EUPHORBIA HIRTA L.

Euphorbia pilulifera L.
Family: Euphorbiaceae

Bengali/vernacular name: Bara Keru, Ghaopata, Bara Dhudi, Dudhiya, Barakarni.
Tribal name: Noma, Sai Ma Mungye (Marma); Dudal (Garo).
English name: Australian Asthma Herb, Pil-bearing Spurge, Snake-weed.

Description of the plant:
A small annual herb, 15-50 cm high, hispid, with white latex. Leaves opposite, 1.3-3.8 cm long, obliquely oblong-lanceolate or obovate-lanceolate, serrulate or dentate. Flowers very small, crowded in small axillary shortly pedunculate globose cymes. Capsules minute, hairy.

Using information:
The plant is astringent and haemostatic; as poultice applied topically to abscesses, inflamed glands, ulcers, oedemas and phlegmons. It is chiefly used in affections of childhood, in worms, bowel complaints and cough. The juice is considered tonic, narcotic, antiasthmatic and febrifuge; effective against dysentery, diarrhoea and colic; especially in amoebiasis.

Decoction is useful in asthma and chronic bronchial affections. The extract of this plant has sedative effect on the mucous membrane of the respiratory and genito-urinary tract and on cardiovascular system. Latex of the plant is rubbed on fissured lips by the Marma in Chittagong Hill Tracts (Yusuf et al. 2009).

EtOH(50%) extract of the plant showed antiprotozoal, antiviral, spasmogenic and anticancer activities. Plant extract possesses antidysenteric activity in in vivo condition (Asolkar et al., 1992). Both alcoholic and water extract of the whole plant possesses antibacterial properties (Singha et al., 1993).


EUPHORBIA HIRTA
EUPHORBIA HIRTA L.


Chemical constituents:
The plant contains flavonoids, terpenoids, alkanes, phenolic acids, shikimic acid and choline. Aerial parts contain latex, a toxic glycoside, an alkaloid, choline, shikimic acid, l-inositol, sugars. It also contains tannins of the pyrogallol group and flavonoids, quercetin, quercitol, taraxerol, leucocyanindin, cyanidol, β-amyrin, friedelin, triacontane, l-hexacosanol, methtyl nacyclo-artenol, tenol, cycloartenol and β-sitosterol, euphorbol, hexacosonate, β-amyrin acetate, tinyatoxin, two derivatives of deoxyphorbol actetate and ingenol triacetate.

Stems have been reported to contain phorbol esters, hentriacontane, myricyl alcohol, triterpenes, sterols and flowers contain gallic acid. Roots contain ingenol triacetate, two derivatives of deoxyphorbol acetate and taraxerone (Ghani, 2003). The plant also contains leucocyanidol, camphol, quercitrin and quercitol derivatives containing rhamnose and chlorophenolic acid (Rastogi & Mehrotra, 1993).

Distribution:
Throughout Bangladesh in fallow lands.