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Strychnos mostueoides Leeuwenb.

Protologue
Meded. Landbouwhogeschool 69(1): 194 (1969).
Family
Loganiaceae
Origin and geographic distribution
Strychnos mostueoides is endemic to Madagascar, but a somewhat different, more hairy specimen that may belong to this species was found in DR Congo.
Uses
In Madagascar a decoction of the aerial parts is taken to treat malaria.
Properties
From the root bark 8 indole alkaloids have been identified: normacusine B, caracusine VII, strychnofendlerine, spermostrychnine, strychnobrasiline, deacetylstrychnobrasiline, malagashine and malagashanine. Chemically normacusine B belongs to the corynanthean class of alkaloids, the other compounds belong to the strychnine class. Normacusine B is also found in Rauvolfia, Tabernaemontana and Vinca spp. It is sympatholytic and its hypotensive activity is stronger than that of reserpine, which is commonly used against high blood pressure. Malagashanine was shown to have promising chemosensitizing activity against chloroquine-resistant strains of the malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum.
Botany
Shrub up to 3 m tall, often dichotomously branched; branchlets sparsely hairy or glabrous. Leaves opposite, simple and entire; stipules absent; petiole 0.5–2 mm long, hairy or glabrous; blade ovate, narrowly ovate or elliptical, 20–70 cm × 9–30 cm, base rounded or cuneate, apex long-acuminate, glabrous or sparingly hairy on the veins on both sides or only beneath, 3-veined from the base. Inflorescence a terminal, lax thyrse 1–2 cm long, few-flowered; peduncle 1–2 cm long. Flowers bisexual, regular, 5-merous; sepals fused at base, nearly triangular, c. 1 mm long; corolla tube cylindrical, c. 2.5 mm long, lobes oblong, c. 2.5 mm long, acute, outside glabrous, inside hairy at base, white; stamens inserted at the middle of the corolla tube, included, anthers oblong, with a single hair at the deeply cordate base; ovary superior, ovoid, c. 1 mm × 0.5 mm, 2-celled, stigma sessile, head-shaped. Fruit a globose berry 6–8 mm in diameter, 1–2-seeded. Seeds elliptical, disk-like, 6–8 mm × 5–7 mm × 2 mm, rough, testa rather thick.
Strychnos comprises about 200 species: about 60 species in Asia, 65 in America and 75 in Africa.
Ecology
Strychnos mostueoides occurs in forest near river banks, from sea-level up to 500(–1000) m altitude.
Genetic resources and breeding
Strychnos mostueoides is endemic to Madagascar and may easily become endangered by habitat destruction.
Prospects
Strychnos mostueoides will remain of minor importance in traditional medicine. More research into the chemical composition and pharmacological activities of the indole alkaloids is needed to evaluate the use in traditional medicine.
Major references
• Leeuwenberg, A.J.M., 1969. The Loganiaceae of Africa 8. Strychnos 3. Revision of the African species with notes on the extra-African. Mededelingen Landbouwhogeschool Wageningen 69–1. Wageningen, Netherlands. 316 pp.
• Neuwinger, H.D., 2000. African traditional medicine: a dictionary of plant use and applications. Medpharm Scientific, Stuttgart, Germany. 589 pp.
• Ramanitrahasimbola, D., Rasoanaivo, P., Ratsimamanga, S. & Vial, H., 2006. Malagashanine potentiates chloroquine antimalarial activity in drug resistant Plasmodium malaria by modifying both its efflux and influx. Molecular and Biochemical Parasitology 146(1): 58–67.
• Rasoanaivo, P., Palazzino, G., Nicoletti, M. & Galeffi, C., 2001. The co-occurrence of C(3) epimer Nb,C(21)-secocuran alkaloids in Strychnos diplotricha and Strychnos myrtoides. Phytochemistry 56: 863–867.
• Rasoanaivo, P., Petitjean, A., Ratsimamanga-Urverg, S. & Rakoto-Ratsimamanga, A., 1992. Medicinal plants used to treat malaria in Madagascar. Journal of Ethnopharmacology 37: 117–127.
• Saxton, J.E., 1993. Recent progress in the chemistry of indole alkaloids and mould metabolites. Natural Product Reports 10(6): 349–395.
Other references
• Leeuwenberg, A.J.M. (Editor), 1980. Angiospermae: Ordnung Gentiales. Fam. Loganiaceae. Die natürlichen Pflanzenfamilien. Second Edition. Band 28 b-1. Duncker & Humblot, Berlin, Germany. 255 pp.
• Leeuwenberg, A.J.M., 1984. Loganiaceae. Flore de Madagascar et des Comores, famille 167. Muséum National d’Histoire Naturelle, Paris, France. 107 pp.
• Rasoanaivo, P., Galeffi, C., De Vicente, Y. & Nicoletti, M., 1991. Malagashanine and malagashine, two alkaloids of Strychnos mostueoides. Revista Latinoamerica di Quimica 22(1): 32.
• Rasoanaivo, P., Ratsimamanga-Urverg, S. & Frappier, F., 1996. Récents résultats sur la pharmacodynamie d’alcaloïdes de Strychnos malgaches. Cahiers Santé 6(4): 249–253.
Author(s)
A. de Ruijter
PROTA Network Office Europe, Wageningen University, P.O. Box 341, 6700 AH Wageningen, Netherlands


Editors
G.H. Schmelzer
PROTA Network Office Europe, Wageningen University, P.O. Box 341, 6700 AH Wageningen, Netherlands
A. Gurib-Fakim
Faculty of Science, University of Mauritius, Réduit, Mauritius
Associate editors
C.H. Bosch
PROTA Network Office Europe, Wageningen University, P.O. Box 341, 6700 AH Wageningen, Netherlands
M.S.J. Simmonds
Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew, Richmond, Surrey TW9 3AB, United Kingdom
R. Arroo
Leicester School of Pharmacy, Natural Products Research, De Montfort University, The Gateway, Leicester LE1 9BH, United Kingdom
A. de Ruijter
PROTA Network Office Europe, Wageningen University, P.O. Box 341, 6700 AH Wageningen, Netherlands
General editors
R.H.M.J. Lemmens
PROTA Network Office Europe, Wageningen University, P.O. Box 341, 6700 AH Wageningen, Netherlands
L.P.A. Oyen
PROTA Network Office Europe, Wageningen University, P.O. Box 341, 6700 AH Wageningen, Netherlands

Correct citation of this article:
de Ruijter, A., 2007. Strychnos mostueoides Leeuwenb. In: Schmelzer, G.H. & Gurib-Fakim, A. (Editors). Prota 11(1): Medicinal plants/Plantes médicinales 1. [CD-Rom]. PROTA, Wageningen, Netherlands.