Jatropha curcas Health effects and herbal facts

Known as
Barbados-nut bubblebush physicnut purgenut purgingnut

Jatropha curcas is a species of flowering plant in the spurge family, Euphorbiaceae, that is native to the American tropics, most likely Mexico and Central America. It is cultivated in tropical and subtropical regions around the world, becoming naturalized in some areas. The specific epithet, "curcas", was first used by Portuguese doctor Garcia de Orta more than 400 years ago and is of uncertain origin. Common names include Barbados Nut, Purging Nut, Physic Nut, or JCL. J. curcas is a poisonous, semi-evergreen shrub or small tree, reaching a height of 6 m. It is resistant to a high degree of aridity, allowing it to be grown in deserts. The seeds contain 27-40% oil that can be processed to produce a high-quality biodiesel fuel, usable in a standard diesel engine. The seeds are also a source of the highly poisonous toxalbumin curcin or jatrophin.

Jatropha curcas

Medical use

Economic importance of Jatropha curcas

Harmful organism host crop pests
Environmental boundary/barier/suport erosion control
Fuels potential as petroleum substitute/alcohol
Materials lipids tanin/dyestuf
Medicines folklore
Vertebrate poisons fish mamals

Gallery

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Geografical distribution

  • NORTHERN AMERICA
    Native
    • Southern Mexico: Mexico - Chiapas
  • SOUTHERN AMERICA
    Native
    • Mesoamerica: Belize; Costa Rica; El Salvador; Guatemala; Honduras; Nicaragua
    • Brazil: Brazil
    • Western South America: Bolivia; Peru
    • Southern South America: Argentina; Paraguay

Biological activities

5-Alpha-Reductase-Inhibitor
Linoleic-acid found in Seed (162240 ppm)
Oleic-acid found in Seed (199680 ppm)
Palmitic-acid found in Seed (65325 ppm)
Palmitoleic-acid found in Seed (6720 ppm)
Stearic-acid found in Seed (87360 ppm)
ACE-Inhibitor
Isovitexin found in Leaf
Vitexin found in Leaf
Absorbent
Starch found in Seed
Acetylcholinergic
Glucose found in Seed
Aggregant
Sucrose found in Seed
Aldose-Reductase-Inhibitor
Vitexin found in Leaf
Allergenic
Oleic-acid found in Seed (199680 ppm)
Alpha-Reductase-Inhibitor
Oleic-acid found in Seed (199680 ppm)
Analgesic
Alpha-amyrin found in Leaf
Beta-amyrin found in Bark
Androgenic
Beta-sitosterol found in Seed
Anemiagenic
Oleic-acid found in Seed (199680 ppm)
Angiogenic
Beta-sitosterol found in Seed
Angiotensin-Receptor-Blocker
Fiber found in Seed (155000 ppm)
Anorexic
Beta-sitosterol found in Seed
Anthelmintic
Tannin found in Resin, Exudate, Sap (187000 ppm)
AntiHIV
Tannin found in Resin, Exudate, Sap (187000 ppm)
AntiMS
Linoleic-acid found in Seed (162240 ppm)
Antiacne
Linoleic-acid found in Seed (162240 ppm)
Antiadenomic
Beta-sitosterol found in Seed
Antialcoholic
Fructose found in Seed
Antialopecic
Linoleic-acid found in Seed (162240 ppm)
Oleic-acid found in Seed (199680 ppm)
Palmitic-acid found in Seed (65325 ppm)
Antianaphylactic
Linoleic-acid found in Seed (162240 ppm)
Antiandrogenic
Beta-sitosterol found in Seed
Linoleic-acid found in Seed (162240 ppm)
Oleic-acid found in Seed (199680 ppm)
Palmitic-acid found in Seed (65325 ppm)
Antiarrhythmic
Vitexin found in Leaf
Antiarteriosclerotic
Linoleic-acid found in Seed (162240 ppm)
Antiarthritic
Linoleic-acid found in Seed (162240 ppm)
Antibacterial
Beta-sitosterol found in Seed
Tannin found in Resin, Exudate, Sap (187000 ppm)
Antibradiquinic
Vitexin found in Leaf
Anticancer
Tannin found in Resin, Exudate, Sap (187000 ppm)
Anticariogenic
Tannin found in Resin, Exudate, Sap (187000 ppm)
Anticoronary
Linoleic-acid found in Seed (162240 ppm)
Antidermatitic
Vitexin found in Leaf
Antidiabetic
Fiber found in Seed (155000 ppm)
Fructose found in Seed
Xylose found in Seed
Antidiarrheic
Tannin found in Resin, Exudate, Sap (187000 ppm)
Antidysenteric
Tannin found in Resin, Exudate, Sap (187000 ppm)
Antieczemic
Linoleic-acid found in Seed (162240 ppm)
Antiedemic
Alpha-amyrin found in Leaf
Beta-amyrin found in Bark
Beta-sitosterol found in Seed
Glucose found in Seed
Taraxasterol found in Bark
Antiestrogenic
Beta-sitosterol found in Seed
Antifeedant
Beta-sitosterol found in Seed
Antifertility
Beta-sitosterol found in Seed
Antifibrinolytic
Linoleic-acid found in Seed (162240 ppm)
Palmitic-acid found in Seed (65325 ppm)
Antigonadotrophic
Beta-sitosterol found in Seed
Antigranular
Linoleic-acid found in Seed (162240 ppm)
Antihangover
Fructose found in Seed
Antihepatotoxic
Glucose found in Seed
Stigmasterol found in Leaf
Tannin found in Resin, Exudate, Sap (187000 ppm)
Antihiccup
Sucrose found in Seed
Antihistaminic
Linoleic-acid found in Seed (162240 ppm)
Vitexin found in Leaf
Antihyperlipoproteinaemic
Beta-sitosterol found in Seed
Antihypertensive
Fiber found in Seed (155000 ppm)
Tannin found in Resin, Exudate, Sap (187000 ppm)
Antiinflammatory
Alpha-amyrin found in Leaf
Beta-amyrin found in Bark
Beta-sitosterol found in Seed
Linoleic-acid found in Seed (162240 ppm)
Oleic-acid found in Seed (199680 ppm)
Stigmasterol found in Leaf
Taraxasterol found in Bark
Vitexin found in Leaf
Antiketotic
Fructose found in Seed
Glucose found in Seed
Antileukemic
Beta-sitosterol found in Seed
Beta-sitosterol-beta-d-glucoside found in Seed (50000 ppm)
Antileukotriene-D4
Linoleic-acid found in Seed (162240 ppm)
Oleic-acid found in Seed (199680 ppm)
Antilipolytic
Tannin found in Resin, Exudate, Sap (187000 ppm)
Antilymphomic
Beta-sitosterol found in Seed
Antimenorrhagic
Linoleic-acid found in Seed (162240 ppm)
Antimutagenic
Beta-sitosterol found in Seed
Tannin found in Resin, Exudate, Sap (187000 ppm)
Antinauseant
Fructose found in Seed
Antinephritic
Tannin found in Resin, Exudate, Sap (187000 ppm)
Antinesidioblastosic
Starch found in Seed
Antinociceptive
Alpha-amyrin found in Leaf
Beta-amyrin found in Bark
Stigmasterol found in Leaf
Antiobesity
Fiber found in Seed (155000 ppm)
Antiophidic
Beta-sitosterol found in Seed
Stigmasterol found in Leaf
Tannin found in Resin, Exudate, Sap (187000 ppm)
Antiophthalmic
Sucrose found in Seed
Antioxidant
Beta-sitosterol found in Seed
Campesterol found in Leaf
Isovitexin found in Leaf
Myristic-acid found in Seed (8640 ppm)
Palmitic-acid found in Seed (65325 ppm)
Stigmasterol found in Leaf
Sucrose found in Seed
Tannin found in Resin, Exudate, Sap (187000 ppm)
Vitexin found in Leaf
Antiprogestational
Beta-sitosterol found in Seed
Antiprostaglandin
Beta-sitosterol found in Seed
Antiprostatadenomic
Beta-sitosterol found in Seed
Antiprostatitic
Beta-sitosterol found in Seed
Linoleic-acid found in Seed (162240 ppm)
Antipyretic
Beta-sitosterol found in Seed
Antiradicular
Tannin found in Resin, Exudate, Sap (187000 ppm)
Antirenitic
Tannin found in Resin, Exudate, Sap (187000 ppm)
Antiserotoninic
Vitexin found in Leaf
Antispasmodic
Beta-sitosterol-beta-d-glucoside found in Seed (50000 ppm)
Antithyroid
Vitexin found in Leaf
Antitumor-Promoter
Tannin found in Resin, Exudate, Sap (187000 ppm)
Antitumor
Alpha-amyrin found in Leaf
Beta-sitosterol-beta-d-glucoside found in Seed (50000 ppm)
Dulcitol found in Seed
Fiber found in Seed (155000 ppm)
Tannin found in Resin, Exudate, Sap (187000 ppm)
Antiulcer
Alpha-amyrin found in Leaf
Beta-amyrin found in Bark
Fiber found in Seed (155000 ppm)
Tannin found in Resin, Exudate, Sap (187000 ppm)
Antivaricose
Glucose found in Seed
Antiviral
Beta-sitosterol found in Seed
Stigmasterol found in Leaf
Tannin found in Resin, Exudate, Sap (187000 ppm)
Aphidifuge
Vitexin found in Leaf
Apoptotic
Beta-sitosterol found in Seed
Artemicide
Beta-sitosterol found in Seed
Stigmasterol found in Leaf
Atherogenic
Sucrose found in Seed
Beta-Blocker
Fiber found in Seed (155000 ppm)
Cancer-Preventive
Beta-sitosterol found in Seed
Fiber found in Seed (155000 ppm)
Isovitexin found in Leaf
Linoleic-acid found in Seed (162240 ppm)
Myristic-acid found in Seed (8640 ppm)
Oleic-acid found in Seed (199680 ppm)
Stigmasterol found in Leaf
Tannin found in Resin, Exudate, Sap (187000 ppm)
Vitexin found in Leaf
Candidicide
Beta-sitosterol found in Seed
Carcinogenic
Linoleic-acid found in Seed (162240 ppm)
Tannin found in Resin, Exudate, Sap (187000 ppm)
Cardioprotective
Fiber found in Seed (155000 ppm)
Caspase-8-Inducer
Beta-sitosterol found in Seed
Chelator
Tannin found in Resin, Exudate, Sap (187000 ppm)
Choleretic
Oleic-acid found in Seed (199680 ppm)
Collyrium
Sucrose found in Seed
Comedolytic
Linoleic-acid found in Seed (162240 ppm)
Cosmetic
Myristic-acid found in Seed (8640 ppm)
Stearic-acid found in Seed (87360 ppm)
Cyclooxygenase-Inhibitor
Tannin found in Resin, Exudate, Sap (187000 ppm)
Cytotoxic
Alpha-amyrin found in Leaf
Demulcent
Sucrose found in Seed
Dermatitigenic
Oleic-acid found in Seed (199680 ppm)
Diagnostic
Xylose found in Seed
Diuretic
Fiber found in Seed (155000 ppm)
Dye
Xylose found in Seed
Emollient
Starch found in Seed
Estrogenic
Beta-sitosterol found in Seed
Stigmasterol found in Leaf
FLavor
Oleic-acid found in Seed (199680 ppm)
Palmitic-acid found in Seed (65325 ppm)
Stearic-acid found in Seed (87360 ppm)
Febrifuge
Beta-sitosterol found in Seed
Flatugenic
Raffinose found in Seed
Stachyose found in Seed
Sucrose found in Seed
Gastroprotective
Alpha-amyrin found in Leaf
Beta-amyrin found in Bark
Glucosyl-Transferase-Inhibitor
Tannin found in Resin, Exudate, Sap (187000 ppm)
Goitrogenic
Vitexin found in Leaf
Gonadotrophic
Beta-sitosterol found in Seed
Hemolytic
Palmitic-acid found in Seed (65325 ppm)
Hepatoprotective
Alpha-amyrin found in Leaf
Beta-amyrin found in Bark
Beta-sitosterol found in Seed
Linoleic-acid found in Seed (162240 ppm)
Tannin found in Resin, Exudate, Sap (187000 ppm)
Hypercholesterolemic
Myristic-acid found in Seed (8640 ppm)
Palmitic-acid found in Seed (65325 ppm)
Sucrose found in Seed
Hyperglycemic
Glucose found in Seed
Hypocholesterolemic
Beta-sitosterol found in Seed
Campesterol found in Leaf
Fiber found in Seed (155000 ppm)
Linoleic-acid found in Seed (162240 ppm)
Oleic-acid found in Seed (199680 ppm)
Stearic-acid found in Seed (87360 ppm)
Stigmasterol found in Leaf
Hypoglycemic
Beta-sitosterol found in Seed
Beta-sitosterol-beta-d-glucoside found in Seed (50000 ppm)
Hypolipidemic
Beta-sitosterol found in Seed
Hypotensive
Fiber found in Seed (155000 ppm)
Vitexin found in Leaf
Hypouricemic
Fiber found in Seed (155000 ppm)
Immunomodulator
Linoleic-acid found in Seed (162240 ppm)
Immunosuppressant
Tannin found in Resin, Exudate, Sap (187000 ppm)
Insectifuge
Alpha-amyrin found in Leaf
Linoleic-acid found in Seed (162240 ppm)
Oleic-acid found in Seed (199680 ppm)
Irritant
Oleic-acid found in Seed (199680 ppm)
Larvicide
Beta-amyrin found in Bark
Laxative
Fiber found in Seed (155000 ppm)
Fructose found in Seed
Lipoxygenase-Inhibitor
Tannin found in Resin, Exudate, Sap (187000 ppm)
Lubricant
Myristic-acid found in Seed (8640 ppm)
Palmitic-acid found in Seed (65325 ppm)
Stearic-acid found in Seed (87360 ppm)
MAO-Inhibitor
Tannin found in Resin, Exudate, Sap (187000 ppm)
Memory-Enhancer
Glucose found in Seed
Metastatic
Linoleic-acid found in Seed (162240 ppm)
Mosquitocide
Beta-amyrin found in Bark
Nematicide
Linoleic-acid found in Seed (162240 ppm)
Myristic-acid found in Seed (8640 ppm)
Palmitic-acid found in Seed (65325 ppm)
Neoplastic
Fructose found in Seed
Ornithine-Decarboxylase-Inhibitor
Tannin found in Resin, Exudate, Sap (187000 ppm)
Ovulant
Stigmasterol found in Leaf
Percutaneostimulant
Oleic-acid found in Seed (199680 ppm)
Perfumery
Oleic-acid found in Seed (199680 ppm)
Stearic-acid found in Seed (87360 ppm)
Pesticide
Beta-sitosterol found in Seed
Palmitic-acid found in Seed (65325 ppm)
Tannin found in Resin, Exudate, Sap (187000 ppm)
Poultice
Starch found in Seed
Preservative
Sucrose found in Seed
Propecic
Linoleic-acid found in Seed (162240 ppm)
Oleic-acid found in Seed (199680 ppm)
Palmitic-acid found in Seed (65325 ppm)
Stearic-acid found in Seed (87360 ppm)
Psychotropic
Tannin found in Resin, Exudate, Sap (187000 ppm)
Sedative
Stigmasterol found in Leaf
Soap
Palmitic-acid found in Seed (65325 ppm)
Palmitoleic-acid found in Seed (6720 ppm)
Spermicide
Beta-sitosterol found in Seed
Suppository
Stearic-acid found in Seed (87360 ppm)
Sweetener
Dulcitol found in Seed
Fructose found in Seed
Galactose found in Fruit
Sucrose found in Seed
Thyroid-Peroxidase-Inhibitor
Vitexin found in Leaf
Triglycerigenic
Sucrose found in Seed
Ubiquiot
Beta-sitosterol found in Seed
Ulcerogenic
Beta-sitosterol found in Seed
Uricogenic
Sucrose found in Seed
Vasodilator
Fiber found in Seed (155000 ppm)
Vulnerary
Sucrose found in Seed
Xanthine-Oxidase-Inhibitor
Tannin found in Resin, Exudate, Sap (187000 ppm)
cAMP-Phosphodiesterase-Inhibitor
Vitexin found in Leaf

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Chemicals detected

Chemical Plant part Low ppm High ppm
7-keto-beta-sitosterol Seed
Alpha-amyrin Leaf
Arabinose Seed
Arachidic-acid Seed 1,800 2,880
Ash Seed 45,000
Beta-amyrin Bark
Beta-sitosterol Seed
Beta-sitosterol-3-o-beta-d-glucoside Leaf
Beta-sitosterol-beta-d-glucoside Seed 50,000
Campesterol Leaf
Carbohydrates Seed 335,000
Curcin Seed
Curcusones Plant
Dulcitol Seed
Fat Seed 300,000 480,000
Fiber Seed 155,000
Fructose Seed
Galactose Fruit
Glucose Seed
Isovitexin Leaf
Linoleic-acid Seed 87,960 162,240
Linolenic-acid Seed 3,300 5,280
Myristic-acid Seed 5,400 8,640
N-1-triacontanol Leaf
Oleic-acid Seed 109,440 199,680
Palmitic-acid Seed 39,900 65,325
Palmitoleic-acid Seed 4,200 6,720
Protein Seed 162,000 186,000
Raffinose Seed
Rhamnose Seed
Stachyose Seed
Starch Seed
Stearic-acid Seed 26,400 87,360
Stigmast-5-ene-3-beta-7-alpha-diol Leaf
Stigmast-5-ene-3-beta-7-beta-diol Leaf
Stigmasterol Leaf
Sucrose Seed
Tannin Resin, Exudate, Sap 116,000 187,000
Taraxasterol Bark
Vitexin Leaf
Water Seed 66,000
Xylose Seed
Reference: Dr. Duke's Phytochemical and Ethnobotanical Databases. [Online Database]