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Family Chloranthaceae
Chloranthus elatior Link
Yu zi lan

Scientific names Common names
Chloranthus elatior Link Barau-barau (Luzon)
Chloranthus elatior R.Br. Lagrimas (Tag., Bik.)
Chloranthus erectus (Buch.-Ham) Sweet ex Wall. Tul-an hinbad (S. Bis.)
Chloranthus erectus (Buch.-Ham) Verdc. Sunulampong (Sub.)
Chloranthus inconspicuus Blanco [Illegitimate] Tunggao (Tagb.)
Chloranthus officinalis Blume Tall chloranthus (Engl.)
Chloranthus salicifolius C.Presl  
Chloranthus sumatranus Miq.  
Cryphaea erecta Buch.-Ham.  
Chloranthus officinalis Blume is a synonym of Cloranthus elatior Link. The Plant List
Chloranthus elatior Link is an accepted name. The Plant List

Other vernacular names
CAMBODIA: KbaKk damrei.
CHINESE: Yu zi lan, Jie jie cha, Jiu hie feng, Shi feng jie.
INDIA: Yasinha, Bea-ken-kur, Lakang-taklang.
INDONESIA: Keras tulang, Uyuh-uyuhan, Haros tulang.
MALAYSIA: Sambau paya, Sigueh puteh, Rami hutan, Keras tulang, Dikut-dikut, Langut-langut.
MYANMAR: Thanat-kha, Yuzara.
SPANISH: Lagrimas.
THAI: Hom kai; Kraduk kai.

Barau-barau is a spreading undershrub, growing up to 2 meters tall, with a similar habit to apot (Chloranthus glabra). Stems are 30 to 70 centimeters high. Leaves are smooth, obovate-oblong or elliptic, the smaller ones broadly lanceolate, averaging 10 to 15 centimeters long, the larger ones being about 5 centimeters wide, with pointed tip, finely granular margin and with short stalks. Spikes are about 3 centimeters long, in few-branched terminal panicles, upon a 3- to 5-centimeter long peduncle. Flowers are white and small. Fruit is green when young, white o maturity, obovoid, juicy, 5 to 8 millimeters in diameter, with a relatively large seed.

- Widely distributed in forests at low and medium altitudes from central Luzon southward to Palawan and Mindanao.
- Occurs in India to Western China and southward through Malaya.

- Study of whole plant yielded two new eudesmane-type sesquiterpenoid lactones, chlorelactone A (1) and chlorelactone B (2), and one new labdane-type diterpenoid, elatiolabdane (3), along with seven known sesquiterpenoids and one known disesquiterpenoid. (8)
- Study of ethanol extract of aerial parts yielded four novel naturally occurring diasterioisomers of dinor-eudesmenes, named chloranthones A-D. (9)
- Study of ethanol extract of C. elatior yielded six eudesmane-type sesquiterpene lactones, chlorantholides A-F, along with 12 known compounds. (11)

- All plant plant parts have a camphoraceous odor and bitter, aromatic taste.
- Leaves and stems lose the aromatic property after drying. Root, if properly dried, preserve it for a long time.
- Considered febrifuge, sudorific and stimulant.
- Studies have shown anti--inflammatory, antibacterial, antipyretic properties.

Parts used
Flowers, roots, leaves.


- Flowers used to scent tea in China.
- Young leaves eaten raw as vegetable.
- Leaves used to make a drink in Malaya and Indonesia.
- In Java, an infusion of the powdered root and the bark of Cinnamomum culilowan used to treat puerperal eclampsia.
- Infusion used in fever accompanied by debility and suppression of the function of the skin.
- Tea made from leaves and roots has a sudorific action.
- Infusion of flowers and leaves used to treat coughs.
- Roots are boiled, then powdered, rubbed over the body for fever.
- Sudorific and stimulant, it is used for malarial fevers.
- Bruised roots used as poultice for boils and carbuncles.
- In India and South-East Asia traditionally used as folklore medicine for localized swelling, joint pains, skin inflammation, fever and body aches.
- Khamti tribe of Arunachal Pradesh use leaves for elephant foot swelling.
(5) Paste of leaves with Curcuma longa applied on area of fracture bones to reduce pain and swelling. (10)
- Leaves and root used as aphrodisiac, particularly in women. In India, the juice from boiled branches is used as contraceptive; root and bark used as antispasmodic during childbirth. Leaf extract used for venereal diseases. (2)

- Dye:
Plant yields a dark blue or black dye.

Anti-Inflammatory / Leaves:
Preliminary study of a methanol extract of C. erectus leaves in acute, sub-acute, and chronic mouse models exhibited significant anti-inflammatory activity in tested models viz., carrageenan-induced rat hind paw edema, histamine- and serotonin-induced sub-acute model. Phenylbutazone was used as standard for comparison. (3)
Antipyretic / Antibacterial / Leaves: A methanol leaf extract was evaluated for antipyretic potential in an albino rat model and for antibacterial activity against Gram(-) and Gram(+) bacterial strains. Results showed significant antipyretic activity in the tested models and antibacterial activity against both groups of bacteria. (4)


Updated April 2020 / April 2018 / Decermber 2014

                                                 PHOTOS / ILLUSTRATIONS
IMAGE SOURCE: Photograph / Coloradans : Chloranthus erectus Chloranthaceae : Chloranthus elatior det. Pieter B. Pelser 11 August 2012/ Inflorescence / Copyright © 2011 by P.B. Pelser & J.F. Barcelona (contact: pieter.pelser@canterbury.ac.nz) [ref. DOL38442] / Click on image to go to source page / phytoimages.siu.edu
IMAGE SOURCE: Photo / Chloranthus erectus / Click to go to source page / © tubiologia.foroactivos.net/t4275-chloranthus-erectus

Additional Sources and Suggested Readings
Chloranthus erectus (Buch.-Ham.) Verdc. (accepted name) / Chinese names / Catalogue of Life, China
Chloranthus erectus / Synonyms & Chinese names / GLOBinMED
Evaluation of anti-inflammatory potential of Chloranthus erectus (Buch.-Ham.) Verd. leaf extract in rats /
Tag H, Namsa ND, Das AK, Kalita P, Mandal SC. / J Ethnopharmacol., 2009 Nov 12;126(2): pp 371-374. / doi: 10.1016/j.jep.2009.08.015.
Antipyretic and antibacterial activity of Chloranthus erectus (Buch.-Ham.) Verdcourt leaf extract: A popular folk medicine of Arunachal Pradesh / Hui Tag, Nima D. Namsa, M. Mandal, P. Kalita, A.K. Das, and S.C. Mandal / Indian J Pharmacol. 2010 October; 42(5): 273–276. / doi: 10.4103/0253-7613.70083
Ethnomedicinal studies of the Khamti tribe of Arunachal Pradesh / A K Das & Hui Tag / Indian Journal of Traditional Knowledge, Vol 5(3), July 2006, pp 317-322.
Chloranthus officinalis —Medicinal Plants of the Philippines / T H Pardo de Tavera et al
Chloranthus elatior / Synonyms / The Plant List
Terpenoids from Chloranthus elatior / Chang-Li SUN, Huan YAN, Xu-Hong LI, Xue-Fang ZHENG, and Hai-Yang LIU* / Nat. Prod. Bioprospect. 2012, 2: pp 156–159 / DOI 10.1007/s13659-012-0039-7
Chloranthones A - D: minor and unprecedented dinor-eudesmenes from Chloranthus elatior / Liu ST, et al. / Chem Biodivers. June 2014; 11(6): pp 904-909 / doi: 10.1002/cbdv.201300247.
Traditional Tai-Khampti medicinal plants to cure fractured bones / Sheelawati Monlai, H. Lalramnghinglova and A. Arunachalam / Pleione, 2013; 7(2): pp 469 - 472
Chlorantholides A–F, eudesmane-type sesquiterpene lactones from Chloranthus elatior / Fei Wang, Ji-Kai Liu et al / Phytochemistry, May 2012; Vol 77: pp 112-117 / https://doi.org/10.1016/j.phytochem.2012.02.008
1-(3,4-Dimethoxyphenyl)propane-1,2-diol / TGSC Information System

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. (Citing and Using a (DOI) Digital Object Identifier)

                                                            List of Understudied Philippine Medicinal Plants

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