Flemingia strobilifera (L.) W.T.Aiton

Last updated: 20 April 2016

Scientific Name

Flemingia strobilifera (L.) W.T.Aiton


Flemingia bracteata (Roxb.) Wight, Flemingia fruticulosa Benth, Hedysarum bracteatum Roxb, Hedysarum strobiliferum L, Moghania bracteata (Roxb.) H.L.Li, Moghania fruticulosa (Benth.) Mukerjee, Moghania strobilifera (L.) J.St.-Hil, Moghania strobilifera (L.) Kuntze, Moghania strobilifera (L.) Jacks. Zornia strobilifera (L.) Pers. [1]

Vernacular Name

Malaysia Serengan, enggan, apa-apa kebo, gatak, kamiraso, kapen, ketipes, kopirosok [2] serengan besar [3] seringan, meringan [4]
English Hop bean, luck plant, wild hops [3]
China Qiu sui, qian jin ba [3], da bao ye qian jin ba, ban guan mu qian jin ba, qui sui hua qian jin ba [4]
India Bandar, bari kapsi, bhurbusi, bolu, bundar, chauranga, chepti, clipti, eknadia, gal phuli, ghora chabuk, hampilla, ka khong, kachinjal, kanghoothi, kanpuhita, kanpute, kanputhi, kanpoothi, kanpooti, kinep-maany, koomulu, kumaalu, kumalu, kumbiltaeri, kumbilteri, kumbiltery, kusrunt, kussunt, kussunt bara salpan, kusurant, kuthyyaghat, makhiloti, makhiyoti, makhloti, nalla baddu, nallabaddu, nallabandu, nallabonda, nappe,nari baalada hoone, nundhar, pat-pat, pithawan, salparni, sulung-pau-araung, teri, their, tun ma leng, tun malang, turinarain, ulu, veer brat [3], kusrunt, simbusak, bundar, kanaphuti, adakkamaniyan [4]
Indonesia Otak-otak (Javanese); hahapaan (Sundanese)[2]; apa-apa kebo, gatak, hahapaan, reriang, reringan [3]
Brunei Pancar angina, ringan [3][5]
Thailand Khee dang, ngon kai, nhut pra [3][5]
Philippines Panapanalahan, panapanarahan, paying-payang, tabang-bayawak [2], gangan, piragan [3]
Vietnam Du[oo]I ch[oof]n, t[os]p m[owx] b[oo]ng to [2][5], top mo bong tron, duoi chon, top mo co choi, dau ma hoa non [4]
Japan Soro hangi [3]
Bangladesh Eyami mana [3], mandipata [4]
Nepal Chunetro, gahate, mranche, sanghale jhar, swata [3], grop muja, jyugar, ghan mamarkha, barkuali jhar, ghans, duware, gahate, miranche, swata [4]
Sri lanka Ham-pinna [4]
Papua New Guinea Aafec, arana, kabur na rar, mineata, rara [3][5]
France Sainfoin de Bengale. [4]

Geographical Distributions

Flemingia strobilifera is distributed from India, eastward to southern China and throughout South-East Asia and widely grown in the tropics and extensively naturalized in the Pacific. [5]

Botanical Description

F. strobilifera is a shrub of the Fabaceae family. It grows up to 1 m high. It has numerous branches, rodded, villous and covered by minute resinous granular globules, at first white but later turning red. [5]

The leaves are somewhat deflexed, subovately oblong with a short point measuring 5-15 cm x 2-4 cm. The nerves are parallel, straight, many, hairy underneath. The base is cordate. [5]

The petiole is several times shorted than the leaf, villous, straight, ascending, with a thickened flexile joint at each end. The stipules are caducous. Racemes compound racemules enclosed in large leafy imbricated bracts. [5]

The flowers are dull greenish dirty white, small. The corolla is not much longer than the calyx: standard broad, reflex, streaked. The wings shorter than the vexillum, narrow. The keel longer than the wings, the two petals running into one towards the upper part of the underside. The stamens diadelphous. The germen pedicled, elliptical, flattened, shaggy, two-seeded; ovules kidney-shaped. The style several times longer, slender, from a thicker middle tapering towards each end. The stigma headed, pale. [5]


No documentation

Chemical Constituent

F. strobilifera has been reported to contain 5,7,4’-trihydroxy-8,2’,5’-tri(3-methylbut-2-enyl)isoflavone, 5,7,2’,4’-tetrahydroxyisoflavone, 5,7,4’-trihydroxyisoflavone and b-sitosterol. [6]

Plant Part Used

Leaves, barks and roots [3][7][8]

Traditional Use

The Nepalese recognised this plant as useful in the treatment of various gastrointestinal complaints. Indigestions prescribed as the paste of the roots in the dose of 2 teaspoons twice a day. Juice of the roots is given for diarrhoea and dysentery, so it the juice of the bark. It is widely used to treat rheumatism in India and Southeast Asia. It has been advocated in the treatment of fever. In Nepalsthe juice of the bark is given in the dose of four teaspoons twice daily.  [9]

In Malaysia fever is contained by bathing the patient with a decoction of the leaves. To treat cases of tuberculosis the Filipinos make use of the decoction of the leaves and flowers. [3] The roots of the plant is known to have sedating properties (as indicated by the Malaysian name Meringan – meaning to lighten). It is being used to contained hyperactive children and induced sleeping at night. In Perak the leaves and flowers used to be stuffed into pillows to provide these effects. The roots are used to treat epilepsy and hysteria. [3][8][9][9] In the immediate postpartum period the people of India and the Malay Archipelago made use of the leaves either singly or in combination with others in a decoction to bathe the mothers. The purpose is to provide a sense of calmness following the tiring and agonizing journey of labour. [3][7]

In Trinidad and Tobago where this plant was introduced in the early 16th century the traditional medical practitioner had recognized its use in treating kidney problems especially kidney stones. [7] In Java the leaves are given to children as vermifuge. The plant extract is applied over ringworms three times daily as a remedy for this disfiguring skin disease. [7][10]

Preclinical Data


Antibacterial activity

A number of isoflavone isolated from the roots of F. strobilifera showed moderated antibacterial activity an anti-oxidant activity. [10] In a screening exercise of the antibacterial properties of the roots it was found that the root juice extract was able to inhibit the growth of Staphylococcus aureus and Escherichia coli. [11]

Gastro-protective activity

The chloroform extract of the roots was a subject of scrutiny for its gastro-protective activity. Studies found that giving the chloroform extracts in a dose of 15 mg/kg and 20 mg/kg could reduce the ulcer indices significantly in rats with indomethacin induced ulcers. [12]

Clinical Data

Clinical findings

No documentation

Interaction & Depletion

No documentation


No documentation

Poisonous Management

No documentation

Line drawing

No documentation


  1. The Plant List. Ver1.1. Flemingia strobilifera (L.) W.T.Aiton. [homepage on the Internet]. c2013 [updated 2010 July 14; cited 2016 May 11]. Available from: http://www.theplantlist.org/tpl1.1/record/ild-41472
  2. Herbal Medicine Research Centre, Institute for Medical Research. Compendium of medicinal plants used in Malaysia. Volume 1. Kuala Lumpur: HMRC IMR, 2002; p. 262-263
  3. Philippines medicinal plants. Flemingia strobilifera (L.) W.T.Aiton. [homepage on the internet] No date [updated Oct 2016; cited 2016 May 11]. Available from: http://www.stuartxchange.com/Panapanarahan
  4. Van der Maesen LJG. Flemingia strobilifera (L.) Roxb. ex W.T. Aiton. 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, 2001p. 269-270
  5. Madan S, Singh GN, Kohli K, et al. Isoflavonoids from Flemingia strobilifera (L) R. Br. Roots. Acta Pol Pharm. 2009;66(3):297–303.
  6. Johnson T.  CRC ethnobotany desk reference. Boca Raton, Florida:CRC Press, 1999; p. 352.
  7. Nadkarni KM. Dr. K.M. Nadkarni’s Indian materia medica. Volume 1. Mumbai: Popular Prakashan; 1976.
  8. NP Manandhar, S Manandhar.  Plants and people of Nepal. Portland: Timber Press, 2002; p. 237
  9. Allen ON, Allen EK. The Leguminosae: A source book of characteristics, uses, and nodulation. Madison: University of Wisconsin Press ,1981; p. 288.
  10. Madan S,  Singh GN, Kohli K, et al. Isoflavonoids from Flemingia Strobilifera (L.) R.Br. roots.  Acta Pol Pharm. 2009;66(3):297-303.
  11. Mahato RB, Chaudhary RP. Ethnomedicial study and antibacterial activities of selected plants of the Palpa District, Nepal. Sci World. 2005;3(3):26-31
  12. Anil Kumar KV, Babul Dewan T. Rama Evaluation of gastro-protective effects of Flemingia strobilifera (L) R. Br. (Fabaceae) root extract. Arch Pharm Sci Res. 2010;2(2):347-353.