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Family Malvaceae
Amapola
Hibiscus mutabilis Linn.
CONFEDERATE ROSE
Mu fu rong

Scientifric names  Common names 
Abelmoschus mutabilis (L.) Wall. ex Hassk. Amapola (Tag.)
Abelmoschus venustus Walp. Mapula (Tag.)
Hibiscus immutabilis Dehnh. ex Walp. Changeable rose (Engl.)
Hibiscus immutabilis Dehnh. Changing rose (Engl.)
Hibiscus javanicus Weinm. Chinese rose (Engl.)
Hibiscus malvarosa Noronha Confederate rose (Engl.)
Hibiscus mutabilis Linn. Cotton rose (Engl.)
Hibiscus sinensis Mill. Cotton rose hibiscus (Engl.)
Ketmia mutabilis (L.) Moench Dixie rose-mallow (Engl.)
Hibiscus mutabilis L. is an accepted name The Plant List

Other vernacular names
BENGALI: Sthal padma, Thul padma.
CHINESE: Mu fu rong, Fu rong hua, Shan fu rong.
JAPANESE: Fuyoo, Fuyou.
KOREAN: Bu yong.
SPANISH: Rosa algodon.
THAI: Phuttan.

Etymology
The species name lives up to the epithet, mutabilis meaning changeable or variable. Many of the common names draw upon its colorful mutability - opening up pale pink or white and darkening into shades of red as the day advances. Confederate Rose is a common name that colors the epithet with the drama of the Civil War, a felled soldier bleeding unto a bed of white hibiscus flowers, the petals slowly soaking red.

Botany
Amapola is an erect, branched bushy shrub or small tree, about 2 to 4 meters high, densely covered with short, grayish, stellate hairs. Leaves are broadly ovate to orbicular ovate, 5-lobed or 5-angled, 7 to 20 centimeters long, with pointed tip, heart-shaped base and toothed margins. Calyx is 3 to 4 centimeters long, with 5 oblong-ovate lobes, connate below. Corolla is 10 to 12 centimeters in diameter, single or double, opening pale pink or nearly white, growing darker in color as the day advances.

Distribution
- Occasionally planted for ornamental purposes in the larger towns of the Archipelago.
- Not spontaneous.
- Native of the Old World.
- Now pantropic.

Constituents
- Study isolated five flavonol glycosides from the ethanol extract of petals.
- Study isolated ten compounds: tetracosanoic acid, B-sitosterol, daucosterol, salicylic acid, emodin, rutin, kaemferol-3-O-B-rutinoside, kaemferol-3-O-B-robinobinoside, kaemferol-3-O-B-D-(6-E-p-hy-droxycinnamoyl)-glucopyranoside. (5)
- Study yielded various compounds from different plant parts: stems—Naringenin-5,7-dimethyl ether,4'-β-D-xylopyranosyl- β-D-arabinopyranoside, Eriodictyol-5,7-dimethyl ether-4'-β-D- arabinopyranoside; flowers—Quercetin, Quercemeritrine, Quercetin-3-D-Xyloside, Quercetin-3-sambubioside, Isoquercetin, Meratrin, Hybridin, Kaempferol, Hyperin, Guaijaverin, Cyanidine-3-xlosyl glucose, Cyanidin-3-monoglucoside, Hibiscones, Hibiscoquinones; and leaves— β-Sitosterol, β-Carotene, Quercetin). (10)
- Study on flavonoid aglycones in fresh flowers yielded quercitin, 80 mg/g fresh tissue; kaempferol, 8 mg/g; and cyananidin, 5 mg/g. (13)

Properties
- Flowers are considered pectoral, emollient and febrifuge, depurative, stimulant.
- Leaves are anodyne, antidote, demulcent, expectorant and cooling.
- Considered expectorant, cooling, antidotal.
- Studies have shown antiproliferative, antioxidant, anti-tyrosinase, antidiabetic, hepatoprotective, anti-inflammatory properties

Parts used
Leaves, roots, flowers.

Uses
Folkloric
- Famine food: In China, leaves reportedly used as famine food, boiled, then eaten with oil and salt. (14)
Folkloric
- In China, flowers and leaves considered expectorant, cooling, analgesic and antidote to all kinds of poison.
- In China medicine, leaves one of the component in a medicine used for treating tuberculous lymphadenitis; the flowers for treating nasopharyngeal carcinoma.
- Decoction of flowers considered pectoral.
- For mumps, egg whites are added to dried powdered leaves and applied to to affected areas.
- Used for persistent coughs, menorrhagia, dysuria and wounds, especially burns and scalds that are slow to heal.
- Leaves and flowers applied to swellings and skin infections.
- Infusion of flowers used for chest and pulmonary complaints; also used as stimulant.


Studies
Antiproliferative / Anti-HIV1 Reverse Transcriptase / Lectin:
Study isolated a hexameric 150-kDa lectin from dried H mutabilis seeds. The galactonic acid-binding lectin potently inhibited HIV-1 reverse transcriptase. It also exhibited weak antiproliferative activity towards hepatoma HepG2 cells and breast cancer MCF-7 cells. (1)
Nitric Oxide Scavenging Activity: Study of the ethanol extracts of four medicinal plants, including Hibiscus mutabilis, showed dose-dependent NO scavenging activity. Results suggest a potential for the plants as novel therapeutic agents in the regulation of pathologic conditions caused by excessive generation of NO and its oxidation product. (2)
Anti-Tyrosinase Activity: In a study of four species of Hibiscus, H mutabilis was second to H tiliaceus in anti-tyrosinase and antioxidant activities. Total phenolic content (TPC) of leaves was 861 ± 92 mg GAE/100 g and an ascorbic acid equivalent antioxidant capacity (AEAC) of 877 ± 137 mgAA/100g. (6)
Bacteriostasis: In a study of extracts of H. mutabilis, the bacteriostasis effect was highest with E. coli and best with a 70% alcohol extract. (8)
Ferulic Acid / Leaves / Anti-Diabetic: Ferulic acid (FRL) purified from the leaves of Hibiscus mutabilis, showed impressive effects in preventing saturated fatty acid (SFA)induced defects through reduction of insulin receptor ß in skeletal muscle cells. Impairment of insulin signaling molecules by SFA was waived by the FRL. In high fat diet fed diabetic rats, FRL reduced blood glucose level and enhanced lipid uptake activity of adipocytes isolated from adipose tissue. Collective, FRL exhibited features for prevention of lipid induced insulin resistance, with a therapeutic potential use for T2DM. (9)
Antimicrobial / Anti-Inflammatory: Antimicrobial testing on various organisms showed satisfactory results. A methanolic extract showed good activity against Bacillus subtilis. An ethyl acetate extract showed comparable anti-inflammatory activity when compared to standard drug Nimuselide. (10)
Antidiabetic / Leaves: Study evaluated a methanolic extract of leaves for anti-diabetic activity in alloxan induced diabetic wistar rats. Results showed significant protection and maximum reduction in glucose in comparison to standard glibenclamide. (11)
Hepatoprotective / Leaves: Defatted phenolic fraction of leaf, stem, and flowers of Hibiscus mutabilis was evaluated against carbon tetrachloride induced hepatic injuries in rats. Results showed curative potential of the defatted antioxidant ethanolic fractions with treatment significantly modulated the enzymes to normal values accompanied by histopathological evidence. (12)
Anti-Allergic Effects / Petals: In vivo assay of aqueous extract of petals on mice isolated various flavanoids. Flavonol triglycoside, quercetin 3-o-1-beta-D-xylopyranosyl and beta-D-galactopyranoside showed significant anti-allergic effects. (15) (16)

Availability
Wild-crafted.
Cultivated.
Flower extracts in the cybermarket.

Godofredo U. Stuart Jr., M.D.

Last Updated May 2016

IMAGE SOURCE: PHOTO / Hibiscus mutabilis / Picture by Doctoroftcm / Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported license / GNU Free Documentation License / click on photo to see source image / WIKIMEDIA COMMONS
OTHER IMAGE SOURCE: Public Domain / File:Hibiscus mutabilis Blanco1.175-original.png / Flora de Filipinas / 1880 - 1883 / Francisco Manuel Blanco (O.S.A) / Wikimedia Commons
SOURCES

Additional Sources and Suggested Readings
(1)
Novel galactonic acid-binding hexameric lectin from Hibiscus mutabilis seeds with antiproliferative and potent HIV-1 reverse transcriptase inhibitory activities / Sze Kwan Lam and Tzi Bun Ng / Acta Biochinica Polonic • Vol. 56 No. 4/2009, 649–654
(2)
In Vitro Nitric Oxide Scavenging Activity of EthanolLeaf Extracts of Four Bangladeshi Medicinal Plants
/ Moni Rani Saha, Rumana Jahangir et al / Stamford Journal of Pharmaceutical Sciences • 1 (1&2): 57-62
(3)
Flavonol Glycosides in the Flowers of Hibiscus mutabilis f. versicolor / Nariyuki Ishikura / Agri Biol Chem, 46 (6), 1705-1706, 1982
(4)
Confederate Rose (Hibiscus mutabilis), the Changeable Beauty / Marie Harrison / Dave's Garden
(5)
Studies on chemical constituents of Hibiscus mutabilis / Yao Li-yun, Lu Yang, Chen Ze-nai / Chinese Traditional and Herbal Drugs, 2003-03
(6)
Evaluation of Antioxidant, Anti-tyrosinase and Antibacterial Activities of Selected Hibiscus Species / S K Wong, Y Y Lim and E W C Chan / Ethnobotanical Leaflets 14: 781-96. 2010.
(7)
Sorting Hibiscus names / MULTILINGUAL MULTISCRIPT PLANT NAME DATABASEStudy on bacteriostasis of extracts of Hibiscus mutabili leaf
(8)
Study on bacteriostasis of extracts of Hibiscus mutabili leaf / Li Chang-ling, Liu Sheng-gui et al / Science and Technology of Food Industry, 2009-11
(9)
A polyphenol rescues lipid induced insulin resistance in skeletal muscle cells and adipocytes / Bhaskarjyoti Gogoi, Priyajit Chatterjee, Sandip Mukherjee, Alak Kumar Buragohain, Samir Bhattacharya, Suman Dasgupta / Biochemical and Biophysical Research Communications, Volume 452, Issue 3, 26 September 2014, Pages 382–388
(10)
Phytochemical and Pharmacological Evaluation of Hibiscus mutabilis leaves / Vandana H. Barve*, S. N. Hiremath, Shashikant. R. Pattan and S. C. Pal / J. Chem. Pharm. Res., 2010, 2(1): 300-309
(11)
Antidiabetic Activity of Methanolic Extract of Hibiscus Mutabilis Leaves Against Alloxan Induced Diabetes in Rats / Sattwik Das*, Shailendra Lariya and Girendra Kumar Gautam / INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF PHARMACEUTICAL AND CHEMICAL SCIENCES, Vol. 2 (3) Jul-Sep 2013
(12)
Hepatoprotective effect of standardized antioxidant phenolic fractions of Hibiscus mutabilis Linn. / Subhash C. Mandal, Subodh C. Pal and Dipak N. Raut* / Der Pharmacia Sinica, 2014, 5(3):46-51
(13)
Analyses for Flavonoid Aglycones in Fresh and Preserved Hibiscus Flowers* / Lorraine S. Puckhaber, Robert D. Stipanovic, and Georgia A. Bost / Trends in new crops and new uses. ASHS Press, Alexandria, VA.
(14)
Famine Foods / Compiled by Robert Freedman / hort.purdue.edu
(15)
Health and Nutrition from Ornamentals / Sharma Yashaswini, Hedge R V, and Venugopal C K / IJRAP, 2(2), 375-382 (2011)
(16)
Allergy preventive effects of H. mutabilis 'versicolor' and a novel allergy preventive flavanoid glycoside / Ewaoka E et al / Biological and Pharmaceutical Bulletin, 2009; 32(3): 509-512

It is not uncommon for links on studies/sources to change. Copying and pasting the information on the search window or using the DOI (if available) will often redirect to the new link page.
Potential Herbal Medicines and Drug Interactions
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Alternative Medicine Dictionary
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List of Philippine Medicinal Plants with Chinese Names
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