Determination of the Scientific Name of Zoufa:A Traditional Persian Medicinal Plant

  • Shokouhsadat Hamedi Department of Persian Pharmacy, School of Persian and Complementary Medicine, Mashhad University of Medical Sciences, Mashhad, Iran
Hyssopus officinalis, Iranian Traditional Medicine, Zoufa, Nepeta bracteata, Scientific Name


Zoufa is one of the most consumed herbs in the Iranian traditional medicine (ITM) that has been used to treat many diseases including bronchitis, chronic cough, asthma and colic [1], [2]. The botanical description of these medicinal plants exists in some ITM literatures; however in the herbal market of Iran, two different plants have been sold as Zoufa, one is Hyssopus officinalis and another is Nepeta bracteata. The aim of the present study is to determine the exact scientific name of Zoufa according to its botanical description in ITM literatures. For this purpose, major traditional  Iranian  herbal  literatures  were  searched  to  find  information  about  the  habitat, appearance, and botanical characteristics as well as pharmacological activities and indications of “Zoufa.” The modern botanical  books  were also searched for  the mentioned  items  about  H. officinalis and N. bracteata. The results obtained from TIM literatures were compared with the findings from modern resources. The comparison of botanical description, habitat and pharmacological activity of H. officinalis and N. bracteata with those of Zoufa in ITM showed that Zoufa in ITM is approximately equivalent to H. officinalis; however, the most of samples sold as Zoufa in herbal shops of Iran is N. bracteata.


Tonekaboni SM. Tohfat Al-Momenin. Tehran, Iran: Shahr Publications; 2007. [In Persian].

Aghili Khorasani MH. Makhzan Al-Advieh.Tehran, Iran: Tehran University of Medical Sciences; 2011. [In Persian].

Ibn al-Nafis. Alshamel fi Alsanaye Al-Tabeat. Abu Dhabi, UAE: Caltural foundation Publication; 2000.

Dioscorides P. De Materia Médica. Oxford, UK:Oxford University Press; 2008.

Bironi AM. Al-Seidaneh fi Al-Teb. Tehran, Iran: Academy of Persian Language and Literature; 1979.

Movafagh Heravi M. Al-Abneieh fi Al-Haghayegh Al-Adveieh. Tehran, Iran: Written Heritage Research Center; 1969. [In Persian].

Heber D. PDR for herbal medicine. 4th ed.Montvale, NJ: Thomson healthcare Inc; 2007.

Soltani A. Encyclopedia of traditional medicine.Tehran, Iran: Arjmand Publications; 2005. [In Persian].

Amin GH. Popular medicinal plants of Iran. Tehran, Iran: University of Tehran Press; 2008. [In Persian].

Latif A, Mahmood Z, Siddiqui N, Rauf A.Physiochemical standardization of market sample of Gul-e-Zofa (Nepeta bracteata Benth.). International Journal of Drug Formulation and Research 2013; 4(4): 76-86.

Avicenna. The canon of medicine. Tehran, Iran:Soroosh Publications; 1986. [In Persian].

Zakariya Al-Razi M. Al-Hawi. Tehran, Iran: Academy of Medical Sciences Islamic Republic of Iran; 2005. [In Persian].

Blumenthal M, American Botanical Council.Therapeutic guide to herbal medicines. Austin, TX: American Botanical Council; 1999.

Bhat JU, Parray SA, Aslam M, Ansari S, Nizami Q, Khanam R, et al. Anti-seizure activity of flower extracts of Nepeta Bractaeta in Swiss albino mice. EXCLI Journal 2012; 11: 531-7.

Gruenwald J, Brendler T, Jaenicke C. PDR for Herbal Medicines [Online]. [cited 2004]; Available from: URL:icines.pdf.

Ody P. The complete medicinal herbal. London, UK: Dorling Kindersley, 1993.

Hoshyar R, Mostafavinia S, Zarban A,Hassanpour M, Partovfari M, Taheri A, et al. Correlation of anticancer effects of 12 Iranian herbs on human breast adenocarcinoma cells with antioxidant properties. Free Radicals and Antioxidants 2015; 5(2): 65-73.

Bazzaz BS, Haririzadeh G. Screening of Iranian plants for antimicrobial activity. Pharmaceutical Biology 2003; 41(8): 573-83.

How to Cite
Hamedi S. Determination of the Scientific Name of Zoufa:A Traditional Persian Medicinal Plant. Trad Integr Med. 1(2):79-81.
Short Communication(s)