Phytolacca dodecandra

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Phytolacca dodecandra
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Plantae
(unranked): Angiosperms
(unranked): Eudicots
(unranked): Core eudicots
Order: Caryophyllales
Family: Phytolaccaceae
Genus: Phytolacca
Species: P. dodecandra
Binomial name
Phytolacca dodecandra

Sarcoca dodecandra, basionym Phytolacca dodecandra, commonly known as endod, gopo berry, or African soapberry, is a trailing shrub or climber native to Tropical Africa, Southern Africa, and Madagascar.[1]

Endod (as it is known in Amharic or shibti in Tigrigna ) has been selected and cultivated by Africans for centuries, particularly in Ethiopia and Eritrea. It is used as a soap and shampoo as well as a poison to stun fish. Endod is lethal to snails[1] - a fact discovered by Ethiopian scientists - and may be effective controlling schistosomiasis. After Aklilu Lemma, an Ethiopian scientist, demonstrated endod's potency to American scientists, they took out a patent, hoping to sell endod as a biological control for the Zebra mussel, a pest in the Great Lakes of the US and Canada.[2][3]


  1. ^ a b Hanelt, Peter (2001), Mansfeld's Encyclopedia of Agricultural and Horticultural Crops (Except Ornamentals), Springer, ISBN 3-540-41017-1 
  2. ^ US 5252330, Lee, Harold H.; Peter C. Fraleigh & Aklilu Lema, "Method of controlling zebra mussels with extract of Phytolacca dodecandra", issued 1993 
  3. ^ US 5334386, Lee, Harold H. & Peter C. Fraleigh, "Method of controlling zebra mussels", issued 1994 

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