Selasih/Basil (Ocimum basillicum)

Selasih/Basil (Ocimum basilicum forma violaceum)

1. Name of Plant

In Indonesia generally recognized with name selasih, except in Sulawesi recognized with amping (Wijayakusuma et al., 1996)

2. Classification of plant
Kingdom : Plantae
Division : Spermatophyta
Sub division : Angiospermae
Class : Dicotyledonae
Order : Amaranthaceae
Family : Lamiaciae (Labiatae)
Genus : Ocimum
Species : Ocimum basilicum forma violaceum Back  (Backer & van den Brink, 1965)

3. Morphology of plant

The upright herb, very fragrant, height 0,6-1,6 m. Brown stalk, rectangle. Single leaves faced, stalked, length 0,5-2 cm, ovoid, tapering tip and base, leave surface rather smooth and gland nodules, bone pinnate leaves, serrated edge, its length 3,5-7,5 cm, width 1,5-2,5 cm, dark green. The flower colored white or purple, outer side of petal haired, obovate with smaller edge around the tube. Hard seed, dark browna, if entered in the water will expand  (Backer & van den Brink, 1965; Wijayakusuma et al., 1996).

4. Habitat and spread
Can found in the moist and shady in lowland until height 450 m. Spread around the island in Indonesia (especially Sumbawa), even in Asia, Europe, and South Africa (Backer & van den Brink, 1965; Wijayakusuma et al., 1996).

5. Chemical Ingredients and benefit
Leaves contain kafeat acid, kumarat p-acid, Myresin, Rutin, quercetin. All herbs contain oil evaporate that consist from 1,8-Sineol, p-Cymene, Limonen, Linalool, Metilkaviol, Metil sinamat, Pinen,  Safrol, alfa-Terpinen (Anonim, 2005)

Benefit and Efficacy
Based on research result, oil evaporate activity as anti-bacteria that has been test with S. aureus, S. enteritidis dan E. coli and its atifungal activity effective against C. albicans, P. notatum, dan Microsporeum gyseum. Kamfor, d-limonen, myresen, and timol has activity as antireppelant, with ability to kill insect until 90% in concentration 113-283 ppm. Basil also has been used as anti expectorant (Anonim, 2005).

6. Anticancer Research

In O. basillicum f v leaves, that has been used as anticancer traditional medicine ethnic Samawa, contain many types of natural product compound so that there aresome possibility compound that responsible as anticancer agent. Including phenolic group compound (kafeat acid, kumarat p-acid) that indeed in O. basillicum there in big value.

Phenolic generally include an antiproliferative agent, that will increase the number of non apoptosis cells in synthesis phase in cell cycle and decrease the number of non apoptosis cells in phase G2/M. Has been known that kafeat acid will cause increasing of FasL, that include in death receptor (Fas). There is complex between FasL with Fas will stimulate signaling that inducting cells death. Phenolic also has been proven can decrease protein anti-apoptotic Bcl2, so that apoptosis not working. Increasing in expression Bcl2 that is followed by increasing in Bax, that in produced because cancer cells occur mutation in protein p53, will stimulate dimer between both of them so that stimulate apoptosis through Fas (Huang et al., 1999).

Research result against extract O. sanctum water, that in one genus and the composition relative same with O. basillicum, its flavonoid known has activity as chemopreventive agent with protect lymphocytes from cancer induction (Devi et al., 2004).

The other compound that also has big abundance are essential oil (terpenoid), that have a role in inhibiting tumor, with increasing performance of Human Natural Killer in the system immune (immunostimulant), so that can lysis tumor cells. This compound also can increase macrophages that have a role as phagocyte of broken cells. Furthermore terpen compound increasing number of leukocyte cells above normal, who was instrumental in the immune system (Mills and Bone, 2000).



Anonim, 2005, Treating Livestock with Medicinal Plants: Beneficial or Toxic?  Ocimum basilicum, O. americanum, and O. micranthum, diambil dari, diakses pada Desember 2005.

Backer, C.A., and Van Den Brink, R.C.B., 1965, Flora of Java (Spermatophytes Only), Vol II., N.V.D. Noordhoff-Groningen-The Netherlands.

Devi, Uma P., Nayak, V., and Kamath, R., 2004, Lack of solid tumour protection by Ocimum extract and its flavonoids orientin and vicenin, Current Science, 86 (10): 1401-1404. [Abstract]

Huang, C., Kohno, N., Inufosa, H., Kodama, K., Taki, T., and Miyaki, M., 1999, Over Expression of Bax Associated with Mutations in The Loop-Sheet-Helix Motif of p53, American Journal of Pathology, 155 (3): 955-965.

Mills, S., and Bone, K., 2000, Principles and Practice of Phytotherapy, Toronto, 385-437.

Wijayakusuma, H., Wirian, S.A., Yaputra, T., Dalimartha S., and Wibowo, B., 1996, Tanaman Berkhasiat Obat di Indonesia, Jilid IV, Pustaka Kartini, Jakarta.


A. Fauzi Romadhon, Sarmoko