Planta Med 2011; 77 - PF85
DOI: 10.1055/s-0031-1282473

Plant known as „Sangra d'água“ (Croton urucurana Baill. (Euphorbiaceae) and its medicinal use in southwestern of Mato Grosso state, Brazil

A Rieder 1, GC Figueiredo 2, ES Pereira 2
  • 1University of Mato Grosso states – UNEMAT, Av. São João, s/n, Bairro Cavalhada, CEP 78200–000 Cáceres (MT), Brazil
  • 2University of Mato Grosso-UNEMAT, Cáceres (MT), Brazil

„Sangra d'água“ is a medicinal tree plant (genus Croton). There are several species, including: C. urucurana Baill., C. salutaris Casar., C. lechleri Müll.Arg., C. planostigma Klotzch. [Croton urucurana (Euphorbiaceae) is the best known. We conducted „filed, lab studies“ and a literature review on popular usage, occurrence and bioactivity of C. urucurana in southwestern Mato Grosso (MT-sw), Brazil, 2003–2007. In MT-sw it grows spontaneously and quickly in watercourses margins. The additional light plant exposure accelerated its reproduction. The inflorescence releases dust that causes allergies-skin irritation. In MT-sw it is used to treat female (discharge, sores, inflammation, cyst) and male genital disorders (prostate); cancer, gastritis, intestinal- stomach ulcers, bruises, infections, hemorrhoids, pain-in-legs, blood-purifying. In other regions of Brazil, it is also used as anti-hemorrhagic, anti-inflammatory, antiseptic, anti-viral, healing, and haemostatic. Obtaining bark and tree sap should be done in the morning and opposite to the rising sun. The water from boiling the bark is used for bathing. Other research on C. urucurana latex discloses that the healing action is attributed to alkaloid taspine; in mice it develops peripheral analgesic activity; in rats, the ingestion was highly toxic, why should it have external use only. The users of these plants should make sure the proper procedures have been taken, consulting qualified professionals to target efficiency and avoiding side effects. In Cáceres (MT-sw), bark and sap are sold by healers, whose expertise is primarily inherited from their ancestors. From this plant the honeybees extract resin to produce propolis. It also has other uses within the conception of sustainable development.

Acknowledgement: For Fapemat – financial support, and for UNEMAT – institutional support; To the collaborators colleagues from the research group FLOBIO – (Plants carrying Bioactive substances)