Acalypha siamensis Oliv. ex Gage

Last updated: 01 June 2016

Scientific Name

Acalypha siamensis Oliv. ex Gage


Acalypha evrardii Gagnep., Acalypha siamensis var. denticulata Airy Shaw, Acalypha sphenophylla Pax & K.Hoffm. [Illegitimate]. [1]

Vernacular Name

Malaysia Te, teh hutan, teh kampong, tumput [2]
English Wild tea [2]
Indonesia Pokok teh, teh-tehan [2]
Thailand Cha-khoi, cha pa, cha-ruesei, cha ruesi, cha yuan, ka nam, phak duk, phak dut, phakduk [2]
Cambodia Taé préi [2]
Vietnam Ch[ef] m[ax]n h[ar]o, tai t[uw][ow]ng xi[ee]m, tr[af] c[oj]c r[af]o, tr[af] h[af]ng r[af]o, tr[af] r[uwf]ng [2].

Geographical Distributions

Acalypha siamensis is native in Peninsular Malaysia, Myanmar, Thailand, Combodia, Laos and Vietnam. [3]

Botanical Description

A. siamensis is a member of the Euphorbiaceae family. It is a shrub of 0.5-5m high, freely branching with branches longitudinally fissured, and pubescent when young. [3]

The stipules are narrowly triangular, 2-2.5mm long, pubescent and with glandular hair. [3]

The leaves have short petiole 0.1-0.87cm long, longitudinally grooved above, pubescent. The blade is rhomboid, 2-7 x 3.5cm, coriaceous with cuneate base and crenulate-serrated margins; apex is acute or obtuse, glabrous on both surfaces; nerves are 4 or 5 pairs. [3]

The inflorescences single together, bisexual or only staminate or pistillate flowers. They appear at the axilla, 3-6cm long with staminated part apically while the pistillate part at the base. [3]

The fruits are 3-lobed obvate, 3-5 x 4-7mm, armed with unsharp thorns with an apical, caducous gland. [3]

The seeds are ovoid or subglobular, 2-3 x 2-2.5mm. [3]


A. siamensis is currently cultivated in Thailand, Peninsular Malaysia and Indonesia. [3]

Chemical Constituent

A. siamensis has been reported to contain tetraterpene (e.g. Acalyphaser A). [4]

Plant Part Used

Leaves [3]

Traditional Use

In South-east Asia it is used as tea. Malaysians used to treat fever and renosis. [5] Indonesians believe it is diuretic and also promotes healing of wounds. [6]

Preclinical Data


Antimicrobial activity

Four fractions (hexane, dichloromethane, ethyl acetate and methanol) of the leaf extracts of A. siamensis were evaluated for their antibacterial and antifungal activity. It was found that the ethyl acetate and methanol extracts showed pronounced antibacterial activity while none of the extracts had any antifungal activity. [7]

Cytotoxic activity

In a study of five Malaysian plant species for their cytotoxicity, studies found A. siamensis exhibited the strongest growth inhibition. They isolated a novel tetraterpene, acalyphaser A which they believe to be responsible for the anticancer activity. [4]


No documentation.

Clinical Data

No documentation.


No documentation.

Poisonous Management

No documentation.

Line drawing


Figure 1: The line drawing of A. siamensis. [3]


  1. The Plant List. Acalypha siamensis Oliv. ex Gage. 2013 ver1.1 [updated 2013, cited 2016 June 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. 39.
  3. Siregar AH. Acalypha siamensis Oliv. ex Gage In: van Valkenburg JLCH, Bunyapraphatsara N, editors. Plant resources of South-East Asia No. 12(2): Medicinal and poisonous plants 2. Leiden, The Netherlands: Backhuys Publisher, 2001; p.35-36.
  4. Kambara H, Yamada T, Tsujioka M, et al. A study on medicinal plants from Malaysia focused on Acalypha siamensis Oliv. ex Gage. Isolation and structure of a new tetraterpene, acalyphaser A. Chem Biodivers. 2006;3(12):1301-1306.
  5. Johnson T. CRC ethnobotany desk reference. Boca Raton: CRC Press LLC, 1999; p. 6.
  6. Juwita Ratnasari SP, Krisantini. Panduan praktis mengenal keunikan, 767 jenis, galeri tanaman hias daun penebar. Jakarta: Niaga Swadaya, 2008; p. 31.
  7. Wiart C, Hannah A, Yassim M, Hamimah H, Sulaiman M. Antimicrobial activity of Acalypha siamensis Oliv. ex Gage. J Ethnopharmacol. 2004;95(2-3):285-6.