Kalabua

Family • Hydrocharitaceae - Ottelia alismoides (Linn.) Pers. - DUCK LETTUCE - Shui che qian

Scientific names

Ottelia alismoides (Linn.) Pers.
Ottelia dioecia Yan
Ottelia ensiformis Blanco
Ottelia philippinensis Ostenfeld.
Ottelia japonica Miq.
Stratiotes alismoides Linn.
Damasonium lancifolium Presl
Long she cao (Chin.)

Common names

Damong-ilalim (Tag.)
Espada (Sp.)
Kalabua (Tag.)
Lanting (Bik.)
Lanten-sapa (Tag.)
Lanting-sapa (Tag.)
Maraduyug (It.)
Tarabang (Ilk.)
Duck lettuce (Engl.)
Water plantain (Engl.)
Shui che qian (Chin.)

Other vernacular names

CHINESE: Shui bai cai, lung she ts’ao.
DUTCH: Duikerbloem.
INDIA: Pokok kelur.
JAPANESE: Mizu-ôba-Ko
KOREAN: Mul jil gyeong.
MALAY: Keladi ayer, Kreboboth.
SPANISH: Espada, Tangila.

Botany
Kalabua is an aquatic plant. Roots are fibrous. Leaves are extremely variable, with short or long petioles, according to the depth of the water. Blades of the submerged leaves are often narrow; the floating ones, ovate or somewhat rounded, with a rounded or often heart-shaped base, 5 to 20 centimeters long. Flowers are white, about 2 centimeters in length. Fruit is oblong, 2.5 to 4 centimeters long.

Kalabua

Additional Sources and Suggested Readings

(1) Preliminary study on the anti-tubercular effect of Ottelia alismoides (L.) Pers. / Li H, Qu X, Zhao D et al /Zhongguo Zhong Yao Za Zhi. 1995 Feb;20(2):115-6, 128.

(2) Otteliones A and B: Potently Cytotoxic 4-Methylene-2-cyclohexenones from Ottelia alismoides / Seif-eldin N Ayyad, Andrew S Judd et al / J. Org. Chem., 1998, 63 (23), pp 8102–8106 / DOI: 10.1021/jo971870a

(3) Cytological Studies in Ottelia alismoides Pers.1 / M. P. Misra / Cytologia 39: 419-427, 1974

(4) Medicinal plants of North-Kamrup district of Assam used in primary healthcare system / N J Das, S P Saikia, S Sakar & K Devi / Indian Journ of Traditional Knowledge, Vol 5(4), Oct 2006, pp 489-493.

(5) METALS AND RADIONUCLIDES UPTAKE BY Ottelia alismoides COLLECTED FROM THE EX-MINING AREA IN KG. GAJAH, PERAK / Marlinda Binti Musa / November 2008

Kalabua2Distribution
– Widely distributed in the Philippines.
– In shallow fresh water of lakes, pools and slow-running streams.
– Occurs wild from Indo-Malaysia to the Pacific Islands and East Asia to Australia.

Properties
Febrifuge, rubefacient, antibacterial.

Parts used
Leaves.

Uses
Edibility
– Fruit is often sought by children.
– Petioles, tender leaves and inflorescences are flavorful and used as vegetable in South East Asia.

Kalabua3

Folkloric
– Leaves used as arm and leg poultices in fever.
– Leaves are used as topicals for hemorrhoids.
– In Assam, India, flower past taken orally early morning for curing hemorrhoids.
– In China, plant prepared as paste and applied to abscesses of the breasts, cancer, ulcers and burns. Leaves used to check bleeding.

Others
• Aquarium: Used as aquarium plant.

Kalabua4

Study Findings
• Anti-Tubercular: A clinical trials, extract of Ottelia alismoides cured two cases of bilateral tuberculosis of cervical lymph glands within 3 months. Results suggest O. alismoides to be a promising medicinal herb with anti-tubercular effect.
• Otteliones / Cytotoxicity: Study isolated otteliones A and B from the fresh water plant Ottelia alismoides. The natural products showed remarkable in vitro cytotoxicity against various cancer cell lines.
• Heavy Metal and Radionuclides Uptake / Cytotoxicity: There are four mechanisms involved in heavy metals uptake by plants: phytoextraction, phytovolatilization, phytostabilization, and rhizofiltration. Phytoextraction uses plants to absorb, concentrate, and precipitate heavy metals from soil. Hyperaccumulators take up to 100 times the concentration of metals as other plants. Study showed that Ottelia Pers. submerged plants may become hyperaccumulators of heavy metals and radionuclides especially in locations of tin ore mines. The concern is for humans and animals who comsume fishes and prawns caught from these areas.
The natural products showed remarkable in vitro cytotoxicity against various cancer cell lines.
• Phytovolatilization: Phytovolatilization is the plant extraction of volatilve metals such as mercury and selenium from sludge and soils and release them through transpiration to the atmosphere as a detoxified vapor. Ottelia alismoides was selected to determine the heavy metal and radionuclide that accumulate from tin mines.

Availability
Wild-crafted.