Family • Asteraceae - Mikania cordata (Burm.f.) B.L. Rob. - HEARTLEAF HEMPVINE - Mi gan cao

Scientific names

Mikania cordata (Burm.f.) B.L. Rob.
Mikania sagitata Blanco
Mikania scandens (Linn.) Willd.
Eupatorium cordatum Burm.
Eupatorium scandens Linn.
Eupatorium volubile Vahl
Jia ze lan (Chin.)

Common names

Bikas (Tag.)
Detitid (Ig.)
Tamburakan (Tagb.)
Uoko (Bon.)
Bikas (Tag.)
Climbing hemp weed (Engl.)
Heartleaf hempvine (Engl.)
Mile-a-minute (Engl.)
Mi gan cao (Chin.)

Other vernacular names

FRENCH: Liane marzoge, Liane Pauline, Liane raisin
INDONESIA: Brojo lego (Javanese), blukar (Sumatra), hila hitu lama (Ambon).
KWARA’AE: Kwalo ngingilo.
MALAYSIA: Akar lupang, ceroma, selaput tunggul.
SAMOAN : Fue saina, Fue sega.
THAILAND : Khikaiyan


Bikas is a smooth vine. Leaves are long-petioled, deltoid-ovoid or ovate heart-shaped, 4 to 10 centimeters long, with pointed tip, rounded, heart-shaped, or truncate base, and toothed margins. Heads are 4-flowered, cylindric, 6 to 9 millimeters long, borne in compound inflorescences. Achenes are smooth, glandular, linear-oblong, and 2.5 to 3 millimeters long. Pappus is composed of one series, whitish or salmon colored.

– In thickets at low and medium altitudes, ascending to 1,600 meters, in most islands and provinces, from northern Luzon to Palawan and Mindanao.
– Probably a native of tropical America.
– Now pantropic in distribution.

– Yields stigmasterol, beta-sitosterol, sesquiterpene dilactones, mikanolide, dihydromikanolide, scandenolide.
– Phytochemical screening yielded flavonoids, steroids, alklaloid, tannin, gum and saponin.

Additional Sources and Suggested Readings


(1) Pharmacological studies of the antiinflammatory profile of Mikania cordata (Burm) B. L. robinson root extract in rodents / S Bhattacharya, S Pai et al / Phytotherapy Research, Vol 6, Issue 5, pages 255–260, September/October 1992 / DOI: 10.1002/ptr.2650060507

(2) The anti-ulcerogenic effect of an alkaloidal fraction from Mikania cordata on diclofenac sodium-induced gastrointestinal lesions in rats / ASHIK MOSADDIK M, FAISAL ALAM K. M. / Journal of pharmacy and pharmacology, 2000, vol. 52, no9, pp. 1157-1162

(3) Mikania cordata / common name details from PIER

(4) Mikania cordata (Burm.f.) B.L. Robinson / Vernacular names / GLOBinMED

(5) Pharmacological studies of the antiinflammatory profile of Mikania cordata (Burm) B. L. robinson root extract in rodents / S. Bhattacharya, S. Pal and A. K. Nag Chaudhuri* / Phytotherapy Research, Volume 6, Issue 5, pages 255–260, September / October 1992 / DOI: 10.1002/ptr.2650060507

(6) Study of chemical constituents of essential oil from flowers of Mikania micrantha H.B.K / Shao H, Nan P, Peng S, Zhang C. / Zhong Yao Cai. 2001 May;24(5):341-2.

(7) Neuropharmacological Studies on Mikania cordata Root Extract / Siddhartha Bhattacharya, Siddhartha Pal, A. K. Nag Chaudhuri / Planta Med 1988; 54(6): 483-487 / DOI: 10.1055/s-2006-962524

(8) Toxicological and Antimicrobial Evaluations of Formulated Ointment from Eskwater (Mikania cordata Asteraceae) Leaf Extract against Trichophyton mentagrophytes and Methicillin-Resistant Staphylococcus aureus / Judee N. Nogodula, Lady Ron M. Ducut, Jelah Mae F. Edorot, Aizovelle T. Egagamao / University of the Immaculate Conception Research Journals, Vol 18, No 2 (2012)

(9) IN VITRO & IN VIVO EVALUATIONS OF MIKANIA CORDATA (BUMR.F.) B.L. ROBINSON EXTRACT / Latifa Bulbul*, Asma Ferdowshi, Mohammad Sazzad Rahman, Somen Mojumder Sushanta, Shahnaj Tanni, Md. Jahir Uddin / Indo American Journal of Pharmaceutical Research, Vol 3, Feb 2013

(10) Safety and Efficacy of Herbal Ointment formulated with Methanolic extract of Mikaniacordata as Treatment for Acute Superficial Injury / BarnabasE.Herbert,*Loraine M.Bagares, RaimeR.Galang, Katherine Garcines, Sherwin S. Go, May A. Jalamana /

Root considered anti-inflammatory, hepatoprotective and adaptogenic.

Parts used
Leaves, leaf juice.


– In some places, leaves used as soup vegetable.
– In southern Nigeria, decoction used for coughs; leaf juice used as remedy for sore eyes.
– In East Africa, the Tongas used the plant as remedy for snake and scorpion bites.
– Infusion of plant given for affections of the stomach and intestines.
– Leaves used by the Malays by rubbing it onto the body for itches.
– In Java, leaves used for poulticing circumcision wounds and other wounds.
– In India, leaves used for itchiness and as wound plaster.
– In Bangladesh, decoction used for treatment of gastric ulcer.
– In southern Africa, leaves applied to wounds.

– Used as cover crop to prevent erosion.
– Used as cattle fodder.

Study Findings
• Anticarcinogenic Biological Response: Study showed the intracellular contents of active intermediates of various xenobiotics including chemical carcinogens would be reduced by specific enhancement of drug-detoxifying enzymes in the liver of rats treated with the plant extract.
• Essential Oil / Leaves: Essential oil of the leaves of Mikania cordata yielded four majors constituents: a-pinene (20%), germacrene D (19.8%),beta-pinene (8.7%) and alpha-thujene (7.1%).
• Anti-Inflammatory: Study of the methanolic fraction of M. cordata root extract showed significant anti-inflammatory effects in exudative, proliferative and chronic phases of inflammation and also showed an antipyretic activity.
• CNS Changes: Study showed root extract induces profound behavioral changes, especially the disappearance of aggressive behavior. It also showed strong narcotic effects and analgesic effects.
• Anti-Stress Activity: Study on stress-induced alterations in central neurotransmitters showed pretreatment with M cordata root extract prevented decreases in adrenaline and noradrenaline and increases in 5-HT, while dopamine was further increases. Dose-depended biochemical responses may be the possible mechanism of the anti-stress activity of this plant extract.
• Analgesic / Antioxidant: Study of a hydromethanol extract of the leaves of Mikania scandens showed strong analgesic and antioxidant effects.
• Anti-Ulcer: Study of alkaloidal fraction from M. cordata on diclofenac-induced gastric ulcer showed the bioactive principles of M. cordata have anti-ulcerogenic effects. Results validate the use of the plant in Bangladesh for treatment of gastric ulcer.
• Anti-Inflammatory / Antipyretic: A methanolic extract of roots showed an inhibitory effect on carrageenin and other mediator-induced edema. The extract also exhibited inhibitory effects on sodium urate-induced experimental gout. Results showed significant anti-inflammatory effects in exudative, proliferative and chronic phases of inflammation, and also showed an antipyretic effect.
• Antibacterial: An ethanol extract of leaves showed moderate concentration-dependent antibacterial properties. Maximum inhibition was seen against Shigella flexneri and Staphylococcus aureus. It showed no apparent in vitro toxicity in the brine-shrimp lethality bioassay.
• Essential Oil / Flowers: Study of essential oil from flowers yielded forty-two compounds. The main constituents were beta-cubebene (12.95%), allo-aromadendrene (11.67%), beta-caryophyllene, 1H-inden-1-one, 5-(1, 1-dimethylethyl)-2, 3, beta-himaohalene, trans-alpha-bergamotene, limonene, and beta-ocimene.
• Phytochemicals / Potential Medicinal Constituents: Study of aqueous extracts yielded thirty compounds, while an ethanolic extract yielded thirty-four. The aqueous compounds included 2,3-pentanedione, glycerin, acetic acid, 2,3-butanediol, and caryophyllene oxide — compounds that are considered pharmaceutically relevant. The ethanolic compound yielded a small amount of sequelene.
• CNS Depressant Effect: Study of a methanolic fraction of root extract on experimental animals exhibited potent CNS-depressant action: alteration in general behavior pattern, reduction in spontaneous motility, hypothermia, potentiation of pentobarbitone-sleeping time, analgesia, reduction in exploratory behaviour and suppression of aggressive behavior. It also showed antagonism to amphetamine toxicity.
• Antibacterial / Leaf Extract Ointment Formulation: Study evaluated the toxicological and antimicrobial properties of eskwater leaf extract. Results showed three doses of ointment formulation produced inhibition on growth of MRSA (Methicillin Resistant Staphylococcus aureus), with potency comparable to Vancomycin at concentration of 0.32 mg. There was no inhibition in fungal growth.
• Anthelmintic / Antiemetic: A methanolic extract showed anthelmintic activity in a Pheretima posthuma model. The extract also showed antiemetic activity.
• Herbal Ointment for Superficial Injuries: An herbal ointment from a methanolic extract evaluated on superficial injuries showed significant activity against Staphylococcus aureus and Bacillus sp. compared to mupirocin. Antioxidant activity of the extract showed scavenging activity attributed to the presence of flavonoids and tannins.