Family • Amaranthaceae - Cyathula prostrata (Linn.) Blume - PASTUREWEED - Bei xian

Scientific names

Cyathula prostrata (Linn.) Blume
Cyathula geniculata Lour.
Achyranthes prostrata Linn.
Desmochaeta prostrata Linn.
Pupalia prostrata (L.) C. Martius.

Common names

Bakbaka (Ilk.)
Dayang (Tag.)
Dokat-dokat (Bis.)
Sait-sait (Sul.)
Tuhod-manok (Tag.)
Pastureweed (Engl.)
Bei xian (Chin.)

Other vernacular names

CAMBODIA: Andot ko.
FRENCH: Cyathule couchée
INDONESIA: Rumput jarang-jarang, Ranggitan, Rai-rai fofoheka.
IVORY COAST: Abure ahue, Dan bie.
MALAYSIA: Nyarang, Menjarang, Keremak.
NIGERIA: Fula-fulfulde.
THAILAND: Yaa phaanngu lek, Yaa phaanghu daeng.
VIETNAME: D[ow]n d[or]g[oj]ng, C[or] x[uw][ows]c, B[oo]ng d[or].

Dayang is an annual, branched herb, reaching a length of 1 meter or more, with the stems prostrate and creeping below. Leaves are rhomboid-oblong, 2 to 8 centimeters long, and gradually tapering to an acute base. Spikes are terminal and axillary, slender, peduncles, and 5 to 20 centimeters long. Flowers are numerous, greenish, ovoid, and about 3 millimeters long. Sepals are hairy. Fruit is an ellipsoid utricle, 1.5 to 2 millimeters long, thin-walled, hairless, one-seeded, surrounded by a stiff perianth. Seed is ovoid, 1.5 to 1.5 millimeters long, shiny brown.


– In waste places, thickets, etc., at low and medium altitudes, throughout the Philippines.
– Pantropic.

– Phytochemical screening yielded saponins, tannins, flavonoids, alkaloids, cardiac glycosides and steroids.


Additional Sources and Suggested Readings

(1) Betaine distribution in the Amaranthaceae / Gerald Blunden, Ming-he Yang et al / Biochemical Systematics and Ecology, Volume 27, Issue 1, January 1999, Pages 87-92 / doi:10.1016/S0305-1978(98)00072-6

(2) CYTOTOXIC ACTIVITY OF SELECTED NIGERIAN PLANTS / A Sowemimo, M van de Venter et al / African Journal of Traditional, Complementary and Alternative Medicines, Vol. 6, No. 4, 2009, pp. 526-528

(3) Cyathula prostrata (Linn.) / Common names / JSTOR Plant Science

(4) Antimicrobial and phytochemical evaluation of the leaf, stem bark and root extracts of Cyathula prostrata (L) Blume against some human pathogens / Gideon Ikechukwu Ogu, Williams Omotola Tanimowo, Perpetua Ugonna Nwachukwu, Bright Esegbuyota Igere / J Intercult Ethnopharmacol. 2012; 1(1): 35-43 / doi: 10.5455/jice.20120407085952

(5) Cardioprotective Effect of Cyathula prostrata Linn on Isoproterenol Induced Myocardial Infarction in Rat / Ramadoss. S*, Kannan. K, Balamurugan. K, Jeganathan NS and Manavalan R / International Journal of Research in Pharmaceutical and Biomedical Sciences, Vol 3, No 2, April-June 2012

(6) Cyathula prostrata / Vernacular names / GLOBinMED

(7) Evaluation of Hydroalcoholic extract of Cyathula prostrata for Different Antiulcer Models / S. Janardhanan*, K. Elango, B. Suresh and M N Satishkumar / International Journal of Research in Pharmaceutical and Biomedical Sciences, Vol 3 (3), Jul-Sep 2012.

(8) HEPATOPROTECTIVE EFFECTS OF CYATHULA PROSTRATA LINN. IN PARACETAMOL INDUCED LIVER INJURY IN RATS / Ramadoss.S*, Kannan.K, Balamurugan.K, Jeganathan.N.S, Manavalan.R / Journal of Pharmaceutical Research and Opinion 1: 7 (2011) 178 – 180.

(9) Protective Effect of Cyathula prostrata Extract on Alloxan Induced Diabetes Mellitus in Rats /Kavitha M, Gurusamy K, Priya K and Kowshik J / The IUP Journal of Biotechnology


– Studies show antibacterial, anticancer, antidiabetic, analgesic, antiinflammatory properties.

Parts used
Whole plant, roots.

– Used by the Malaysexternally and internally.
– Decoction used for coughs.
– Decoction of roots used for dysentery.
– Kroo people used the ashes of the burnt plants, mixed with water to smear on the body, for craw-craw, scabies, etc.
– In Cameroon, plant used in prescriptions for articular rheumatism and dysentery.
– In Nigeria plant used for by traditional healers to treat cancer, pain and inflammatory disorders.
– In Gabon, used for treating eye troubles, wounds, and urethral discharges.
– In the Ivory Coast, sap is applied to sores and chancres and used for ear drops for otitis. Leafy twigs, flowers, and seeds are pulped into a paste and applied to sores, burns, and fractures.

Study Findings
• Glycinebetaine: A study of aerial parts of 23 species from 10 genera of Amaranthaceae was done to examine the presence of betaines. Glycinebetaine was the dominant betaine and the highest yield of the compound was from Cyathula geniculata, 2.11% of dry weight.
• Cytotoxicity / HeLa Cell Line: In a study on the cytotoxic effect of plant extracts on HeLa (cervix adenocarcinoma) cell line, Cyathula prostrata was one of five plants that showed over 50% activity at 500 ug/ml.
• Analgesic / Anti-Inflammatory: In in vivo anti-inflammatory assays using carrageenan, arachidonic acid and xylene-induced tests and analgesic evaluation using acetic acid and hot plate analgesic tests, a methanolic extract showed dose-dependent anti-inflammatory and analgesic activities.
• Antimicrobial: Aqueous and ethanolic extracts of leaf stem, bark and rook were investigated against human clinical bacterial and Candida albicans isolates. The greatest activity was seen with the ethanolic fractions. Of the bacteria, the most sensitive isolate was E. coli (95.9%), the least sensitive K pneumonia (40.0%). Candida albicans had a sensitivity of 57.5%. Results suggest a potential source of a novel broad spectrum drug.
• Oils / Antibacterial and Antifungal: An ethyl acetate fraction yielded two oils, established to be ethyl hexadecanoate 1 (alkyl ester) and 7, 9-Di-tert-butyl-1-oxaspiro n(4, 5) deca-6, 9-diene-2, 8-dione 2 (diketone). Both exhibited between marginal and moderate antibacterial and antifungal activities.
• Cardioprotective: Study evaluated an ethanolic extract of whole plant on isoproterenol-induced myocardial infarction in rat. Results indicated antioxidant, antilipid peroxidative and anti-ischemic activity in albino rats. Benefits were attributed the CPE phenolic content.
• Anti-Cancer / Apoptosis Induction: Study evaluated C. prostrata for cytotoxic benefits on HeLa (cervical cancer cell line) and U937 (myelo-monocytic cell line). Results showed the extract induces apoptosis via the extrinsic pathway, an induction independent of the mitochondria.
• Anti-Ulcer / Apoptosis Induction: Study evaluated the mucoprotective action of C. prostrata on experimental and drug-induced ulcer model in rats. The hydroalcoholic extract exhibited significant dose-dependent anti-ulcer activity on the cysteamine-induced ulcer model, possibly through action of the phytoconstituents, reduction of gastric emptying time, and inhibition of hypersecretion of gastric acid.
• Hepatoprotective: Study showed very significant hepatoprotective effect of an ethanolic extract on paracetamol-induced acute liver damage in Wistar albino rats.
• Antidiabetic: Study evaluated the antidiabetic effect of an extract of C. prostrata in alloxan-induced diabetic rats. Results showed reversal of the condition by oral administration of the methanol extract.