Gali-Muhtasib HU, El-Najjar, N. and Schneider-Stock R. 2006. "The Medicinal Potential of Black seed (Nigella sativa) and its Components." In: New Trends in Research Strategies on Lead Molecules from Natural Products, M.T. Khan (Ed). pp. 133-153, Elsevier Publishers.
The seeds of Nigella sativa L., commonly known as black seed, have been used in traditional medicine by many Asian, Middle Eastern and Far Eastern Countries to treat headache, coughs, abdominal pain, diarrhea, asthma, rheumatism and other diseases. The seeds of this plant are the most extensively studied, both phytochemically and pharmacologically. The aqueous and oil extracts of the seeds have been shown to possess antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, anticancer, analgesic and antimicrobial activities. Thymoquinone, the most abundant constituent of black seed essential oil has been shown to the be active principle responsible for many of the seed’s beneficial effects. This review paper describes the seed, its chemical components and popular uses in traditional medicine. The paper also discussed the medicinal potential and therapeutic values of some of the individual components present in the extracts of the seeds.