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Family Clusiaceae
Garcinia smeathmanii (Planch. & Triana) Oliv.

Scientific names Common names
Garcinia barteri Oliv.. Gatasan-layugan (Tag.)
Garcinia chevalierana Hochr. False chew stick tree (Engl.)
Garcinia chevalieri Engl. ex R.E.Fr.  
Garcinia guineensis (D.Don) Vesque  
Garcinia lualabensis Engl.  
Garcinia mbulwe Engl.  
Garcinia neolivingstonei Spirlet  
Garcinia pierreana De Wild.  
Garcinia polyantha Oliv.  
Garcinia seretii De Wild.  
Garcinia smeathmanii (Planch. & Triana) Oliv.  
Garcinia stolzii Engl.  
Rheedia smeathmanii Planch. & Triana.  
Garcinia smeathmanii (Planch. & Triana) Oliv. is an accepted name. The Plant List

Other vernacular names
GHANA: False chew stick.
WEST AFRICAN: Tweapia-akoa, Macacundje, Oropupati, Obien-odun.

Garcinia smeathmanii is a hairless evergreen shrub or tree growing up to 15- 25 meters high, erect, much branched. Bole is straight, 2o centimeters or more in diameter. Branches are longitudinally grooved. Leaves are opposite; stipules are absent. Flowers are in fascicles of 5 to 30 in the leaf axils. Fruit is a globose berry, yellow when ripe, 1 to 2.5 centimeters.

- Introduced.
- Widespread in tropical Africa.

- Study of methanolic extract of stem bark yielded 10 compounds: Cheffouxanthone (1). 1,5-dihydroxy-xanthone (2), 1,3,5-trihydroxyxanthone (3), bagangxanthone A (4), Smeathxnthone B (5), Smeathxanthone A (6), Guttiferone 1 benzophenone) (7), Isoxanthochymol (8), triterpene (Friedelin) (9), and cinnamate (Triacontanyl caffeate) (10). (see study below) (3)
- Study of stem bark yielded a new prenylated xanthone, 1,3,5,8-tetrahydroxy-2-(3-methyllbut-2-enyl)-4-(3,7-dimethylocta-2,6-dienyl) xanthone (1) and a new benzophenone (2), along with four known xanthone derivatives, cheffourxanthone (3), smeathxanthone A (4), smeathxanthone B (5), anani-xanthone (6),and two pentacyclic triterpenes, epi-friedelinol (7) and friedelin (8). (see study below) (9)
- Study of roots isolated eight compounds. two were xanthone garciniaxanthone 1 (1) and the triterpene, garcinane (2), along with three known xanthones, smeath-xanthone A (3), smeathxanthone B (4), and chefouxanthone (5), one benzophenone, isoxantho-chymol (6), one triterpene, magnificol (7), and one sterol, ß-sitosterol. (see study below) (10)

- Studies have suggested antibacterial, antifungal, wound healing, antioxidant, antidiabetic properties.

Parts used
Bark, latex.


- Fruit is edible, eaten in times of scarcity. (2)
- No reported folkloric medicinal use in the Philippines.
- Bark yielded a bright yellow latex used for wound dressing. (2)
- Latex used for treating ophthalmia. (2)
- Bark decoction used as purgative, treatment of female sterility, and as antidote for poisoning. (2)
- In Africa, stem bark used for treatment of HIV. (6)

- Wood: Hard and durable; use for post construction in Ghana. (2)
- Tooth cleaner: Chewed to clean the teeth.

Antibacterial / Antifungal / Stem Bark:
Study evaluated a methanolic extract of stem bark and ten compounds isolated from a crude extract for antimicrobial activity against 6 gram-positive bacterial,, 12 gram-negative bacterial and 3 Candida species using well micro-dilution methods. Results showed inhibition of the test pathogens with MICs lower than 156.25 µg/mL on 21 of 22 pathogens tested. Two of the isolated compounds, Cheffouxanthone (1) and Friedelin (9) exhibited antibacterial and anticandidal activities. (3)
Antidiabetic / Wound Healing / Smeathxanthone A: Study evaluated smeathxanthone A, a compound isolated from G. smeathmanii, for wound healing activity in incisional wound model in diabetic mice. Results showed smeathxnthone A administered after laparotomy expedited wound healing as evidenced by significantly increased skin tensile strength, stimulated hair growth, and reduced signs of inflammation in the scar sections. Smeathxanthone A also reduced blood glucose levels in diabetic mice. Tissue healing activity was attributed to significant enhancement of tissue collagen deposition and effect on blood glucose levels. (4)
Antioxidant / Benzophenones and Xanthones / Root Bark: Study of root bark isolated a new geranylated xanthone (1), along with known guttiferone I, isoxanthochymol, smeathxanthones A and B and triacontanyl caffeate. The compounds showed significant DPPH radical scavenging activities. (5)
Antibacterial / Antioxidant / Benzophenone and Xanthones / Stem Bark: Study of stem bark isolated a new prenylated xanthone, 1,3,5,8-tetrahydroxy-2-(3-methyllbut-2-enyl)-4-(3,7-dimethylocta-2,6-dienyl) xanthone (1) and a new benzophenone (2), along with four known xanthone derivatives and two pentacyclic triterpenes. Compounds 1 2, and 3 exhibited the most prominent antibacterial activity against gram-positive Enterococcus faecalis with MICs of 8, 8, and 2 µg/mL, respectively. Compounds 1, 3, 4, and 6 showed capacity to scavenge free radicals. (see constituents above) (9)
Antimalarial / Root Bark: Study of roots isolated eight compounds. Compound 6, isoxanthochymol, showed strong in-vitro antimalarial activity against Plasmodium falcifarum with strong chemosuppression of parasitic growth. (see constituents above) (10)
Antimicrobial / Xanthones / Stem Bark: Study of stem bark isolated two new xanthones, smeathxanthone A (2-(3,7'-dimethyl-2,6-octadienyl)-1,3,5,8-tetrahydroxyxanthone) (1) and smeath-
xanthone B (5,7,10-trigtdrixt-2-methyl-2-(4-methylpent-3-enyl)[2H-,6H]pyrano[3.2-b]xanthen-6-one) (2). The compounds showed only modest activity against a range of bacteria and yeasts. (11)

Herbal teas and supplements in the cybermarket.

Updated September 2021
August 2020

IMAGE SOURCE: Photograph / Garcinia smeathmanii berries and leaves/ © J Stevens / click on image to go to source page / Flora of Zambia
IMAGE SOURCE: Photograph / Garcinia smeathmanii tree / © MG Bingham / click on image to go to source page / Flora of Zambia

Additional Sources and Suggested Readings
Garcinia smeathmanii / Synonyms / The Plant List
Garcinia smeathmanii / Ken Fern: Tropical Plants Databases / Useful Tropical Plants
Antimicrobial components of the methanolic extract from the stem bark of Garcinia smeathmannii Oliver (Clusiaceae) / V Kuete, D Lontsi et al / South African Journal of Botany, July 2007; 73(3): pp 347-354 / https://doi.org/10.1016/j.sajb.2007.01.004
Antidiabetic and Wound Healing Effects of Smeathxanthone A / David Emery Txala, alain Meli Lannang, Dimo Theophile, Norbert Sewald et al / Recent Advances in Biology and Medicine, 2016; 2(5) / DOI: 10.18639/RABM.2016.02.271146
Antioxidant benzophenones and xanthones from the root bark of Garcinia smeathmannii / Alain Meli Lannang, Justin Komguem, Fernande Ngninzeko Ngounou, Atta-ur-Rahman et al / Bulletin of the Chemical Society of Ethiopia, Dec 2006; 20(2): pp 247-252 / DOI: 10.4314/bcse.v20i2.61409
Medicinal Plants Used in the Treatment of Human Immunodeficiency Virus / Bahare Salehi. Nanjangud V Anil Kumar, Bilge Sener et al / Int J Mol Sci., May 2018; 19(5) / doi: 10.3390/ijms19051459 / PMCID: PMC5983620 / PMID: 29757986
Garcinia smeathmannii / Flora of Zambia
Garcinia smeathmannii / Vernacular names / PROTA4U
Antibacterial and antioxidant xanthones and benzophenone from garcinia smeathmannii. / Hugues Fouotsa, Alain Meli Lannang, Norbert Sewald et l / Planta Medica / DOI:10.1055/s-0035-1545841 / Corpus ID: 206381453
Antimalarial Compounds from the Root Bark of Garcinia polyantha Olv. / Alain Meli Lannang, Gabin Nselapi Lou, David Lontsi, Sabine Specht, Salem Ramadan Sarite, Karsten Krohn et al / Journal of Antibiotics, 2008; 61: pp 518-523 / DOI: https://doi.org/10.1038/ja.2008.70
Xanthones from Garcinia smeathmannii (Oliver) and their antimicrobial activity / Justin Kombuem, Alain Meli Lannang, R N Manfouo, Joseph D Connolly et al / Phytochemistry, 2005; 66(14): pp 1713-1717 /
DOI: 10.1016/j.phytochem.2005.03.010

DOI: 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. (Citing and Using a (DOI) Digital Object Identifier)

                                                            List of Understudied Philippine Medicinal Plants

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