Achyranthes aspera

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Achyranthes aspera
Achyranthes aspera at Kadavoor.jpg
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Plantae
(unranked): Angiosperms
(unranked): Eudicots
(unranked): Core eudicots
Order: Caryophyllales
Family: Amaranthaceae
Genus: Achyranthes
Species: A. aspera
Binomial name
Achyranthes aspera

Achyranthes aspera (common name: prickly chaff flower,[1] devil's horsewhip,[2] Sanskrit: अपामार्ग apamarga) is a species of plant in the Amaranthaceae family. It is distributed throughout the tropical world.[3] It can be found in many places growing as an introduced species and a common weed.[4] It is an invasive species in some areas, including many Pacific Islands environments.[5]

It is one of the 21 leaves used in the Ganesh Patra Pooja done regularly on Ganesh Chaturthi day. In Uttar Pradesh the plant is used for a great many medicinal purposes, especially in obstetrics and gynecology, including abortion, induction of labor, and cessation of postpartum bleeding.[6] The Maasai people of Kenya use the plant medicinally to ease the symptoms of malaria.[7]

Chemical constituents[edit]

Achyranthes aspera contains triterpenoid saponins which possess oleanolic acid as the aglycone. Ecdysterone, an insect moulting hormone, and long chain alcohols are also found in Achyranthes aspera.[8] Medicinally important chemicals like achyranthine, betaine, pentatriaontane, 6-pentatriacontanone, hexatriacontane and tritriacontane are also present.[9]


Achyranthes aspera L. (prickly chaff flower)has occupied a pivotal position in Indian culture and folk medicine. Since ancient times the tribal and rural people of India commonly use this herb in various disorders.This has been effective in treating snake and scorpion bites.[10] The plant which possesses innumerable properties that include antidiabetic,[11]anticancer,[12][13]Diuretic,[14]hepatoprotective,[15]anti-inflammatory, anti-arthritic,[16][16] antiparasitic,[17][18] Anti-oxidant,[19] antihyperlipidemic activity,[20] Anti-larvicidial properties of mosquitoes that spread Dengue, Malaria and lymphatic filariasis.,[21][22]Anti-fungal, anti-bacterial,[23][24] Spermicidal ,[25] anti-viral,[26] anti-asthmatic,[27] anti-epileptic,[28]Antinociceptive,[29]Anti-depressant[30] and Anti-obesity.[31]
It is seen from the literature that Achyranthes aspera is avery important plant for its large number of medicinal properties. Thus, Achyranthes aspera is proved to be a multipurpose medicinal agent, thus instrumental in curing large number of ailments.


Achyranthes aspera has different names in various Indian languages.,[32][33]

Spanish:Mosotillo, rabo de gato, rabo de chango, rabo de raton Afrikaans :Grootklits and langklitskafblom


  1. ^ Flowers of India
  2. ^ USDA Plants Profile
  3. ^ Flora of North America
  4. ^ GRIN Species Profile
  5. ^ Pacific Islands Ecosystems at Risk
  6. ^ Khan, A. V. and A. A. Khan. Ethnomedicinal uses of Achyranthes aspera L. (Amaranthaceae) in management of gynaecological disorders in western Uttar Pradesh (India). Ethnoleaflets.
  7. ^ Bussmann, R. W., et al. (2006). Plant use of the Maasai of Sekenani Valley, Maasai Mara, Kenya. J Ethnobiol Ethnomed 2 22.
  8. ^ Indian Herbal Pharmacopia Vol. II, Page-5.
  9. ^
  10. ^
  11. ^
  12. ^
  13. ^
  14. ^
  15. ^
  16. ^ a b
  17. ^
  18. ^
  19. ^
  20. ^
  21. ^
  22. ^
  23. ^
  24. ^
  25. ^
  26. ^
  27. ^
  28. ^
  29. ^ antinociceptive
  30. ^
  31. ^
  32. ^ Dr. K. M. Nadkarni's Indian Materia Medica, Volume 1, Edited by A. K. Nadkarni, Popular Prakashan, Bombay, 1976, pp. 21-2.
  33. ^

External links[edit]