Malakafe

Family • Rubiaceae - Canthium dicoccum (Gaertn.) Merr. - CEYLON BOX WOOD

Scientific names

Canthium dicoccum (Gaertn.) Merr.
Canthium didymum Gaertn.f.
Plectronia dicocca (Gaertn.) Merr.
Plectronia didyma Elm.
Psydrax dicoccos Gaertn.

Other vernacular names

TAMIL: Nallamandharam.

Common names

Bogas (P. Bis.)
Luing-luing (P. Bis.)
Malakafe (P. Bis.)
Tandan (Mag.)
Ceylon boxwood (Engl.)

Botany
Malakafe is an unarmed, smooth shrub 3 to 4 meters or more in height. Leaves are extremely variable, ovate, elliptic, ovate or somewhat rounded, 5 to 15 centimeters long, 1.5 to 10 centimeters wide, leathery, shining above, and usually pointed at both ends. Flowers are white, with very slender stalks, 5 to 10 millimeters long, and borne in compressed, short-stalked cymes. Calyx is cut off at the end or obscurely toothed. Corolla is bell-shaped, with a 4- to 6-millimeter tube, and five somewhat pointed lobes. Fruit is rounded, ellipsoid or obovoid, 6 to 10 millimeters long, slightly flattened and obscurely 2-lobed.

Malakafe

Additional Sources and Suggested Readings

(1) 7-O-(6-O-Benzoyl-β- -glucopyranosyl)-rutin from leaves of Canthium dicoccum / R. Gunasegaran, K. Subramani, P. Azantha Parimala et al / Fitoterapia, Vol 72, No 3, March 2001, Pages 201-205 / doi:10.1016/S0367-326X(00)00302-6

(2) ANTI-INFLAMMATORY ACTIVITY OF ETHANOLIC EXTRACT OF CANTHIUM DICOCCUM / Bhaargavi Vuyyuri / INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF PHARMACEUTICAL AND PHYTOPHARMACOLOGICAL RESEARCH, Vol 3, No 3, 2013.

(3) EVALUATION OF ANTI-DIABETIC AND NEPHRO PROTECTIVE ACTIVITY OF 95% ETHANOLIC EXTRACT OF CANTHIUM DICOCCUM WHOLE PLANT BY USING ALBINO RATS / SANTHAN S*, JANARTHAN M, ZUBER ALI M / Journal of Chemical and Pharmaceutical Sciences, Vol 6, No 4, Oct-Dec 2013

Malakafe2Distribution
– In secondary and primary forests at low altitudes in Benguet, Pangasinan, Zambales, Bataan, Rizal and Batangas Provinces in Luzon; and in Mindoro, Ticao, Palawan, Negro, Guimaras, and Mindanao.
– Also from southeast China to tropical Asia.

Constituents
– Study yielded ursolic acid, rutin and 7-O-(5-O-benzoyl-ß-D-glucopyranosyl)-rutin.
– Study yielded major chemical components viz. Spathulenol (20.76 %), Caryophyllene oxide (19.25 %), Cedren-13-ol (10.62 %), Ledene oxide (5.24 %), m-mentho-4, 8-diene (6.41 %) and 2-furancarboxaldehyde (4.51 %).

Properties
Febrifuge, antidiarrheal.

Parts used
Bark, roots.

Uses
Folkloric
– In India, bark is used for fever.
– Decoction of roots used for diarrhea.

Malakafe3

Study Findings
• Flavonol Glycoside: Study yielded a new flavonol glycoside, 7-O-(5-O-benzoyl-ß-D-glucopyranosyl)-rutin.
• Antifungal: Diglycosides, rutin and its benzoic derivative, 7-O-(5-O-benzoyl-ß-D-glucopyranosyl)-rutin from C dicoccum and kaempferol 3-ß-D-rutinoside from C rheedii strongly inhibited all test fungi.
• Anti-Inflammatory: Study evaluated an ethanolic extract of whole plant of Canthium diococcum for anti-inflammatory activity in Wistar albino rats in various models of anti-inflammatory activity viz. Carrageenan induced paw edema, Formalin induced paw edema, fresh egg white induced paw edema and cotton pellet induced granuloma model. Results showed the extract with anti-inflammatory activity and suggests a potential alternative to NSAIDS like diclofenac.
• Anti-Diabetic / Nephroprotective: Study evaluated an ethanolic extract of Canthium diococcum for anti-diabetic in an alloxan induced diabetic rat model. Results showed a significant drop in fasting blood sugar in a dose-dependent manner, with an effect on the beta-cell population in the pancreas. The extract showed almost equipotent antidiabetic activity compared to standard drug Glibenclamide.
• Anti-Arthritic: Study evaluated an ethanolic extract for anti-arthritic activity in albino rats. Results showed significant anti-arthritic activity against Egg-albumin induced arthritis model.
• Bioactive Components: Study of an ethanolic extract of leaf yielded major chemical constituents viz. Spathulenol (20.76 %), Caryophyllene oxide (19.25 %), Cedren-13-ol (10.62 %), Ledene oxide (5.24 %), m-mentho-4, 8-diene (6.41 %) and 2-furancarboxaldehyde (4.51 %). Some on the constituents provide scientific bases and evidence for antimicrobial, anti-tumor, immunomodulatory, and antioxidant properties of the plant.

Availability
Wild-crafted.