Pansi-pansi is an erect and diffusely
branched annual herb. Leaves are linear or oblong, 2.5 to 7.5 centimeters long
with blunt tips and scalloped margins. Whorls are large, terminal and
axillary, about 2.5 centimeters in diameter and crowded with white flowers. Calyx
is variable, with an upper lip with short, triangular teeth. Corolla is small.
- Found in Cagayan, Isabela, Ilocos Norte, Abra, La Union, Pampanga, Bataan, and Rizal Provinces in Luzon; in Mindoro; and in Mindanao (Lanao) in open, dry,
- A weed in waste places, and locally abundant.
- Also occurs in India to Mauritius and Java.
• Studies have yield
LC alipathic compounds, a triterpene-leucolactone, sterols – sitosterol,
campesterol stigmasterol and a phenolic compound.
• Study yielded a liquid alkaloid, nicotine, from the aerial parts.
• Main constituents of leaf oil has been reported to be (Z,E)-farnesene.
• Methanol fractions of leaf extracts yielded fatty acid esters, fatty acid amide, triterpene, diterpene alcohols and phytol as major chemical compound groups. GC-MS analysis showed phytol (24.55%), 9, 12, 15-Octadecatrienoic acid, methyl ester (z, z, z) - (22.97%), n-Hexadecanoic acid (17.17%), Squalene (5.28%) and 1, 2-Benzenedicarboxylic acid, bis(2-methylpropyl) ester (4.44%). (16)
• Micro chemical (elemental) analysis of various plant parts yielded major elements of carbon, oxygen, calcium, silica, and aluminum. Other elements were iron, sodium, potassium, phosphorus, and chlorine. (25)
• Study of chemical composition of leaf oil yielded carvone, carvacrol, menthol, phellandral, farnesene, caryophyllene and two new compounds (Alloaromadendrene and Caryophyllene). (see study below) (36)
• A liquid alkaloids was isolated from the aerial parts of Leucas aspera and identified as nicotine. (37)
• Whole plant is fragrant.
• Considered antipyretic, diaphoretic, expectorant, stimulant, laxative and anthelmintic.
• Studies have suggested antimicrobial, antioxidant, hepatoprotective, anti-inflammatory, antinociceptive, larvicidal, cytotoxic, antimalarial, anabolic, anti-diabetic properties.
- A fragrant herb used in cooking.
· In the Philippines, crushed plant is applied hot to wounds.
· Decoction of leaves and bark used to hasten menstruation.
· Decoction also used after childbirth.
· Used for fever, colds and scabies.
· Bruised leaves used for bites of snakes and poisonous insects.
· Juice of leaves used for psoriasis and other skin disorders.
· In Malabar and Reunion, plant is given for amenorrhea.
· Leaves used in rheumatism.
· In India, used as an insecticide
and as traditional medicine for coughs, colds, painful swellings,
skin eruptions, scabies, typhoid fever, and snake bites.
· In India, leaf juice used to relieve chronic headaches; roots used for dental pain; fresh leaf juice mixed with honey used for gonorrhea, sterility, spermatorrhea and impotency; whole plant taken orally as antidote to snake bites, also to relieve fever and insect stings; root paste taken orally for asthma.
· In Siddha medicine: (1) Samoolam of the plant is crushed and boiled in water, and the steam used for inhalation treatments of nasal congestion, cough, cold, fever, headache. (2) Flower juice for sinusitis. (3) Flower oil used for headaches and sinusitis. (4) Juice or decoction of flowers and leaves used for intestinal worms in children. (5) Leaves rubbed over scorpion bites. (38)
· In India, seven young vegetative shoots and seven flowers of L. aspera, together with seven fruits of P. nigrum, are crushed and taken orally in the morning for two days for dysmenorrhea. (42)
Study of methanol extract and methanol fraction of LA flowers showed good antibacterial activity; alkaloidal residue showed maximum activity. (1)
• Antioxidant / Prostaglandin Inhibition:
Extract study showed prostaglandin inhibition and antioxidant activity. Study yielded eight lignans and four flavonoids. (2)
Study showed hepatoprotective activity of LA attributed to the unconfirmed
presence of flavonoids. (3)
• Antinociceptive / Antioxidant: Ethanolic extract of L aspera showed significant writhing inhibition and significant free radical scavenging activity and significant lethality to brine shrimp with an LC50 value. (4)
• Larvicidal: Study
of crude extracts of L aspera showed good
larvicidal activity against the larvae of Culex quinquefasciatus and
Aedes aegypti. (5)
• Anti-inflammatory: Study
showed L aspera to have significant anti-inflammatory effect in acute and subacute inflammation, more effective than acetylsalicylic acid and less than phenylbutazone. (6)
• Alkaloid / Nicotine: Study
yielded a liquid alkaloid from the aerial parts of L aspera, identified as nicotine, giving a characteristic tobacco-like odor. The insecticidal property of the herb could be due to the presence of nicotine. (7)
• Diterpenes / Inhibition of Prostaglandin-Induced Contractions: Study
on the inhibitory activity on prostaglandin-induced contraction in guinea pig ileum yielded four new diterpenes (leucasperones A and B and lecasperols A and B) and three new isopimarane glycosides (leucasperosides A, B, and C) together with known compounds. Leucasperone A, leucasperosides A and B, and linifolioside (known compound) showed inhibition of prostaglandin-induced contractions. (10)
• Antioxidant / Antibacterial: Study evaluated methanol extracts of various parts of L. aspera for biologic activity. A methanol extract of root showed antioxidant activity near the range of vitamin E. Crude extracts of root, flower, leaf and stem showed notable antibacterial activity. A methanol root extract showed significant toxicity on brine shrimp lethality assay. (11)
• Larvicidal and Pupicidal / Anti-Malarial: Study investigated the larvicidal and pupicidal activity of ethanolic extracts of L. aspera and B. sphaericus against first and fourth instar larvae and pupae of laboratory-reared mosquitoes. Results showed excellent potential for controlling the malarial vector, A. stephensi. (12)
• Hepatoprotective / Lead Exposure / Leaves : Study evaluated the hepatoprotective activity of a leaf extract of L. aspera on male albino wistar rats during exposure to lead acetate. Results showed hepatoprotective activity with significant dose-dependent reduction of liver enzymes. (13)
• Antivenom / Triterpenoid / Leaves: A triterpenoid, 1-hydroxytetratriacontane-4-one (C34H68O2), isolated from a methanolic leaf extract, was studied for antisnake venom activity. The plant significantly antagonized the cobra (Naja naja naja) venom induced lethal activity in a mouse model. There was significant attenuation of the venom-induced antioxidant status and LPO activity in different organs. (14)
• Hepatoprotective / CCl4-Induced Injury: Study evaluated a methanolic extract of L. aspera against carbon tetrachloride induced acute liver injury in rats. Results showed antioxidant and curative effects. Phytochemical screening yielded sitosterol, flavonoids and alkaloids which could have been responsible for the possible hepatoprotection. (15)
• Antibacterial / Cytotoxic: Study evaluated L. aspera leaves for in vitro antibacterial, antifungal and cytotoxic properties. All extracts showed remarkable antibacterial activity against all studied organisms except E. coli. None showed antifungal activity. A methanol extract showed strongest cytotoxic activity in the brine shrimp lethality assay. (17)
• Antiulcer / Leaves: Study evaluated an alcoholic extract for antiulcer activity by two experimental models. Results showed significant reduction i acid secretion and ulcer score, possibly through a combination antisecretory effect and protective effect on the gastric mucosa. (19)
• Safety / Potential Anabolic Effect: Study evaluated an aqueous suspension of dried powder leaves in three different animal groups. There were no changes in behavioral responses indicating the safe nature of the plant. A significant increase in food consumption and body weight changes suggested a potential anabolic / nutraceutical property. (20)
• Hypoglycemic / Leaves: Study evaluated the effect of leaves and stem on blood glucose of normoglycemic and diabetic rats. Chronic administration showed hypoglycemic activity with significant reduction in FBS levels comparable to the drug metformin. (21)
• Immunostimulatory Effect in Cyclophosphamide-Induced Immunosuppression: Study evaluated the immunostimulatory effect of an aqueous extract in cyclophosphamide induced immunosuppressed mice. There was significant increase in neutrophil and DTH activity with increase in RBC, WBC, and Hb. Results suggest L. aspera provoked both cellular and humoral immune responses. (22)
• Anti-Inflammatory / Leaves: Study showed alkaloidal fractions of leaves caused significant reduction in inflammation in carrageenan induced paw edema testing. (23)
• Anti-Diabetic: Study showed extract of leaves caused a significant antihyperglycemic activities in alloxan-induced diabetic rats, with improvement in parameters such as body weight and lipid profile, as well as regeneration of pancreatic ß-cells. (24) Study of a methanol extract of whole plant showed significant reduction of blood glucose in streptozotocin-induced diabetic rats. 400 mg/kbw was more effective with the highest glycemic change. (27) Study evaluated Leucas aspera leaves on experimental diabetes (Type 1) in rats in terms of alterations in biochemical profiles. Results showed profound effect in lowering blood glucose in a dose dependent manner. Type-1 induced patho-biochemical changes were ameliorated more effectively by the ethanolic extract in a dose dependent manner. (39)
• Analgesic / Antipyretic / Antimicrobial: Study of ethanolic extract of whole plant of L. aspera showed analgesic, antipyretic and antimicroblal activities. (26)
• Acute and Sub-Acute Toxicity Testing: Study evaluated the acute and sub-acute oral toxicity of ethanolic extract of L. aspera on albino mice and adult Wistar rats. Results showed no significant adverse effects on hematological and biochemical parameters with no damage to vital organs. Investigation demonstrates that in the usual doses used in traditional medicine, the ethanolic extract may be considered relatively safe. (28)
• Antioxidant / Anti-Arthritic Potential: Study evaluated a hydroalcoholic extract of aerial parts for anti-arthritic effect in adjuvant-induced arthritic rats. Results showed significant anti-inflammatory (P>0.001) and antioxidant activity (P>0.0010. It showed no mortality up to 2000 mg KBW. Histopathological studies confirmed cartilage regeneration. (29)
• CNS Depressant Activity / Roots: Study of an ethanolic extract of root of Leucas aspera showed a central nervous system depressant effect using pentobarbitone induced sleeping time test, the open field test, and the hold cross test in Swiss albino mice. (31)
• Angiosuppressive Activity / Leaves: A methanol leaf extract using Chicken Chorioallantoic Membrane (CAM) assay showed maximum concentration dependent angiosuppressive activity. The inhibition of angiogenesis is due to suppression of vascular endothelial cell spreading, migration, and angiogenesis. Results suggest Leucas aspera can be a useful source material as an antiangiogenic agent for human health. (32)
• Antitumor / Inhibition of Dalton's Ascitic Lymphoma / Aerial Parts: Study evaluated aerial parts of L. aspera for antitumor activity in Dalton's lymphoma (DAL) bearing mice. Results showed a cytotoxic effect of EALA in DAL cell lines, with a significant decrease in ascites tumor volume and viable cell count. Also, there was inhibition of neovascularization and production of macrophage stimulation in treated mice. (33)
• Wound Healing / Baicalin / Flowers: Study of flowers isolated baicalin (baicalein-7-O-ß-D-glucuronide). The compound showed wound healing activity in albino rats. The effect could be attributed to its antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. (34)
• Silver Nanoparticles / Antibacterial Studies: Silver nanoparticles were synthesized using L. aspera leaf extracts. The nanoparticles were examined for antibacterial activities against multidrug resistance human pathogens.
• Leaf Volatile Oil / Antimicrobial: Study showed Pseudomonas aeruginosa, Haemophilus influenza, and Candida albicans were highly sensitive to the volatile oil of Leucas aspera. (see constituents above) (36)
• Nicotine / Aerial Parts: Study isolated a liquid alkaloid from the aerial parts of Leucas aspera and identified as nicotine, based on physiochemical, TLC, HPTLC, and RP-HPLC analysis. (37)
• Nephroprotective / Lead Acetate Induced Nephrotoxicity: Study evaluated the nephroprotective and antioxidant activities of methanol extract on lead acetate induced toxicity in rats. Results showed protective activity against lead acetate induced necrotic damage of renal tissue and significant improvement in biochemical parameters. Activity was likely mediated through antioxidant activities. (40)
• Antiparkinsonism: Study evaluated an ethanolic extract of L. aspera on rotenone-induced parkinson's disorder in mice. Results showed a protective effect in both behavioral and biochemical parameters, with increased motor coordination, protective changes in oxidative marker levels and no depletion of dopamine content. (41)
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