Gynandropsis gynandra

Synonym ► G. pentaphylla DC. Cleome gynandra Linn.

Family ► Capparidaceae.

Habitat ► Throughout warmer parts of India.

Ayurvedic ► Tilaparni (white var.), (Pita or yellow-flowered var. is equated with Cleome viscosa Linn.), Ajagandhaa, Pashugandhaa, Ugragandhaa, Puutigandhaa, Barbaraka. Suuryaavartta has been equated with G. pentaphylla DC.

Siddha/Tamil ► Thaivelai, Nalvelai.

Action ► Leaves and seeds—used in the same way as mustard. Bruised leaves—rubefacient and vesicant, used as counter-irritant in headache, neuralgia, rheumatic affections. Roots—decoction, febrifuge. Seeds—anthelmintic; externally counter-irritant. Applied as poultice to sores with maggots. An infusion is given for coughs.

The Ayurvedic Pharmacopoeia ofIn-dia recommended the use of the seed in chlorsis, chronic obstructive jaundice and enlarged prostate.

The seeds are reported to contain cleomin, hexacosanol, free beta-sitos-terol and kaempferol; also glucosino-lates.

Alcoholic extract of the whole plant exhibited anti-inflammatory activity in carrageenan-induced inflammation in rats.

The medicinal properties of the seeds are attributed to the presence of cleomin. Seeds also contain 1% tannins.

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