Albizia myriophylla Benth.

Last updated: 22 Jan 2016

Scientific Name

Albizia myriophylla Benth.


Albizia microphylla J.F.Macbr., Albizia myriophylla var. foliolosa Baker, Albizia thorelii Pierre, Albizia vialeana var. thorelii (Pierre) P.H.Ho, Mimosa microphylla Roxb. [1]

Vernacular Name

Malaysia Tebu gajah [2], akar manis, akar kulit manis [3]
India Madhurang lata [2]
Thailand Cha-em-thai [2], cha-em-pa, oi chang [3].

Geographical Distributions

Albizia myriophylla is distributed in East Asia; India, Myanmar, Thailand, Cambodia, Laos, Vietnam, Malaysia. This plant lives in evergreen forest, forest margins, sandy riverbanks and beaches, disturbed habitats; recorded also from old bedded dolomite; at elevations from sea level to 300 m. [4]

Botanical Description

A. myriophylla is a member of the Fabaceae family. It is a small tree that could reach a height of 4 m. [5]

The young shoots are dark brown in colour and scarcely villous. [5]

The leaves are bipinnate, from 15 to 20 cm long, of bright green colour. The pinnae consist of 10 to 15 pairs. The leaflets are from 30 to 40 pairs, minute, obliquely-linear in shape and smooth. The petioles are common and partial, downy. The panicles are terminal and axillary, villous, composed of globular heads of minute greenish-yellow corollets. The bracts are subulate, villous with calyx and corolla both villous. The filaments are from 10 – 20, monodelphous. The germ is long-pediculed. [5]

The legumes are thin, leafy, smooth, long, broad and obtuse-pointed, from 3 to 6-seeded measuring 15-20 cm long and rather above one broad. [5]

The seeds are oval, flat, smooth in shape and light brown in colour. [5]


No documentation.

Chemical Constituent

Aqueous methanol (50%) extract of A. myriophylla wood has been reported to contain iminosugars (e.g. 1-deoxymannojirimycin (DMJ), 2R,5R-dihydroxymethyl-3R,4R-dihydroxypyrrolidine (DMDP), 3- O-β-D-glucopyranosyl-DMDP), 2,5-dideoxy-2,5- imino-D-glucitol, 2-O-β-D-glucopyranosyl-DMJ and 4-O-β-D-glucopyranosyl-DMJ). [6]

Methanol extract of A. myriophylla dried stems has been reported to contain oleanane-type triterpene saponins (e.g. albiziasaponins A-E). [7]

Hydrolyzed and unhydrolyzed methanol (80%) extract of A. myriophylla bark powder has been reported to contain gallic acid, gentisic acid, p-hydroxybenzoic acid, vanillic acid, caffeic acid, syringic acid, p-coumaric acid, ferulic acid, salicylic acid, quercetin acid, eugenol and kaempferol. [8]

Plant Part Used

Roots, leaves, stems [9][10]

Traditional Use

The Malays used the infusion of the A. myriophylla root internally for fever. The extract of the root of A. myriophylla, cotton bush (Gossypium brasiliense), rambutan (Nephelium lappaceum) and an Euginia together with the ferns Stenochlaena palustris and Lypodium flexuosum has been prescribed by people at Beserah, near Kuantan, Pahang for fever. The roots with Gardenia and Jasminum leaves also can be used by applying the lotion to the children with feverish symptom. [10]

Kelantanese used the boiled leaves as a lotion to treat ear ache by applying on the head. [10]

Preclinical Data




Methanol extract of A.myriophylla stem showed broad antifungal activity against six pathogenic Candida species: C. albicans, C. glabrata, C. guilliermondii, C. krusei, C. parapsilosis and C. tropicalis. The anticandidal activity of A. myriophylla’s extract was confirmed, as the minimal inhibitory concentration was ranged 100-500 mug ml (-1) with a fast acting killing activity and the reduction in the number of CFU/mL was >3 log (10 unites (99.9%) in 2 hours. [9]


No Documentation

Clinical Data

Clinical findings

A clinical study has been caried out to study the effectiveness of A. myriophylla mouth wash on mutan streptococci (MS) and immunoglobulin A (IgA) levels in 67 school children with MS more than 105 cfu/mL of saliva compared to palcebo mouthwash. The result found that the group of children who did a twice daily mouth rinsing activity using A. myriophylla mouthwash for duration of two weeks showed significant (p<0.05) reduction of MS counts but not the IgA level. Both levels showed no significant (p>0.05) differences to placebo mouthwash group.


No documentation.

Interaction & Depletion

No documentation.


No documentation.


No documentation.

Poisonous Management

No documentation.

Line drawing

No documentation.


  1. The Plant List. Ver 1.1. Albizia myriophylla Benth. [homepage on the Internet]. c2013. [updated 2010 Jul 14; cited 2015 Sept 10]. Available from:
  2. Quattrocchi U. CRC world dictionary of medicinal and poisonous plants: Common names, scientific names, eponyms, synonyms, and etymology. Volume IV A-B. Boca Raton, Florida: CRC Press, 2012; p. 152.
  3. Herbal Medicine Research Centre, Institute for Medical Research. Compendium of medicinal plants used in Malaysia. Volume 1. Kuala Lumpur: HMRC IMR, 2002; p. 26.
  4. Tang W, Eisenbrand G. Handbook of Chinese medicinal plants: Chemistry, pharmacology, toxicology. Weinheim, Germany: Wiley-VCH; 2011.
  5. Roxburgh W. Flora Indica, or description of Indian plants. Serampore, India: W. Thacker and Co., 1832; p. 549-550.
  6. Asano N, Yamauchi T, Kagamifuchi K, et al. Iminosugar-producing Thai medicinal plants. J Nat Prod. 2005;68(8):1238-1242.
  7. Yoshikawa M, Morikawa T, Nakano K, Pongpiriyadacha Y, Murakami T, Matsuda H. Characterization of new sweet triterpene saponins from Albizia myriophylla. J Nat Prod. 2002;65(11):1638-1642.
  8. Panmei C, Singh PK, Gautam S, Variyar PS, Shantibala Devi GA, Sharma A. Phenolic acids in Albizia bark used as a starter for rice fermentation in Zou preparation. Int J Food Agric Environ. 2007;5(3-4):147-150
  9. Rukayadi Y, Shim JS, Hwang JK. Screening of Thai medicinal plants for anticandidal activity. Mycoses. 2008:51(4);308-312.
  10. Burkill IH. A dictionary of the economic products of the Malay Peninsula. Volume 1. London: Published on behalf of the governments of the Straits settlements and Federated Malay states by the Crown agents for the colonies, 1935; p. 88.
  11. Amornchat C, Kraivaphan P, Dhanabhumi C, Tandhachoon K, Trirattana T, Choonhareongdej S. Effect of Cha-em Thai mouthwash on salivary levels of mutans Streptococci and total IgA. Southeast Asian J Trop Med Public Health. 2006;37(3):528-531.