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Family Capparaceae / Cleomaceae
Botete
Cleome spinosa Jacq.

SPIDER FLOWER
Xi yang bai hua cai

Scientific names  Common names
Cleome heptaphylla L. Botete (Ig.)
Cleome pubescens Sims Grandfather's whiskers (Engl.)
Cleome pungens Willd. Spiny spider flower (Engl.)
Cleome sandwicensis A. Gray Spider legs (Engl.)
Cleome spinosa Jacq. Violet queen (Engl.)
Cleome spinosa Sw.                                                 [Illegitimate]  
Cleome tonduzii Briq.  
Neocleome spinosa (Jacq.) Small  
Tarenaya spinosa (Jacq.) Raf.  
Cleome spinosa Jacq. is an accepted name The Plant List

Other vernacular names
BRAZIL:Mussambe-de-espino, Sete-marias.
CHINESE: Zui die huo, Zi long xu, Xi yang bai hua cai.
ZANZIBAR: Mvunjakhondo.

Botany
Botete is an annual, hairy, strongly-scented herb. Stems are erect, 30 to 90 centimeters in height, simple or branched. Leaves are alternate, palmately compound with 5- to 7-foliate, on petioles longer than the leaflets, commonly with stipular spines. Leaflets are entire, elliptic to obovate or rarely oblanceolate, 2 to 10 centimeters long, and pointed at both ends. Racemes are 10 to 30 centimeters long. Sepals are linear-lanceolate and 5 to 10 millimeters long. Petals are clawed, purple or rarely white, oval or rounded, 2.5 to 3.5 centimeters long. Fruit is a narrow capsule, 6 to 10 centimeters long, with pale and finely reticulated seeds.

Distribution
- Originally Introduced in Baguio as an ornamental, now thoroughly naturalized.
- Wild and abundant along streams in Baguio.
- Used for bedding in gardens.

- Native of tropical America.
- Now pantropic.

Constituents
- Oil of grains rich in glucosinolates.
- Yields flavone, flindulatin, and five novel diterpene cembranes, called cleospinol A, B, C, D and the 3'-hydroxy-isopentan-10-oate ester of cleospinol A. (5)
- Methanol extract of leaves yielded flavonoids, terpenoids, tannins and saponins. (see study below) (9)

Properties
- Stomachic and vulnerary.
- Studies suggest anti-inflammatory, antinociceptive, antimicrobial, and hair-promoting properties.

Parts utilized
Leaves.

Uses
Folkloric
- Bruised leaves applied to the head for headaches.
- Plant is a stomachic; in Brazil, used as an vulnerary.

- In Northeastern Brazil, used for treatment of diseases of the respiratory tract. Syrups and infusions of leaf and flower used for fever, influenza, cough, bronchitis and asthma. Whole plant used for digestive and cicatrizant effects. (6)
- Oil of grains used for earaches.

Studies
Pharmaceutical and Cosmetic Compositions / Hair Growth: Patent application made for Cleome spinosa extract use in pharmaceutical preparation and cosmetic composition. (2) Invention uses a Cleome spinosa extract as an active ingredient for extending the growth of hair follicles. (3)
Anti-Inflammatory / Antinociceptive: Methanol extracts were evaluated using carrageenan-induced paw edema and acetic acid-induced writhing animal models. Results showed significant anti-inflammatory and antinociceptive properties. No toxicity was noted by Artemia salina bioassay. (6)
Essential Oil / Antimicrobial / Aerial Parts: Major compounds from the aerial portion without flowers were caryophyllene oxide, (-)-spathulenol and Z-phytol; In the flower oil, the main components were 7-alpha-hydroxy manool, incensole and sclareol; in fruit oil, tetradecanoic acid, (Z)-phytol and sclareol; In leaf oil, (Z)-phytol, 7-alpha-hydroxy manool and caryophyllene oxide. The volatile oil showed moderate action against seven of the eight bacteria strains used. The oils showed moderate insecticidal activity against Cylas formicarius elegantalus. (7)
Antimicrobial / Leaves: Study of methanolic extract of leaves showed antimicrobial activity against Gram-positive bacteria (S. aureus and B. subtilis), Gram-negative bacteria (E. coli and P. aeruginosa) and fungus (C. albicans, C. glabrata, and C. krusei). (see constituents above) (9)

Availability
Wildcrafted.

Last Update December 2015

Photo © Godofredo Stuart / StuartXchange
OTHER IMAGE SOURCE / Line Drawing / Cleome spinosa Jacq. - spiny spiderflower / USDA-NRCS PLANTS Database / Britton, N.L., and A. Brown. 1913. An illustrated flora of the northern United States, Canada and the British Possessions. 3 vols. Charles Scribner's Sons, New York. Vol. 2: 197. / USDA
Additional Sources and Suggested Readings
(1)
Acylated anthocyanins in inflorescence of spider flower (Cleome hassleriana) / Jordheim Monica et al /
Phytochemistry 2009;70(6):740-5 / 2009
(2)
US Patent Application 20100119632 - CLEOME SPINOSA EXTRACT USED IN PHARMACEUTICAL PREPARATIONS AND COSMETIC COMPOSITIONS / Belle et a]. / PatentStorm
(3)
Cleome spinosa extract used in pharmaceutical preparations and cosmetic compositions / Fresh Patents
(4)
Tarenaya hassleriana (Chodat) Iltis (accepted name) / Chinese names / Catalogue of Life, China
(5)
New cembranes from Cleome spinosa. / Collins DO, Reynolds WF, Reese PB. / J Nat Prod. 2004, Feb;67(2):179-83.
(6)
Anti-inflammatory and antinociceptive activity of field- growth plants and tissue culture of Cleome spinosa (Jacq.) in mice / Norma Albarello*, Claudia Simões-Gurgel, Tatiana Carvalho de Castro, Carlos Roberto M. Gayer, Marsen Garcia Pinto Coelho, Roberto Soares de Moura and Elisabeth Mansur / Journal of Medicinal Plants Research, Vol. 7(16), pp. 1043-1049, 25 April, 2013/ DOI: 10.5897/JMPR12.153
(7)
Chemical composition and antimicrobial activity of the essential oils from Cleome spinosa. / McNeil MJ, Porter RB, Williams LA, Rainford L / Natural Product Communications, 2010, 5(8):1301-1306
(8)
Cleome spinosa / Synonyms / The Plant List
(9)

It is not uncommon for links on studies/sources to change. Copying and pasting the information on the search window or using the DOI (if available) will often redirect to the new link page.

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