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Starr 031209-0044 Artocarpus altilis.jpg
Breadfruit (Artocarpus altilis)
Scientific classification e
Kingdom: Plantae
Clade: Tracheophytes
Clade: Angiosperms
Clade: Eudicots
Clade: Rosids
Order: Rosales
Family: Moraceae
Tribe: Artocarpeae
Genus: Artocarpus
J.R.Forster & G.Forster

See text

Artocarpus is a genus of approximately 60 trees and shrubs of Southeast Asian and Pacific origin, belonging to the mulberry family, Moraceae. Most species of Artocarpus are restricted to Southeast Asia; a few cultivated species are more widely distributed, especially A. altilis (breadfruit) and A. heterophyllus (jackfruit), which are cultivated throughout the tropics.[1]


All Artocarpus species are laticiferous trees or shrubs that are composed of leaves, twigs and stems capable of producing a milky sap. The flora type is monoecious and produces unisexual flowers; furthermore, both sexes are present within the same plant. The plants produce small, greenish, female flowers that grow on short, fleshy spikes. Following pollination, the flowers grow into a syncarpous fruit, and these are capable of growing into very large sizes. The stipulated leaves vary from small and entire (Artocarpus integer) to large and lobed (Artocarpus altilis), with the cordate leaves of the species A. altilis ending in long, sharp tips.


The name Artocarpus is derived from the Greek words artos ("bread") and karpos ("fruit"). This name was coined by Johann Reinhold Forster and J. Georg Adam Forster, a father-and-son team of botanists aboard HMS Resolution on James Cook's second voyage; they used it in their book Characteres generum plantarum. It is maintained as a conserved name.

Although fossils of Artocarpus have been reported from as early as the Late Cretaceous, these fossils generally that lack key diagnostic characters such as that could definitively place them in the genus. The last common ancestor of all living Artocarpus likely originated in the vicinity of Borneo, from which Artocarpus dispersed elsewhere in Asia and Oceania.[2]


Recent phylogenetic research, based on leaf arrangement, leaf anatomical characters and stipules, indicates that there are at least two subgenera in Artocarpus:

Subgenus Pseudojaca is allied to the genus Prainea, and some researchers treat this taxon as a fourth subgenus of Artocarpus.

Extant species[edit]

Subgenus Image Scientific name Common name Distribution
Artocarpus Starr 060703-8343 Artocarpus altilis.jpg Artocarpus altilis (Parkinson) Fosberg Breadfruit, Seeded breadfruit, Sukun, Antipolo, Camansi, Anubing Oceania from New Guinea through the Indo-Malayan Archipelago to western Micronesia
Arto aniso T 070203 mncg.JPG Artocarpus anisophyllus Miq. Entawak, Mentawa Peninsular Malaysia, Sumatra, Borneo
Artocarpus blancoi (Elmer) Merr. Philippines
Artocarpus brevipedunculatus (F. M. Jarrett) C. C. Berg Borneo
Artocarpus camansi 1.jpg Artocarpus camansi Blanco Breadnut, Kluwih, Deeball Indonesia, Papua New Guinea
Artocarpus corneri Kochummen Borneo (Sarawak)
Artocarpus chama Buch.-Ham. Chaplaish Yunnan China, Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, Sikkim, Thailand
Artocarpus elasticus Reinw. ex Blume - Bendo, Terap.jpg Artocarpus elasticus Reinw. ex Blume Benda, Bendo, Teureup Burma, Thailand, Peninsular Malaysia, Sumatra, Java, Lesser Sunda Islands, Borneo, Philippines, Sulawesi, Moluccas
Artocarpus excelsus Jarrett Borneo (Sabah)
Artocarpus hirsutus fruit.jpg Artocarpus hirsutus Lam. Anjily, WildJack, Jungle Jack, Angelin, Hirsute Artocarpus, Aini Maram, Aini Western Ghats, India
Artocarpus hispidus Jarrett Peninsular Malaysia
Artocarpus horridus Jarrett Maluku
Artocarpus jarrettiae Kochummen Borneo (Sabah, Sarawak)
Artocarpus kemando Miq. Pudau, Pudu Thailand, Peninsular Malaysia, Sumatra, Borneo
Keledang (2).jpg Artocarpus lanceifolius Roxb. Keledang Indonesia
Artocarpus lowii King Peninsula Malaysia to Sumatera
Artocarpus maingayi King Borneo
Artocarpus mariannensis Trécul Dugdug Mariana Islands and Guam
Artocarpus melinoxylus Gagnep. Vietnam
Artocarpus multifidus Jarrett Philippines (Mindanao, Samar)
Artocarpus nobilis.jpg Artocarpus nobilis Thwaites Ceylon breadfruit south western regions of Sri Lanka
8158Marang Philippines Artocarpus odoratissimus 12.jpg Artocarpus odoratissimus Blanco Johey oak, Terap, Marang, Morangbaum Borneo, Palawan, and Mindanao Island
Artocarpus obtusus Jarrett Borneo (Sarawak)
Artocarpus pinnatisectus Merr. Philippines (Luzon, Mindanao)
Artocarpus rigidus Blume Monkey jackfruit Indochina and Malesia
Artocarpus sarawakensis F.M.Jarrett Pingan, Mountain Terap Sarawak
Artocarpus scortechinii1.jpg Artocarpus scortechinii King Two winged Artocarpus, Black Terap Malaysia
Artocarpus sepicanus Diels New Guinea
Artocarpus sericicarpus 6zz.jpg Artocarpus sericicarpus F.M.Jarrett Peluntan, Gumihan, Pedalai, Hairy Terap Borneo (Sarawak), Malaysia (Sabah), the Philippines and Kalimantan (Indonesia)
Artocarpus sumatranus Jarrett Sumatra
Timbangan (Artocarpus tamaran) (8082540008).jpg Artocarpus tamaran Becc. Elephant Jack, Tamaran Borneo
Artocarpus teysmannii Miq. Nicobar Islands, Peninsula Thailand to W. New Guinea
Artocarpus treculianus Elmer Togop, Tugup Philippines
Cauliflori (F.M. Jarrett) Zerega, Supardi, and Motley Artocarpus annulatus Jarrett Borneo (Sarawak)
Artocarpus heterophylla fruit 01.JPG Artocarpus heterophyllus Lam. Nangka, Langka, Jackfruit India, South East of Indian Subcontinent, China to Philippines
Artocarpus integer Fruit and Tree.JPG Artocarpus integer (Thunb.) Merr. Cempedak southeast Asia, especially from Malaysia and can be found in Indonesia to the island of New Guinea
Pseudojaca Trécul Artocarpus albobrunneus Berg Borneo (Kalimantan)
Artocarpus altissimus (Miq.) J. J. Smith Peninsula Thailand, Sumatra, Borneo (Kalimantan)
Artocarpus borneensis Merr. Tampang Borneo
Artocarpus dadah fruit.jpg Artocarpus dadah Miq. Dadah, Tampang Sumatra
Artocarpus fretessii Teysm. & Binnend. Eastern Borneo, the Philippines, Sulawesi, the Moluccas and Irian Jaya
Artocarpus fulvicortex Jarrett Malaya to Sumatera
Artocarpus gomezianus 16.JPG Artocarpus gomezianus Wall. ex Trécul Sampang Assam to W. Malesia
Artocarpus gongshanensis S.K.Wu ex C.Y.Wu & S.S.Chang NW Yunnan, China
Artocarpus griffithii (King) Merr. Beruni, Selanking Southern China to Sumatra, Singapore and Borneo
Artocarpus humilis Becc. Beruni, Selanking Borneo
Artocarpus hypargyreus Hance ex Benth. White Kwai Muk China
Monkey Jack (Artocarpus lakoocha) 4.jpg Artocarpus lacucha Buch.-Ham. Lakoocha, Monkey fruit Indian Subcontinent and Southeast Asia
Artocarpus lamellosus Blanco Butong China (Guangdong, Guangxi, Hainan, S Hunan, S Yunnan), Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Philippines, Thailand, Vietnam
Artocarpus longifolius Becc. Borneo
Artocarpus nanchuanensis S.S.Chang et al. Chongqing (Nanchuan), China
Artocarpus nigrifolius C.Y.Wu S Yunnan (Jinping), China
Artocarpus ovatus Blanco Philippines
Artocarpus parvus Gagnep. Kwai muk South-East Asia, China
Artocarpus petelotii Gagnepain China (SE Yunnan), N Vietnam
Artocarpus pithecogallus C.Y.Wu China (Xishuangbanna, Yunnan)
Artocarpus primackiana Kochummen Borneo (Sabah, Sarawak)
Artocarpus reticulatus Miq. Sulawesi to Maluku
Artocarpus rubrovenia Warb. Kalulot Philippines
Artocarpus subrotundifolius Elmer Philippines
Artocarpus styracifolius Pierre China (Guangdong, Guangxi, Hainan, SW Hunan, SE Yunnan), Laos, Vietnam
Artocarpus thailandicus C.C.Berg N Thailand
Artocarpus tomentosulus Jarrett NE Borneo
Artocarpus tonkinensis A.Chev. ex Gagnep. China (Fujian, Guangdong, Guangxi, Guizhou, Hainan, S Yunnan), Cambodia, N Vietnam
Artocarpus vrieseanus Miq. Sulawesi to New Guinea
Artocarpus xanthocarpus Merr. Taiwan (Lan Yu), Indonesia (Kalimantan), Philippines


Fossil record[edit]

Fossil leaves and fruits of †Artocarpus dicksoni have been found in Cretaceous formations of West Greenland. Fossil leaves of †Artocarpus ordinarius have been found in Cretaceous stratum at the south bank of the Yukon River just above Rampart, Alaska.[7] Fossils of †Artocarpus californica have been described from Eocene and Miocene strata of the Pacific coast of California and Oregon.[8] 8 fossil species of Artocarpus (†A. capellinii, †A. isseli, †A. macrophylla, †A. massalongoi, †A. multinervis, †A. ovalifolia, †A. sismondai and †A. taramellii) from the lower Oligocene, have been described from a fossil leaves collected from 1857 to 1889 in Santa Giustina and Sassello in Central Liguria, Italy.[9]


Several species in the genus bear edible fruit and are commonly cultivated: Breadfruit (Artocarpus altilis), Cempedak (Artocarpus integer), Jackfruit (Artocarpus heterophyllus), Kwai Muk (Artocarpus parvus), Lakoocha (Artocarpus lakoocha), Pudau (Artocarpus kemando), Anjily (a.k.a. Jungle Jack) (Artocarpus hirsutus), Chaplaish (Artocarpus chama), and Marang (Artocarpus odoratissimus).

Breadfruit and jackfruit are cultivated widely in the tropical Southeast Asia. Other species are cultivated locally for their timber, fruit or edible seeds. Anjily, A. hirsutus, is grown for fruit and timber in the Western Ghats.


See also[edit]


  1. ^ Zerega, Nyree J. C.; Diane Ragone; Timothy J. Motley (2005). "Systematics and Species Limits of Breadfruit (Artocarpus, Moraceae)" (PDF). Systematic Botany. 30 (3): 603–15. doi:10.1600/03636440yy54782134.
  2. ^ Williams, Evelyn W.; Gardner, Elliot M.; Harris, Robert; Chaveerach, Arunrat; Pereira, Joan T.; Zerega, Nyree J. C. (2017-01-10). "Out of Borneo: biogeography, phylogeny and divergence date estimates of Artocarpus (Moraceae)". Annals of Botany. 119 (4): 611–627. doi:10.1093/aob/mcw249. ISSN 0305-7364. PMC 5458716. PMID 28073771.
  3. ^ "Species list – Zerega Lab". NUsites – A website publishing platform for Northwestern University. 2013-01-15. Retrieved 2020-02-06.
  4. ^ GRIN. "Species in GRIN for genus Artocarpus". Taxonomy for Plants. National Germplasm Resources Laboratory, Beltsville, Maryland: USDA, ARS, National Genetic Resources Program. Retrieved April 6, 2010.
  5. ^ "Name – Artocarpus J.R.Forst. & G.Forst. subordinate taxa". Tropicos. Saint Louis, Missouri: Missouri Botanical Garden. Retrieved April 6, 2010.
  6. ^ "Query Results for Genus Genus". IPNI. Retrieved April 6, 2010.
  7. ^ The Tertiary floras of Alaska: Issues 181–184 by Charles Arthur Hollick – 1 January 1936 – U.S. Gov't. Print. Off.
  8. ^ The Lower Ecene Floras of Southeastern North America by Edward Wilber Berry, Professional Paper – United States Geological Survey, The Survey, 1916
  9. ^ Oligocene fossil leaves of the Perrando Collection: history, preservation and paleoclimatic meaning by Maria Cristina Bonci, Grazia Vannucci, Simona Tacchino & Michele Piazza – Bollettino della Società Paleontologica Italiana, 50 (3), 2011, 145–164. Modena, 30 dicembre 2011 – ISSN 0375-7633 – doi:10.4435/BSPI.2011.14


  • Zerega, N. J. C. and T. J. Motley. 2001. Artocarpus (Moraceae) molecular phylogeny and the systematics and origins of breadfruit, Artocarpus altilis. Botanical Society of America Annual Meeting. Albuquerque, NM. August 12–16, 2001.