HOME      •      SEARCH      •      EMAIL    •     ABOUT

Family Leguminosae
Pithecellobium dulce
(Roxb.) Benth.
Niu ti dou

Scientific names  Common names 
Acacia obliquifolia M.Martens & Galeotti Camachile (Pamp.)
Albizia dulcis (Roxb.) F.Muell. Chamultis (Ig.) 
Feuilleea dulcis  (Roxb.) Kuntze Damortis (Ilk.) 
Inga camatchili  Perr. Damulkis (Bon.) 
Inga javana  DC. Kamachili (Tag., Bik.) 
Inga javanica DC. Kamachilis (Tag.) 
Inga leucantha C.Presl Kamanchilis (P. Bis., Mag.) 
Inga pungens Willd. Kamansile (Tag.) 
Mimosa dulcis  Roxb. Kamantilis (Pang.)  
Mimosa pungens  (Willd.) Poir. Kamarsiles (Tag.)
Mimosa unguis-cati  Blanco Kamatsile (Tag.)
Pithecellobium dulce (Roxb.) Benth. Kamatsele (Tag.) 
Pithecellobium litorale Record Kamonsiles (Tag.) 
Pithecellobium litorale Brittpm & Rose ex Rec. Kamunsil (P. Bis.) 
Zygia dulcis (Roxb.) Lyons  Karamansili (Ibn.) 
  Komonsili (P. Bis.) 
  Komontos (Ting.)
  Komontres (Ting.)  
  Black bead (Engl.)
  Camachile tree (Engl.)
  Madras thorn (Engl.)  
  Manila tamarind (Engl.)
  Monkeypod (Engl.)
  Sweet inga (Engl.)
  Sweet tamarind (Engl.)
Pithecellobium dulce (Roxb.) Benth. is an accepted name The Plant List

Other vernacular names
CHINESE: Niu ti dou.
FRENCH : Campèche (New Caledonia), Cassie de Manille, Épine de Madras, Pois sucré, Tamarin de l'Inde, Tamarin de Manille.
GERMAN : Camambilarinde.
HINDI: Vilayati babul.
SPANISH : Guamúchil, Guayamochil, Huamúchil, Madre de flecha, Quamachil.
TAMIL: Kodukkapuli.
THAI : Ma kham khong, Ma kham thet.
VIETNAMESE : Me Keo, Keo Tây, Me nước, Găng Tây.

Gen info / Etymology
Referred to as Manila tamarind because of the sweet-sour tamarind-like taste. Genus Pithecellobium derives from from the Greek words 'pithekos' (ape) and 'lobos' (pod), and the species name 'dulce' from the Latin 'dulcis' meaning sweet.

Kamatsile is a tree 5 to 18 meters high, with pendulous branches, with short, sharp stipular spines. The leaves are evenly 2-pinnate, 4 to 8 centimeters long. The flowers are white, in dense heads, 1 centimeter in diameter. Pods are turgid, twisted, and spiral, 10 to 18 centimeters long, 1 centimeter wide, and dehiscent along the lower suture. Seeds are 6 to 8, with an edible, whitish, pulpy aril. The arillus is sweet when the fruit is ripe.

Found throughout the Philippines at low or medium altitudes.

- Tannin, 25.36%; fixed oil, 18.22%, olein.
- A glycoside quercitin has been isolated.
- Seeds have been reported to contain steroids, saponins, lipids, phospholipids, glycosides, glycolipids and polysaccharides.
- Bark yields 37% tannins of the catechol type.
- Leaves yield quercitin, kaempferol, dulcitol and afezilin.

- Fatty acid analysis of seed extract yielded 9 saturated and 17 unsaturated fatty acids. Elemental composition yielded (mg/kg) arsenic 17.6µg/kg, copper 16.25, cadmium 3.48, iron 1.89, lead 0.19, magnesium 15.06, potassium 26.89, sodium 10.19, zinc 26.89. Total protein content was highest in the seeds (50.3-67.1%), followed by stems, roots, leaves, flowers, and fruits. (21)
- Ethanolic extract of fruits yielded ten compounds viz. (1) 2, 5, 6-trimethyl 1, 3-oxathiane, (2) trans-3-methyl-2-N-propylthiophane, (3) 2-furan carboxaldehyde-5-(hydroxymethyl), (4) D-pinitol, (5) heptacosanoic acid, (6) hexadecanoic acid, (7) tetracosanol, (8) 22-tricosenoic acid, (9) methyl-2-hydroxy icosanoate and (10) stigmasterol. (25)
- Evaluation of seed protein flour showed a protein content of 39.22%, calcium 48 mg, and phosphorus 542 mg/100 g. Major amino acids were glutamic acid, arginine, aspartic acid, lysine, valine, threonine and leucine. Ratio of essential to nonessential amino acid was 0.61. Total polyphenol content was 294 mg/100g. (31)

- Considered abortifacient, anodyne, astringent, larvicidal, antibacterial, antiinflammatory, febrifuge, antidiabetic.
- Bark and leaves considered astringent.
- Leaves considered astringent, emollient, antidiabetic, and abortifacient.
- Roots reported to be estrogenic.

Parts used
Bark, leaves.

Pulp around the seed is edible.
• Frequent bowel movements: Decoction of bark taken as tea.
• The leaves, when applied as plasters, used for pain, venereal sores.
• Salted decoction of leaves, for indigestion; also used as abortifacient.
• Bark used in dysentery, dermatitis and eye inflammation.
• In Brazil, P. avaremotem, used as a cancer elixir.
• In Mexico, decoction of leaves for earaches, leprosy, toothaches and larvicide.
• In India, bark of the plant used as astringent in dysentery, febrifuge. Also used for dermatitis and eye inflammations. Leaves used as abortifacient.
• In Guiana, root bark used for dysentery and as febrifuge.

Anti-Inflammatory / Antibacterial:
Study of the fresh flowers of Pithecellobium dulce yielded a glycoside quercitin. The activity of the flavonol glycoside confirmed its antiinflammatory and antibacterial properties.
Phenolics / Antioxidant:
Study of the aqueous extract of Pithecellobium dulce leaves revealed phenolics including flavonoids and showed potent free radical scavenging activity. (2)
Anti-inflammatory Triterpene:
Anti-inflammatory triterpene saponins of Pithecellobium dulce: characterization of an echinocystic acid bisdesmoside. A new bisdesmodic triterpenoid saponin, dulcin, was isolated from the seeds of PD. (3)
Genotoxicity / Mutagenic and Antimutagenic Activities:
In a study of 138 medicinal plants for genotoxicity, Pithecellobium dulce was one of 12 that exhibited detectable genotoxicity in any system. (4)
Anti-tuberculosis / Antimicrobial:
Hexane, chloroform and alcoholic leaf extracts were studied for activity against Mycobacterium tuberculosis strains. The alcoholic extract showed good inhibitory activity and antimicrobial activity against secondary pathogens. (6)
Anti-Diabetic / Leaves:
Study of ethanolic and aqueous leaf extract of P dulce in STZ-induced diabetic model in rats showed significant activity, aqueous more than the alcoholic extract, comparable to glibenclamide. (7)
Anti-Ulcer / Free Radical Scavenging:
Study of the hydroalcoholic extract of PD was found to possess good antioxidant activity and suggests possible antiulcer activity with its free-radical scavenging and inhibition of H, K-ATPase activities comparable to omeprazole. Phytochemical screening yielded flavonoids - quercetin, rutin, kaempferol, naringin, daidzein. (8)
Hepatoprotective / Carbon Tetrachloride Induced Toxicity:
Study of an aqueous extract of P. dulce in a murine model showed hepatoprotection against CCl4-induced oxidative impairments probably through its antioxidative property. Results were supported by histological findings. (9)
CNS Depressant:
Study evaluating the locomotor activity of aqueous and alcoholic extracts of PD in albino mice showed significant CNS depression, the alcoholic extract exhibiting greater effect when compared to chlorpromazine. The activity was attributed to an increase in the concentration of GABA in the brain. (10)
Analgesic / Anti-Inflammatory:
Study of methanol extract showed significant anti-inflammatory and analgesic effects comparable to standard drugs. (11)
Antioxidant / Antibacterial:
Study of fruit peel for antioxidant and antibacterial potential revealed significant activity in the ethyl acetate, methanolic, and aqueous extracts.
Acute and Subacute Toxicity Studies / Fruit Extract:
Study on albino rats evaluated the acute and subacute toxicity profile of a hydroalcoholic fruit extract of P. dulce. PD did not cause any abnormal changes in hematological and biochemical parameters. Results suggest HAEPD can be used safely for experimental and clinical trials. (13)
Antioxidant / Free Radical Scavenging: Study evaluated aqueous and methanol extracts of seeds for antioxidant potential. Results showed good dose-dependent free radical scavenging activity in all the models. The activity was attributed to high phenolic contents. (14)
Hypolipidemic / Free Radical Scavenging:
Study evaluated the anti-hyperlipidemic activity of an aqueous extract of leaves against triton induced hyperlipidemia in rats. Results showed lipid effects with a decrease in total serum cholesterol, LDL, and an increase in serum HDL cholesterol level. (15)
Adulticidal / Free Radical Scavenging:
Study evaluated the adulticidal activity of various solvent leaf and seed extracts against Culex quinquefasciatus. Results showed the crude extract of P. dulce has excellent potential for controlling filiariasis vector mosquito Cx quinquefasciatus. (16)
Antimicrobial / Leaf Extracts: Study evaluated the antimicrobial activity of leaf of P. dulce against 20 pathogenic microorganisms. Results showed extracts possess bioactive compounds with significant antimicrobial activities. (17)
α-Glucosidase and α-Amylase / Bark and Leaves: Study evaluated bark and leaves of P. dulce for a-amylase and a-glucosidase inhibition in vitro. a-amylase and a-gluscosidase inhibitors from food-grade plant sources offer an alternative approach for the treatment of post-prandial hyperglycemia by decrease glucose release from starch and delaying carbohydrate absorption. Results confirmed a-glucosidase and a-amylase inhibitory activity of a methanol and ethanol extract. (18)
Skeletal Muscle Relaxant / CNS Depressant:
Study showed an acutely administered single dose of aqueous and ethanolic extracts of leaves possess skeletal muscle relaxant activity and CNS depressant activity but no anticonvulsant action. (19)
Larvicidal & Ovicidal Against Mosquito Vectors:
Study evaluated various extracts of P. dulce for larvicidal and ovicidal potential against mosquito vectors, Anopheles stephensi and Aedes aegypti. All leaf and seed extracts showed moderate larvicidal and ovicidal effects; however, the methanol extract of leaf showed the highest larval activity. Results suggest the seed and leaf extracts have potential as an eco-friendly option for mosquito vector control. (
Anti-Diabetic / Fruits:
Study evaluated the antidiabetic potential of P. dulce fruits in STZ-induced experimental diabetes in rats. Results showed significant reduction in blood glucose, glycosylated hemoglobin, urea and creatinine. There was also improved glycogen contact upon treatment with the extract. (
Cardioprotective / Fruit Peel:
Study evaluated the effect of P. dulce peel in isoproterenol (ISO) induced myocardial infarction in adult male Wistar rats. ISO-induced MI in rats showed increase in marker enzymes. Pretreatment PD fruit peel extracts positively altered the activities of marker enzymes and biochemical parameters in ISO-induced rats. (
Anthelmintic / Leaves:
Study evaluated leaf extracts of P. dulce in three different concentrations for anthelmintic activity against Pheretima posthuma. The aqueous extract was more potent than the alcoholic extract, with activity comparable to the reference drug piperazine citrate. (
Adulticidal / Aedes aegypti: Study evaluated the toxicity and mosquito adulticidal activity of different solvent leaf and seed extracts of P. dulce against dengue vector, Aedes aegypti. Among tested solvents, the leaf and seed methanol extract showed maximum efficacy. (27)
Antiulcer / Fruits: Study evaluated the antiulcer activity of hydroalcoholic fruit extract of Pithecellobium dulce on a cysteamine induced duodenal ulcer model in male albino Wistar rats. Rats preadministered with HAEPD showed significantly reduced ulcer score compatible to that of ranitidine pretreated rats. Results showed antioxidant and cytoprotective antiulcer activity. (29)

Nanoparticles / Fruits:
Study reported on the biosynthesis of titanium dioxide nanoparticles using Pithecellobium dulce and Lagenaria siceraria aqueous leaf extract. The nanoparticles synthesized by biological method showed a higher antioxidant potential and antimicrobial activity than chemically synthesized. (30)

Wild crafted. 

Godofredo U. Stuart Jr., M.D.

Last Update November 2015

Photos © Godofredo Stuart / StuartXchange
OTHER IMAGE SOURCE / Pithecellobium dulce (Roxb.) Benth. - monkeypod / Tracey Slotta @ USDA-NRCS PLANTS Database / USDA

Additional Sources and Suggested Readings
Phytochemical Investigation and Pharmocological Studies of the Flowers of Pithecellobium dulce / P G R Chandran and S Balaji / Ethnobotanical Leaflets 12: 245-253. 2008.
Free Radical Scavenging Activity of Folklore: Pithecellobium dulce Benth. Leaves / M Sugumara et al / Ethnobotanical Leaflets 12: 446-451. 2008.
Anti-inflammatory triterpene saponins of Pithecellobium dulce: characterization of an echinocystic acid bisdesmoside / N P Sahu, S B Mahato / Phytochemistry. 1994 Nov; 37(5): 1425-7
Mutagenic and Antimutagenic Activities in Philippine Medicinal and Food Plants
/ Clara Y Lim-Sylianco and W Thomas Shier / Toxin Reviews, Volume 4, Issue 1 1985 , pages 71 - 105 / DOI: 10.3109/15569548509014414
Pithecellobium Dulce Benth - A Review / M Sugumaran
Manila Tamarind could help treat tuberculosis / S D Shanmugakumar / Natural News Today

Antidiabetic potential of aqueous and alcoholic leaf extracts of Pithecellobium dulce / M Sugumaran et al / Asian J. Research Chem.. 2(1): Jan..-Mar. 2009
Free radical-scavenging and H+, K+-ATPase inhibition activities of Pithecellobium dulce / J Megala and A Geetha / Food Chemistry, Vol 121, Issue 4, 15 August 2010, Pages 1120-1128 / doi:10.1016/j.foodchem.2010.01.059
Phytomedicinal Role of Pithecellobium dulce against CCl4-mediated Hepatic Oxidative Impairments and Necrotic Cell Death / Prasenjit Manna, Sudip Bahttacharyya, Joydeep Das et al / Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine, Volume 2011 (2011) / doi:10.1093/ecam/neq065
Locomotor Activity of Leaf extracts of Pithecellobium dulce Benth. / M. Sugumaran, T.Vetrichelvan, S. Darline Quine / Ethnobotanical Leaflets 12: 490-493. 2008.
Analgesic and anti-inflammatory activities of leaf extract of Pithecellobium dulce Benth.
/ S.Arul Selvan, P.Muthukumaran / International Journal of PharmTech Research, Vol.3, No.1, pp 337-341, Jan-Mar 2011
Sorting Pithecellobium names / Authorised by Prof. Snow Barlow / Maintained by: Michel H. Porcher / MULTILINGUAL MULTISCRIPT PLANT NAME DATABASE / Copyright © 1997 - 2000 The University of Melbourne.
Evaluation of In Vitro Antioxidant and Antibacterial Activity of Pithecellobium dulce Benth Fruit Peel / Sukantha T A, Shubashini K Sripathi, Ravindran N T and Balashanmugam P / Internation Journal of Current Research, Vol 3, No 11, pp 378-382, October 2011
Acute and Sub-Acute Toxicity Study of Hydroalcoholic Fruit Extract of Pithecellobium dulce
/ Jayaraman Megala and Arumugan Geetha / Natural Product Research, Vol 26, No 12, June 2012, 1167-1171.
Antioxidant activity free radical-scavenging potential of Pithecellobium dulce Benth seed extracts / Dnyaneshwar M. Nagmoti, Dharmendra K. Khatri, Parikshit R. Juvekar, Archana R. Juvekar / Free Radicals and Antioxidants, Volume 2, Issue 2 , Pages 37-43, April 2012
Hypolipidemic activity of Pithecellobium Dulce Bench. in Triton Wr-1339 Induced Hyperlipidemic Rats / Sundarrajan T *, Raj kumar T, Udhayakumar E and Arunachalam G. / International Journal of Chemical and Pharmaceutical Sciences 2010, Dec., Vol.1 (2)
Adulticidal activity of Pithecellobium dulce (Roxb.) Benth. against Culex / Govindarajan M*, Sivakumar R, Rajeswary M, Yogalakshmi K / Asian Pacific Journal of Tropical Disease (2012)124-128
E / MUKESH KUMAR, KIRAN NEHRA* and J.S. DUHAN / Asian Journal of Pharmaceutical and Clinical Research Vol 6, Issue 1, 2013
α-Glucosidase and α-amylase inhibitory activities of Pithecellobium dulce bark and leaves / Shankar D. Katekhaye*, Dnyaneshwar M. Nagmoti / Phytopharmacology 2013, 4(1), 123-130
Neuropharmacological Profile of Aqueous and Ethanolic Extract of Pithecellobium dulce Benth Leaves in Mice / Mule V.S.*, Potdar V.H., Jadhav S.D., Disouza J. I. / Research Journal of Pharmacology and Pharmacodynamics, 2011, Volume 3, Issue 1
Pithecellobium dulce (Roxb.) Benth. / Synonyms / The Plant List
Larvicidal & ovicidal efficacy of Pithecellobium dulce (Roxb.) Benth. (Fabaceae) against Anopheles stephensi Liston & Aedes aegypti Linn. (Diptera: Culicidae) / M. Govindarajan, M. Rajeswary & R. Sivakumar / Indian J Med Res 138, July 2013, pp 129-134
Biochemical evaluation of antidiabetic properties of Pithecellobium dulce fruits studied in streptozotocin induced experimental diabetic rats / S. Pradeepa, S. Subramanian, V. Kaviyarasan / International Journal of Herbal Medicine 2013; 1 (4): 21-28
Cardioprotective Activity of Pithecellobium Dulce Fruit Peel on Isoproterenol-Induced Myocardial Infarction in Rats / PakutharivuThangarajan*, Anitha Anumanthan, Usha Venkatachalam, Sharmila Sivakumar, Chitra Somaskandan / Int. J. Pharm. Sci. Rev. Res., 30(1), January – February 2015; Pages: 133-136
GC-MS Analysis of Microwave Assisted Ethanolic Extract of Pithecellobium dulce /Preethi S, Mary Saral A* /Malaya Journal of Biosciences 2014, 1(4):242-247
INVITRO ANTHELMINTIC ACTIVITY OF LEAF EXTRACTS OF PITHECELLOBIUM DULCE BENTH / M. SUGUMARAN , T. VETRICHELVAN AND S. DARLIN QUINE / Asian Journal of Microbiology, Biotechnology & Environmental Sciences Paper, Vol.12, Issue 2, 2010; Pp 313-314.
Adulticidal properties of Pithecellobium dulce (Roxb.) Benth. (Family: Fabaceae) against dengue vector, Aedes aegypti (Linn.) (Diptera: Culicidae) / Mohan Rajeswary, Marimuthu Govindarajan* / Asian Pac J Trop Dis 2014; 4(Suppl 1): S449-S452
In vitro anti-diabetic activity of compounds from pithecellobium dulce fruit peel / Praylin Singh, Prasanna Kumar Sugirtha / International Journal of Pharmaceutical Chemistry, Vol 5 , No 4; 2015 / DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7439/ijpc.v5i4.1873
Effect of Pithecellobium dulce (Roxb.) Benth. fruit extract on cysteamine induced duodenal ulcer in rats / Jayaraman Megala & Arumugam Geetha* / Indian Journal of Experimental Biology Vol. 53, October 2015, pp. 657-664
Biosynthesis and Characterization of Titanium Dioxide Nanoparticles Using Pithecellobium Dulce and Lagenaria Siceraria Aqueous Leaf Extract and Screening their Free Radical Scavenging and Antibacterial Properties / S. Kalyanasundaram, M. J. Prakash / International Letters of Chemistry, Physics and Astronomy, Volume 50, pp 80-95 / DOI: 10.18052/www.scipress.com/ILCPA.50.80
Physico-Chemical, Mineral, Amino Acid Composition, in Vitro Antioxidant Activity and Sorption Isotherm of Pithecellobium dulce L. Seed Protein Flour / Galla Narsing Rao / J.Food Pharm.Sci. 1 (2013) 74-80

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