HOME      •      SEARCH      •      EMAIL    •     ABOUT


Family Cucurbitaceae
Melon
Cucumis melo Linn.
CANTALOUPE

Xiang gua

Scientific names Common names
Cucumis acidus Jacq. Atimon (Bis.)
Cucumis alba Nakai Inkug (Sul.)
Cucumis arenarius Schumach. & Thonn. Itimon (Ilk.)
Cucumis aromaticus Royle Katimon (Bis.)
Cucumis bisexualis A.M.Lu & G.C.Wang Melon (Span., Tag.)
Cucumis callosus (Rottler) Cogn. Cantaloupe (Engl.)
Cucumis campechianus Kunth Musk melon (Engl.)
Cucumis cantalupo Rchb.  
Cucumis chate L.  
Cucumis chinensis (Pangalo) Pangalo  
Cucumis chito C.Morren  
Cucumis cicatrisatus Stocks  
Cucumis conomon Thunb.  
Cucumis cubensis Schrad.  
Cucumis dudaim L.  
Cucumis eriocarpus Boiss. & Noé  
Cucumis flexuosus L.  
Cucumis jamaicensis Bertero ex Spreng.  
Cucumis jucunda F.Muell.  
Cucumis laevigatus Chiov.  
Cucumis maculatus Willd.  
Cucumis melo L.  
Cucumis microcarpus (Alef.) Pangalo  
Cucumis microsperma Nakai  
Cucumis momordica Roxb.  
Cucumis officinarum-melo Crantz  
Cucumis orientalis Kudr.  
Cucumis pancherianus Naudin  
Cucumis pedatifidus Schrad.  
Cucumis persicodorus Seitz  
Cucumis persicus (Sarg.) M.Roem.  
Cucumis pictus Jacq.  
Cucumis princeps Wender.  
Cucumis pseudocolocynthis Wender.  
Cucumis pubescens Willd.  
Cucumis reginae Schrad.  
Cucumis schraderianus M.Roem.  
Cucumis serotinus Haberle ex Seitz  
Cucumis trigonus Roxb.  
Cucumis turbinatus Roxb.  
Cucumis ultissimus Roxb.  
Ecballium lambertianum M.Roem.  
Melo adaba (Pangalo) Pangalo  
Melo x ambigua Pangalo  
Melo ameri Pangalo  
Melo cantalupensis (Naudin) Pangalo  
Melo cassaba Pangalo  
Melo chandalak Pangalo  
Melo chinensis Pangalo  
Melo conomon Pangalo  
Melo dudaim (L.) Sageret  
Melo figari Pangalo  
Melo flexuosus (L.) Pangalo  
Melo microcarpus (Alef.) Pangalo  
Melo monoclinus Pangalo  
Melo orientalis (Kudr.) Nabiev  
Melo persicus Sageret  
Melo sativus Sageret  
Melo vulgaris Moench ex Cogn.  
Melo zard Pangalo  

Cucumis melo is an accepted name. The Plant List


Other vernacular names
CHINESE: Ha mi gua, Bai lan gua, Hua cai tu gua, Yue gua, Shao gua, sheng gua, Xiang gua, Tian gua.
DANISH: Netmelon
DUTCH : Netmeloen, Muskaatmeloen.
FINNISH : Verkkomeloni.
FRENCH : Melon brodé, Melon de Cavaillon, Melon cantaloup brodé, Melon maraîcher.
GERMAN: Netzmelone.
HINDI : Kharbuza.
ITALIAN : Melone retato, Melone reticolato, Melone moscato.
JAPANESE : Masuku meron.
PORTUGUESE : Melão reticulado, Melão-de-casca-de-carvalho.
SPANISH : Melón bordado.
SWEDISH : Nätmelon.
THAI : Taeng thai.
TURKISH : Kavun fidani.

Botany
Melon is a spreading, annual, more or less hairy vine. Leaves are somewhat rounded, angled, 6 to 15 centimeters long, heart-shaped at the base, and shallowly 3- to 7-lobed. Flowers are yellow, 1.5 to 2 centimeters long. Fruit is ovoid, somewhat rounded or ellipsoid, 20 centimeters long or less, smooth, green, and longitudinally striped or mottled.

Distribution
- Cultivated in several forms or varieties in the Philippines.
- Occasional as an escape.
- Cultivated in all warm countries.

Constituents
- Fruit contains dextrose, 1.4 to 2.6%; citric acid, water, 92 to 96%; fat, 0.5 to 0.8%;.
- Seed contains globulin and glutine, arginine, histidine, lysine, cystine, tryptophan, fixed oil, galactan and glucose.
- Oil consists of glycerides of linoleic, oleic, palmitic, stearic and myristic acid; also, lecithin and chloresterin.
- Roots contain nenemetin, potassium malate and pectin.
- Contains an emetic principle.

- Study of various seed extracts yielded the presence of tannins, saponins, phenols, flavonoids, cardiac glycosides, terpenoids, alkaloids, and steroids. (see study below) (17)
- Proximate analysis of three varieties of seeds and seed oils of melon showed chemical composition values as follows: fat 41.6 to 44.5%, protein 34.4 to 39.8%, crude fiber 4.5 to 8.5%, carbohydrates 8.2 to 12.7%, soluble sugars 3.7 to 4.2%, and minerals 4.6 to 5.1%. Content of sterols, phospholipids, and tocopherols in the oils was 0.6, 0.7-1.7% and 435-828 mg/kg, respectively. Major fatty acid in lipids was linoleic (51.1-58.5%), followed by oleic acid (24.8-25.6%). Palmitic acid was the major fatty acid of the phospholipids, followed by oleic acid. Oleic acid was the main component among the fatty acids of the sterol esters, followed by oleic acid. (18)
- Study of EtOAc fraction of Cucumis melo var. reticulatus seeds yielded a new phenylethyl chromenone, cucumin S [(R)-5,7-dihydroxy-2-[1-hydroxy-2-(4-hydroxy-3-methoxyphenyl)ethyl]chromone] (1), along with five known compounds: 5,7-dihydroxy-2-[2-(4-hydroxyphenyl)ethyl]chromone (2), 5,7-dihydroxy-2-[2-(3,4-dihydroxyphenyl)ethyl]chromone (3), luteolin (4), quercetin (5), and 7-glucosyloxy-5-hydroxy-2-[2-(4-hydroxyphenyl)ethyl]chromone (6). (see study below) (25)

Properties
- Considered emetic and purgative.
- Fruit, especially the pulp, considered nutritive, demulcent, diuretic and cooling.
- Seeds considered diuretic.
- Kernel considered stomachic, peptic and constructive remedy.

Parts used
Roots, pulp, seeds, kernel.

Uses
Culinary / Nutrition
- The native variety as a soft, white flesh, which is cut up, shredded, or mashed, and eaten or drunk with sugar.
- The other cultivated varieties have yellowish or pale-orange flesh, with firmer flesh, and with rough skins. These belong to the cantaloupe group.
- Seeds are salted, dried, and the kernels eaten as delicacy.
- Seed kernels are rich in protein and fat, used as dressing for cakes, bread, confectionery, sweet snack foods. Sometimes, it is used as substitute for almonds and pistachio.
- Source of edible oil with the nutritional value of melon seed oil.
- A good source of potassium, vitamin A, and folate.
Folkloric
- Root considered an effective emetic – one piece in 60 gm of lime water.
- Peduncles used for anasarca and indigestion. In Indo-China, it is employed to arrest vomiting.
- Fruit pulp used as a lotion for chronic and acute eczema; also used for removing tan and freckles; and internally, used for dyspepsia.
- Seeds yield a sweet, edible oil which is nutritive and diuretic, useful for painful discharges and suppression of the urine.
- Fruit pulp also used as diuretic.
- Kernels prescribed for cancer of the stomach and for purulent problems of the digestive tract.
- Kernels used for menorrhagia, after the oil has been extracted.
- In Italy seeds are used as emollient and refreshing medicine.



Studies
Cucurbitane-Type Triterpenoids / Cytotoxic Activity:
Study of the stems of Cucumis melo isolated 21 cucurbitane-type triterpenoids, including 9 new compounds. Two known compounds, cucurbitacin B and cucurbitacin A showed significant cytotoxic activity against proliferation of A549/ATCC and BEL7402 cells in vitro. (1)
Melon Allergy / Randomized, Double-Blind, Crossover Challenge Study: In a study of 53 patients with a clinical history of adverse reactions to melon, acute clinical reactivity was confirmed in 19 (36%). The most frequent was oral allergy, two had life-threatening reactions. Skin prick test and specific IgE measurements were 42% and 44% predictive, respectively. Isolated melon allergy is rare, most patients having allergic rhinitis and asthma or both, and associated food allergies. (2)
Antioxidant / Anti-Inflammatory: The CM extract inhibited in a dose-dependent manner the production of superoxide anion, closely linked to superoxide dismutase activity. The anti-inflammatory activity of the extract was related to its capacity to induce the production of IL-10 by peritoneal macrophages. Also, animals supplemented with the CME/gliadin combination was protected against the pro-inflammatory properties of IFN-g. (4)
Antioxidant / Analgesic / Anti-Inflammatory: Study of the seed extract of Cucumis melo var. agrestis in albino mice showed significant antioxidant, anti-inflammatory and analgesic properties. (9) Study showed C. melo seeds have potent anti-inflammatory activity (carrageenan-induced paw edema in rats), antioxidant activity (DPPH and H2O2 radical scavenging) and analgesic activity (tail immersion and tail flick methods in mice). (20)
Cytotoxicity / Antioxidant: Study of an aqueous extract of fruit pulp showed hydroxyl radical, superoxide radical, nitric oxide and DPPH activity. It was found to be cytotoxic dose-dependent and concentration-dependent effect against Erlich's Ascites Carcinoma Cells. (10)
Curcubitacin Liposome / Antitumor: Study showed CLI (Cucurbitacin Liposome for Injection) showed significant antitumor effects in vivo and in vitro probably through induction of G2/M cell cycle arrest. Cucurbitacins are highly oxygenated tetracyclic triterpenes, predominantly found in the cucurbitaceae family. (11)
Antifungal / Aflatoxin: Aflatoxins are the most important fungi toxin produced by Aspergillus flavus on animal feedstuff. Various extracts of mature and immature fruits of C. melo was studied for effect on fungi. Results showed an effect on A. flavus and suggest possible benefit of adding the extract to feedstuff for decreasing the growth of A. flavus, thus decreasing aflatoxin production. The ethanolic extract showed better antifungal effect than the methanolic one. (12)
Immunomodulatory: Study showed the fruit extracts of P. granatum, A. squamosa and Cucumis melo significantly stimulated both cell mediated immunity and humoral immunity in mice. (13)
Anti-Hyperlipidemic / Fruit Peels: Study showed methanolic and aqueous extract of fruit peels of Cucumis melo have potent antihyperlipidemic activity in high cholesterol diet induced hyperlipidemic model, with activity equipotent with the atorvastatin treated group. (14)
Cytotoxic Potential / Prostate Cancer Cell Line / Fruit: Study of aqueous fruit extract of C. melo in human prostate cancer cell line (PC-3) showed dose-dependent cytotoxic activities. As dose increased the number of viable cells decreased. (16)
Antioxidant / Seeds: Among different solvents, maximum antioxidant activity was found in the aqueous extract (73.2%). Total phenol and flavonoid content in the seed extract was 23.32 mg gallic acid equivalents (GAE)/g and 63.1 mg Quercetin Equivalent (QE)/g, respectively. The powerful antioxidant activity was attributed to phenols and flavonoids in the ethanolic peel extracts. (see constituents above) (17)
Anti-Inflammatory / Anti-Prostate Cancer: Study evaluated the therapeutic potential of ethanolic extract of C. melo as anti-inflammatory and anticancer agent on the prostate gland in various in vitro and in vivo experiments with wistar albino rats. Results showed reduction of prostate hyperplasia suggesting benefit in BPH, together with apoptotic activity. The ethanolic extract showed reduction of inflammation through reduction of prime inflammatory mediator TNF-α. (19)
Cytotoxic / Ehrlich's Ascites Carcinoma Cells: Study of an aqueous extract of C. melo seeds showed cytotoxic effect against Ehrlich's cancer cells in a dose dependent manner. Maximum cytotoxicity was observed at 500 µg of extract. (21)
Antibacterial / Antifungal: Whole plant and fruit extracts of C. melo showed highest zone of inhibition against C. albicans and E. coli. (22)
Antidepressant / Anxiolytic / Fruit: Study investigated the antidepressant activity of C. melo fruit extract in stress induced rats by Forced Swimming Test (FST). Results showed anti-stress and moderate anxiolytic activity, which may be due, in part, to its antioxidant effect. (23)
Diuretic / Seeds: Study investigated the diuretic effect of ethanolic seed extracts of Macrotyloma uniflorum and Cucumis melo in albino rats. Significant diuretic effect was observed. C. melo extract (400 mg/kg) showed more diuretic effect than standard furosemide (5mg/kg). (24)
Cucumin S / Antioxidant / Seeds: Study of Cucumis melo var. reticulatus seeds yielded a new phenylethyl chromenone, cucumin S [(R)-5,7-dihydroxy-2-[1-hydroxy-2-(4-hydroxy-3-methoxyphenyl)ethyl]chromone], along with five known compounds. Using DPPH assay, compounds 3, 4, and 5 showed potent antioxidant activity compared to propyl gallate at concentration of 100 µM.(see constituents above) (25)
Antihyperglycemic / Leaves: Study investigated the possible anti-hyperglycemic activity of C. melo leaf extracts in streptozotocin induced hyperglycemia in rats. Results showed a methanolic leaf extract to have greater anti-hyperglycemic effect than the aqueous extract, compared to the glibenclamide treated group. The acute toxicity value was 5000 mg/kg. (26)
Antilithiasis / Prevention of Calcium Oxalate Crystallization / Fruit Skin: Study investigated the effect of C. melo fruit skin hydro-alcoholic extract on calcium oxalate crystallization in vitro. Results showed C. melo fruit skin can facilitate kidney stones excretion by decreasing the size of crystals and prevent the formation of primary kidney stone nucleus. (27)
Anti-Cancer Against Human Melanoma Cells: Study showed C. melo ethanol extract has a strong toxicity against human melanoma A375 cancer cells. (28)
Mosquito Repellent / Fruit: Study evaluated the repellent activities of C. melo and C. prophetarum against larvae of Cx. quinquefasciatus. Highest larval mortality was seen with the petroleum ether fruit extract of C. melo as compared to C. prophetarum. (29)

Availability
Wild-crafted.

Godofredo U. Stuart Jr., M.D.

Last Update June 2016

Photos © Godofredo Stuart / StuartXchange
OTHER IMAGE SOURCE: / Cucurbitaceae - Cucumis melo x dudaïm / From: Flore des serres et des jardins de l'Europe by Charles Lemaire and others. Gand [Gent], Louis van Houtte, 1861, volume 14, plate 1474. / MEEMELINK
OTHER IMAGE SOURCE: / Line Drawing / CUCUMIS MELO / CHEST OF BOOKS

Additional Sources and Suggested Readings
(1)
Cucurbitane-Type Triterpenoids from the Stems of Cucumis melo / Chuan Chen, Shigao Qiang et al / J. Nat. Prod., 2009, 72 (5), pp 824–829 / DOI: 10.1021/np800692t
(2)
Randomized, double-blind, crossover challenge study in 53 subjects reporting adverse reactions to melon (Cucumis melo) / Julia Rodriguez, Jesus Crespo et al / Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology,
Volume 106, Issue 5, Pages 968-972 (November 2000)
(3)
Volatile Components in Aqueous Essence and Fresh Fruit of Cucumis melo cv. Athena (Muskmelon) by GC-MS and GC-O / Mara Jordn et al / J. Agric. Food Chem., 2001, 49 (12), 5929-5933 • DOI: 10.1021/jf010954o
(4)
Antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties of a Cucumis melo LC. extract rich in superoxide dismutase activity / Ioannis Vouldoukis et al /
Journal of Ethnopharmacology, Volume 94, Issue 1, September 2004, Pages 67-75 / doi:10.1016/j.jep.2004.04.023
(5)
Breast cancer-related effects of eating melons

(6)
Cucumis melo L. / Catalogue of Life, China
(7)
Sorting Cucumis names / Maintained by: Michel H. Porcher, / MULTILINGUAL MULTISCRIPT PLANT NAME DATABASE
(8)
PHYSICO-CHEMICAL STUDIES OF INDIGENOUS DIURETIC MEDICINAL PLANTS--Citrullus vulgaris Schrad, Cucumis melo Linn, Cymbopogon citratus (DC) Stapf, Moringa oleifera Lam, Raphanus sativus Linn and Zea mays Linn. / MARYAM MIRZA, MAHBOOB ALI KALHORO, ZAHRA YAQEEN, TAHIRA B. SARFARAZ AND R.B. QADRI / Pakistan Journal of Pharmacology Vol.20, No.1, January 2003, pp.9-16
(9)
Antioxidant Activity and Pharmacological Evaluation of Cucumis melo var. agrestis Methanolic Seed Extract /
R. Arora, M. Kaur and N.S. Gill / Research Journal of Phytochemistry, 2011, Vol 5, No: 3, pp 146-155 /
DOI: 10.3923/rjphyto.2011.146.155
(10)
Invitro Cytotoxicity and Free Radical Scavenging Activity of aqueous extract of Cucumis melo / P.A.Vasundra Devi / International Journal of Pharmaceutical and Biological Research (IJPBR) Vol. 2(6), 2011, 150-156
(11)
The antitumor activities of Cucurbitacin Liposome for Injec5ion both in vitro and in vivo / Junwei Wang, Xiaomian Zhou, Yinglin Cao, Jinfang Xiao, Enlong Ma, Yijhu Deng, Dawei Chen / Asian Journ of Traditional Medicine, 2007, 2(3)
(12)
Antifungal Effects of Mature and Immature Fruit Extracts of Cucumis melo L. on Aspergillus flavus / M. Asadi, I. Gholampour Azizi and F. Yahyayi / Global Veterinaria 8 (4): 347-351, 2012
(13)
Immunomodulatory Activity of Alcoholic Extract of Different Fruits in Mice / Dhasarathan P., Gomathi R., Theriappan P. and S. Paulsi / Journal of Applied Sciences Research, 6(8): 1056-1059, 2010
(14)
Anti-hyperlipidemic Activity of Cucumis Melo Fruit Peel Extracts in High Cholesterol Diet Induced Hyperlipidemia in Rats / Jayant S. Bidkar, Dhanaji Dadaso Ghanwat, Madhuri D. Bhujbal, Ganesh Y. Dama / Journal of Complementary and Integrative Medicine, Vol 9, Issue 1, Sept 2012
(15)
Cucumis melo / Synonyms / The Plant List
(16)
Studies of Cytotoxic Potential of Cucumis melo. Linn Fruit Aqueous Extract in Prostate Cancer Cell lines PC-3 Using MTT and Neutral Red Assay / Sibi Perumbamkudiyil Ittiyavirah, Ann George, Anju M Santhosh, Sudhi T Kurian, Prinsy Pappachan, Gifty Jacob / Iranian Journal of Pharmacology & Therapeutics 2013. 12(1):24-29.
(17)
Studies on phytochemical analysis, proximate analysis and antioxidant activity of Cucumis melo seed extract / B Janarthanam / 3rd International Conference and Exhibition on Pharmacognosy, Phytochemistry & Natural Products, October 26-28, 2015 Hyderabad, India
(18)
Proximate composition of seeds and seed oils from melon (Cucumis melo L.) cultivated in Bulgaria / Zhana Petkova* & Ginka Antova / Cogent Food & Agriculture, Volume 1, Issue 1, 2015 / DOI:10.1080/23311932.2015.1018779
(19)
Evaluation of ethanolic extract of Cucumis melo L. for inflammation and hyperplasia of prostate / Sibi P Ittiyavirah, Silby Cheriyan / Int J Nutr Pharmacol Neurol Dis 2014;4:224-30 / DOI: 10.4103/2231-0738.139403
(20)
Evaluation of Therapeutic Potential of Traditionally Consumed Cucumis melo Seeds / N.S. Gill, J Bajwa, K Dhiman, P Sharma, S Sood, PD Sharma, B Singh, and M Bali / Asian Journal of Plant Sciences, 10 (1): 86-91, 2011
(21)
Invitro Cytotoxicity and Free Radical Scavenging Activity of aqueous extract of Cucumis melo
/ P.A. Vasundra Devi*, S.Sharmila, S.Divyapriya /
International Journal of Pharmaceutical and Biological Research (IJPBR) Vol. 2(6), 2011, 150-156
(22)
ANTIMICROBIAL AND ANTIFUNGAL ACTIVITY OF CUCUMIS MELO L. (CUCURBITACEAE) AND PERGULARIA DAEMIA FROSK. (ASCLEPIADACEAE) AN ETHNOMEDICINAL PLANTS / Hemantkumar A Thakur / International Journal of Bioassays, 2015, 4 (01), 3661-3665
(23)
Antidepressant activity of Cucumis melo Fruit Extract in Stress Induced Rats / Victor Arokia Doss*, Sowndarya R. and Sandiya S. / Journal of Science and Technology Volume : 3 No. : 1, ISSN: 2349 – 5456
(24)
EVALUATION OF DIURETIC EFFECT OF ETHANOLIC SEED EXTRACTS OF MACROTYLOMA UNIFLORUM AND CUCUMIS MELO IN RATS / K.RAVISHANKAR* AND P.S.V.VISHNU PRIYA / International Journal of Pharma and Bio Sciences, 2012 July; 3(3): (P) 251- 255
(25)
Cucumin S, a new phenylethyl chromone from Cucumis melo var. reticulatus seeds / Sabrin R.M. Ibrahim, Gamal A. Mohamed / Revista Brasileira de Farmacognosia, Volume 25, Issue 5, September–October 2015, Pages 462–464
(26)
Anti-Hyperglycemic Activity of Cucumis melo Leaf Extracts in Streptozotocin Induced Hyperglycemia in Rats / N Babulreddy, Shakti Prasanna Sahoo, S Ramachandran, and MD Dhanaraju / IJPRAS, Vol 2, Issue 4 (2013): 22-27
(27)
Effect of Hydro-Alcoholic Extract of Cucumis melo L. Fruit Skin on Prevention of Calcium Oxalate Crystallization In vitro / M Eidi *, M Bahar, A Eidi, O Pouyan , P Shahmohammadi / JMP. 2009; 4 (32) :46-52
(28)
Evaluate the Activity of Cucumis melo Ethanol Extract against Skin Cancer Named Melanoma
/ Ali A. A. Al-Shawi / Basrah Journal of Science(C) Vol.33(1),1-9, 2015
(29)
MOSQUITO REPELLENT ACTIVITY OF CUCUMIS MELO L. AND CUCUMIS PROPHETARUM LINN. /
Sonwalkar R.P., Ahire Y. R., Deokule S. S., Kadam P. S. / Research & Reviews: Journal of Botany, Vol 2, No 1 (2013)

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.

HOME      •      SEARCH      •      EMAIL    •     ABOUT