Jatropha glandulifera Roxb. 345
Action Root—bitter tonic without astringency, carminative, gastric
tonic, antiflatulent, hyptotensive, orexigenic, uterine stimulant, sedative. Used in anorexia, poor digestion, hypochlorhydria, amoebic dysentery and menstrual disorders. Antifungal.
Key application As appetite stimulant. (The British Herbal Pharmacopoeia.)
The root gave isoquinoline alkaloids 2—3%; palmatine, jaterorrhizine and its dimer bis-j ateorrhizine, columbamine; bitters (including chasmanthin and palmanin). Volatile oil contains thymol.
The alkaloid jateorrhizine is sedative, hypotensive. Palmatine is a uterine stimulant.
As calumba contains very little volatile oil and no tannins, it is free from astringency which is common with other bitter herbs.
The root alkaloids exhibit narcotic properties and side effects similar to morphine. It is no longer used (in Western herbal) as a digestive aid, and is rarely used as an antidiarrhoeal agent. (Natural Medicines Comprehensive Database, 2007.)
Jatropha curcas Linn.
Habitat Native to tropical
America. Now cultivated along with Cromandel Coast and in Travancore.
English Physic Nut, Purging Nut.
Ayurvedic Vyaaghrairanda (var.), Sthula-eranda, Kaanan-eranda.
Siddha/Tamil Kattu Amanaku. Folk Bagharenda (var.). Action Seed—highly toxic. Nut— purgative. Plant—used for scabies, ringworm, eczema, whitlow, warts, syphilis. Stem bark—applied to wounds of animal bites; root bark to sores.
The protein of the seed contains the toxic albumin curcin (protein 18.0%, curcin 0.005%).
Seed and seed oil—more drastic purgative than castor seed oil and milder than Croton tiglium oil.
An aqueous (10%) infusion of leaves increased cardiac contraction is small doses. EtOH (50%) extract of aerial parts—diuretic and CNS depressant.
The seed contain phorbol derivatives. The plant also contains curcosones and lathyrane diterpenes.
iatropha glandulifera Roxb.
Habitat South India and Bengal.