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.
- 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.
- Found from southeast China to tropical Asia.
- Listed as "vulnerable" in the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species.
- 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 %). (See study below) (3)
- Various extracts of leaves yielded alkaloids, flavonoids, phenolic compounds, saponins, tannins, cardiac glycosides, steroids, and terpenoids. (see study below) (12)
- Febrifuge, antidiarrheal.
- Studies have suggested antifungal, antibacterial, anti-inflammatory, antidiabetic, anti-arthritic, nephroprotective, hepatoprotective properties.
Bark, roots, leaves.
- In India, fruit pulp reported as edible. (10)
- In India, bark is used for fever.
- Decoction of roots used for diarrhea.
- The Malayali tribals in Kolli hills of Tamil Nadu, India, a leaf extract mixed with banana is taken orally to facilitate delivery. (11)
- Fish poison: In India, coarsely ground plant parts used in small ponds and streams. (14)
• Flavonol Glycoside: Study yielded a new flavonol glycoside, 7-O-(5-O-benzoyl-ß-D-glucopyranosyl)-rutin. (1)
• 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. (2)
• 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. (4)
• 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. (5)
• 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. (6)
• 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. (3)
• Hepatoprotective: Study evaluated an ethanolic extract of Canthium dicoccum whole plant for hepatoprotective activity in isoniazid (INH) and rifampicin (RIF) induced hepatotoxicity. Treatment with ECD significantly attenuated the INH and RIF induced enzyme elevations and improved serum T-PRO levels. (8)
• Nephroprotective: Study evaluated the protective effect of aqueous extract of C. dicoccum against Streptomycin-induced nephrotoxicity in rats. Results suggest a dose-dependent nephroprotective potential as evidenced by improvement in biochemical and urinary parameters. (9)
• Antibacterial / Antifungal: Study evaluated various solvent extracts for antimicrobial activity against Staphylococcus aureus, Streptococcus pyogenes, Enterococcus faecalis, E. coli, Proteus vulgaris, Pseudomonas aeruginosa, Vibrio cholerae, Candida albicans, C. parapsilosis, and C. tropicalis. A methanol extract showed the highest antimicrobial activity against all bacteria and fungal strains tested. (see constituents above) (12)
• Antifungal / Leaves: Study investigated the antifungal activity of methanol extract of leaves of Psydrax dicoccos against C. albicans C. krusei, C. guilliermondii, C. parapsilosis, C. tropicalis, C. glabrata, four dermatophytes viz., T. rubrum, T. mentagrophytes, M. gypseum and E. flococcum. The highest zone of inhibition was against C. albicans. Antifungal activity was attributed to cinnamic acid, 2H-1-Benzopyran-2-one, 5,7-, (Z)6,(Z)9-pentadecadien-1-ol, n-Hesadecanoic acid from the methanol extract. (13)
• Antioxidant Capacity / Free Radical Scavenging / Phenolic and Flavonoid Contents: Study evaluated the in vitro antioxidant activity of various extracts of Psydrax dicoccos using various radical scavenging assays. A methanol extract showed the highest phenol and flavonoid contents with total phenol content of 5.05 ± 0.76 mg/ml GAE/g and flavonoids of 6.72 ± 0.13 mg/ml QE/g. (14)