Celastrus paniculatus

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Celastrus paniculatus
Celastrus paniculatus 05.JPG
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Plantae
(unranked): Angiosperms
(unranked): Eudicots
(unranked): Rosids
Order: Celastrales
Family: Celastraceae
Genus: Celastrus
Species: C. paniculatus
Binomial name
Celastrus paniculatus

Celastrus dependens Wall.

Celastrus paniculatus seeds

Celastrus paniculatus is a woody liana commonly known as black oil plant, climbing staff tree, and intellect tree (Sanskrit: jyotishmati ज्योतीष्मती, Hindi: Mal-kangani माल-कांगनी, Chinese: deng you teng 灯油藤).[1][2][3] The plant grows throughout India at elevations up to 1800 m.[1][4] Oil from the seeds is used as a traditional medicine in Indian Unani and Ayurvedic medicine.[1][5]

C. paniculatus is a deciduous vine with stems up to 10 centimeters in diameter and 6 meters long with rough, pale brown exfoliating bark covered densely with small, elongated lenticles. The leaves are simple, broad, and oval, obovate or elliptic in shape, with toothed margins.[1][2] C. paniculatus is a climbing shrub found throughout India.

Potential pharmacology[edit]

The seeds contain fatty acids and alkaloids, and have sedative and antidepressant actions.[medical citation needed] In Ayurvedic medicine, the seeds are used to sharpen the memory and the seed oil is used as a tonic for memory loss.[citation needed] These activities may be due to its neuroprotective actions.[6][full citation needed] A study in rats suggested that the aqueous extract of C. paniculatus seed has dose-dependent cholinergic activity, thereby improving rodent memory performance.[7]

US Relative[edit]

Celastrus paniculatus has a relative that grows in the United States that is poisonous, so it is important to identify this plant carefully.


  1. ^ a b c d Premila, M. S. (2006). Ayurvedic Herbs: A Clinical Guide to the Healing Plants of Traditional Indian Medicine. New York: Haworth Press. ISBN 0-7890-1768-7. 
  2. ^ a b H. F. Macmillan (1989). Handbook of Tropical Plants. Columbia, Mo: South Asia Books. ISBN 81-7041-177-7. 
  3. ^ Putz, Francis E.; Mooney, Harold A. (1991). The Biology of vines. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press. ISBN 0-521-39250-0. 
  4. ^ Zhixiang Zhang, Michele Funston: Celastrus, in Flora of China, Vol. 11
  5. ^ Chopra, R. N. Indigenous Drugs of india. Kolkata: Academic Publishers. ISBN 978-81-85086-80-4. 
  6. ^ A study published in the August 2004 issue of the "Journal of Ethnopharmacology"
  7. ^ Bhanumathy M. Harish MS. Shivaprasad HN. Sushma G (2010). "Nootropic activity of Celastrus paniculatus seed". Pharmaceutical Biology 48 (3): 324–7. doi:10.3109/13880200903127391. 

External links[edit]