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Family Verbenaceae
Duranta repens Linn.
Jia lian qiao

Scientific names Common names
Duranta repens Linn. Duranta (Tag.)
Duranta plumieri Jacq.  Golden dew drop (Engl.)
Duranta erecta Linn. Golden eardrops (Engl.)
Pigeon berry (Engl.)
  Skyflower (Engl.)

Other vernacular names
CHIINESE: Jia lian qiao.
FRENCH: Durante dressée.
MARSHALLESE: Jab meloklok.
SPANISH: Cuentas de oro, San Jacinto.

Duranta is a smooth, unarmed shrub, growing to a height of 1-3 meters, with straggling and drooping branches. Leaves are small, obovate-elliptic, 3 to 6 centimeters long, with pointed or rounded tips and pointed base; the margins, entire or slightly toothed. Racemes are axillary with terminal panicles, spreading and slender, up to 12 centimeters long. Flowers are scentless, borne on one side of the rachis, white or lilac-blue with two violet stripes, about 1 centimeter long and 1 centimeter wide. Fruit is fleshy, ovoid, orange-yellow and 7 to 8 millimeters long.

- Native of tropical America.
- A common hedge and fence screen in Baguio.

• The bark contains a glucosidal principal; the leaves yield a saponin substance.
• Phytochemical studies report new compounds: cleomisconsin A, hardwickiic acid, 3,13-clerodadien-16, oleic acid plus other known compounds.

Study isolated 6 compounds: 24-ethylcholest-5-en-3-â-ol (â-sitoserol), naringenin, 3,4-dihydroxy-bphenethyl-O-á- rhamnopyranosyl-(1T3)-4-O-caffeoyl-â-D-glucopyranosid (acteoside), lamiide, á-glucopyranosyl (1T2) â-fructopyranoside (sucrose), á-galactopyranosyl(1T6) á-glucopyranosyl-(1T2) fructopyranoside (raffinose) from Duranta repens Linn. var. variegate. (See study below) (4)
- Leaves extracts yielded two new iridoids, durantoside IV and durantoside V together with several known compounds, oleanolic acid, ursolic acid, (E)-cinnamic acid, beta-sitosteryl-3-O-beta-D-glucopyranoside, (E)-p-methoxycinnamic acid, KNO-3, KCl, kusaginin, glucose, durantoside I, and durantoside II. (15)
- Phytochemical screening of aqueous and methanolic leaf extracts yielded alkaloids, flavonoids, steroids, triterpenoids, tannins and phenols. (see study below) (16)

- Phytochemical analysis of fruits yielded alkaloids, glycoside, saponins, and tannins. (see study below) (17)
- A chloroform soluble fraction of an ethanolic extract of stem yield two triterpenes, ß-amyrin and 12-oleanene 3ß, 21ß-diol. (see study below) (19)

• Fruit is slightly poisonous with alkaloid type reactions. Deaths have been reported from ingestion.

Parts used
Leaves, fruits, juice.

- Fruit has been used as febrifuge.
- Fruits used for malaria and intestinal worms.
- Flowers are believed to be stimulant.
- Infusion of leaves and juice of fruit are diuretic.
- Leaves used for treatment of abscesses.
- In Bangladesh, tribal and mainstream use for malaria. Also used by mainstream Kavirajes as insect repellent, treatment of itches, infertility, fever, and pneumonia.

• Fruit is slightly poisonous with alkaloid type reactions. Deaths have been reported from ingestion.
• Study of the chloroform soluble fraction of the stem of D. repens showed toxicity with changes in biochemical parameters and abnormalities in liver and renal functions, with degenerative changes on histopath examination of the cellular destruction of the liver, heart and kidney. (8)
• Duranta erecta Poisoning in Nine Dogs and a Cat: Observed ingestion of fruits and leaves resulted in drowsiness, hyperaesthesia and tetanic seizures with GI manifestations of vomiting, diarrhea and bleeding. (9)

Thrombin Inhibitory: Study isolated flavonoids with some compounds showing significant enzyme-inhibitory activity against thrombin. (3)
Mosquitocidal Triterpenes: Study isolated two triterpenes, ß-amyrin and 12-oleanene 3ß,21ß-diol. The mixture of the two compounds was highly effective against the larvae of the mosquito, Culex quinquefasciatus, as a mosquitocide. (10)
Phytochemical Investigation / Antiviral: The DR extract showed 76% reduction in the viral titer of Hepatitis A. The activity may be attributed to the aceteoside or lamiide content which showed high antioxidant activity. (4)
Cardiac Depressant: Estimation of Cardiac Depressant Activity of Ten Medicinal Plant Extracts from Pakistan: Cardiac depressant effect induced by D repens extract was not dose-dependent, with a 50% negative inotropic effect, 50% negative chronotropic effect and 80% reduction in coronary outflow. (5)
Saponins / Cytotoxicity: Study isolated two new triterpene saponins from the leaves of DRL durantanin IV and V, together with 10 known compounds. The methanol extract and the 2 new compounds 1,2 and E/Z acteoside showed significant cytotoxic activity against a HepG2 cell line.
Antioxidant: Study of the methanol extract of Duranta repens showed radical scavenging activity. Study yielded three compounds: an acteoside, an iridoid lamilid and a saponin. (6)
Radical Scavenging Activity: Phytochemical screening isolated four new coumarinolignoids, Repenins A-D (1-4) with known coumarinolignoids, cleomiscosin A and durantin A. The compounds showed potent radical scavenging activity. (7)
Iridoid Glycosides / Antioxidative: An ethanolic extract isolated six iridoid glycosides 1-6. Duranterectoside A (1) exhibited the strongest scavenging potential for DPPH radicals, -OH inhibitory activity, total ROS inhibitory activity, and OBNOO(-) scavenging activity tests. (12)
Antiplasmodial Flavanoid Glycosides / Antimalarial: A CHCl3-soluble fraction of the whole plant of Duranta repens yielded two new flavonoid glycosides, along with five known flavonoids. Compounds 1-7 showed potent anti-plasmodial activity against the chloroquine-sensitive (D6) and chloroquine-resistant (W2) strains of Plasmodium falciparum. (14)
Antifungal: Study evaluated aqueous and methanolic leaf extracts of D. repens against three fungi, viz., Aspergillus niger, Candida albicans and Microsporum gypseum. Results showed promising antifungal activity against the tested fungi with the methanolic extract showing more potent inhibitory effect. (see constituents above) (16)
Cytotoxicity / Fruit: Study evaluated various extracts of fruit for cytotoxicity and antibacterial activity. On cytotoxic screening using brine shrimp (Artemia salina Leach) assay, the highest mortality was seen in the methanolic extract. No antibacterial activity was seen at various concentrations against human pathogenic bacteria tested. (17)
Antioxidative Potential / H2O2 Induced Cell Death / Fruit: Study investigated the antioxidative potential of DR fruits on H2O2 induced oxidative cell death. In vitro analysis showed DPPH and H2O2 scavenging and reducing potential of the extracts. (18)
Antishigellosis / Antimicrobial / Cytotoxic Potential / Stems and Fruits: Study of a chloroform soluble fraction of stem and ethanol extract of fruits exhibited potent antishigellosis activity and moderate activity against some pathogenic bacteria and fungi. Study also showed significant cytotoxicity against brine shrimp larvae. (19)
Mosquito Larvicidal / Stem and Fruit: Study of crude extracts of stem and fruits, fractions and fresh fruit juice of D. repens against the larvae of Culex quinquefasciatus showed effective larvicidal activity. (20)
Gastroprotective / Ethanol Induced Mucosal Damage: Study of an ethanol extract showed gastroprotective activity against ethanol-induced gastric mucosal injuries in rats. There was increased mucus production, decreased acidity, increased SOD level and decreased MDA level. (21)
Antimicrobial / Leaves: Study of various extracts of leaves showed antimicrobial activity. Gram positive bacteria showed more sensitivity than gram negative bacteria. It also showed antifungal activity against Candida albicans and Aspergillus niger and A. flavus. (22)

Cultivated for ornamental purposes.

Godofredo U. Stuart Jr., M.D.

Last Update September 2015

Photos © Godofredo Stuart / StuartXchange

Additional Sources and Suggested Readings
New Triterpene Saponins from Duranta repens Linn. and Their Cytotoxic Activity /Molecules 2009, 14(5), 1952-1965 / doi:10.3390/molecules14051952
Thrombin Inhibitory Constituents from Duranta repens / Itrat Anis et al / Helvetica Chimica Acta Vol 84 Issue 3, Pages 649 - 655 / DOI :10.1002/1522-2675(20010321)84:3<649::AID-HLCA649>3.0.CO;2-5
Phytochemical Investigation and Antiviral Activity of Duranta repens / Lobna M. Abou-Setta, Naglaa M. Nazif, Abdelaaty A. Shahat / Journal of Applied Sciences Research, 3(11): 1426-1433, 2007
Estimation of Cardiac Depressant Activity of Ten Medicinal Plant Extracts from Pakistan / Tasneem Mariam Sajid et al / Phytotherapy Research, Volume 10 Issue 2, Pages 178 - 180 / DOI: 10.1002/(SICI)1099-1573(199603)10:2<178::AID-PTR802>3.0.CO;2-T
Phytochemical investigation and antioxidant activity of Duranta repens / Abdelaaty A Shahat et al / Phytotherapy Research Vol 19 Issue 12, Pages 1071 - 1073 / 10.1002/ptr.1766
Repenins A–D, four new antioxidative coumarinolignoids from Duranta repens Linn.
/ Nisar Ahmad et al / Bioorganic & Medicinal Chemistry Letters, Volume 19, Issue 13, 1 July 2009, Pages 3521-3524 / doi:10.1016/j.bmcl.2009.05.006
Biochemical, Hematological and Histopathological Effects of Duranta repens Stems on Rats / Nikkon F et al / Asian Journal of Biochemistry, 2008 | Volume: 3 | Issue: 6 | Page No.: 366-372 / DOI: 10.3923/ajb.2008.366.372
Duranta erecta poisoning in nine dogs and a cat / Australian veterinary journal / 2006-Oct; vol 84 (issue 10) : pp 367-70

Mosquitocidal triterpenes from the stem of Duranta repens / Farjana Nikkon et al / Summary
Pharmaceutical Biology, March 2010, Vol. 48, No. 3, Pages 264-268 , DOI 10.3109/13880200903096570
Duranta erecta / Common names / PIER
Antioxidative iridoid glycosides from the sky flower (Duranta repens Linn). / Ijaz F, Ul Haq A, Ahmad I, Ahmad N, Hussain J, Chen S. / J Enzyme Inhib Med Chem. 2011 Feb;26(1):88-92. doi: 10.3109/14756361003724778.
Folk Medicinal Uses of Verbenaceae Family Plants in Bangladesh / Mohammed Rahmatullah, Rownak Jahan. . . and Taufiq Rahman / African Journal of Traditional, Complementary, and Alternative Medicines
Two new anti-plasmodial flavonoid glycosides from Duranta repens / Fozia Ijaz, Nisar Ahmad, Ijaz Ahmad, Azhar ul Haq, Fanghai Wang / Journal of Enzyme Inhibition and Medicinal Chemistry, December 2010, Vol. 25, No. 6 , Pages 773-778 / (doi:10.3109/14756360903433365)
Chemical components of the leaves of Duranta repens Linn
/ Kuo, Yueh Hsiung; Chen, Zong Shiow; Lin, Yun Lian / Chemical & Pharmaceutical Bulletin (tokyo), 1996, 44(2): 429-436
Evaluation of Duranta repens for its antifungal potential / Mandvi Sikarwar, Showkat Ahmad Ganie, Rajneesh K. Agnihotri, Rajendra Sharma / International Journal of Medicinal Plants 01/2014; 106:390-395.
PHYTOCHEMICAL AND BIOLOGICAL STUDIES ON FRUITS OF DURANTA REPENS / L.D. P. KHANAL*, B. RAUT, R. K. MAJHI, A. KAINI, R. BASNET, P.K. MAHAT / Pharmanest: An International Journal of Advances in Pharmaceutical Sciences
Antioxidative Potential of Duranta Repens (Linn.) Fruits Against H2O2 Induced Cell Death In Vitro / Md Asaduzzaman Khan, Mohammad Mijanur Rahman, Mousumi Tania, Nusrat Fatima Shoshee, Ai-hua Xu, and Han-chun Chen / Afr J Tradit Complement Altern Med. 2013; 10(3): 436–441.
Antishigellosis and Cytotoxic Potency of Crude Extracts and Isolated Constituents from Duranta repens / Farjana Nikkon, M. Rowshanul Habib, M. Rezaul Karim, M. Shamim Hossain, M. Ashik Mosaddik, and M. Ekramul Haque / Mycobiology. 2008 Sep; 36(3): 173–177 / doi: 10.4489/MYCO.2008.36.3.173
Larvicidal Effects of Stem and Fruits of Duranta repens Against the Mosquito Culex quinquefasciatus
/ Farjana Nikkon*, Zahangir A. Saud, Khaled Hossain, Mst. Shahnaj Parvin and M. Ekramul Haque / Int.J. PharmTech Res.2009,1(4)
Evaluation of gastro protective effects of duranta repens extract against ethanol-induced gastric mucosal injuries in rats / Peshawa Yunis Aziz. / Masters thesis,2014 / University of Malaya Students Repository
Effect of leaves Extracts of Duranta repens on growth and activity of some types of Pathogenic Bacteria and Some types of Fungi / Safaa Al-deen Ahmed Shanter Al-qay, Hala Haitham Mahmed Ali / University of Baghdad, Repository of Researches and Academic Data

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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