Elephantopus scaber L.

Last updated: 2016 Oct 25

Scientific Name

Elephantopus scaber L.

Synonyms

Elephantopus carolinensis G.Mey., Elephantopus sordidus Salisb., Scabiosa cochinchinensis Lour. [1]

Vernacular Name

Malaysia Urat tutup bumi, tapak Sulaiman, tapak leman, tapak babi, berseh hitam [2]; pepalut (Sabah) [3]
English Prickly-leaved elephant’s foot [3][4][5]  
China Di dan cao [6]
India Anashovadi (Malayalam, Tamil); gojialata, shamdulum, (Bengali); bhopathari (Gujarati); gobhi, samudulan, gojivha, jangli tambakhu (Hindi); hakkarike (Kannada); hastipata, pathari (Marathi); gojihva, karipadam (Sanskrit); hastikasa (Telugu) [4]
Indonesia Tapak liman (Javanese) [2]; talpak tana (Madurese) [3]
Thailand Do mai ruu lom (Central); kee fai nok khuun (Loei); naat me khlaen (Surat Thani) [3]; ya kai nok kum, domain ru lom [2]
Philippines Dila-dila, tabatabakohan (Tagalog); kabkabron (Iloko) [3]
Vietnam C[us]c chi thi[ee]n, c[or] l[uw][owx]i m[ef]o, dia d[ar]m th[ar]o [3]
French Pied d’elephant [5]
Brazil Erva-colégio, erva-grossa, suçuaiá (Portuguese) [6].

Geographical Distributions

Elephantopus scaber distributed in South East Asuam Mainland China, Japan, Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar, Vietnam, Thailand, Malaysia, the Philippine Islands as well as America. [7]

Botanical Description

E. scaber is a member of the Asteraceae family. It is a herbaceous plant that can reach up to 80cm tall. E. scaber occurs in grasslands, wasteland, roadsides, along fields and in forest borders, up to 1500m altitude. [3]

The stems are rigid, appressed long haired or scabrous. [3]

The leaves in a radical rosette, if cauline much smaller, oblong-obovate to spatulate, measuring about 5-38cm x 1-6cm; glomerules terminal, generally long-peduncled, glomerule bracts generally longer than the involucral bracts. [3]

The flowers with corolla 7-9mm long, bluish or purplish, sometimes white. [3]

The fruits measure about 4mm long with pappus bristles equal and 4-6mm long. [3]

Cultivation

No documentation

Chemical Constituent

Aqueous ethanol extract of E. scaber whole plant has been reported to contain sesquiterpenes (e.g. elescaberin, scabertopin, isodeoxyelephantopin and deoxyelephantopin). [8][9]

Ethanol extract of E. scaber roots has been reported to contain sesquiterpenes (e.g. isodeoxyelephantopin, isoscabertopin, scabertopin, deoxyelephantopin), triterpenoids (e.g. lupeol, lupeol acetate, ursa-12-en-3β-heptadecanoate), phenol (e.g. curcuphenol and 2-butenoic acid, 3-methyl-[4-(1,5-dimethyl-4-hexenyl)-3-hydroxyphenyl]methylester) phenolic acids (e.g. methyl 3,5-di-O-caffeoyl quinate and 3,4-di-O-caffeoylquinic acid methyl ester), alkaloid (e.g. patriscabratine) and sterol (e.g. β-sitosterol). [10]

Ethanol extract of E. scaber dried roots has been reported to contain phenolic acids (e.g. 1α,2β-O-dicaffeoylcy-clopentan-3β-ol, 4,5-di-O-caffeoylquinic acid, 4,5-di-O- caffeoylquinic acid methyl ester, 3,4-di-O-caffeoylquinic acid, 3,4-di-O-caffeoylquinic acid methyl ester). [11]

Ethanol extract of E. scaber leaves has been reported to contain sesquiterpenes (e.g. deoxyelephantopin and isodeoxyelephantopin), triterpenes (e.g. lupeol, betulin, olean-12-en-3-one, lup-20(29)-3-en-3-one and 3β-lup-20(29)-en-3-ol acetate), sterol (e.g. stigmasterol). [12]

Methanol extract of E. scaber dried leaves has been reported to contain sesquiterpene (e.g. deoxyelephantopin). [13]

Hexane extract of E. scaber whole plant has been reported to contain sesquiterpenes (e.g. isodeoxyelephantopin and deoxyelephantopin). [14]

Essential oil of E. scaber whole plant has been reported to contain cyclosativene, copaene, isopropyldimethylhexahydronaphthalene, zingiberene, trimethyldimethylenedecahydronaphthalene, caryophyllene, dimethyl-6-(6-methyl-3-pentenyl)-2-norpinene, β-sesquiphellandrene, β-caryophyllene, isocaryophyllene, α-santalol, ledol, α-bisabolol, caryopyhllene oxide, cadinol, β-bisabolol, isopropyl dimethyl tetrahydronaphthalnenol, hexadecanoic acid, phytol and octadecadienoic acid. [15]

Plant Part Used

Leaves and roots. [2][5]

Traditional Use

E. scaber is mucilaginous and is considered a cardiac tonic, an astringent, an alternative, a febrifuge, a diuretic and an emollient. [5] It is also traditionally used as anthelmintic in the form of decoction of the leaves and for abdominal pains. It is used for stomachache and the leaves are applied to wounds. The decoction of roots taken after childbirth as a protective medicine. [2]

Preclinical Data

Pharmacology

Antioxidant activity

Methanol extract of E. scaber root exhibited superoxide scavenging activity with 50% inhibition concentration (IC50 = 48 ± 5 μg/mL) compared to curcumin (IC50 = 9.2 ± 1.1 μg/mL), hydroxyl radicals scavenging activity (IC50 = 72 ± 12 μg/mL) compared to curcumin (IC50 = 38.4 ± 6 μg/mL) and lipid peroxidation inhibition (IC50 = 103 ± 18 μg/mL) compared to curcumin (IC50 = 16.5 ± 2.1 μg/mL). [16]

Antiviral activity

Isolates from butanol fraction of ethanol (95%) extract of E. scaber rhizomes showed antiviral activity against respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) where 1α,2β-O-dicaffeoylcyclopentan-3β-ol showed IC50 values of 0.63 μg/mL, 4,5-di-O-caffeoyl quinic acid (IC50 = 1.25 μg/mL), 3,4-di-O-caffeoyl quinic acid (IC50 = 1.50 μg/mL), 4,5-di-O-caffeoyl quinic acid methyl ester (IC50 = 0.63 μg/mL) and 3,4-di-O-caffeoyl quinic acid methyl ester (IC50 = 0.78 μg/mL) compared to standard drug ribavirin (IC50 = 1.50 μg/mL). [11]

Aqueous extract of E. scaber whole plant exhibited anti-respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) activity with IC50 of 23.5 µg/mL compared to ribavirin (IC50 = 3.0 µg/mL). [17]

Antibacterial activity

Methanol extract of E. scaber leaves (100 µg/mL per disc) inhibited the growth of Staphylococcus aureus, Escherichia coli, Bacillus subtilis, Pseudomonas aeruginosa, Proteus vulgaris with zone of inhibition ranging from 23-29 mm compared to chloramphenicol (30 µg/mL per disc) with inhibition zone ranging from 27-32 mm using disc diffusion method. [18]

Antihyperglycemic activity

Acetone extract of E. scaber whole plant (150 mg/kg) administered orally to streptozotocin-induced male Wistar albino rats (150-220 g) for a duration of 60 days showed significant (p < 0.05) reduction in blood glucose level (86.14 ± 1.74 mg/dL) when compared to diabetic control groups (534.6 ± 4.88 mg/dL). [19]

Cytotoxic activity

Ethanol extract of E. scaber leaves showed cytotoxicity effect on human breast cancer cell line (MCF-7) with an IC50 value of 7.17 μg/mL at 72 hr compared to positive control, tamoxifen (IC50 = 10.2 μg/mL) using 3-(4,5-dimethylthiazol-2-yl)-2,5-diphenyltetrazolium bromide (MTT) assay. [20]

Deoxyelephantopin and isodeoxyelephantopin isolated from chloroform extract of E. scaber whole plant showed cytotoxicity activity of L-929 tumour cells with IC50 of 2.7 μg/mL for and 3.3 μg/mL respectively compared to DMSO control using MTT assay. [14]

Deoxyelephantopin from chloroform extract of E. scaber whole plant (8 and 10 μg/mL) in lymphocyte cell isolated from venous blood from healthy human volunteer (induced with PHA) significantly (p < 0.001) decreased the lymphocyte count (8 μg/mL: 3000 count per minute (CPM) x 106; 10 μg/mL: 1500 x 106 CPM) compared to phytohemagglutinin (PHA) positive control~7800 x 106 CPM lymphocytes using lymphocyte proliferation assay. [14]

Isodeolephantopin from chloroform extract of E. scaber whole plant (8 and 10 μg/mL) in lymphocyte cell isolated from venous blood from healthy human volunteer (induced with PHA) significantly (p < 0.001) decreased the lymphocyte count (8 μg/mL: 4000 x 106 count per min (CPM); 10 μg/mL: 2000 x 106 CPM) compared to phytohemagglutinin (PHA) positive control~7800 x 106 CPM lymphocytes using lymphocyte proliferation assay. [14]

Anti-inflammatory activity

Aqueous extract of E. scaber whole plant (300 mg/kg body weight) administered subcutaneously to male Wistar albino rats (150-180 g; 4-6 weeks old) one hour before induction of paw edema using carrageenan showed significant (p < 0.005) edema inhibition (35.3 ± 4.2%) after five hours compared to untreated control group (50.5 ± 9.3%) and reference drug, indomethacin treated group (26.1 ± 8.8%). [21]

Antitrypanosomal activity

Methanol extract of E. scaber leaves showed activity against Trypanosome brucei rhodesience with IC50 of 0.22 ± 0.02 μg/mL compared to standard drug melarsoprol (IC50 = 1.61 ± 0.50 μg/mL) and pentamidine (IC50 = 0.50 ± 0.12 μg/mL). [13]

Hepatoprotective activity

Methanol extract of E. scaber root (75 mg/kg and 150 mg/kg) administrated orally tomale albino Wistar rats (120-150 g) with acute liver failure induced by carbon tetrachloride (CCl4) twice a week for the duration of 14 days significantly (p < 0.05) decreased the level of liver enzymes with 85 IU/L and 75 IU/L for alanine transaminase (ALT), 160 IU/L and 125 IU/L for aspartate aminotransferase (AST) and 165 IU/L and 140 IU/L for alkaline phosphatase (ALP) compared to curcumin treated group (ALT = 60 IU/L, AST = 75 IU/L,  ALP = 120 IU/L). In CCl4 treated group, significant (p < 0.05) hepatic toxicity was evidenced by bridging hepatic and centrilobular necrosis, ballooning and fatty infiltration of the liver scoring 5.6 ± 0.4. In curcumin treated and E. scaber root treated rats, at doses 75 mg/kg and 150 mg/kg body weight liver exhibited significant (p < 0.05) protection from CCl4 damage showing an almost normal architecture barring a little deformity of hepatocytes with pyknosis and clearing of cytoplasm with scores 1.8 ± 0.7 (75 mg/kg); 2.5 ± 0.5 (150 mg/kg); 2.1 ± 0.7 (curcumin) respectively. [17]

Aqueous extract of E. scaber whole plant (500 mg/kg) administrated intraperitoneally to male Wistar albino rats (4-6 weeks old) two hours before the induction of β-D-galactosamine significantly (p < 0.005) reduced the level of serum glutamate-oxalate transaminase (177.7 ± 41.6 IU/L at 24 hr) compared to reference drug (silymarin) which reduced serum glutamate-oxalate transaminase level at 216.9 ± 47.7 IU/L (24 hr). [22]

Aqueous extract of E. scaber whole plant (500 mg/kg) administrated intraperitoneally to male Wistar albino rats (4-6 weeks old) two hours before the induction of β-D-galactosamine significantly (p < 0.005) reduced the level of serum glutamate-pyruvate transaminase (65.3 ± 14.2 IU/L at 24 hr) compared to reference drug (silymarin) which reduced serum glutamate-pyruvate transaminase level at 72.9 ± 14.6 IU/L (24 hr). [22]

E. scaber root powder (1000 mg/kg body weight) orally administered to male albino Sprague Dawley rats (120-150 g) with acute liver failure induced by carbon tetrachloride significantly (p < 0.01) decreased the activity of liver enzymes in serum (aspartate aminotransferase, (AST): 16.66 ± 0.86 IU/L serum alanine aminotransferase, (ALT): 43.33 ± 2.2 IU/L serum, alkaline phosphatase, (ALP): 159.75 ± 8.00 IU/L serum) compared to the control groups (AST: 29.17 ± 1.02 IU/L serum, ALT: 69.44 ± 2.45 IU/L serum, ALP: 390.50 ± 13.73 IU/L serum). [23]

Antiasthmatic activity

Ethanol extract of E. scaber leaves (250 mg/kg and 500 mg/kg) orally administered to guinea pigs (400-600 g) of either sex for seven days significantly (p < 0.001) increased the pre-convulsive dyspnea time following exposure to histamine aerosol (393.38 ± 2.69 s and 602.59 ± 3.52 s) as compared to the time before treatment (128 ± 79 s and 130.68 ± 1.60 s). [24]

Ethanol extract of E. scaber leaves (250 mg/kg and 500 mg/kg) orally administered to guinea pigs (400-600 g) of either sex for seven days significantly (p < 0.001) increased the pre-convulsive dyspnea time following exposure to acethylcholine aerosol induced bronchospasm (323.10 ± 1.07 s and 379.67 ± 1.88 s) as compared to the time before treatment (153.07 ± 1.12 s and 146.93 ± 1.61 s). [24]

Ethanol extract of E. scaber leaves (1000 µg/mL) significantly (p < 0.001) inhibited in vitro rat peritoneal mast cell degranulation induced by compound 48/80 by 38.28 ± 2.82% as compared to standard drug ketotifen (21.93 ± 3.19%). [24]

Ethanol extract of E. scaber leaves (1000 µg/mL) significantly (p < 0.001) inhibited the contraction of isolated guinea pig tracheal muscles induce by histamine by 64.01% inhibition as compared to control group. [24]

Toxicity

Acute toxicity

Acetone extract of E. scaber whole plant (0.25-2.0 g) was orally administered to male albino rats of Wistar strain (150-220 g). There was no lethality or toxic reaction found at any dose selected for a period of 24 hr and behavior of the treated rats appeared normal throughout the study. [19]

Clinical Data

No documentation.

Dosage

No documentation.

Poisonous Management

No documentation

Line drawing

29

 

 

Figure 1: The line drawing of E. scaber [2]

References

  1. Plant list. The Plant List. Ver1.1. Elephantopus scaber L.[homepage on the Internet] .c2013 [updated 2012 Feb 11; cited 2016 Apr 26] Available from: http://www.theplantlist.org/tpl1.1/record/gcc-116229
  2. 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. 909-910.
  3. Ng Lean Teik. Elephantopus scaber L. In: de Padua LS, Bunyapraphatsara N, Lemmens RHMJ, editors. Plant Resources of South-East Asia No. 12(1): Medicinal and poisonous plants 1. Leiden, Netherlands: Backhuys Publishers, 1999; p. 253.
  4. Rai M, Acharya D, Ríos JL, editors. Ethnomedicinal plants: Revitalisation of traditional knowledge of herbs. Boca Raton, Florida: CRC Press; Enfield, New Hampshire: Science Publishers, 2011; p. 227.
  5. Panda H. Handbook on medicinal herbs with uses. New Delhi: Asia Pacific Business Press, 2004; p. 489-492.
  6. US National Plant Germplasm System. Pogostemon cablin (Blanco) Benth. [homepage on the Internet]. No date [cited 2016 Oct 20]. Available from: https://npgsweb.ars-grin.gov/gringlobal/taxonomydetail.aspx?401632
  7. Herbal Medicine Research Centre, Institute for Medical Research. Compendium of Medicinal Plants Used in Malaysia. Volume 1. Kuala Lumpur: HMRC IMR, 2002; p. 312.
  8. Liang QL, Min ZDTang YP.  A new elemanolide sesquiterpene lactone from Elephantopus scaber. J Asian Nat Prod Res. 2008;10(5):403-407.
  9. But PPH, Hon PM, Cao H, et al. Sesquiterpene lactones from Elephantopus scaber. J Phytochem. 1997;44(1);113-116.
  10. Wu T, Chui H, Cheng B, Fang S, Xu J, Gu Q. Chemical constituents from the roots of Elephantopus scaber L. Biochem Sys Ecol. 2014;54:65-67.
  11. Geng HW, Zhang XL, Wang GC, et al. Antiviral dicaffeoyl derivatives from Elephantopus scaber. J Asian Nat Prod Res. 2011;13(7):665-669.
  12. Chan CK, Supriady H, Goh BH, Abdul Kadir H. Elephantopus scaber induces apoptosis through ROS-dependen mitochondrial signalling pathway in HCT116 human colorectal carcinoma cells. J Ethnopharmacol. 2015:291-304.
  13. Zahari Z, Jani NA, Amanah A, Latif MN, Majid MI, Adenan MI. Bioassay guided isolation of a sesquiterpene lactone of deoxyelephantopin from Elephantopus scaber Lin. active on Trypanosome brucei rhodesience. Phytomedicine. 2014;21(3):282-285.
  14. Geetha BS, Nair MS, Latha PG, Remani P. Sesquiterpene lactones isolated from Elephantopus scaber L. inhibits human lymphocyte proliferation and the growth of tumour cell lines and induces apoptosis in vitro. J Biomed Biotechnol. 2012:1-8.
  15. Wang L, Jian S, Nan P, Zhong Y. Chemical composition of the essential oil of Elephantopus scaber from Southern China. Zeitschrift fur Naturforsch. 2004;59 (5-6); 327-9.
  16. Sheeba KO, Wills PJ, Latha BK, Rajalekshmy R, Latha MS. Antioxidant and antihepatotoxic efficacy of methanolic extract of Elephantopus scaber Linn in Wistar rats. Asian Pac J Trop Dis. 2012;2(2):904-908.
  17. Li Y, Ooi LSM, Wang H, But PPH, Ooi VE. Antiviral activities of medicinal herbs traditionally used in Southern Mainland China. Photother Res. 2004;18(9):718-722.
  18. Kumar SS, Perumal P, Suresh B. Antibacterial studies on leaf extract of Elephantopus scaber Linn. Anc Sci Life. 2004;23(3):6-8.
  19. Daisy PJasmine RIgnacimuthu SMurugan E. A novel steroid from Elephantopus scaber L. an ethnomedicinal plant with antidiabetic activity. Phytomedicine. 2009;16(2-3):252-257.
  20. Ho WY, Yeap SK, Ho CL, Raha AR, Suraini AA, Alitheen NB. Elephantopus scaber induces cytotoxicity in MCF-7 human breast cancer cells via p53 induced apoptosis. J Med Plant Res. 2011;5(24):5741-5749.
  21. Tsai CC, Lin CC. Anti-inflammatory effects of Taiwan folk medicine 'Teng-Khia-U' on carrageenan and adjuvant-induced paw edema in rats. J Ethnopharmacol. 1999;64(1):85-89.
  22. Lin CCTsai CCYen MH. The evaluation of hepatoprotective effects of Taiwan folk medicine 'teng-khia-u'. J Ethnopharmacol. 1995;45(2):113-123.
  23. Rajesh MG, Latha MS. Hepatoprotection by Elephantopus scaber Linn. In CCl4-induced liver injury. Indian J Physiol Pharmacol. 2001;45(4):481-486.
  24. Sagar R, Sahoo HB. Evaluation of antiasthmatic activity of ethanolic extract of Elephantopus scaber L. leaves. Indian J Pharmacol. 2012;44(3):398-401.