Anisophyllea disticha (Jack) Baill.

Last updated: 15/9/2015

Scientific Name

Anisophyllea disticha (Jack) Baill.


Anisophyllea rhomboidea Baill., Anisophyllea trapezoidalis (Baill.) Baill., Anisophyllum trapezoidale Baill., Haloragis disticha Jack. [1]

Vernacular Name

Malaysia Pokok kancil, kayu pacat, rambai ayam, lambai ayam, ribu-ribu [2] kayu ribu-ribu, lambey ayam, raja berangkat [3]
English Leechwood, mousedeer plant [3]
Indonesia Kayu ribu, mempiding, sempiding (Sumatra) [2]
Brunei Sapad [3]

Geographical Distributions

Anisophyllea has 25-30 species in South America, Africa, Asia and South America. [4]

Botanical Description

A. disticha is a member of Anisophylleaceae family. It is a forest shrub with ferruginous pilose branches. [1]

The leaves are alternate, distichous and arranged in two series, which one of the large leaves and other of very small ones which resemble stipulae, being regularly placed a little below the insertion of the large ones, so as to lie over their bases; large leaves are subsessile, rhomboid oblong, inequilateral, acute, entire, nearly smooth above, pilose with short appressed hairs beneath; measuring 2.5-4 cm long and the small leaves are similar in shape, but more acute, and little more than 0.5 cm long. They are arranged on the anterior side of the branch and are closely appressed to it, so as to resemble stipules. [1]

The flowers are axillary, generally solitary, subsessile. The calyx are 4-leaves and persistent. The four petals shorter than the calyx, trifid. The stamina 8 is as long as the petals and anthers 2-celled. The ovary is inferior, 4-sided, ferruginous, 4-celled, tetrasporous. The styles 4, equal to the stamina. The stigma is simple. [1]

The fruit is a drupe: oblong ovate, red, containing a nut with 8 longitudinal furrows, and containing a single seed. [1]

The seed oblong oval; embryo central in an ample albumen. [1]


No documentation.

Chemical Constituent

Methanolic extract from the root bark of A. disticha contains a mixture of polyphenolic compounds ((+)-catechin-3-O-b-D-glucopyranoside, epicatechin-(4b ! 8)-catechin (procyanidin B1), (+)-catechin, epicatechin trimer, (–)-epicatechin, (–)-epicatechin 3-O-gallate, procyanidin B2, 3-O-methyl ellagic acid, 4-O-b-D-glucopyranoside, (–)-epicatechin 3-O-vanillate, 3,4-methylenedioxo ellagic acid 40-O-b-Dglucopyranoside, 30-O-methyl-3,4-methylenedioxo ellagic acid 40-O-bD-glucopyranoside, 30-O-methyl ellagic acid, 4-O-b-D-xylopyranoside, 3,30-di-O-methyl ellagic acid, 4-O-b-D-xylopyranoside, 3-O-methyl ellagic acid, 3,3’-di-O-methyl ellagic acid, 30-O-methyl-3,4-methylenedioxo ellagic acid). [5]

Plant Part Used

Roots, leaves [6][7][8]

Traditional Use

Gastrointestinal Diseases

An infusion of the plant is used to treat diarrhoea and dysentery and a decoction of the leaves is used to bathe patients suffering from jaundice. [6] In some places, the leaves are chewed on fresh to stop diarrhoea and dysentery.


In Sumatra decoction of the roots in combination with other herbs is used to relieve tiredness. [6] In Malaysia the roots of A. disticha is boiled with onion and black cumin (Nigella sativa) for relieve of tiredness and body aches. [8] The root itself can be eaten raw or made as fresh decoction or tonic decoction and serve for weakness in men. [3]

Other uses

Decoction of the roots alone is given to women during period of confinement as a method of revitalizing their birth canal. [7] The leaves astringent is eaten to treat diarrhea, dysentery, fever, jaundice or if pounded the young leaves can be used to treat cuts and wounds. While the fruits of A. disticha, are eaten raw for septic stings by bees or hornets. [3]

Preclinical Data


Antimicrobial activity

Crude extract of A. disticha were used to estimate the inhibition growth of eight assay composed of bacterium and fungus namely: Bacillus subtilis, Staphylococcus aureus, Escherichia coli, Proteus vulgaris, Aspergillus niger, Penicillium luteum, Mucor spinescens and Candida albicans. The crude extract of A disticha showed inhibition of B. subtilis, S. aureus, E. coli and P. vulgaris at concentration of 5 to 10 mg/ml. [9]


The crude extract of A. disticha showed acute toxicity with an LD50 value of more than 1000 mg/kg. [9]

Clinical Data

No documentation


No documentation

Poisonous Management

No documentation

Line drawing

No documentation.


  1. The Plant List. Ver 1.1. Anisophyllea disticha (Jack) Baill. [homepage on the Internet]. c2013. [updated on 2012 Mar 23; cited 2015 Sept 10]. Available from:
  2. Herbal Medicine Research Centre, Institute for Medical Research. Compendium of medicinal plants used in Malaysia. Volume 1. Kuala Lumpur: HMRC IMR, 2002; p. 50.
  3. 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. 308.
  4. Zhang LB, Simmons MP, Renner SS. A phylogeny of Anisophylleaceae based on six nuclear and plastid loci: Ancient disjunctions and recent dispersal between South America, Africa, and Asia. Mol Phylogenet Evol. 2007;44(3):1057-1067.
  5. Khallouki F, Haubner R, Hull WE, et al. Isolation, purification and identification of ellagic acid derivatives, catechins, and procyanidins from the root bark of Anisophyllea dichostyla R. Br. Food Chem Toxicol. 2007;45(3):472-485.
  6. Burkill IH. A dictionary of economic products of the Malay Peninsula. Volume 1. Kuala Lumpur: Ministry of Agriculture and Cooperatives of Malaysia, 1966; p. 162
  7. Wiart C. Medicinal plants of Asia and the Pacific. Boca Raton, Florida: CRC Press, 2006; p. 121
  8. Ong HC. Tumbuhan liar: Khasiat ubatan & kegunaan lain. Kuala Lumpur: Utusan Publications and Distributors, 2008; p. 91
  9. Nakanishi K, Sasaki S, Kiang JG, et al. Phytochemical survey of Malaysian plants preliminary chemical and pharmacological screening. Chem Pharm Bull (Tokyo). 1965;13(7):882-890.