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CANNABACEAE

(Hemp family)

 

• Medicinal / Folk-medicinal aspects: Preparations for treating sore eyes have been used in traditional medicine in both Central Africa and Central America. Some other uses, mostly for skin infections and wound healing have been recorded from in and around northern India; and for pediculosis in North Africa. •
• Adverse effects: Cannabis sativa L. and Humulus lupulus L. are both documented as causes of occupational allergic contact dermatitis. The responsible allergens have not been unequivocally identified. Mechanical irritation of the skin and eyes caused by rough hairs present on many species and mechanical injury caused by the spines on other species may also occur. Timber derived from certain Celtis L. species has been reported to produce skin reactions in woodworkers. •
• Veterinary aspects: Dermatitis and photodermatitis in cattle has been reported following exposure to a member of the genus Trema Lour. in Australia. •

Once included in the Moraceae and formerly known as the Cannabidaceae or Cannabinaceae, this family was until recently considered to comprise just 4 species in 2 genera, namely Cannabis L. and Humulus L. The transfer into this family by the Angiosperm Phylogeny Group (2003) of a number of genera formerly included in the Ulmaceae or Celtidaceae has now expanded the Cannabaceae to 10 genera and about 80 species (Mabberley 2008).

Two of the species are of unusual economic importance. Cannabis sativa L. provides the fibre hemp from its stems, cannabis resin from its flowering tops, and bird seed and fishing bait from its seeds. The plant is cultivated mainly (and illicitly) for its resin, which has mood and perception altering properties. Humulus lupulus L., a climbing herb, is also extensively cultivated. It provides hops. These are used both in the brewing industry and at home in the production of beer and similar alcoholic beverages. Thus, a large number of people throughout tropical and temperate regions are likely to come into contact with the plants or their products.

Some Celtis L. species are known to horticulture, being grown as ornamental trees (Hunt 1968/70). Several provide useful timber (Irvine 1961).

Humulus lupulus L. is included in a number of proprietary herbal sedative preparations (Stuart 1979, Wren 1988, Reynolds 1996). It may also be used in a smoke or tea (Siegel 1976).



Cannabis sativa L.
(syn. Cannabis indica Lam.)
Indian Hemp, True Hemp, Marihuana, Marijuana

The species is somewhat variable, two subspecies being recognised namely Cannabis sativa ssp sativa, which is grown as a source of fibre known as hemp, and Cannabis sativa ssp indica E. Small & Cronquist, which yields a psychotropic drug which in its various forms is known as churrus, gunjah, bhang, hashish, marihuana, pot, dagga, kif, etc. (Pereira 1842, Trease & Evans 1966, Mabberley 2008).

Workers who process the plant for its fibre, known as hemp, can develop maceration of the skin from standing in water in the retting basins. The dust from the dried fibre may also cause irritation and pruritus. Secondary infection from scratching, and reactions to the oil used in the process can also occur (Slaviero 1915, Schwartz et al. 1957, Hegyi et al. 1965). Meneghini & Gianotti (1953), Touton (1932), Porias (1922) and Oppenheim (1914) also refer to this topic.

Silverstein & Lessin (1974) found that the chronic use of marihuana did not decrease the capacity of a subject to become sensitised and to develop delayed cutaneous hypersensitivity when challenged with 2,4-dinitrochlorobenzene (DNCB).

Marihuana can be contaminated with herbicides including Agent Orange, phencyclidine, and paraquat, and also with storage fungi belonging to the form-genus Aspergillus Mich., fam. Eurotiaceae (Kagen 1981). In addition to the potential toxicity/pathogenicity associated with inhalation of these materials, they may render the results from patch tests with crude plant material or with simple extracts unreliable.

[Further information available but not yet included in database]



Celtis L.
Hackberry, Nettle Tree, Sugar Berry

[Information available but not yet included in database]



Celtis brieyi De Wild.
Diania

[Information available but not yet included in database]



Celtis ehrenbergiana Liebm.
(syns Celtis pallida Torrey, Celtis spinosa Sprengel var pallida M. Johnston, Momisia ehrenbergiana Klotzsch)
Spiny Hackberry, Desert Hackberry, Granjeno

[Information available but not yet included in database]



Celtis iguanaea Sarg.
(syns Celtis aculeata Sw., Celtis spinosa Sprengel, Mertensia iguanaea Schult., Momisia iguanaea Rose & Standl., Rhamnus iguanaea Jacq.)
Iguana Hackberry, Desert Hackberry

[Information available but not yet included in database]



Celtis liukiuensis Nakai

[Information available but not yet included in database]



Celtis madagascariensis Sattarian

[Information available but not yet included in database]



Celtis timorensis Span.
(syn. Celtis cinnamomea Lindl. ex Planchon)

[Information available but not yet included in database]



Chaetachme aristata Planchon
(syns Chaetachme madagascariensis Baker, Chaetachme microcarpa Rendle, Chaetachme serrata Engl.)
Thorny Elm

[Information available but not yet included in database]



Humulus japonicus Siebold & Zucc.
(syn. Humulus scandens Merr.)
Japanese Hop

The wild hop of China and Japan is covered with fine prickles which chafe the skin when they come into contact with it (Stuart 1911).



Humulus lupulus L.
Hop

Dermatitis from hops has long been recognised (Badham 1834, Danlos 1900, Broers 1926, Lewith 1928), and has been attributed to mechanical abrasion by the rough hairs on the climbing stem (Maiden 1918a, Wimmer 1926). Maiden (1918a) suggested also that lupulin, a yellow powdery secretion of the glandular hairs on the scales of the hop cones, may be responsible for the irritation.

Hops in beer were alleged to have caused dermatitis in a bar-tender (Hurst 1942). Respiratory allergy to hops can also occur (O'Donovan 1924, Newmark 1978, Godnic-Cvar 1999).

[Further information available but not yet included in database]



Trema Lour.

[Information available but not yet included in database]



Trema orientalis Blume
(syns Celtis guineensis Schum. & Thonn., Celtis orientalis L., Trema bracteolata Blume, Trema cannabina Lour., Trema guineensis Ficalho)
Charcoal Tree, Gunpowder Tree, Pigeonwood, Rhodesian Elm, Indian Nettle Tree, Poison Peach, Peach Cedar, Woolly Cedar

The leaves, the upper surface of which are rough, have been used as a substitute for sandpaper (Williamson 1955). Watt & Breyer-Brandwijk (1962) note that handling the tree has sometimes resulted in the development of eczema.

[Further information available but not yet included in database]



Trema tomentosa H. Hara var viridis Hewson
(syns Celtis aspera Brongn., Trema aspera Blume, Trema viridis Blume)
Native Peach, Poison Peach, Peach-Leaved Poison Bush

Referring to Trema aspera, Hurst (1942) noted that the leaves act as a mechanical irritant to animals or cause impaction of the stomach owing to the tough nature of the fibre. Dermatitis and photodermatitis in cattle has also been ascribed to the plant.


References

  • Angiosperm Phylogeny Group (2003) An update of the Angiosperm Phylogeny Group classification for the orders and families of flowering plants: APG II. Botanical Journal of the Linnean Society 141(4): 399-436 [doi] [url] [url-2]
  • Badham J (1834) Case of exanthema and narcotism, from the external application of hops. London Medical Gazette 15(360; Oct 25): 112 [url] [url-2]
  • Broers JH (1926) Beruflich erworbene Hautveränderungen durch Stoffe vorwiegend vegetabilischen Ursprungs. Dermatitis venenata phytogenes. In: Oppenheim M, Rille JH, Ullmann K (Eds) Die Schädigungen der Haut durch Beruf und gewerbliche Arbeit, Vol. 2, pp. 509-548. Leipzig: Leopold Voss
  • Danlos (1900) Eczéma artificiel provoqué par le houblon. [Exogenous eczema provoked by hops]. Annales de Dermatologie et de Syphiligraphie, Quatrième Série 1(3): 392-393
  • Godnic-Cvar J, Zuskin E, Mustajbegovic J, Schachter EN, Kanceljak B, Macan J, Ilic Z, Ebling Z (1999) Respiratory and immunological findings in brewery workers. American Journal of Industrial Medicine 35(1): 68-75
  • Hegyi E, Zabojnikova M, Hlavaty P, Janovjakova-Zverkova E, Birkusova M, Hajtman Z, Hornicky L (1965) Kozne poskodenia pri praci s olejmi. [Skin damage caused by working with oils]. Československá Dermatologie 40(Apr): 92-96
  • Hunt P (Ed.) (1968/70) The Marshall Cavendish Encyclopedia of Gardening. London: Marshall Cavendish [WorldCat]
  • Hurst E (1942) The Poison Plants of New South Wales. Sydney: NSW Poison Plants Committee
  • Irvine FR (1961) Woody Plants of Ghana. With special reference to their uses. London: Oxford University Press [WorldCat] [url] [url-2]
  • Kagen SL (1981) Aspergillus, an inhalable contaminant of marihuana. New England Journal of Medicine 304(8): 483-484
  • Lewith R (1928) Über Hopfendermatitis. Archiv für Dermatologie und Syphilis 154: 345
  • Mabberley DJ (2008) Mabberley's Plant-Book. A portable dictionary of plants, their classification and uses, 3rd edn. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press
  • Maiden JH (1918a) Plants which produce inflammation or irritation of the skin. Agricultural Gazette of New South Wales 29(5): 344-345
  • Meneghini CL, Gianotti F (1953) Contributo alla conoscenza della patologia cutanea nella lavorazione del lino e della canapa. [Contribution to the knowledge of cutaneous pathology in workers handling flax and hemp]. Medicina del Lavoro 44(12): 538-543
  • Newmark FM (1978) Hops allergy and terpene sensitivity: an occupational disease. Annals of Allergy 41(5): 311-312
  • O'Donovan WJ (1924) Hop dermatitis. The Lancet 204(5273): 597-598
  • Oppenheim M (1914) [Title]. Wiener Klinische Wochenschrift 27: 63
  • Pereira J (1842) Elements of Materia Medica and Therapeutics. 2nd edn, Vol. 1 & 2. London: Longman, Brown, Green, and Longmans
  • Porias (1922) Toxicodermie durch indischen Hanf. Zentralblatt für Haut- und Geschlechtskrankheiten 6(10/11): 500
  • Reynolds JEF (Ed.) (1996) Martindale. The Extra Pharmacopoeia. 31st edn. London: Royal Pharmaceutical Society
  • Schwartz L, Tulipan L, Birmingham DJ (1957) Occupational Diseases of the Skin. 3rd edn. London: Henry Kimpton
  • Siegel RK (1976) Herbal intoxication. Psychoactive effects from herbal cigarettes, tea, and capsules. Journal of the American Medical Association 236(5): 473-476
  • Silverstein MJ, Lessin PJ (1974) Normal skin test responses in chronic marijuana users. Science 186(4165): 740-741
  • Slaviero G (1916) Disease among workers in hemp cultivation. The Lancet 187(4828): 580
  • Stuart GA (1911) Chinese Materia Medica. Vegetable Kingdom. Extensively revised from Dr. F. Porter Smith's work. Shanghai: American Presbyterian Mission Press
  • Stuart M (1979) Reference section. In: Stuart M (Ed.) The Encyclopedia of Herbs and Herbalism, pp. 141-283. London: Orbis Publishing
  • Touton K (1932) Hauterkrankungen durch phanerogamische Pflanzen und ihre Produkte (Toxicodermia et Allergodermia phytogenes). In: Jadassohn J (Ed.) Handbuch der Haut- und Geschlechtskrankheiten. Band IV, Teil I. Angeborene Anomalien. Lichtdermatosen. Pflanzengifte. Thermische Schädigungen. Einfluss Innerer Störungen auf die Haut, pp. 487-697. Berlin: Julius Springer [WorldCat] [url] [url-2]
  • Trease GE, Evans WC (1966) A Textbook of Pharmacognosy. 9th edn. London: Baillière, Tindall and Cassell
  • Watt JM, Breyer-Brandwijk MG (1962) The Medicinal and Poisonous Plants of Southern and Eastern Africa. Being an account of their medicinal and other uses, chemical composition, pharmacological effects and toxicology in man and animal, 2nd edn. Edinburgh: E & S Livingstone [WorldCat] [url]
  • Williamson J (1955) Useful Plants of Nyasaland. (Edited by Greenway PJ). Zomba, Nyasaland: Government Printer [WorldCat] [url]
  • Wimmer C (1926) Morphologisches über Pflanzen und Tiere, welche Hautschädigungen hervorrufen. [Morphology of plants and animals that cause skin damage]. In: Ullmann K, Oppenheim M, Rille JH (Eds) Die Schädigungen der Haut durch Beruf und gewerbliche Arbeit, Vol. 2, pp. 485-508. Leipzig: Leopold Voss
  • Wren RC (1988) Potter's New Cyclopaedia of Botanical Drugs and Preparations. (Rewritten by Williamson EM, Evans FJ). Saffron Walden: CW Daniel
  • [ + 52 further references not yet included in database]



Richard J. Schmidt [Valid HTML 4.01!]



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