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Ficus odorata (Blanco) Merr.

Scientific names Common names
Ficus arenata Elmer (Illegitimate) Isis (Tag.)
Ficus hispida var. odorata Blanco Pakiling (Tag.)
Ficus odorata (Blanco) Merr.  
Ficus odorata (Blanco) Merr. is an accepted name. The Plant List

Gen info
There are 150 endemic Ficus species in the Philippines. (4)

Pakiling is a small tree reaching a height of nine meters, with young hispidous, greenish branchlets. Leaves are simple, alternate, oblong or broadly ovate and rounded, 16 to 20 centimeters long, 6 to 8 centimeters wide, acuminate at the apex, cordately inequilateral, margins toothed, lateral veins 6 to 8 pairs, prominent underneath, base penta- to octa-veined, venation semi-craspedodromous. Young branches are greenish, pubescent, petiole 1.0 to 1.2 centimeters long. (4)

- Endemic in the Philippines.
- Widely cultivated in Tayabas, Zambales, Pampanga, Bataan, and Laguna in Luzon.

- Dichlormethane extract of leaves yielded l -sitosteryl-3ß-glucopyranoside-6'- O-palmitate ( 1), squalene (2), lutein ( 3), α-amyrin acetate ( 4), lupeol acetate ( 5), and ß-carotene ( 6). (See study below) (2)
- Phytochemical screening yielded terpenes, glycosides, and phenolic acids. Crude extract yielded low gallic acid and quercetin equivalence. (3)
- Nutrient analysis of leaf for major dietary components yielded 47.5% carbohydrates and 36.1% dietary fibers, 15.2% total proteins, and 4.7% total fat. Micronutrients present were calcium (3.35%), potassium (1.38%), with trace amounts of sodium and zinc. (see study below) (8)

- Dried leaves are fragrant.
- Studies suggest prooxidant, cytotoxic, genotoxic properties.
- Studies suggest hypoglycemic, antioxidant, hypoglycemic, anticancer properties.


- Used in the treatment of allergy, asthma, diarrhea, diabetes, tumor and cancer. (4)
- Commonly used by the Aetas of Bataan for treatment of various ailments. (8)

Cytotoxicity / Human Stomach Adenocarcinoma Cell Line / Leaves:
Study of dichlormethane extract of leaves yielded 6 compounds. Compound 1 (l -sitosteryl3ß-glucopyranoside-6'- O-palmitate) showed cytotoxicity against human stomach adenocarcinoma cell line (AGS) with 60.28% growth inhibition. (See constituents above) (2)
Teratogenicity: Study of investigated leaf extracts of Ficus odorata (Blanco) Merr. and Baccaurea tetrandra (Baill) for teratogenic/antiteratogenic potential in inbred strain of ICR mice. Results showed a strong potential for F. odorata, with a high frequency of congenital abnormalities in the fetuses of mice treated with crude leaf extracts. Both plants did not show antiteratogenic activity. (3)
Pro-Oxidant Activity: Study evaluated F. odorata for potential medical application for its pro-oxidant activity. Pro-oxidant activity was evident in the crude ethanolic leaf extract. Results suggest F. odorata can be tapped as functional food and nutraceutical and drug development. (4)
Cytotoxic / Genotoxic / Human Hepatocellular Carcinoma / Leaves: Study evaluated Ficus odorata as a chemopreventive agent. Results showed a crude ethanolic extract has potent cytotoxicity towards HepG2 cells. It also showed genotoxic activity by Comet and TUNEL assays. The extract induced release of caspase 3 protease which activates cell apoptosis. Results suggest a potential anticancer agent. (5)
Hypoglycemic / Antioxidant / Leaves: Study evaluated the hypoglycemic and antioxidant activity of leaves of Ficus odorata. A dichlormethane fraction exhibited scavenging activity against hydroxyl radical and hydrogen peroxide. In STZ-induced diabetic rats, there was significant decrease in mean blood sugar after a 14-day treatment. On toxicity study, it was non toxic up to 2000 mg/kg. (7)
• Prebiotic Potential: Nutritional analysis showed F. odorota is a fiber-rich food ingredient with a wide range of health benefits. F. odorata has potential as functional food component as prebiotics for probiotics. (see constituents above) (8)
• Antibacterial / Leaves: Study evaluated the antibacterial potential of Ficus odorata leaves against different gastrointestinal bacteria i.e., B. subtilis, E. coli, S. aureus, and S. marcescens. (9)

- Wild-crafted.

© Godofredo U. Stuart Jr., M.D.

Updated March 2019 / December 2017 / July 2015
August 2014

IMAGE SOURCE: / Photo / Moraceae : Ficus odorata det. D.N. Tandang & W.F. Vendivil / Leaf / Copyright © 2011 by P.B. Pelser & J.F. Barcelona (contact: pieter.pelser@canterbury.ac.nz) [ref. DOL37567] / Non-Commercial Use / click on image to go to source page / Phytoimages.siu.edu
OTHER IMAGE SOURCE: Photograph / File: San Rafael Bulacan Ficus Odorata Diliman Paddy / Judgefloro /Creative Commons 4.0 / click on image to go to source page/ WIKIMEDIA COMMONS

Additional Sources and Suggested Readings
Ficus odorata (Blanco) Merr. / The Plant List
Chemical constituents of Ficus odorata / Tsai, P.-W.; Castro-Cruz, K.; Shen, C.-C.; Chiou, C.-T.; Ragasa, C. / Pharmaceutical Chemistry Journal; July 2012; Vol 46, Issue 4: pp 225-227 /
DOI: 10.1007/s11094-012-0767-3
Teratogenic Activity of Ficus odorata (Blanco) Merr. and Baccaurea tetrandra (Baill.) Müll. in Mice Embryos
/ Annabelle A. Herrera, Jobylyn B. Ramos, Lerrie Ann DG Ipulan / The Philippine Agricultural Scientist, 2010; Vol 93, No 3
Prooxidant Effect of the Crude Ethanolic Leaf Extract of Ficus odorata Blanco Merr. in vitro: It's Medical Significance / Librado A. Santiago, Anna Beatriz R. Mayor / World Academy of Science, Engineering and Technology / International Journal of Biological, Veterinary, Agricultural and Food Engineering, 2014; 8(1): pp 53-60
Cytotoxic and genotoxic activities of the crude ethanolic leaf extract of Ficus odorata (Blco). Merr. against human hepatocellular carcinoma / Librado A. Santiago, Kelsey C. Dayrit, Pamela Cjisel B. Correa, Angel Camille M. Aguila, Mary Rosary M. De Leon, and Anna Beatriz R. Mayor / Journal of Pharmacognosy and Phytochemistry, 2014; 3(3): pp 33-38
Ficus odorata (Blanco) Merr. is an accepted name / The Plant List
HYPOGLYCEMIC EFFECT AND IN VITRO ANTIOXIDANT ACTIVITY OF THE DICHLOROMETHANE FRACTION FROM THE LEAVES OF FICUS ODORATA (BLANCO) MERR. (MORACEAE) / Jasmin V. Degollado, Rowen T. Yolo, and Librado A. Santiago / International Journal of Research and Development in Pharmacy and Life Sciences, August-September 2014; Vol 3, No 5: pp 1163-1173
Nutritional composition analysis of Ficus odorata (Blanco) Merr.: a road to its prebiotic potential / Librado A Santiago & Anna Beatriz Mayor / Acta Manilana, Jan 2014; 62: pp 41-46
Antibacterial potential of crude ethanolic leaf extract of dried ficus odorata (Blanco) Merr. (Pakiling) / Charlene Z. Diocancil, Jovel Marie M. Domingo / Ninoy Aquino Library and Learning Resources Center

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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