Update: 2007-03-07 07:47 PM -0500


Burmese Indigenous Medicinal Plants

by Daw Mya Bwin and U Sein Gwan, Pharmacology Research Division, Department of Medical Research, Ministry of Health, Rangoon, 1973.

HTML version with additions from other sources by U Kyaw Tun, U Pe Than,  and staff of TIL for staff and students of TIL. Edited by UKT for incorporating into Myanmar Medicinal Plant Database. Not for sale.

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Contents of this page: Plants for hypotensive action
   See Plants for hypertensive action
09. Citrullus vulgaris -- {hpa.r:} Phay-ye
10. Carissa carandas -- {hkn-ping} Khan-pin
11. Convolvulus arvensis -- {kauk-ro:nw} Kauk-yo nwe
12. Curcuma comosa -- {na.nwin:hka:} Na-nwin-ga or {hsa.nwin:hka:} Sa-nwin-ga

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09. Citrullus vulgaris Schrad.

Family as given by authors: Cucurbitaceae

Burmese name: {hpa.r:} Phay-ye.

CITRULLUS VULGARIS Schrad. ex Eckl. & Zeyh. Enum. 279 (1836).
Cucurbita Citrullus Linn. Sp. Pl. 1010 (1753).
Citrullus fistulosus Stocks in Hook. Kew Journ. Bot. III. t. 3.
Cucumia Citrullus DC. Prodr. III. 301. (1828).
Cucurbita Citrullus Linn; Roxb. Fl. Ind. III. 319 (1832).

English common name: Water melon.

An extensively climbing annual with thick angular branching stems; young shoots villous woolly at their tips. Tendril bifid, stout, pubescent. Leaves divided or moderately lobed, some what hairy, alternate. Flowers rather large, yellow within, greenish outside. Fruit large, sub-globose or ellipsoid, dark green. Family Cucurbitaceae. Fruiting from June to July.

Cultivated for its edible fruits in dry areas.

A saponin bitrin and cucurbocitrin isolated from the seed was formerly used for hypertension. fn06-01
Fruit is cooling and used as diuretic.
The seed has a cooling effect, used as a tonic and also for diuretic. Seed oil used as a substitute for almond oil. fn06-02
Seed contains diuretic principles.1
Cucurbitocitrin a glucosidal saponin isolated from the seed has been used as an antihypertensive drug, oral dose used from 60 to 120 mg.1


fn06-01 The Merck Index of Chemicals and Drugs (1960). Seventh edition, 1105, 299 & 267. Rahway: New Jersey, U.S.A.: Merck & Co., Inc. fn06-01b

fn06-02 Chopra, R. N., S. L. Nayar & I. C. Chopra (1956). Glossary of Indian Medicinal plants, p. 67. New Delhi: Council of Scientific and Industrial Research. fn06-02b

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10. Carissa carandas Linn.

Family as given by authors: Apocynaceae

Burmese name: {hkn-ping} Khan-pin.

Carissa Carandas Linn. Mant. I. 52 (1767).
Carissa paucinervai A. DC. Prodr. VIII. 333 (1844).
Carrissa congesta Wight Ic. t. 1289 (1850).
Arduina carandas (L.) K. Schum. in Engler & Prantl. Nat. Pflanzenfam. IV. Abt. 2. 127 (1895).
English common name: Natal plum.

Armed, large spreading shrub. Leaves opposite, ellipcic-obovate to obovate; stipules paired, spiniform, sometimes simple or forked. Flowers small, white or pinkish. Fruit berries, ellipsoidal in shape, at first the colour of the fruit turns red and pink checks then turn purple when ripe. Family Apocynaceae. Flowers from April to June, fruiting from June to July.

Often planted in gardens as an ornamental plant throughout Burma.

Alcoholic root extract lowers the blood pressure in cats. fn12-01
Root is bitter, used in the treatment of stomachic and also as anti-anthelminthic.
Decoction of leaves is given at the commencement of remittent fever. fn12-02


fn12-01 Chatterjee, M. L. & A. R. Roy (1965). Pharmacological action of Carissa carandas L. root. Bull. Calcutta Sch. trop. Med. 13, 14-16. In: Chem. Abstr. (1965). 63, 3501 fg. fn12-01b

fn12-02 Chopra, R. N., S. L. Nayar & I. C. Chopra (1956). Glossary of Indian medicinal plants. 52. Council of Scientific and Industrial Research: New Delh: fn12-02b

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11. Convolvulus arvensis Linn.

Family as given by authors: Convolvulaceae


Burmese name:  kauk-ro:nw} Kauk-yo nwe.

Convolvulus Arvensis Linn. Sp. Pl. 153 (1753).
Convolvulus Malcolmii Roxb. Hort. Beng. 14.
Convolvulus divaricata Wall. Cat. 1422.
English common name: Lesser biweed, Field bindweed, Deer's foot bindweed.

A creeping, twining herb. Leaves ovate or oblong-lanceolate, leaf base auriculate or hastate. Flowers middle-sized, solitary, purplish-pink or white. Fruit, a globose capsule. Family Convolvulaceae. Flowers and fruits from July to Obtober.

A common weed. especially in the fields. Grown in Arid regions.

Extract of the above ground parts reduced blood pressure level. fn23-01
Root used as purgative.
Plant yield resinous substances, possesses cathartic properties. fn23-02


fn23-01 Voronina, M. N. (1966). Pharmacology of the lesser biweed. Farmakol. Toksikol 29, 70-72. In: Biol. Abstr. (1966) 47, 112298. fn23-01b

fn23-02 Chopra, R. N.. S. I.. Nayar & I. C. Chopra (1956). Glossary of INdian medicinal plants, p 76. Council of Scientific and Industrial Rsearch: New Delhi. fn23-02b

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12. Curcuma comosa Roxb.

Family as given by the authors: Zingiberaceae


Burmese name: {na.nwin:hka:} Na-nwin-ga or {hsa.nwin:hka:} Sa-nwin-ga.

Curcuma Comosa Roxb. in Asiat. Res. XI. 336 (1810).
English common name: Nil.

Rootstock large of palmately branched sessile annulate tuber, aromatic with light yellow circling deeper yellow inside when young; colour changing to bright orange on becoming older. Leaves large, lanceolate to oblong-elliptic, leaf-stalk as long as the blade, plain green except in the earliest, which are clouded with faint brown down the centre above, glabrous on both sides. Flowering spike arising from the centre of the tuft of leaves. Appearing after the leaves are developed, flowers fragrant, pinkish-yellow, longer than the flowering bracts; flower bracts greenish tipped with purplish-red streak, those of the coma tinged with purplish-red at the tip and with white base below. Family Zingiberaceae. Flowering in late August to September.

Pegu, Twante and Rangoon, Often cultivated for its medicinal use.

Burmese people believed that powdered dried rhizome mixed with honey taken one tablespoon twice a day produces a fall in blood pressure. fn34-01


fn34-01 fn34-01b

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