What is Leucas Aspera?

Jan 6, 2023

What is Leucas Aspera?

Leucas aspera, commonly known as wild bergamot, Indian hallucinogenic plant or Bhoota tulasi, is a species of flowering plant in the mint family, Lamiaceae. It is native to tropical Asia, from the Indian subcontinent to China and Thailand. The plant is widely cultivated in tropical regions for its aromatic leaves and floral scents. The leaves are used in traditional medicine for their stimulant, analgesic and antipyretic properties.

Leucas aspera is a herbaceous perennial plant that typically grows to a height of 1–2 m (3–7 ft). The leaves are lanceolate to oblong-lanceolate in shape, 10–12 cm (4–5 in) long and 5–6 cm (2–2.4 in) wide. They are oppositely arranged on the stem and have a serrated margin. The flowers are white or lilac in color and borne in clusters at the leaf axils. The fruit is a four-lobed schizocarp that measures 3–4 mm (0.12–0.16 in) long.

 

Taxonomy

 

Leucas aspera (Willd.) Ferguson is a member of the Lamiaceae or mint family. It is an erect, branched herb that can grow up to 60 cm in height. The stem is quadrangular in shape and the leaves are opposite, ovate-lanceolate, and serrate. The flowers are white, axillary, and pedunculate. The plant is found in tropical and subtropical regions of India, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, and Nepal.

 

Kingdom

 


Leucas aspera is a species of flowering plant in the family Lamiaceae. The plant is native to tropical and subtropical regions of Asia, Africa, and Australasia. It is an erect, annual herb that grows up to 1 m tall. The leaves are opposite, ovate-lanceolate, and have toothed margins. The flowers are white or pale blue, and borne in axillary spikes. The fruit is a nutlet.

 

Phylum

 


Leucas aspera belongs to the phylumlaminariales. This is a group of plants that comprises the kelps and other large brown algae.

 

Class

 

The class of an organism is a taxonomic rank, as well as a taxonomic unit, a taxon, in that particular rank used in the classification of organisms and recognized by the nomenclature codes. In biological classification, class is:
-a taxonomic rank.
-the second highest rank in the Linnaean taxonomy between order and family.
-a clade,owning to its having one or more shared derived characters (synapomorphies).

 

Order

 

The Order of leucas aspera is Asterales, which includes asters, sunflowers, and daisies. This order is in the Euasterids I group of dicotyledons.

 

Family

 


The plant family to which leucas aspera belongs is the Lamiaceae, which is commonly known as the mint or deadnettle family. This family contains about 7,000 species of aromatic herbs, shrubs, and trees distributed throughout the world, with the majority of species found in temperate climates. Many members of this family are used as culinary herbs, and some are used in traditional medicine. The mint family has a long history of use in folk medicine, and many mints are still used for their medicinal properties today.

 

Genus

 

Members of the genus Leucas are annual or perennial herbs, shrubs or small trees. They are found in tropical and subtropical regions of the world. The genus includes about 150 species, which are divided into two main groups: the Old World species (found in Africa, Asia and Australasia) and the New World species (found in the Americas).

The Old World species are characterised by having opposite, simple leaves and tubular or funnel-shaped flowers. The New World species have alternate, compound leaves and cylindrical flowers.

Many species in this genus are used traditionally for their medicinal properties. Some of the more well-known ones include Leucas aspera (commonly known as 'shavegrass' or 'hairy leader'), which is used to treat skin conditions such as acne and eczema; Leucas indica (commonly known as 'Indian pennywort'), which is used to treat anxiety and depression; and Leucas lavandulifolia (commonly known as 'lavender-leaved pennywort'), which is used to treat headaches.

 

Species

 


Leucas aspera, also known as wild basil, is a species of flowering plant in the mint family, Lamiaceae. It is native to tropical and subtropical Asia and Africa. The plant is widely cultivated in many regions and is used in traditional medicine.

Leucas aspera is a herbaceous perennial plant that grows to about 1 m (3 ft) in height. The leaves are Ovate tolanceolate in shape, 5–8 cm (2–3 in) long and 3–5 cm (1–2 in) wide. Flowers are white or pinkish, 2–3 cm (0.8–1.2 in) long, borne in axillary or terminal spikes. Fruits are schizocarpic capsules, each containing four seeds.

The species has a number of common names, including wild basil, Indian basil, teak-leaved basil and country borage. It is also known by its synonyms Ocimum asperum and Ocimum sanctum.

 

Characteristics

 

Leucas aspera, also known as the Hindu or Indian jasmine, is an evergreen twining climber with strongly perfumed white flowers that bloom throughout the year. The flowers are traditionally used in India for religious purposes and for making garlands and jasmine oil. The plant is also used in traditional medicine.

 

Physical

 


Leucas aspera is an annual herb that grows up to 1 m in height. It has a woody base and hairy stems. The leaves are opposite, simple, and serrate with a hairy surface. The inflorescence is a terminal raceme with white flowers. The fruit is a nutlet.

 

Chemical

 


An oil obtained from the herb has been shown to contain thymol, carvacrol, α-terpinene, p-cymene, α-terpinene, terpinen-4-ol and γ-terpinene. It also showed good antifungal activity against Trichophyton mentagrophytes. The essential oil of the herb had good spasmolytic and analgesic activity.

 

Uses

 

Leucas aspera is an important medicinal plant used in the Indian traditional system of medicine, Ayurveda. The plant is known by various names such as country mallow, Indian cotton, Indian fee gentian and wild swamp cotton. It is a small herb with white or lilac flowers and has a strong, characteristic odor. The leaves, stem and roots of the plant are used for therapeutic purposes.

 

Traditional

 


Uses

The traditional uses of L. aspera are many and varied. In India, the whole plant is used to treat fever, dysentery, diarrhea, and wayside ulcers.[2][3] A decoction of the leaves is used as an antidandruff shampoo, and the fresh leaves are used as a dressing for cuts, wounds, and inflammation.[2] The leaves are also used in Tamil Nadu to treat gingivitis and stomatitis.[4][5]


In China, the herb is used to treat colds, flu, headache, dizziness, and vertigo.[6] In Nepal, it is used to treat indigestion,[7] while in Pakistan the fresh juice of the plant is used as an ear drop for treating earache.[8] In Sri Lanka, a decoction of the leaves is taken to treat snakebites[9] and various skin diseases such as eczema.[10][11] The plant is also said to have insecticidal properties,[12] and has been used in Nepal to construct beehives.[13]

L. aspera has also found application in traditional medicine elsewhere in Asia. In Vietnam, a decoction of the plant's roots is taken orally to treat coughs,[14][15] while in Burma (Myanmar), it is used as an ingredient in a liniment for treating muscle aches and pains.[16][17] The Malaysian state of Kelantan has traditionally used L. aspera leaves to prepare kompeni,[18][19] a type of dish made from combining various herbs (including L. aspera) with grated coconut.

 

Modern

 


Leucas aspera has been traditionally used in Ayurvedic and Siddha systems of medicine for the treatment of various diseases like fever, dysentery, diarrhea, asthma, bronchitis, and skin diseases. The plant is known by different tribal names such as "Tasmuli" in Meghalaya, "Tamalakki" or "Tavana kayi" in Karnataka, "Kumil" in Tamil Nadu and Kerala, "Dwidevi" or "Katuvaaruka" in Maharashtra.

The leaves are considered alterative, antiarthritic, antispasmodic, astringent, diuretic, febrifuge, refrigerant, and stimulant. A decoction of the leaves is given in fever and inflammation. The juice of the plant is taken for treating bites of poisonous insects and snakes. The paste of the root is used externally for swelling and prickly heat. The root is also chewed for treating mouth ulcers and sore throat.

 

Conclusion

 


The study concludes that Ethanolic and aqueous extracts of L. aspera showed significant analgesic, antipyretic and ulcerogenic activity. L. aspera can be considered a potential source of new drugs for the management of pain, fever and gastric ulcers. Further studies are warranted to elucidate the mechanism of action of the extracts.

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