Lobelia chinensis

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Lobelia chinensis
Lobelia chinensis 01.jpg
Flower of Lobelia chinensis
Scientific classification edit
Kingdom: Plantae
Clade: Tracheophytes
Clade: Angiosperms
Clade: Eudicots
Clade: Asterids
Order: Asterales
Family: Campanulaceae
Genus: Lobelia
L. chinensis
Binomial name
Lobelia chinensis
  • Dortmanna campanuloides (Thunb.) Kuntze
  • Dortmanna chinensis (Lour.) Kuntze
  • Dortmanna radicans (Thunb.) Kuntze
  • Isolobus caespitosus (Blume) Hassk.
  • Isolobus campanuloides (Thunb.) A.DC.
  • Isolobus kerii A.DC.
  • Isolobus radicans (Thunb.) A.DC.
  • Isolobus roxburghianus A.DC.
  • Lobelia caespitosa Blume
  • Lobelia campanuloides Thunb.
  • Lobelia chinensis f. lactiflora
  • Lobelia chinensis f. plena
  • Lobelia japonica F.Dietr.
  • Lobelia kerii (A.DC.) Heynh.
  • Lobelia radicans Thunb.*
  • Lobelia roxburgiana (A.DC.) Heynh.
  • Pratia radicans G.Don
  • Pratia thunbergii G.Don

Lobelia chinensis, commonly known as Asian lobelia,[2] Chinese Lobelia, and Herba Lobellae Chinensis, is a species of flowering plant in the family Campanulaceae. It is one of the 50 fundamental herbs used in traditional Chinese medicine, where it has the name (Chinese: ; pinyin: bàn biān lián).[3]


Lobelia chinensis is a small perennial herb[4] that grows in tangled clumps from 15 centimetres (5.9 in) to 35 centimetres (14 in) long. It has a long, thin, branching stem that is olive green and green-brown crumpled narrow leaves. It has little to no odor and a sweet and pungent taste. When harvesting herbs for medical use, the ones with the greenest stems and yellower roots are preferred.[3]


It is endemic to east, south, southwest, and south-central China.

Herbal medicine[edit]

Lobelia chinensis is considered one of the 50 fundamental herbs in Chinese herbology. Historically, L. chinensis has been used in herbal medicine to help stop smoking,[citation needed] however the Food and Drug Administration has banned the use of herbs containing lobeline.[citation needed]

Chemical constituents[edit]

Lobelia chinensis contains 6,7-dimethoxycoumarin, fraxinol, 5-hydroxy-7-methoxycoumarin, tomentin, 3'-hydroxygenkwanin, apigenin, quercetin, luteolin, linarin, luteolin 3',4'-dimethylether-7-O-beta-D-glucoside, isoferulic acid, and ethyl rosmarinate.[5]

Toxicity and adverse effects[edit]

Lobeliachinensis is considered mildly toxic[1] due to its adverse effects, including vomiting, heartburn, anxiety, vibrating, eclampsia, increased heart-rate, and severe stomach aches.[6]


  1. ^ a b "Lobelia chinensis". Germplasm Resources Information Network (GRIN). Agricultural Research Service (ARS), United States Department of Agriculture (USDA). Retrieved 2008-02-11.
  2. ^ English Names for Korean Native Plants (PDF). Pocheon: Korea National Arboretum. 2015. p. 524. ISBN 978-89-97450-98-5. Archived from the original (PDF) on 25 May 2017. Retrieved 25 January 2016 – via Korea Forest Service.
  3. ^ a b "Lobelia Herb (Ban Bian Lian)". Chinese Herbs Healing. 2008. Missing or empty |url= (help)
  4. ^ "Lobelia chinensis Lour. - Chinese lobelia". United States Department of Agriculture. Retrieved 22 February 2014.
  5. ^ Chen JX, Huang SH, Wang Y, Shao M, Ye WC (2010). "Studies on the chemical constituents from Lobelia chinensis". Zhong Yao Cai. 33 (11): 1721–4. PMID 21434431.
  6. ^ Han J, Zhang F, Li Z, Du G, Qin H (2009). "[Chemical constituents of Lobelia chinensis]". Zhongguo Zhong Yao Za Zhi (in Chinese). 34 (17): 2200–2. PMID 19943485.