Cerbera odollam Gaertn.

Last updated: 29 April 2015

Scientific Name

Cerbera odollam Gaertn.


Cerbera dilatata Markgr., Cerbera forsteri Seem., Cerbera lactaria Buch.-Ham. ex Spreng., Excoecaria ovatifolia Noronha [Invalid], Odollamia malabarica Raf., Tanghinia lactaria (Buch.-Ham. ex Spreng.) G.Don, Tanghinia odollam (Gaertn.) G.Don [1]

Vernacular Name

Malaysia Bintan (Peninsular) [2]; bentan, bintaru, pompong, pongpong, bebuta, buta-buta, ubat betak-betak [3]
Indonesia Bintaru (Javanese) [3]
Thailand Sang la (Peninsular); teenpet nam, teenpet thale (Central) [2]; tin ped [3]
Brunei Pong pong (Seng­kurong) [2]
Vietnam M[uw][ows]p s[as]t v[af]ng, m[uw][ows]p x[as]c v[af]ng [2]

Geographical Distributions

Cerbera odollam is distributed from Sri Lanka and India to­wards Burma (Myanmar), Indo-China and Thai­land. In Malaysia, it is recorded in Peninsular Malaysia, also Sumatra, Java, western Sulawesi, Borneo and the Philippines (Luzon). Meanwhile, in the Pacific, it is recorded in the Mariana Islands and Guam. [2]

Cerbera species are generally associated with water and occur along rivers or streams, in swamp forests and behind mangroves, but may also be found in shrubby savannas or in secondary forest edges. Most Cerbera species occur at low altitude in primary lowland rainforests, but some may ascend up to 2000 m. [2]

Botanical Description

C. odollam comes from the family of Apocynaceae. It is a shrub or tree that can reach up to 15 m tall. Its bole is up to 20 cm in diametre. [2]

The leaves are obovate, measure 9-26 cm x 2-5.5 cm, with 2.5-5 length-width ratio, wedge-shaped at base, acuminate or apiculate at apex and with 15-25 pairs of secondary veins. [2]

The inflorescence is few-to many-flowered and up to 35 cm long. Usually, only one flower opens at a time. The sepals are very variable in shape and size where the length-width ratio is 2-6. The petal tube which is 15-25 mm long bulges in the middle with its lobes 12-38 mm long. They are usually white but sometimes yellow or orange in the mouth. The stamens inserted around the middle of the petal tube. [2]

The fruits consist of 2 mericarps. They are nearly globular to broadly ellipsoid, measure 8-11 cm x 7.5-11 cm x 6.5-10 cm and pale yellow-green or red. [2]


No documentation

Chemical Constituent

No documentation

Plant Part Used

No documentation

Traditional Use

No documentation

Preclinical Data

No documentation

Clinical Data

No documentation


No documentation

Poisonous Management

No documentation

Line drawing


Figure 1: The line drawing of C. odollam Gaertn. [2]


  1. The Plant List. Ver1.1. Cerbera odollam Gaertn. [homepage on the Internet]. c2013 [updated 2012 Mar 23; cited 2015 Apr 28]. Available from: http://www.theplantlist.org/tpl1.1/record/kew-37178
  2. Khanh TC. Cerbera odollam Gaertner In: Van Valkenburg JLCH, Bunyapraphatsara N, editors. Plant Resources of South-East Asia No. 12(2): Medicinal and poisonous plants 2. Leiden, Netherlands: Backhuys Publisher; 2001. p. 154-155.
  3. Herbal Medicine Research Centre, Institute Medical Research. Compendium of Medicinal Plants Used in Malaysia. Volume 1. Kuala Lumpur: HMRC IMR; 2002. p. 162.