Reproductive Biology of Endangered Trees in the southern Western Ghats’ at Madura college, Madurai.

Andrographis Genus:

The newly discovered plant belongs to the Andrographis genus, a tropical Asian group native to countries like Bangladesh, India, Myanmar, Nepal, Sri Lanka, and the West Himalaya. While this genus has a widespread presence, a significant number of Andrographis species are found in southern India and Sri Lanka, particularly in the Western and Eastern Ghats.

Traditional Medicinal Uses:

Andrographis has been traditionally used to treat various ailments in both codified and non-codified medicinal systems. Its applications include treating conditions such as cold, cough, fever, jaundice, diarrhea, cardiovascular, and hepatic diseases.

Characteristics of the New Plant:

The newly discovered plant, ‘Andrographis theniensis,’ bears a resemblance to Andrographis megamalayana. However, it can be easily distinguished by certain characteristics, including glabrous leaves and stems, a nine-veined lower lip, pale yellowish sparse hair on the middle lobe of the lower lip, and yellow anther.