Volkameria inermis L.

Last updated: 17 Feb 2017

Scientific Name

Volkameria inermis L.


Catesbaea javanica Osbeck, Clerodendrum buxifolium (Willd.) Spreng., Clerodendrum capsulare Blanco, Clerodendron commersonii (Poir.) Spreng., Clerodendrum coriaceum Poir. [Illegitimate], Clerodendron coromandelianum Spreng., Clerodendrum emarginatum Briq., Clerodendron inerme (L.), Gaertn., Clerodendrum inerme var. macrocarpum (Wall. ex C.B.Clarke) Moldenke, Clerodendrum inerme var. neriifolium Kurz, Clerodendrum inerme var. oceanicum A.Gray, Clerodendrum inerme f. parvifolium Moldenke, Clerodendrum javanicum Spreng., Clerodendrum neriifolium (Roxb.) Wall. ex Steud., Clerodendrum neriifolium (Roxb.) King & Gamble ex Schau, Clerodendrum neriifolium var. macrocarpum Wall. ex C.B.Clarke, Clerodendrum ovalifolium (A.Juss.) Bakh. [Illegitimate], Clerodendrum ovatum Poir. [Illegitimate], Ovieda inermis (L.) Burm.f., Ovieda ovalifolia A.Juss., Volkameria buxifolia Willd., Volkameria commersonii Poir., Volkameria neriifolia Roxb. [1]

Vernacular Name

Malaysia Tulang tulang, [2] bunga pawang, langa langa, pawan, terong gambol [2][3]
English Garden quinine, glory bower, seaside clerodendron, unarmed glory bower, [2] garden quinine [3]
China Shui hu man, ku lang shu [2]
India Acankamuli, aciriticankam, alalampu, amettiyanari, ancali, Anjali, arni, banjai, batha raja, batraj, binjoam, cankam kuppi, cankamuli, cankankuppi, cankaputpikam, cankaraputnam, cankini, cankinicceti, carpaccu, carparacciyam, carpparacciyam, carpparaci, carppara-cicceti, carpparatci, carupparacci, carupparacciyacceti, carupparacciyam, catpitakkani, catucanki, chhoti-ari, chi-ani, cirikaciyam, cirinkaciyam, coraputpacceti, coraputpam, coraputpi, cuvacakkini, erru pucha, erup-pichha, erupicheha, erupittsa, erupucca, erupuchha, etipisangi, etipisinika, holemadarangi, icanku, irangu, itampuri, itteru, iyanku, kampuputpikam, karithekku, kecini, kentakattailomakki, kentakattaittailamakki, kol, kshudragnimantha, ksudragni-mantha, kucumam, kucumo, kumpaccinitacceti, kumpac-cinitam, kuncarakicacceti, kuncarakitacceti, kuncarakitam, kundali, kundali gida, kuntali, kuntati, kuntaticceti, kuppi, kurottai, kuyapaciyaccanku, kuyapaciyam, lanjai, mannyi, miccenkan, muttapalam, naayi tekkake, naayi thekkile, naitakkilay, naitakkile, nallaoopi, nallauppi, navikaccanku,navikaccan-kucceti, nayitakkali, nellavuppi niir-notsjiil, nilla vuppi, nil-lavuppi, nir-notsjil, nirnocci, nirnochi, nirnotijil, nirnotsjil, pampukkanni, peechangu, peenaari, peenarichangu, pesung, piccenkan, piccuvila, piccuvilatti, pikkalatti, pikkalatticceti, pikkilatti, pina-shengam-kuppi, pinacenkamkuppi, pinari, pinaricankankuppi, pinariccankankuppi, pinariccanku, pinariccankucceti, pinarichanganguppi, pinarichangan-guppu, pinasangam-koppi, pincal, pinchil, pisangi, pishinika, pisingi, pisiniggha, pisinika, pitankai nari, pumalecanam, pumalekinam, pumalekkinam, pumankicceti, samudra-yuthika, sang-kuppi, sangam, sangan-kuppi, sangangkuppi, sanganguppi, sangkupi, sgangam-kuppi, shengan-kuppi, sirit-mari, takkolakamu, takkolam, takkolapu-chettu, takolapu, thakkalika, thakkolakamu, thakkolamu, thakkolapu chettu, tinpu, tinpucceti, tirkkanatacceti, tirkkanatam, tirkkapat-tiri, tirklanatacceti, uti, uti-chettu, utichettu, uttanarippuntu, uttiyavanavaci, vanajai, vanayuthika, vellaiccankankuppi, vilayati mendhi, vishama dhaari, vishama dhari, vishmad-haari, yeti pisinika [2]
Indonesia Gambir laut, kembang bungang, wiri solo, [2] kembang bugang (Sunda) [3]
Borneo Akar kerujo [2]
Thailand Sak khree yaan, sammangaa, som neraa [2][3]
Philippines Ang’angri, balis-kug, balisin, busel-busel, mangotngot, tabangongo, [2] mangongot (Tagalog); baliseng (Bisaya); samin anga (Sulu) [3]
Vietnam Ch[uf]m[g[oj]ng [2][3]
Japan Ibota-kusagi, manka-hôgi [2]

Geographical Distributions

Volkameria inermis is from the coast of subtropical and tropical India to Australia, almost throughout the Pacific, and northward to southern China. It is introduced in other parts of the tropics to control beach erosion and as an ornamental. [3]

Botanical Description

V. inermis is a member of the Lamiaceae family. [1] V. inermis is an evergreen erect bush, often scrambling or scandent that can reach up to 3 m tall but sometimes a liana and measures up to 13 m long. [3]

The branches and branchlets are slender while the nodes are not annulate. [3]

The leaves are elliptical or narrowly lance-shaped, measuring 2.3-10 cm x 0.8-4.5 cm, acute at the base, obtuse or shortly acuminate at the apex, entire, glabrate above, almost glabrate beneath, aromatic and with the petiole is 0.5-1 cm long. [3]

The cymes are axillary or supra-axillary with 3-7-flowered, solitary, opposite and measure 4.5-9.5 cm long. The sepal is bell-shaped; with tube is about 4 mm long, 5-toothed and green. The petal is hypocrateriform, slender tube, measures (1.5-)2-3.5(-4) cm long, with lobes measuring 0.4-0.8(-1.1) cm long, white or tinged purple and fragrant. The stamens are long exserted, reddish to purple and the fruiting sepal accrescent to 1.5 cm in diameter. [3]

The drupe is 0.8(-1.9) cm in diameter, bright green but turns black or brown and splits into 4 pyrenes. [3]


V. inermis is a polymorphic species of seashores, saline marshes and swamps, muddy tidal river banks, and the edges of mangrove forests. [3]

Chemical Constituent

V. inermis aerial parts has been reported to contain 24-ethyl-22-dehydrocholestanol, 24-ethylcholesterol, 24-ethyl-22-dehydrocholesterol, 24-methyl-sterols, 24-methylcholestanol, 24-methylcholesterol, 24-methyl-22-dehydrocholesterol, and 24-methyllathosterol. [4]

V. inermis leaves extract has been reported to contain two iridoid biglycosides namely inerminoside A, B, [5] A1, C, and D. [6]

V. inermis aerial parts has been reported to contain two megastigmane glucosides namely sammangaosides A and B, and irioid glucoside namely sammangaosides C. [7]

Aerial parts of V. inermis has been reported to contain sterols (e.g. 4α-methyl-24β-ethyl-5α-cholesta-14, 25-dien-3β-ol, and 24β-ethylcholesta-5, 9(11), 22E-trien-3β-ol) aliphatic ketone (e.g. 11-pentacosanone and 6-nonacosanone) and diterpene (e.g. clerodermic acid). [8]

Hexane extract of V. inermis extract has been reported to contain three neo-clerodane diterpenoids, inermes A, B, and 14,15-dihydro-15β-methoxy-3-epicaryoptin, and 14,15-dihydro-15-hydroxy-3-epicaryoptin. [9]

Aerial part of V. inermis has been reported to contain phenyllethanoid glycoside (2-(3-methoxy-4-hydroxylphenyl) ethyl-O-2",3"-diacetyl-α-L-rhamnopyranosyl-(1-->3)-4-O-(E)-feruloyl-β-D-glucopyranoside), monomelittoside, melittoside,  inerminoside A1, verbascoside, isoverbascoside, and campneoside I. [10]

Alcoholic extract of V. inermis leaves have been reported to contain triterpenic glucoside (lup-1,5,20(29)-trien-3-O-β-D-glucopyranoside), n-octacosane, friedelin, β-amyrin. [11]

Plant Part Used

Aerial parts, leaves and roots. [4][5][6][7][8][12]

Traditional Use

In India, the leaf of V. inermis is used to treat febrifuge, reminent and intermittent fevers. The leaf juice is taken orally to relieve muscular pains and stiffness of legs (intetanus). The metahnolic extract of the roots contains verbascoside which exhibits analgesic and antimicrobial properties. [12]

In the South Pacific Islands various parts of the plant had been used as an abortifacient. Some considered it as a potent contraceptive. [13]

Preclinical Data


Hepatoprotective activity

The ethanolic extract of the leaves of V. inermis proved to have hepatoprotective activity against CCl4 induced liver damage in Swiss albino rats. This extract was able to decrease serum enzymes alanine amino transferase (ALT), aspartate amino transferase (AST), alkaline phosphatase (ALP) and significantly increase gluthathione level. [14]

Anticancer activity

The chemoprotective potential of V. inermis is exhibited in the aqueous and ethanol extracts of the leaves. This is evident by the ability of this extract to inhibit tumour formation in DMBA-painted animals. It is attributed to the potent antilipidperoxidative effect and improved antioxidant defence system exhibited by the extract. [15][16]


No documentation.

Clinical Data

Clinical findings

No documentation.

Side effects

No documentation.

Pregnancy/Breast Feeding

Not recommended during pregnancy since it has been used to induce abortion in the islands of South Pacific. [13]

Case Report

It was reported that a 13 year old girl with chronic motor tic disorder refractory to multiple anti-tic therapies was given crude leaf extract of V. inermis. She showed dramatic improvement and remission with no side effects being observed during follow up of more than 2 years. [17]


No documentation.

Poisonous Management

No documentation.

Line drawing


Figure 1: The line drawing of V. inermis [3]


  1. The Plant List. Ver1.1. Volkameria inermis L. [homepage on the Internet]. c2013 [updated 2012 Mar 23; cited 2017 Feb 16]. Available from: http://www.theplantlist.org/tpl1.1/record/kew-214017.
  2. Quattrocchi U. CRC world dictionary of medicinal and poisonous plants: Common names, scientific names, eponyms, synonyms, and etymology. Volume II C-D. Boca Raton, Florida: CRC Press, 2012; p. 312-313.
  3. van Valkenburg JLCH, Bunyapraphatsara N. Clerodendrum inerme (L.) Gaertner 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. 175-176.
  4. Akishisa T, Matsubara Y, Ghosh P, Thakur S, Tamura T, Mautsumoto T. Sterols of some Clerodendrum spp Verbenaceae occurance of the 24 alpha and 24 beta epimers of 24 ethylsterols lacking a delta 25 bond. Steroids. 1989;53(3-5):625-638.
  5. Calis H, Hosny M, Yürüker A, Wright AD, Sticher O. Inerminosides A and B, two novel complex iridoid glycosides from Clerodendrum inerme. J Nat Prod. 1994;57(4):494-500.
  6. Calis I, Hosny M, Yürüker A. Inerminosides A1, C, and D, three iridioid glycosides from Clerodendrum inerme. Phytochemistry. 1994;37(4):1083-1085.
  7. Kanchanapoom T, Kasai R, Chumsri P, Hiraga Y, Yamasaki K. Megastigmane and iridoid glucosides from Clerodendrum inerme. Phytochemistry. 2001;58(2001):333-336.
  8. Pandey R, Verma RK, Singh SC, Gupta MM. 4α-methyl-24β-ethyl-5α-cholesta-14,25-dien-3β-ol and 24β-ethylcholesta-5, 9(11), 22E-trien-3β-ol, sterols from Clerodendrum inerme. Phytochemistry. 2003;63(4):415-420.
  9. Pandey R, Verma RK, Gupta MM. Neo-clerodane diterpenoids from Clerodendrum inerme. Phytochemistry. 2005;66(6):643-648.
  10. Nan H, Wu J, Zhang S. A new phenylethanoid glycoside from Clerodendrum inerme. Pharmazie. 2005;60(10):798-799.
  11. Parveen M, Khanam Z, Ali M, Rahman SZ. A novel lupine-type triterpenic glucoside from the leaves of Clerodendrum inerme. Nat Prod Res. 2010;24(2):167-176.
  12. Khare CP. Indian medicinal plants: An illustrated dictionary. Berlin: Springer Science & Business Media, 2008; p. 159-160.
  13. Cambie RC, Brewis A. Anti-fertility plants of the Pacific. Collingwood: CSIRO Publishing, 1997; p. 149–150.
  14. Gopal N, Sengottuvelu S. Hepatoprotective activity of Clerodendron inerme against CCl4 induced hepatic injury in rats. Fitoterpia. 2008;79(1):24-26.
  15. Manoharan S, Kavitha K, Senthil N, Renju GL. Evaluation of anticarcinogenic effects of Clerodendron inerme on 7,12-dimethylbenz(a) anthracene-induced hamster buccal pouch carcinogenesis. Singapore Med J. 2006;47(12):1038-1043.
  16. Renju GL, Manoharan S, Balakrishnan S, Senthil N. Chemopreventive and antilipidperoxidative potential of Clerodendron inerme (L) Gaertn in 7,12-dimethylbenz(a)anthracene induced skin carcinogenesis in Swiss albino mice. Pak J Biol Sci. 2007;10(9):1465-1470.
  17. Fan PC, Huang WJ, Chiou LC. Intractable chronic motor tics dramatically respond to Clerodendrum inerme (L) Gaertn. J Child Neurol. 2009;24(7):887-890.