Other Names : Ailanthus gracilis Salisb., Brucea amarissima, Brucea glabrata, Brucea gracilis, Brucea sumatrana, Brucea sumatrensis, Gonus amarissimus, Lussa radja, Rhus javanica; Jajaruman, Jaloot, Kuinin, Mara, Merapayas, Morinja, Pait-pait, Payas, Tongkat ali
B. javanica is a monoecious or dioecious shrub or small tree that can grow up to 10 m tall with soft-haired twigs and leaves. It prefers open localities such as light secondary forests and thickets, forest edges, ridges, and even occurring in sunny places on sandy dunes and on limestone. It grows under both per-humid and seasonal conditions from sea level up to 900 m altitude
Special Precautions of Brucea Javanica
Benefits and uses of Brucea Javanica are
For several millennia, herbal preparations and natural remedies from B. javanica have been shown to be effective in treating many types of maladies including malaria, and amoebiasis as well as cancer. B. javanica contains alkaloids (brucamarine, yatanine), glycosides/quassinoids (brucealin, yatanoside A and B, kosamine, bruceantin, bruceantarin, bruceantinol), and phenol (brucenol, bruceolic acid). The seeds contain brusatol and bruceine. The pulp oil contains fat, oleic acid, linoleic acid, stearic acid, and palmitoleic acid. Fruit and leaves contain tannin.
- The roots and fruits are used against diarrhoea, dysentery and fevers.
- The crushed leaves are used medicinally against ring worms, scurf, boils, centipede bites and internal pains.
- Cancer :
- To date, 153 compounds have been reported from the seeds and aerial parts of Brucea javanica. Quassinoids are the main constituents of this species. The extract of Brucea javanica and the isolated compounds, specifically quassinoids exhibit various biological properties and are well known for their antitumor effects, especially how they are selectively toxic to cancer cells.
- A study in the American Journal of Medical Science demonstrated that the aqueous extract from B. javanica and the induction of apoptosis by components of B. javanica is an indicated mechanism by which it kills cancer cells. The study found that B. javanica treatment lead to 70% cell death in breast cancer cells.
- Another study in the American Journal of Chinese Medicine from researchers at the Department of Urology, The First Affiliated Hospital, Zhejiang University School of Medicine, Hongzhou, China, found that B. javanica oil significantly induces programmed cell death of bladder cancer cells.
- A study from the international journal Cancer Letters, researchers showed that brucein D (BD), a quassinoid found abundantly in B. javanica fruit, inhibited the growth of three pancreatic cancer cell lines. They provided experimental evidence to support the traditional use of B. javanica fruit in cancer treatment, and render BD a promising candidate for further development into anti-pancreatic cancer agent.
- Yet another study in the International Journal of Molecular Medicine, demonstrated the antiproliferative and apoptotic activities of B. javanica along with other herbal traditional Chinese medicines. They concluded that the programmed cell death of cancer cells activated by specific proteins was 5 times higher in cells treated with B. javanica.
- Bruceantin, a contituent of B. javanica has also been found to interfere with the growth of leukemia, lymphoma, and myeloma cells.