Family: Euphorbiaceae

Bengali/Vernacular Name: Jaipal, Jaiphal, Jamalgota.

English Name: Purging Croton, Croton Oil Plant.

Description of the Plant

A small evergreen tree. Leaves 5-10 cm long, oblong to ovate-lanceolate, minutely and remotely repand-toothed. Flowers small, on terminal glabrous racemes at the end of branchlets. Capsules 17-25 mm long, oblong and obtusely 3- lobed.

Using Information

Seeds, leaves, bark and root, all possesses drastic purgative properties. Oil is powerful hydragogue, cathartic and externally a vesicant, producing irritation, inflammation, and pustular eruption. It is given only when a drastic and violent purgative is required, as in dropsy and cerebral affection like apoplexy, convulsions and insanity, attended with high blood presure.

Seeds are vermifuge; useful in asthma. The roots are abortifacient. Wood is diaphoretic in small doses, but purgative and emetic in large doses.

Plant extract used in folk medicine for treating cancer, showed activity against P-388 lymphocytic leukaemia in mice (Rastogi & Mehrotra, 1993). Seed oil exhibit analgesic, anti-fungal and anti-HIV activity (Aslam et al., 2006).

Chemical Constituents

Seed oil contains inflammatory and carcinogenic compounds, phorbol-12, 13-diesters, a series of toxic, irritating co-carcinogenic di-esters of tigliane type of diterpene ployol, phorbol with simple acids such as acetic methylbutyric, tiglic and myristic acids.


Seeds contain ß-sitosterol and haemolytic proteins, crotin I and II and an alkaloid, ricinine and two tumour-promoting principles of which one is phorbol 12-tiglate, 13-decanoate in seed oil. The oil also contains a vesicant non-purgative and non-vesicant purgative compound. (Ghani, 2003)


Chittagong and Sal forests.

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