Corchorus aestuans Linn

Synonym ► C. acutangulus Lam.

Family ► Tiliaceae.

Habitat ► Throughout the warmer parts of India, as a weed.

English ► White Jute. (Tossa Jute is equated with C. olitorius Linn.).

Ayurvedic ► Chunchu, Chanchu, Chinchaa. (bigger var. is equated with C. olitorius; smallar var. with C. capsularis.)

Folk ► Chench shaaka, Titapat (Bengal).

Action ► Seeds and aerial parts— stomachic, anti-inflammatory. Used in pneumonia.

The seeds contain cardenolides, beta-sitosterol, ceryl alcohol, oligosaccharides. The aerial parts contain triterpenoidal glycosides—corchoru-sins. Corchorusins have similar structural similarity with saikosaponins (isolated so far from Bupleurum sp. of Japan, China and Korea) and some of them exhibit antiviral, anti-inflam

172 Corchorus capsularis Linn.

matory and plasma-cholesterol lowering activities.

The alcoholic extract of the entire plant was found to have anticancer activity against epidermal carcinoma of nasopharynx in tissue culture. Alcoholic extract and glycosides of seeds exhibit cardiotonic activity. Digitox-ose containing glycosides are reported to be present in Corchorus sp.

C. olitorius Linn. is known as Jew's Mallow (Pattaa Shaaka or Patuaa Shaa-ka).

Corchorosid A, reported from the plant, improved cardiac competence experimentally.

The leaf extracts may be used as moisturizers in skin cosmetics. The extracts consist of uronic acid containing muco-polysaccharide, Ca, K and P, among others, which act as effective moisturizers.

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