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Family Myrtaceae
Syzygium malaccense
Hong hua qing tao

Scientific names  Common names 
Eugenia malaccensis Linn.   Gubal (Buk.) 
Eugenia bauanguica Blanco Makopang-kalabau (Tag.) 
Jambosa malaccensis  DC. Makopa (Tag.) 
Jambosa domestica  Blume Mangkopa (P. Bis.) 
Syzygium malaccense (Linn.) Merr. and Perry Tamo (Tag.) 
  Tual (Bag., Lan.) 
  Yambu (Tag.) 
  Otaheite cashew (India)
  Tersana rose apple (Engl.) 
  Malay apple (Engl.)
  Mountain apple (Engl.)
  Water apple (Engl.)
  Hong hua qing tao (Chin.)

Other vernacular names
BURMESE: Thabyo thabyang, Thabyo thabyay.
CHINESE: Hong hua pu tao, Ma lai pu tao, Ma liu jia pu tao, Yang pu tao.
FRENCH: Jambosier rouge, Poire de Malacca, Poire Malaque, Pomme de Malaisie, Pomme de Tahiti, Pomme d'eau, Pomme Malacca.
GERMAN: Malacca-Apfel, Malakka-Apfel.
JAPANESE: Maree futo momo.
KHMER: Chompuh kraham.
MALAY: Darsana, Jambu bar, Jambu bol, Jambu bubul, Jambu kapal, Jambu kling, Jambu melaka, Jambu merah, Jambu tersana (Indonesia).
PORTUGUESE: Jambo vermelho (Brazil), Jambeiro.
RUSSIAN: Malaiskoe iabloko, Sitsigium malakskij, Sizigium malakkskij,
SPANISH : Cajualito (Dominica Rep.), Mazana de agua (Costa Rica), Manzana de agua, Manzana malaya, Pera de agua (Venezuela), Pomagás (Venezuela), Pomalaca, Pomarosa de Malaca (Colombia), Marañon japonés ((El Salvador), Pomarrosa de Malaca, Yambo.
THAI: Chom phûu daeng, Chom phûu mamieo, Chom phûu saaraek.
VIETNAMESE: Cay dao, Cay roi, Dièu dò, Man hurong tau.

Makopa is a tree reaching a height of 10 meters. Leaves are pinkish when young. Older leaves are large, drooping, elliptic-oblong to broadly oblong-lanceolate, 15 to 30 centimeters long, 7 to 15 centimeters wide, narrowed and pointed at both ends. Flowers are large, showy, crimson, 5 to 6 centimeters in diameter, borne on the branches below the leaves, clustered on short, few-flowered racemes, 6 centimeters long or less. Fruit is shiny, oblong or pear-shaped, 5 to 7.5 centimeters long, either white splashed, striped with pink, or wholly crimson to purplish, and slightly shiny, seedless or one-seeded. Flesh is white, pithy, juicy. Although rather tasteless, some varieties have a pleasant flavor.

- Cultivated for its edible fruit.
- Nowhere naturalized.
- Also occurs in Indo-Malaya.
- Now planted in most tropical countries.

Parts used and preparation

• Leaf oil largely composed of monoterpenes (30% sesquiterpenes, 9 % caryophyllene).

- Considered diuretic, emmenagogue, abortifacient, febrifuge.
Nutrition / Culinary
Fruit is eaten raw but may be prepared with flavoring.
In Puerto Rico, used for making of table wines.
In Indonesia, flowers eaten in salads. Young shoots and leaves eaten, raw or cooked.

- Not known in the Philippines for its medicinal properties.
- In the Moluccas, the astringent bark is used for making a mouthwash for thrush (dapulak).
- A root-bark decoction used for dysentery and amenorrhea.
- Malays applies the dried, powdered leaves for cracked tongues.
- Root applied to itches.
- For sore throat, the inner bark is scraped or the whole bark is decocted.
- Root-bark used as abortifacient; also for amenorrhea and dysentery.
- In Hawaii, juice of salted pounded bark used for wounds.
- In Molucca, decoction of bark used for thrush.
Malayans use powdered dried leaves for cracked tongues. Root preparations for itching.
- In Cambodia, decoction of fruit, leaves and seeds used for fever. Juice of leaves used for baths and lotions. The root is considered diuretic.
- In Brazil, used for diabetes, cough, headaches, constipation.
- In Malaysian Borneo, Malaysian Borneo, decoction of stem and bark for diarrhea.
Wood is used for construction, bowls and boards.

Antiinflammatory: Flavan-3-ols isolated from some medicinal plants inhibiting COX-1 and COX-2 catalyzed prostaglandin biosynthesis: S malaccense was one of four plants tested that were traditionally used for inflammatory conditions. (2)
Antioxidant: Study of 58 underutilized Malaysian fruits of 32 different species, showed fruits from some genera, including Syzygium, had higher antioxidant capacity compared to other genera.
Leaf Oil Analysis: Study of hydrodistilled essential oil from the fresh leaves of SM grown in Nigeria showed the oil to be largely composed of monoterpenes (61.1%) characterized mainly by a-pinene, b-pinene, p-cymene and a-terpineol. The sesquiterpenes constituted 30.8% of the oil with b-caryophyllene as the major component. (4)
Essential Oils / Non-Ichthyotoxic: Study yielded three compounds – ursolic acid, B-sitosterol, and sitos-4-en-3-one. None of the compounds gave any significant ichthyotoxicity. (6)
Aldose Reductase Inhibition / Cataract Prevention: Cataractogenesis is a common complication in diabetes, and aldose reductase in a lens enzyme involved in its development. In a study, S malaccense was one of the best four plant extract inhibitors with a preventive effect on cataract formation. (7)
Hypoglycemic / Antidiabetic: Study of SM aqueous and alcoholic bark extracts in STZ-induced diabetic rats showed reduction of blood sugar and improvement in hyperlipidemia and liver glycogen depletion. The alcohol extract was more effective than the aqueous extract and equivalent to that of glibenclamide.
Candied Fruit Slices: Study was done to develop pomera (S. malaccense), an underutilized highly perishable fruit, into a candied fruit product. Results showed the color, taste, and texture of the candied fruit to be acceptable. (9)
Antioxidant / Leaves: A methanolic extract of fresh leaves exhibited high antioxidant activity with DPPH and hydroxyl radical scavenging assays. A strong correlation was noted with phenolic and flavonoid contents. (10)
Hypoglycemic / Hypolipidemic: Study evaluated the effect of aqueous and alcoholic extracts of S. malaccense on serum glucose, lipid profile and liver glycogen in normal and hyperglycemic rats. Results showed reduction of FBS and significant reversal of diabetes induced hyperlipidemia and liver glycogen depletion. (12)


Last Update November 2013

Photos © Godofredo Stuart / StuartXchange

Additional Sources and Suggested Readings
Malay Apple / Syzygium malaccense Merr. & Perry / Morton, J. 1987. Malay Apple. p. 378–38
Flavan-3-ols isolated from some medicinal plants inhibiting COX-1 and COX-2 catalysed prostaglandin biosynthesis
Quantitative analysis of antiradical phenolic constituents from fourteen edible Myrtaceae fruits / Kurt A Reynertson, Hui Yang et al /
Food Chemistry, Vol 109, Issue 4, 15 August 2008, Pages 883-890 /

Analysis of the leaf Oil of Syzygium malaccense Merr. et Perry from Nigeria / Karioti, A, Skaltsa, H, Gbolade, A A / Journal of Essential Oil Research: JEOR, Jul/Aug 2007 by Karioti, A, Skaltsa, H, Gbolade, A A
Medicinal Plants used by various Ethnic Groups in Sabah, Malaysian Borneo
/ Fasihuddin Ahmad / Faculty of Resource Science and technology, Universiti Malaysia Sarawak (UNIMAS)
Ichthyotoxic Properties and Essential Oils of Syzygium malaccense (Myrtaceae) / Intan S Ismail et al / Pertanika J. Sci. & Technol. 18 (1): 1-6 (2010)

Inhibition of aldose reductase by herbs extracts and natural substances and their role in prevention of cataracts / Dr Angel Guzmani and Dr Ricardo Guerrero / REV CUBANA PLANT MED 2005;10(3-4)
Antioxidant capacity and total phenolic content of Malaysian underutilized fruits / Emmy Hainida Khairui Ikram et al / Journal of Food Composition and Analysis, Vol 22, Issue 5, August 2009, Pages 388-393 /
doi:10.1016/j.jfca.2009.04.001 |
/ G S H Baccus-Taylor, A Frederick, J O Akingbala / ISHS Acta Horticulturae 806: International Symposium on Underutilized Plants for Food Security, Nutrition, Income and Sustainable Development

Invitro Antioxidant Activities on Leaf Extracts of Syzygium malaccense (L.) Merr and Perry. / Savitha Rabeque, Padmavathy Sethuraman, Sundhararajan Arumugam / Ancient Science of Life, Vol 30, No 4 (2011)
Sorting Syzygium names / Maintained by: Michel H. Porcher / MULTILINGUAL MULTISCRIPT PLANT NAME DATABASE
Evaluation of the Hypoglycemic, Hypolipidaemic and Hepatic Glycogen Raising Effects of Syzygium malaccense Upon Streptozotocin Induced Diabetic Rats / K. L. Bairy, A. Sharma, Adiga Shalini / Journal of Natural Remedies, Vol 5, No 1, Jan 2005

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