It also supplies a dye, wood etc, and is occasionally used for food. The plant is cultivated for its medicinal uses in DR Congo, and is also used in shelterbelts and. Uses, Benefits, Cures, Side Effects, Nutrients in Alchornea. Names of Alchornea in various languages of the world are also given. Alchornea Cordifolia. The ethanolic leaf extract of Alchornea cordifolia (Schum. and Thonn.) Müll. Arg ( Euphorbiaceae), a widely used traditional medicinal plant was assessed for.

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Email this to a friend Print Share on facebook Tweet this. Showing 0 of 0 comments. Alchornea cordifolia 1, leafy branch; 2, part of young male inflorescence; 3, tip of female inflorescence; 4, fruit; 5, seed. Redrawn and adapted by Iskak Syamsudin.

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Arbre de djeman Fr. It is cultivated in DR Congo for its medicinal use. Alchornea cordifolia is commonly used as a medicinal plant throughout its area of distribution. The leaves are mostly used, but also the stem bark, stem pith, leafy stems, root bark, roots and fruits enter in local medicine.

The leaves or leafy stems, as an infusion or chewed fresh, are taken for their sedative and antispasmodic activities to treat a variety of respiratory problems including sore throat, cough and bronchitis, genital-urinary problems including venereal diseases and female sterility, and intestinal problems including gastric ulcers, diarrhoea, amoebic dysentery and worms.

As a purgative, they are also taken as an enema; high doses taken orally are emetic. They are also taken as a blood purifier, as a tonic and to treat anaemia and epilepsy. In Senegal a leaf decoction is taken to treat tachycardia. Young stem pith is bitter and astringent and is chewed for the same use. The pith may also be rubbed on the chest to treat respiratory problems.

The leaves are eaten in West Africa and Congo as an emmenagogue and to facilitate delivery, and in Gabon as an abortifacient.

A cold infusion of the dried and crushed leaves acts as a diuretic. Leaf and root decoctions are widely used as mouth wash to treat ulcers of the mouth, toothache and caries, and twigs are chewed for the same purposes.

Crushed fresh leaves or powdered dry leaves are applied externally as a cicatrisant to wounds, to relieve pain, e. A decoction or paste of leafy twigs is applied as a wash to treat fever, malaria, rheumatic pains, enlarged spleen and as a lotion or poultice to sore feet; vapour baths can also be taken.

In Sierra Leone and Congo young leaves or pounded bark are made into a suppository to treat haemorrhoids. In DR Congo bruised leaves are applied as an enema to treat impotency. In West Africa pulped root is widely taken to treat venereal diseases. Dried leaves or roots, alone or with tobacco, are smoked to cure cough. The leaves and root bark are externally applied to treat leprosy and as an antidote to snake venom. In Gabon and Congo a root decoction or maceration is taken to treat amoebic dysentery and diarrhoea and used as eye drops to cure conjunctivitis.


In Nigeria a decoction of bruised fruit is taken to prevent miscarriage. The sap of the fruit is applied to cure eye problems and skin diseases.

Alchornea Herb Uses, Benefits, Cures, Side Effects, Nutrients

In veterinary medicine a leaf or root infusion is given to livestock to treat trypanosomiasis. In Nigeria the stem alchotnea is thrown in dammed streams as a fish poison. Alchornea cordifolia is used for alley cropping for in-situ mulch production in banana or maize plantations in West and East Africa.

In Burkina Faso the plant is used as a windbreak around crops.

In West Africa the leaves are used as forage for small ruminants and poultry. Chicken produce egg yolks with a deeper yellow colour when fed regularly with the leaves. Pipe stems are made from the branches with the pith removed. The Iwo people of Nigeria chew the leaves as an appetizer. Dried leaves are a tea substitute. In West Africa mats and cloth are cooked with the fruits and natron to colour them black; the fruits are often combined with fermented Parkia pods or the bark of Bridelia ferruginea Benth.

This dye is also used on pottery, calabashes and leather.

Alchornea cordifolia – Wikipedia

The leaves are often added to indigo to darken its colour. In Nigeria fishermen use leaves and fruits for dyeing and preserving fishing nets; dried leaves give a darker colour than fresh ones.

In Gabon bark and leaves are used to blacken cloth and vordifolia. The wood ash serves as a mordant. The wood is light, soft and perishable and is used for house construction, stakes and kitchen utensils, and also benches when large stems are available. The wood is also used as fuel. In DR Congo the split stems are used to line baskets.

In Cameroon and Gabon the acidulous fruits are cordiifolia edible and are also used as bait to trap birds. The infructescences are used in decorations. Alchornea cordifolia extract has been patented for various other applications: In Ghana and Burkina Faso the leaves, root bark and fruits of Alchornea cordifolia are sold in local markets from November to January. The leaves also contain a range of hydroxybenzoic alchkrnea A C 20 homologue of vernolic acid, named alchornoic acid, was found in the seed oil.

Different leaf, stem bark and root extracts macerations or decoctions and methanolic, ethanolic or acetonic extracts have shown significant activities against a range of bacterial and fungal pathogens of humans. Cordifoila root bark showed the strongest activity. The results of tests on anti-HIV activities of the seed extract are contradictory; in African tests, HIV-1 strains were sensitive to the seed extract, whereas American tests seemed inconclusive.

The ethanol extracts of the leaf and fruit showed significant trypanocidal, anthelminthic and amoebicidal activities. The amoebicidal activity of the root bark was even much higher. The ethanol extract of the alchirnea exhibited mild in-vitro activity against Plasmodium falciparumwhereas chloroform and ether extracts were inactive.


Ellagic acid was found to be the active constituent of the extract.

Nigerian Journal of Natural Products and Medicine

Crude ethanol extracts of the leaves showed moderate in-vitro anthelmintic activity against Alchonea contortusa nematode pathogenic to small ruminants.

Different leaf extracts showed a significant anti-anaemic activity by increasing the level of haemoglobin and iron in the blood after oral administration to anaemic rats. Crude extracts of the leaves coagulated blood plasma in vitro.

The high tannin content was thought to be responsible for this activity. The ethanol extract of the leaf showed significant activity against castor oil-induced diarrhoea in mice. The presence of tannins and flavonoids may account for the increased alchoenea water and electrolyte reabsorption.

Antimicrobial spectrum of Alchornea cordifolia leaf extract.

The crude methanol extract of the leaf has a moderate relaxing effect on smooth muscles alchognea vitro, which is attributed to the flavonoid quercetin and its derivatives.

The ethanol extract of the root significantly delayed the effect of histamine-induced broncho-constriction characterized by shortness of breath in guinea pig. The crude methanol extract of the leaves and several fractions of it have shown anti-inflammatory activity in the croton oil-induced ear oedema test in mice and in the egg albumen-induced hind paw oedema test in rats. The cytotoxicity of the crude extract was very low.

Alcohol extracts from root bark, stem bark, leaves, fruits and seeds disrupted mitotic cell division in onion Allium cepa L. A methanol extract of the seed has shown inhibition of vascularization in chicken embryos. Corfifolia approximate nutrient composition of leaf meal for use in chicken feed was per g dry matter: While the production of leaves is high, their palatability to cattle, goats and sheep is rather low.

Straggling, laxly branched, evergreen dioecious shrub or small tree up to 8 m tall; young shoots erect, later becoming horizontal, hollow, glabrous. Leaves alternate, simple; stipules triangular, c. Male inflorescence an axillary panicle up to 30 —45 cm long, sparingly hairy, bracts minute; female inflorescence an axillary spike or lax panicle up to 30 —45 cm long, 1-several together, bracts broadly triangular-ovate, c. Flowers alchorna, sessile; male flowers with 2 cup-shaped sepals, petals absent, stamens 8, the united filaments forming a basal plate; female flowers with 2—4-lobed calyx, lobes obtuse, hairy, petals absent, ovary superior, conical, c.

Alchornes a 2-lobed capsule c. Alchornea is pantropical and comprises about 60 species of which 6 occur in tropical Africa. The nectar glands at the leaf base attract ants, which protect the plant from attacks from other insects. Alchornea cordifolia is widespread in secondary forest and riverine forest, especially in marshy areas but sometimes in drier sites, from sea-level up to m altitude.

It often forms thickets in disturbed, unburned localities. It is well adapted to acid soils. In DR Congo the tree is reported to improve soil fertility and is known to be effective in restoring calcium levels in acid soils.

It is one of the first trees to appear in vegetation dominated by Chromolaena odorata L. Alchornea cordifolia is propagated by seed or stem cuttings.