Family Malvaceae

Habitat ► Throughout the hotter parts of India. Found as a weed in the sub-Himalayan tract and other hills up to 1,200 m.

English ► Country Mallow, Flowering Maples, Chinese Bell-flowers.

Ayurvedic ► Atibalaa, Kankatikaa, Rishyaproktaa.

Acacia arabica Willd. var. indica Benth.

Unani ► Kanghi, Musht-ul-Ghaul, Darkht-e-Shaan.

Siddha/Tamil ► Thutthi.

Folk ► Kanghi, Kakahi, Kakahiyaa.

Action ► Dried, whole plant— febrifuge, anthelmintic, demulcent, diuretic, anti-inflammatory (in urinary and uterine discharges, piles, lumbago). Juice of the plant— emollient. Seeds—demulcent (used in cough, chronic cystitis), laxative. Leaves—cooked and eaten for bleeding piles. Flowers— antibacterial, anti-inflammatory. Bark—astringent, diuretic. Root— nervine tonic, given in paralysis; also prescribed in strangury.

Along with other therapeutic applications, The Ayurvedic Pharmacopoeia of India indicates the use of the root in gout, polyuria and haemorrhagic diseases.

The plant contains mucilage, tannins, asparagines, gallic acid and ses-quiterpenes. Presence of alkaloids, leucoanthocyanins, flavonoids, sterols, triterpenoids, saponins and cardiac glycosides is also reported.

Asparagine is diuretic. Gallic acid is analgesic. Mucilages act by reflex, loosen cough as well as bronchial tension. Essential oil—antibacterial, antifungal.

The drug exhibits immunological activity. It augments antibody in animals. EtOH (50%) extract of A. indicum ssp. guineense Borssum, synonym A. asiaticum (Linn.) Sweet, exhibits anticancer activity.

Related sp. include: Abutilon avicen-nae Gaertn., synonym A. theophrastii

Medic.; A. fruticosum Guill. et al.; A. hirtum (Lam.) Sweet, synonym A. graveolens Wt. and Arn.; A. muticum Sweet, synonym A. glaucum Sweet; and A. polyandrum Wight and Arn., synonym A. persicum (Burm. f.) Merrill (known as Naani-khapaat, Jhinaki-khapaat, Kanghi, Makhamali-khapaat and Khaajavani-khapaat, respectively, in folk medicine).

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