Barleria lupulina Lindl.

Last updated: 01 Oct 2015

Scientific Name

Barleria lupulina Lindl. 


Barleria macrostachya Bojer , Dicliptera spinosa Lodd. ex Nees [Invalid] [1]

Vernacular Name

Malaysia Setawar sakelian bias [2], bias ular, setawar ular [3]
English Hop-headed barleria, hophead, Philippine violet [2]
China Hua je jia du juan [2]
India Kanta bishalyakarani, mullanangai [2]
Indonesia landik, sujen trus (Javanese) [4]
Thailand salet phangphong, phimsen ton (Central) [4], chek che kiam [2]
Vietnam gai kim v[af]ng [4]

Geographical Distributions

No documentation.

Botanical Description

Barleria lupulina is a shrub of the family Acanthaceae. The plant can reach up to a height of 1.5 m high. [5]

The stems is glabrous with much branching, 4 angled, armed with one, two or three pairs of spines 5-20 mm long in the leaf axils. [5]

The leaves are linear-oblong, 3-9.5 x 0.9-1.4 cm, cuneate at base and obtuse, mucronulate and glabrous. The petiole can grow up to 0.6 cm long. The upper surface is dark green in colour with a distinct red midrib while the under surface is of a lighter shade of green. [5]

The inflorescences in the form of spikes that are erect, terminal, hop-like, up to 9 cm long; bracts erect, broadly ovate, 1.8 x 1.3 cm, muconulate, ciliolate, on the back at base with copular glands, brateoles lanceolate, 4 x 1 mm, mucronulate; calyx-lobes broadly ovate, unequal, 6-9 x 1-4 mm, shortly aristate; corolla yellow; tube 3 cm long, bent at the base, expanded above; stamens exserted; capsules not seen. [5]


No documentation.

Chemical Constituent

Aqueous extract of B. lupulina dried aerial parts extract has been reported to contain iridoid glycosides (barlupulins A-D), together with 14 known analogues (6-O-p-methoxy-trans-cinnamoyl-8-O-acetylshanzhiside methyl ester, 6-O-p-methoxy-cis-cinnamoyl-8-O-acetylshanzhiside methyl ester, 6-O-p-methoxy-trans-cinnamoyl-8-O-acetylshanzhiside, 6-O-p-methoxy-cis-cinnamoyl-8-O-acetylshanzhiside, 6-O-p-trans-coumaroyl-8-O-acetylshanzhiside methyl ester, 6-O-p-cis-coumaroyl-8-O-acetylshanzhiside methyl ester, acetylbarlerin, barlerin, ipolamiidoside, 8-O-acetylshanzhiside, 6-O-acetylshanzhiside methyl ester, shanzhiside methyl ester, shanzhiside, and mussaenosidic acid). [6]

Methanol extract of B. lupulina aerial part has been reported to contain iridoid glucosides (shanzhiside methyl ester, 8-O-acetylshanzhiside methyl ester (barlerin), 6-O-acetylshanzhiside methyl ester, 6,8-O,O-diacetylshanzhiside methyl ester (acetylbarlerin), 8-O-acetyl-6-O-trans-p-coumaroylshanzhiside, saletpangponosides A, saletpangponosides B, saletpangponosides C, ipolamiide, ipolamiidoside, phlorigidoside B, and 8-O-acetylmussaenoside), phenylpropanoid glycosides (forsythoside B, verbascoside, poliumoside), lignan glucoside ((+)-lyoniresinol 3a-O-β-glucopyranoside), aliphatic glycoside ((3R)-1-octen-3-yl-β-prime- veroside) and benzyl alcohol glycoside (β-(2’-O-β-xylopyranosyl) glucopyranoside). [7]

Chloroform and methanol extract of B. lupulina flowers has been reported to contain iridoid glucosides (e.g. lupulinoside, acetylbarlerin, ipolamiidoside, 6-O-acetylshanzhiside methyl ester, barlerin, shanzhiside methyl ester, mussaenosidic acid, 8-O-acetylshanzhiside, and shanzhiside). [8]

B. lupulina aerial part has been reported to contain 4,8,8-trimethylcyclooct-2-enone derivatives (e.g. chakyunglupulins A and chakyunglupulins B). [9]

Unspecified extract of B. lupulina has been reported to contain iridoid glucosides (e.g. 8-O-acetylipolamiidic acid, 8-O-acetyl-6-O-(p-methoxy-cis-cinnamoyl)shanzhiside, and 8-O-acetyl-6-O-(p-methoxy-trans-cinnamoyl)shanzhiside). [10]

Plant Part Used

Leaves [5], aerial parts [11]

Traditional Use

B. lupulina leaves are used to treat snakebites, dog bites, swelling due to fall or assault, boils, bleeding wounds and rheumatism. For boils and traumatic swelling a decoction of the leaves is being given orally in a dose of half of glass taken twice per day. For snakebites treatment, a glass of the decoction of 9 g of leaves being taken immediately while still hot. The leaves are pounded and applied over the bite site. For rheumatic pains 15 g of the leaves are pounded and mixed with ¼ teaspoon of lime (kapur sirih) and this is applied over the affected part. [5]

B.lupulina also strongly recommended for ant, bee, centipede, fish, hornet, paper wasp, salamander, scorpion, spider and wasp envenomation. Aqueous or alcoholic extract of 10-15 fresh leaves were recommended for the treatment. [12]

Preclinical Data




Crude extracts from B. lupulina showed antimicrobial activity since it had strong inhibitory effect and could inhibit the growth of Propionibacterium acnes. [13]


Extract of B. lupulina suggested a therapeutic potential against herpex simplex virus type 2 (HSV-2) strain G. The extract exhibited activity against all five clinical HSV-2 isolates except for the standard strain. [14]


Chloroform extract from B. lupulina were found to be active against Entamoeba histolytica strain HM1: IMSS with IC50 value of 78.5 µg/mL when compared to control of standard drug, metronidazole (1.1 µg/mL) [15]


Methanol extract from B. lupulina aerial parts showed anti-inflammatory activity in albino rats when it exhibits significant inhibition of carrageenin and serotonin induced paw oedema volumes when compared with the untreated (control) group. It also has potential in reducing granuloma weight in the cotton pellet induced granuloma model compared to the standard drug (indomethacin). [11]

Extract of B. lupulina mediated the powerful anti-inflammatory activity by inhibiting the neutrophil responsiveness that can leads to oedema formation in two rat models. Treatment of neutrophils with the extracts concentration-dependently inhibited fMLP-induced chemotaxis, superoxide anion generation (SAG), myeloperoxidase activity and elastase release. [16]

Analgesic activity

Methanol extract from B. lupulina showed analgesic potential as it demonstrated protection against CCl(4) induced lipid peroxidation and acetic acid induced writhing in model of albino rats. [11]

Antiulcerogenic activity

Acute administration of ethanol extract from B. lupulina (300 mg/kg) did not produce any gastric lesion in rat models. [11]

Methanol extract of B. lupulina aerial parts exhibited gastric cytoprotective against gastric and duodenal ulcers in albino rats. The extract (200 mg/kg) was administered to reduce the volume of gastric juice, total acidity and the ulcer index in pylorus ligated rats. It also afforded significant protection against alcohol and indomethacin induced ulcer as well as stress induced ulceration. [17]


Methanol extract of B. lupulina aerial parts (100, 200, 300 mg/kg) administered orally to streptozotocin-induced hyperglycemia in rat. The extract significantly showed antihyperglycemic effect [18]

Neuropharmacological activity

Methanol extract of B. lupulina aerial parts (100, 200, 300 mg/kg) produced a significant reduction of the exploratory behavioural profile (Y-maze test, head dip test) and conditioned avoidance response. It also showed reduction in general behavioural pattern in a dose dependent manner as well as the motor incoordination and muscle relaxant activity. [19]

Clinical Data

No documentation

Side effects

No documentation

Interaction & Depletion

No documentation

Interaction with drug

Patients on antidiabetic medication should be caution because the extract also has hypoglycaemic activities, thus may interact with the medicines. It also may have interaction with phenobarbitone. [19][20]


No documentation

Line drawing

No documentation


  1. The Plant List. Ver1.1. Barleria lupulina Lindl. [homepage on the Internet]. c2013 [updated 2012 Mar 23; cited 2015 Oct 01]. Available from:
  2. Quattrocchi U. CRC world dictionary of medicinal and poisonous plants: Common names, scientific names, eponyms, synonyms, and etymology. Volume I A-B. Boca Raton, Florida: CRC Press, 2012; p. 537-538.
  3. Herbal Medicine Research Centre, Institute for Medical Research. Compendium of medicinal plants used in Malaysia. Volume 2. Kuala Lumpur: HMRC IMR, 2002; p. 101.
  4. Aguilar NO. Barleria lupulina Lindley. 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. 527.
  5. Hariana HA. Tumbuhan obat dan khasiatnya. Seri Kedua. Jakarta: Niaga Swadaya, 2008; p. 81-82.
  6. Kim KH, Park YJ, Chung KH, et al. Iridoid glycosides from Barleria lupulina. J Nat Prod. 2015;78(2):320-324.
  7. Kanchanapoom T, Kasai R, Yamasaki K. Iridoid glucosides from Barleria lupulina. Phytochemistry. 2001;58(2):337-341.
  8. Suksamrarn S, Wongkrajang K, Kirtikara K, Suksamrarn A. Iridoid glucosides from the flowers of Barleria lupulina. Planta Med. 2003;69(9):877-879.
  9. Kim KH, Clardy J, Senger D, Cao S. Chakyunglupulins A and B, two novel 4,8,8-trimethylcyclooct-2-enone derivatives from Barleria lupulina. Tetrahedron Lett. 2015;56(21):2732-2734.
  10. Widyowati R, Tezuka Y, Miyahara T, Awale S, Kadota S. Alkaline phosphatase (ALP) enhancing iridoid glucosides from the Indonesian medicinal plant Barleria lupulina. Nat Prod Commun. 2010;5(11):1711-1716.
  11. Suba V, Murugesan T, Kumaravelrajan R, Mandal SC, Saha BP. Antiinflammatory, analgesic and antiperoxidative efficacy of Barleria lupulina Lindl. extract. Phytother Res. 2005;19(8):695-699.
  12. Watson RR, Preedy VR. Botanical medicine in clinical practice. Oxfordshire: CABI, 2008; p. 819.
  13. Chomnawang MT, Surassmo S, Nukoolkarn VS, Gritsanapan W. Antimicrobial effects of Thai medicinal plants against acne-inducing bacteria. J Ethnopharmacol. 2005;101(1-3):330-333.
  14. Yoosook C, Panpisutchaia Y, Chaichanab Y, Santisukc T, Reutrakulb V. Evaluation of anti-HSV-2 activities of Barleria lupulina and Clinacanthus nutans. J Ethnopharmacol. 1999; 67(2):179-187.
  15. Sawangjaroen N, Phongpaichit S, Subhadhirasakul S, Visutthi M, Srisuwan N, Thammapalerd N. The anti-amoebic activity of some medicinal plants used by AIDS patients in southern Thailand. Parasitol Res. 2006;98(6):588-592.
  16. Wanikiat P, Panthong A, Sujayanon P, Yoosook C, Rossi AG, Reutrakul V. The anti-inflammatory effects and the inhibition of neutrophil responsiveness by Barleria lupulina and Clinacanthus nutans extracts. J Ethnopharmacol. 2008;116(2):234.
  17. Suba V, Murugesan T, Pal M, Mandal SC, Saha BP. Antiulcer activity of methanol fraction of Barleria lupulina Lindl. in animal models. Phytother Res. 2004;18(11):925-929.
  18. Suba V, Murugesan T, Rao RB, et al. Antidiabetic potential of Barleria lupulina extract in rats. Fitoterapia. 2004:75(1);1-4
  19. Suba V, Murugesan T, Rao RB, Pal M, Mandal SC, Saha BP. Neuropharmacological profile of Barleria lupulina Lindl. Extract in animal models. J Ethnopharmacol. 2002;81(2):251-255.
  20. Suba V, Murugesan T, Arunachalam G, Mandal SC, Saha BP. Anti-diabetic potential of Barleria lupulina extract in rats. Phytomedicine. 2004;11(2-3):202-205.