Momordica cochinchinensis

Spreng.

Family ► Cucurbitaceae.

Habitat ► Cultivated throughout the country, especially found in Assam, Bengal, South India and Andaman Islands.

Ayurvedic ► Karkataka, Kaaravella-jalaja.

Folk ► Kakrol (Maharashtra), Bhat-karelaa, Gulkakraa.

Action ► Leaf and fruit—used externally for lumbago, ulceration, fracture of bone. Seed—bechic, aperient, emmenagogue, anti-inflammatory, deobstruent. (Used for obstructions of liver and spleen).

The tuberous root contains saponins belonging to the pentacyclic tri-terpene glycoside series. Seeds contain momordica saponins I and II (ester glycosides of gypsogenin and quilla-ic acid respectively), the diterpenoid columbin, oleanolic acid, its derivative momordic acid and bessisterol.

The seeds contain the glycoprotein, momorcochin S, which exhibits RNA N-glycosidase activity.

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