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Family Plantaginaceae
Plantago lanceolata Linn.


Scientific names Common names
Amoglossum lanceolatum (L.) Gray. Lanting-haba (Tag.)
Lagopus lanceolatus (L.) Fourr. Lance leaf plantain (Engl.)
Lagopus timbali Fourr.                         Unresolved Ribgrass (Engl._
Plantago lanceolata Linn. Ribwort (Engl.)
Plantago sinuata Lam. Ribwort plantain (Engl.)
  Ripplegrass (Engl.)
  Narrow leaf plantain (Engl.)
Plantago lanceolata is an accepted name. The Plant List

Other vernacular names
CHINESE: Ch'e-ch'len.
FRENCH: Petit plantain.
GERMAN: Spitzwegerich.
POLISH: Babka lancetowata.
PORTUGUESE: Tanchagem-menor.
SPANISH: Llantén menor.

Lanting-haba is a perennial, scape-bearing, low herb, varying considerably in size. Rootstock is tapering. Leaves, which arise from the roots, are wooly, lanceolate, 15 to 21 centimeters long, 2 to 3 centimeters wide, with entire or toothed margins. Scape is as long as the leaf, deeply furrowed. Spikes are ovoid, subglobose, or cylindric, 1 to 7.5 centimeters long. Sepals are usually ciliate. Corolla is smooth. Capsule is 2-celled and the cells 1- to 2-seeded.

- Found only in Pauai, Benguet Subprovince in Luzon, in gardens at al altitude of about 2,200 meters.
- Introduced; of European or Asiatic origin.
- Now widely distributed
in most temperate and subtemperate regions.

- The leaves, roots and seeds yield a glucoside, aucubin, together with the enzymes, invertin and emulsin.
- Phytochemical screening yielded coumarins, flavonoids and terpenes.

- Constituent study yielded mucilage, polysaccharides, tannins, iridoid glycosides including aucubin and its precursor catalpol, silicic acid, phenolic carboxylic acids (protocatechuic acid), flavonoids (apigenin, luteolin, minerals (zinc, potassium) and saponin.
- Crude extract of leaves yielded steroids, alkaloids, flavonoids, saponins, glycosides, phenols, tannins, and terpenoids compounds. (17)

- Seeds considered purgative and hemostatic.
- Leaves considered diuretic and astringent.
- Considered anti-inflammatory, anti-asthma, antioxidant.
- Studies have shown antioxidant, antitussive, antigenotoxic, antimitotic, bacteriostatic, bactericidal, anti-inflammatory, wound healing properties.

s Parts used
Leaves, seeds.


- Leaves are edible, raw or cooked.
- Young leaves are less fibrous and less bitter.
- Seeds are cooked; can be ground into a powder and added to flours in making bread. (14)
- Leaves used on wounds, inflamed surfaces and sores.
- Seeds, with sugar, is a drastic purgative; also, acts as a hemostatic.
- In Africa, leaves used to treat wounds, insect stings, sunburn, skin disease, eye irritation and inflammation of the mouth and throat. Infusion used as detoxifier and taken for treat colds, asthma, emphysema, urinary bladder stones, gastric ulcers. Infusion of dried seeds used as soothing eye lotion, taken for diarrhea and dysentery, and for intestinal worms in children.
- In Mauritius, alcohol tincture of mashed leaves applied to toothaches associated with caries. Crushed leaves used as poultice on wounds to stop bleeding. Leaf decoction or infusion used to wash infected eyes. - Decoction of whole plant used for nausea, for mouth wash for aphthae, and for body wash to treat rheumatic pains.
- In Nigeria, whole plant and seeds used to treat intestinal problems such as gastritis and enteritis.
- In Ethiopia, leaves used for wound healing. (17) Roots used as taenicidal and to treat fertility problems.
- Fodder: Elsewhere, sometimes grown as fodder crop, and considered of better quality than Plantago major. (Also see study below 13)
- Fiber:
Leaves yield a good fiber. (14)
- Mucilage: Seed coat yields a mucilage used as fabric stiffener. (14)
- Dye:
Plant yields a gold and brown dyes. (14)

Study evaluated ethanolic extracts of chopped, dried plant for antitussive effect in guinea pigs. P lanceolata extracts showed significant reduction in cough numbers. The antitussive effects of aqueous and macerated extracts were not significantly different with that of codeine. (1)
Anti-Mitotic / Anti-Genotoxic: Study showed the aqueous leaf extracts of Plantago lanceolata on Allium cepa root tip meristems treated with hydrogen peroxide have anti-mitotic and anti-genotoxic effects. (3)
Bacteriostatic / Bactericidal: Bacteriostatic and bactericidal activity show in vitro study of cold aqueous extract attributed to the aglycone, aucubigenin. Since the activity is destroyed by heat, cold macerate form is used as rinse, gargle or cataplasm for antibacterial action.
Anti-Inflammatory: Study showed Pinus sylvestris and Plantago lanceolata extracts inhibited NO production in a concentration-dependent manner. Results suggest the anti-inflammatory may reflect decreased NO production, possibly due to inhibitory effects on iNOS gene expression or to NO-scavenging activity. (7)
Phenylethanoids / Arachidonic Acid Inhibition: Study yielded five phenylethanoids - acteoside, cistanoside F, lavandulifolioside, plantamajoside and isoacteoside. Acteoside, the major phenylethanoid, showed inhibitory effects on arachidonic acid-induced mouse ear edema. (8)
Allergens: Fractionation of plantain pollen extracts showed a spread of allergenic activity. At least 16 different antigens were detected in plantain pollen and six may be allergenic. IgE-binding components were widely distributed in plantain plants and not confined to the pollen. (9)
Potential in Collagenase-Induced Tendonitis: Histopathological study evaluated P. lanceolata ointment as topical treatment of collagenase-induced tendonitis in rats. Results showed significant proliferation of endotendon, earlier disappearance of adipose, inflammatory cells and tendon lobulation, and faster collagen fiber rearrangement. (11) Study evaluated the healing potential of water-soluble extract of P. lanceolata as a topical ointment on experimental collagenase-induced tendinitis in burros. Results concluded the ointment was effective in promoting the healing process of the tendon. (21)
Potentia l as Pasture Species: Supplementation of ruminant diets with Plantago seed husks have been shown to increase the ratio of propionic acid and acetic acid; early studies have suggested plaintain herbage may have a similar effect. Presence of antimicrobial compounds that may affect rumen fermentation may have implications for rumen efficiency, mineral composition, bloat and animal health. (12)
Antibacterial / Induced UTI: Study evaluated the antibacterial activity of an alcoholic extract of Pl lanceolata leaves in vitro and in vivo by inducing urinary tract infection in fats with S. saprophyticus isolated from humans and animals (cows and sheep). Results showed significant inhibition of growth in vitro. Histopathological studies showed decreased pathological signs in bladder and kidney, decreased renal congestion blood vessels and few inflammatory cells in the bladder. (13)
• Anti-Inflammatory / Acetaminophen Induced Liver Injury / Leaves: Study evaluated the anti-inflammatory property of P
• Toxicity Study / 14-Day Oral Dose / Leaves: Study evaluated the oral toxicity of plantain leaf extract- containing syrup. The syrup was found stable and non-toxic in 14-day repeat toxicity testing in rats. (16)
• Antimicrobial / Leaves: Crude leaf extracts, the isolated compound PL-5, and n-hexane extracted oil were active against all test bacteria viz., gram-negative E. coli and S. typhi; gram-positive S. aureus, Strep agalactiae, and two fungal species, Aspergillus niger and Fusarium solani. (17)
• Wound Healing / Anti-Inflammatory: Study evaluated the wound healing and anti-inflammatory effects of aqueous and methanol extract of P. lanceolata in in vivo excision and incision wound models in rats and mice. Aqueous extract showed significant wound healing activity with 49.09% tensile strength value in the linear incision wound model and 85.08% contraction in circular excision wound model. Both extracts showed significant and moderate anti-inflammatory activity at 200 mg/kg dose. Extracts exerted antiphlogistic effect on carrageenan-induced edema. (18)
• Antibacterial on Enteropathogenic E. coli / Tannins: Study evaluated the effect of extracts of dried leaves and fruits of P. lanceolata on the growth and pathogenesis of enteropathogenic E. coli. The extracted and purified tannins from Plantago lanceolata at concentration of 150 mg/ml showed high antibacterial activity in vitro and in vivo. (19)
• Antioxidant Polysaccharides / Leaves: Study evaluated the chemical composition and antioxidant activity of polysaccharides from three Bulgarian species of Plantago genus viz., Plantago major, P. lanceolata, and P. media. Crude polysaccharides from fresh leaves was between 0.64% and 2.79%. P. lanceolata WEPs (water extractable polysaccharides) had the most pronounced ferric reducing power (137.83 µM TE/5 mg Ps, correlating with the highest value of galacturonic acid (70.58%) among all isolated polysaccharides. (20)

Extracts, tinctures, seeds in the cybermarket.

© Godofredo U. Stuart Jr., M.D.

Updated April 2018 / April 2014

IMAGE SOURCE: / Modified / Public Domain images / (1) File:Plantago lanceolata Sturm61.jpg / Deutschlands Flora in Abbildungen, 1796/ Wikimedia Commons
OTHER IMAGE SOURCE: Photo by Leo Michels - Source: http://www.imagines-plantarum.de / click on photo to go to source page / Schede di botanica / altervista
OTHER IMAGE SOURCE: / Plantago lanceolata L. - narrowleaf plantain PLLA /Steve Hurst @ USDA-NRCS PLANTS Database / USDA

Additional Sources and Suggested Readings
Antitussive Effect of Plantago lanceolata in Guinea Pigs / M H Boskabady, H Rakhshandah et al / Iran J Med Sci 2006; 31(3): 143-146.
Plantago lanceolata L. / A Guide to Medicinal Plants in North Africa / Sp. Pl., ed. 1,114 1753).
Anti-mitotic and anti-genotoxic effects of Plantago lanceolata aqueous extract on Allium cepa root tip meristem cells / Tulay Askin Celik and Ozlem Sultan Aslanturk / Biologia, Volume 61, Number 6 / December, 2006 / DOI 10.2478/s11756-006-0142-5
Plantago lanceolata L. / Prota 11(1): Medicinal plants/Plantes médicinales
Effects of cinnamic acid on polyphenol production in Plantago lanceolata / Francoise Fons et al / Phytochemistry, Vol 49, Issue 3, October 1998, Pages 697-702 / doi:10.1016/S0031-9422(98)00210-6 |
Possible role for Plantago lanceolata in the treatment of HIV infection? / Townsend Letter for Doctors and Patients, June, 2006 by Maria Abdin
In-vitro anti-inflammatory activity of Pinus sylvestris and Plantago lanceolata extracts: effect on inducible NOS, COX-1, COX-2 and their products in J774A.1 murine macrophages / Vigo E, Cepeda A et al / J-Pharm-Pharmacol. 2005 Mar; 57(3): 383-91
Phenylethanoids in the herb of Plantago lanceolata and inhibitory effect on arachidonic acid / M Murai, Y Tamayama, S Nishibe / Planta Med (1995) 61: 479-80.
Allergens from plantain (plantago lanceolata). Studies with pollen and plant extracts. / Baldo BA, Chensee QJ, Howden ME, Sharp PJ. / Int Arch Allergy Appl Immunol. 1982;68(4):295-304.
Sorting Plantago names / /Maintained by: Michel H. Porcher / MULTILINGUAL MULTISCRIPT PLANT NAME DATABASE / Copyright © 1995 - 2020 The University of Melbourne.
A histopathological study of the healing potential of Plantago lanceolata ointment on collagenase-induced tendonitis in rats / Sina Kakooei, Mohammad Mehdi Oloumi, Amin Derakhshanfar, Laya Golmoradi / Comparative Clinical Pathology, September 2013, Volume 22, Issue 5, pp 977-981
Plantain (Plantago lanceolata) – a potential pasture species / A. V. Stewart / Proceedings of the New Zealand Grassland Association 58: 77–86 (1996)
Study the therapeutic role of Alcoholic Extract of Plantago lanceolata aganist infection with Staphylococcus saprophyticus / Hassan A. Abdul –Ratha and Aseel J. Mohammad / Proceeding of the Eleventh Veterinary Scientific Conference, 2012; 8-15
Plantago lanceolata / Plants For A Future
Plantago lanceolata / Synonyms / The Plant List
Stability Study and a 14-Day Oral Dose Toxicity in Rats of Plantain Leaf Extract (Plantago lanceolata L.) Syrup / Kenza Mansoor, Fadi Qadan, Mathias Schmidt, Eyad Mallah, Wael Abudayyih, and Khalid Matalka / Sci Pharm. 2017; 85(1): 15 /  doi:  10.3390/scipharm85010015
Phytochemical Investigation and Antimicrobial Study of Leaf Extract of Plantago lanceolata / Shuma Fayera*, Neelaiah Babu G, Aman Dekebo and Yiheyis Bogale / Nat Prod Chem Res 2018, 6:2 / DOI: 10.4172/2329-6836.1000311
Investigating Biological Activity Potential of Plantago lanceolata L. in Healing of Skin Wounds by a Preclinical Research / Esin KURANEL, Esra KÜPELI AKKOL*, Ipek SÜNTAR, Şule GÜRSOY, Hikmet KELEŞ, Göknur AKTAY / Turk J Pharm Sci 13(2), 135-144, 2016
Comparison of structure and antioxidant activity of polysaccharides extracted from the leaves of Plantago major L., P. media L. and P. lanceolata L. / PK Lukova, DP Karcheva-Bahchevanska, MM Nikolova, Ilia N Iliev, RD Mladenov / Bulgarian Chemical Communications, Vol 49, Special Issue D: pp 282-288 ) 2017
The Healing Potential of Plantago lanceolata Ointment on Collagenase-Induced Tendinitis in Burros (Equus asinus) / Mohammad Medhi Oloumi DVM DVS, Dariush Vosough PhD, Amin Derakjshanfar PhD, Mohammad Hadi Nematollahi DVM / Journal of Equine Veterinary Science, August 2011, Vol 31, Issue 8: pp 470-474

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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