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Family Rubiaceae
Oldenlandia corymbosa (Linn)
Shui xian cao

Scientific names  Common names 
Gerontogea biflora Cham. & Schltdl. Mala-ulasiman-aso (Tag.) 
Gerontogea corymbosa (L.) Cham. & Schltdl. Ulasiman-aso (Tag.) 
Gerontogea herbacea Cham. & Schltdl. Malaulasiman (Tag.)
Hedyotis biflora Hornem. [Illegitimate] Diamond flower (Engl.)
Hedyotis burmanniana Wght & Arn. Flat top mille graines(Engl.)
Hedyotis corymbosa (L.) Lam. Old World diamond flower (Engl.)
Hedyotis depressa (Willd.) Roem. & Schult. Pearl grass (Engl.)
Hedyotis diantha Schult. Snake tongue grass(Engl.)
Hedyotis graminicola Kurz  
Hedyotis intermedia Wight & Arn.  
Hedyotis pseudocorymbosa Bakh.f.  
Hedyotis pusilla Hochst. ex A.Rich.  
Hedyotis ramosa (Roxb.) Blume  
Hedyotis scabrida Steud.  
Hedyotis sperguloides A.Rich.  
Oldenlandia alsinifolia G.Don  
Oldenlandia biflora Lam. [Illegitimate]  
Oldenlandia burmanniana G..Don.  
Oldenlandia capillaris DC.  
Oldenlandia depressa Willd.  
Oldenlandia herbacea DC. [Illegitimate]  
Oldenlandia mollugoides O.Schwarz  
Oldenlandia praetermissa Bremek.  
Oldenlandia pseudocorymbosa (Bakh.f.) Raizada  
Oldenlandia ramosa Roxb.  
Oldenlandia scabrida DC.  
Ulasiman-aso is a shared common name of (1) Ulasimang-aso, Baccopa monnieria, water hyssop, and (2) Malaulasiman, ulasiman-aso, malaulasima, Oldenlandia corymbosa.
Oldenlandia corymbosa L. is an accepted name The Plant List

Other vernacular names
CHINESE: Shui xian cao, Bai hua she she cao, San feng hue er cao.
HINDI: Daman pappar, Pitpapra.
INDONESIAH: Rumput mutiara.
KANNADA: Parpata hullu.
MALAYALAM: Parppatakam, Parppatakappullu.
MALAYSIA: Siku-siku, Siku dengan, Pokok telur belangkas.
MARATHI: Pitpapda.
NEPALI: Piringo.
TAMIL: Kattucayaver, Pappan puntu, Parppatakam.
THAI: Yaa linnguu.
SANSKRIT: Parpatah, Parpatakah.
VIETNAMESE: l[uw] [owx]i r[aws]n, C[os]c m[awr]n.

Malaulasiman is a slender, erect or spreading, sparsely branched, annual herb, 20 to 50 centimeters in length. Leaves are stalkless, linear-oblanceolate to linear-oblong, and 1.5 to 3 centimeters long. Flowers occur in axillary, peduncled, 2- to 5-flowered umbels, with slender peduncles which are 5 to 10 millimeters long; the pedicels are half as long or less; and solitary flowers are often intermixed. Corolla is small and white. Capsules are shaped like a top, about 2 millimeters long, and do not protrude beyond the short, acuminate, calyx-lobes.

This plant closely resembles H. diffusa, differentiated mainly by the 2- to 7-flowered inflorescence (in H. diffusa, there is only 1 flower subtended per pedicel) and moreover, by the longer pedicel.

- Found throughout the Philippines, common in and about towns, in open waste places, grasslands, etc.
- Pantropic.
- Probably a native of the Old World.

• The pharmacological properties of this species is fundamentally identical with that of H. diffusa, however, with reference to its anticancer actions, H. diffusa (Ulasiman kalat) is regarded as a more powerful drug than H. corymbosa.
• Considered cooling, febrifuge, pectoral, digestive, diuretic, depurative, diaphoretic, stomachic, and vermifuge.
• Studies have shown antioxidant, anticarcinogenic, anti-malarial, antimicrobial, hepatoprotective, radioprotective, antipyretic, analgesic properties.

• Thai study isolated ten compounds, among them: geniposide, 6a-hydroxygeniposide, scandoside methyl ester.
•Study isolated three new iridoid glycosides, nine iridoid and lignan glucosides and rutin.
• Study of alcoholic extract yielded alkaloids, carbohydrates, saponins, tannins, chlorogenic acid, steroidal glycosides, flavonoids, phenolic compounds, and coumarin. (18)
• Phytochemical analysis yielded 29.53 ± 0.15% carbohydrate content, 3.65 ± 0.18 % protein content, 23.90 ± 0.14 % crude fiber, 0.09 ± 0.15 gm ash content, 47.5 ± i.09 mg/100g ascorbic acid content, 32.68 ± 0.39 µgGAE/mg total phenol content, 129.28 ± 1.59 µg/ml inhibition concentration (IC50). (see study below) (27)

Edibility / Nutrition
• Tender young leaves and stems are edible.
• Ash from burnt leaves and stems are mixed with water, filtered, and resultant water use as tenderizer when cooking other vegetables. (23)
• Rich source of vitamin C.
• Decoction of plant used for fevers and stomach aches.
• A cooling medicine used in remittent fevers with gastric irritability and nervous depression caused by deranged air and bile. Entire plant prescribed in decoction, and combined with aromatics.
• Decoction applied to the surface of the body and given internally to cure heat eruptions.
• Used for jaundice and diseases of the liver.
• In Konkan, juice is applied for burning of the palms of the hands and soles of the feet. For burning at the pit of the stomach, the juice is taken with a little milk and sugar.
• In Martinique, tincture of roots used as vermifuge.
• In the Antiles, used as a vermifuge.
• In India, plant juice mixed with sugar and milk for stomach burning.
• In India, used for jaundice and liver problems, giddiness, dyspepsia, flatulence, colic, constipation, helminthiasis, leprosy, bronchitis.
• In Malaysia, poultice of leaves used for sore eyes and wounds.
• In the Congo, used for facilitation of childbirth.
• In Chinese medicine used for viral infections, cancer, acne, boils, appendicitis, hepatitis, eye problems and bleeding. Leaves and roots used to improve circulation and treat inflammation.
• Used as mouthwash for toothaches.
Dye: Roots yield a green dye, gerancine, after treatment with mordant. (23)

Hepatoprotective / Paracetamol Induced Toxicity: Study on the effect of methanolic extract of HC against paracetamol overdose-induced liver damage in Wistar rats showed significant hepatoprotective effects evidenced by decreased enzyme activities and an almost normal histological architecture. (1)
Antimicrobial: Screening method for the identification of plants possessing anti-microbial activity and tolerance to abiotic stresses: In a study of 50 species, Datura metel and Oldenlandia corymbosa exhibited the highest antimicrobial activity.
(3) Study of a methanol extract of Oldenlandia corymbosa showed antimicrobial activity against both gram positive and gram negative bacteria. (18)
Anti-Malarial: Study of A paniculata and Hedyotis corymbosa, both known for their hepatoprotective and fever-reducing abilities, showed inhibitory activity in the ring stage of the parasite without in vivo toxicity, with increased in vivo potency when used in combination and with curcumin. (5)
Immunocompetent Activity: Study showed prior administration of J corymbosa and H diffusa ameliorated the leukopenia and splenic cellular decrease associated with sublethal irradiation. (6)
Oxytocic Activity / Antimicrobial: O affinis is one of many plants used in the Congo and Central Africa regions for the facilitation of childbirth. Study isolated uterotonic substances - cyclic peptides (kalata-peptides) and a main peptide, B1. The kalata-peptide B1 have also shown to hold antimicrobial activity and presents a potential for the design of new peptide antibiotics. (7)
Ascorbic Acid Content: Study of fresh and dried leaves of two edible plants - O corymbosa and D rotundifolia - found them to be rich sources of ascorbic acid (vitamin C) when compared to some common garden fruits and vegetables, more in the fresh than in the dried leaves. (8)
Antioxidant / Radical Scavenging Activities: (1) Study on the antioxidant and radical scavenging activities of three traditional Chinese medicines – HD (H. diffusa), HC (Hedyotis corymbosa) and MP (M. pentaphylla), showed HD had the strongest inhibition of lipid peroxidation, followed by HC, while H corymbosa had the highest radical scavenging activity. The differences may explain the variation in therapeutic properties when the herbal medicines are used interchangeably in medicinal preparations. (2) Study showed marked antioxidant activity of the HC extract, attributed to the presence of total phenolic and total flavonoid contents. (10)
Peh-Hue-Juwa-Chi-Cao / Anti-Tumor / Radioprotective Activity: A study was done on three different crude drugs that take the same name (Peh-Hue-Juwa-Chi-Chao) as an antitumor agent and evaluated for its antitumor activity against malignant implanted subcutaneous tumors and protective effect against radiation-induced hematopoeitic damage. Results showed the three kinds of Peh-Hue-Juwa-Chi-Cao drugs all showed similar antitumor effects and protection from radiation damage. (11)
Hepatoprotective / CCl4-Hepatotoxicity: Study of ethanolic extract in albino rats showed significant reduction of SGOT and SGPT in CCl4 induced hepatotoxicity. (15)
Antipyretic: Study evaluated various extracts of H. corymbosa on yeast induced pyrexia model in albino rats. Most of the test extracts, except for petroleum ether, showed significant antipyretic activity. Results showed potential usefulness in the treatment of fever. (16)
Antihepatotoxic / D-galactosamine Induced Hepatopathy: Study showed the hepatoprotective potential of methanolic extract against D-galactosamine induced hepatopathy in experimental animals showed significant dose dependent prevention of chemically induced increase in liver enzymes. (17)
Analgesic: Study evaluated an ethanol extract of whole plant dried powder for analgesic activity using hot plate test, acetic acid induced writhing, and formalin test. Results showed significant dose-dependent analgesic effect mediated by both central and peripheral mechanisms. Standard drug for comparison was ketorolac. (19)
Tumor Inhibition: Study evaluated the key components exhibiting anti-tumor activities in the two herbs, Hedyotis corymbosa and H. diffusa using plant components ursolic acid, oleanolic acid, and geniposidic acid. Results showed ursolic acid and oleanolic acid to inhibit the growth of cultured hep-2B cells and enlargement of subcutaneous tumor. (20)
Anti-Inflammatory / Hepatoprotective / Peh-Hue-Juwa-Chi-Cao: Study in rats evaluated Peh-Hue-Juwa-Chi-Cao, containing extracts of Hedyotis diffusa, H. corymbosa or Mollugo pentaphylla. Results showed all three possess anti-inflammatory activity and hepatoprotective properties, reducing acute elevation of SGOT and SGPT after intraperitoneal administration of hepatotoxins. (21)
Cytotoxicity / Asperuloside / Anticancer: An ethanol extract and methylene chloride fraction showed potential anticancer activity with growth inhibitory activity to human YMB-1 breast cancer cell line with IC50 of 6.51 µg/mL and 2.75 µg/mL, respectively. Study isolated a lead compound asperuloside with high biological activity and growth inhibition against YMB-1 and HL60 cell line with IC50 of 0.7 and 11.0 µg/mL. (24)
Anticarcinogenic / Antioxidant / Combined Extracts of Soursop and Pearl Grass: Study evaluated the effects of combined extracts of soursop (Annona muricata) and pearl grass (Hedyotis corymbosa). Results of the combination of ethanol extract of soursop and pearl grass showed potential anticarcinogenic properties which increased with increment of doses. The anticarcinogenic properties could be due to their high antioxidant activities. (25)
Anti-Malarial / Combined Extracts of A. paniculata and H. corymbosa / Curcumin: Study evaluated methanolic extracts of Andrographis paniculata and Hedyotis corymbosa alone and in combination and individually with curcumin. Results showed combination of the two herbal drugs showed substantial enhancement in their anti-malarial activity. Combination of each with curcumin also revealed synergistic anti-malarial effect. Both extracts inhibited the ring stage of the parasite and did not show any in vivo toxicity when used alone or in combination. (26)
Antioxidant: Study evaluated the phytoconstituents and antioxidant activity of Oldenlandia corymbosa using DPPH assay for free radical scavenging activity. Methanolic extract showed significant antioxidant activity with IC50 value of 129.28 ± 1.59 µg/ml. (see constituents above) (27)


Last Update October 2016

IMAGE SOURCE: / Photograph / Oldenlandia corymbosa L. / Leaves, flowers and capsule / © Flora of Qatar / click on image to go to source page / Flora of Qatar
OTHER IMAGE SOURCE: / Illustration / Oldenlandia corymbosa L. [as Hedyotis ramosa (Roxb.) Blume] / Wight, R., Icones Plantarum Indiae Orientalis, vol. 3: t. 822 (1846) [n.a.] / PlantIllustrations.org
IMAGE SOURCE: / Photograph / Oldenlandia corymbosa L. / Seed capsules of snake tongue grass / © Flora of Qatar / click on image to go to source page / Flora of Qatar

Additional Sources and Suggested Readings
Hepatoprotective studies on Hedyotis corymbosa (L.) Lam. / Sini Sadasivan et al / Journal of Ethnopharmacology • Volume 106, Issue 2, 30 June 2006, Pages 245-249 / doi:10.1016/j.jep.2006.01.002
Oldenlandia and Scutellaria Antitoxin and Anticancer Herbs / Subhut Dharmananda /
Screening method for the identification of plants possessing anti-microbial activity and tolerance to abiotic stresses

Chemical constituents from Oldenlandia corymbosa L. of Thai origin / Pawadee N et al / Journal of Natural Medicines • Volume 62, Number 2 / April, 2008 / DOI 10.1007/s11418-007-0212-1

Anti-malarial activities of Andrographis paniculata and Hedyotis corymbosa extracts and their combination with curcumin / Kirti Mishra et al /
Malar J. 2009; 8: 26. / doi: 10.1186/1475-2875-8-26.
Comparative study on the immunocompetent activity of three different kinds of Peh-Hue-Juwa-Chi-Cao, Hedyotis diffusa, H. corymbosa and Mollugo pentaphylla after sublethal whole body x-irradiation / Yang J J et al / PTR. Phytotherapy research • 1997, vol. 11, no6, pp. 428-432
Oldenlandia affinis (R&S) DC: A plant containing uteroactive peptides used in African traditional medicine / Lorents Gran et al /
Journal of Ethnopharmacology, Volume 70, Issue 3, 15 July 2000, Pages 197-203 /
Antioxidant activity of extracts of peh-hue-juwa-chi-cao in a cell free system / Lin, Chun-Ching et al / Am J Chin Med 2004,Jan,01;32(3):339-49; (PMID: 15344417)
In vitro antioxidant activity of Hedyotis corymbosa (L.) Lam aerial parts / J M Sasikumar et al / Indian Jour of Biochemistry and Biophysics, Vol 47, Feb 2010, pp 49-52
The possible use of Peh-Hue-Juwa-Chi-Cao as an antitumour agent and radioprotector after therapeutic irradiation / Jenq-Jer Yang, Chun-Ching Lin and Hsue-Yin Hsu / Phytotherapy Research
Volume 11 Issue 1, Pages 6 - 10
Hedyotis corymbosa (L.) Lam. / Catalogue of Life, China 2011
Diamond flower / Common names / Flowers of India
Oldenlandia corymbosa / Vernacular names / GLOBinMED
A Study of hepatoprotective activity of Hedyotis corymbosa. Linn, in albino rats / Rajshekar Chimkode, M.B Patil, Sunil Jalalpure, T.Y. Pasha, and Sibaji sarkar / Anc Sci Life. 2009 Apr-Jun; 28(4): 32–35.
A study of antipyretic activity of Hedyotis corymbosa Linn. in Albino rats. / Rajshekar Chimkode; Patil, M. B.; Sunil Jalalpure; Pasha, T. Y.; Sibaji Sarkar / Biomed 2008 Vol. 3 No. 3/4 pp. 234-238
Anti-hepatotoxic potential of Hedyotis corymbosa against D-galactosamine-induced hepatopathy in experimental rodents / Ramesh Kr. Gupta*, Rajnish Kr. Singh, Sudhansu Ranjan Swain, Talib Hussain, Chandana Venkateswara Rao / Asian Pacific Journal of Tropical Biomedicine (2012)S1542-S1547
Phytochemical and antimicrobial evaluation of Oldenlandia corymbosa / A. Zahir Hussain and S. Kumaresan / Asian Journal of Plant Science and Research, 2013, 3(4):155-158
Analgesic Effect of Ethanol Extract of Hedyotis Corymbosa L. Whole Plant / Ummul Khayer Fatema, Md. Selim Hossain / Int Res J. Pharm. 2014, 5(1)
Tumor inhibition by several components extracted from Hedyotis corymbosa and Hedyotis diffusa / H Y Hsu / PhD / Cancer Detection and Prevention 1998; 22(Supplement 1).
Anti-Inflammatory and Hepatoprotective Activity of Peh-Hue-Juwa-Chi-Cao in Male Rats / Chun-Ching Lin, Lean-Teik Ng, Jenq-Jer Yang, Yu-Fang Hsu / Chun-Ching Lin et al, Am. J. Chin. Med. 30, 225 (2002). DOI: 10.1142/S0192415X02000405
Oldenlandia corymbosa / Synonyms / The Plant List
Oldenlandia corymbosa / Useful Tropical Plants
Isolation of an Anti-Cancer Asperuloside from Hedyotis corymbosa L. / Nina Artanti, Muhammad Hanafi*, Rina Andriyani, Vienna Saraswati, Zalinar Udin, Puspa D. Lotulung, Ken Ichi Fujita, Yoshinosuke Usuki / THE JOURNAL OF TROPICAL LIFE SCIENCE, VOL. 5, NO. 2, pp. 88-91, May, 2015

Anti-malarial activities of Andrographis paniculata and Hedyotis corymbosa extracts and their combination with curcumin / Kirti Mishra, Aditya P Dash, Bijay K Swain and Nrisingha Dey / Malaria Journal (2009) 8:26 / DOI: 10.1186/1475-2875-8-26

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.

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