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   Index



 

EUPHORBIACEAE — 7
Euphorbia deightonii - Euphorbia kotschyana

(Spurge family)

 



Euphorbia deightonii Croizat

This thorny plant, which grows to 6 metres in height, has caustic latex (Dalziel 1937, Irvine 1961). Kinghorn & Evans (1975a) demonstrated the irritancy of the latex in a mouse ear irritancy assay, and subsequently (Evans & Kinghorn 1977) reported the presence of ingenol esters in the plant.



Euphorbia dendroides L.
(syns Tithymalus dendroides Hill, Tithymalus arboreus Lam.)

Pammel (1911) lists this species as being irritant.



Euphorbia desmondi Keay & Milne-Redh.

Kinghorn & Evans (1975a) demonstrated the irritancy of the latex in a mouse ear irritancy assay, and subsequently reported the presence of ingenol esters in the plant (Evans & Kinghorn 1975a, 1977).



Euphorbia drupifera Thonn.
(syns Elaeophorbia drupifera Stapf, Euphorbia drupacea Stapf)

The latex, which causes considerable swelling when rubbed on the skin, is used to remove warts. It is dangerous to the eyes and can cause blindness (Oliver 1959, Irvine 1961).

The irritants of this species are ingenol esters (Kinghorn & Evans 1974, 1975a, Evans & Kinghorn 1975a).



Euphorbia dulcis L.
(syn. Tithymalus dulcis Scop.)

Upadhyay et al. (1980a) ascribed the irritancy of this species to the presence of ingenol esters.



Euphorbia epithymoides L.
(syn. Euphorbia polychroma A. Kerner)

Kinghorn & Evans (1975a) demonstrated the irritancy of the latex in a mouse ear irritancy assay.



Euphorbia eremophila A. Cunn.

Pammel (1911) lists this species as being irritant.



Euphorbia erythraea Hemsley

Kinghorn & Evans (1975a) demonstrated the irritancy of the latex in a mouse ear irritancy assay, and subsequently reported the presence of ingenol esters in the plant (Evans & Kinghorn 1977).



Euphorbia esculenta Marloth

This plant and also Euphorbia hamata Sweet are used as cattle fodder (Jacobsen 1974) suggesting that they are not strongly irritant. Watt & Breyer-Brandwijk (1962) consider that Euphorbia esculenta may nevertheless be irritant.



Euphorbia esula L.
(syn. Tithymalus esula Hill)
Wolf's Milk

This species has an irritant and acrid milky juice (Pammel 1911, Fernald 1950, Upadhyay et al. 1980a). The sap is also irritating to the human eye (Lewin & Guillery 1913, Lampe & Fagerström 1968, Duke-Elder & MacFaul 1972b, Grant 1974).

Several irritant ingenol esters have been reported from this species (Kupchan et al. 1976, Seip & Hecker 1982).



Euphorbia esula L. ssp tommasiniana Nyman
(syns Euphorbia virgata Waldst. & Kit., Tithymalus virgatus Klotzsch & Garcke)

Upadhyay et al. (1980a, 1981) reported the presence of ingenol esters in this species.



Euphorbia exigua L.
(syn. Tithymalus exiguus Lam.)
Dwarf Spurge

This species is irritant (North 1967).



Euphorbia fortissima Leach

Evans et al. (1975) and Kinghorn & Evans (1975c) reported the presence of irritant 12-deoxyphorbol esters in this species.



Euphorbia franckiana A. Berger

Kinghorn & Evans (1975a) demonstrated the irritancy of the latex of this thorny succulent species in a mouse ear irritancy assay. The irritants appear to be esters of phorbol and 12-deoxyphorbol (Kinghorn & Evans 1975b, Evans & Kinghorn 1977).



Euphorbia fulgens Karw.

Two cases of dermatitis occurred following contact with this plant (Hausen 1974). The sap of this species has given evidence of sensitising capacity (Hausen & Schulz 1977b).

Inhalation of the pollen can cause occupational allergy (Hausen et al. 1976).



Euphorbia gaudichaudii Boiss.

Souder (1963) lists this species among spurges that can cause an acute dermatitis on contact with their sap or latex.



Euphorbia geniculata Ortega
(syn. Poinsettia geniculata Klotzsch & Garcke)

Kinghorn & Evans (1975a) found the latex to be non-irritant in a mouse ear irritancy assay.



Euphorbia genistoides Bergius

This species is irritant to the skin of sheep (Watt & Breyer-Brandwijk 1962).



Euphorbia gorgonis A. Berger

The latex is applied as an aid to the removal of warts and other skin eruptions. It is also used as a styptic (Watt & Breyer-Brandwijk 1962).



Euphorbia grandidens Haw.

The latex of this thorny succulent species is thought to be irritant and possibly capable of causing blindness (Watt & Breyer-Brandwijk 1962).



Euphorbia grandifolia Haw.
(syn. Elaeophorbia grandifolia Haw.)

This species contains caustic latex (Irvine 1961). The irritants of this species are ingenol esters (Kinghorn & Evans 1974, Kinghorn & Evans 1975a, Evans & Kinghorn 1975a).



Euphorbia grantii Oliver
African Milk Bush

The plant is irritant to the skin and eyes (Raymond 1939) and a powerful purgative (Watt & Breyer-Brandwijk 1962).



Euphorbia hebecarpa Boiss.

Upadhyay et al. (1980a) found this species to be non-irritant in a mouse ear irritancy assay.



Euphorbia helioscopia L.
(syn. Tithymalus helioscopius Hill)
Sun Spurge, Wolf's Milk, Wartweed

Pammel (1911) listed this species as being irritant. Cleland (1931) received a report that this species caused dermatitis when handled. Varca (1937) reported two cases of a diffuse itching eruption on the face, neck and forearms after contact with the plant. Watt & Breyer-Bandwijk (1962) cite various authors who stated that the plant is irritant and vesicant to the hands and face and that severe ulceration of the skin has followed application of a poultice of the bruised plant. Some children who played with the plant in New South Wales developed blisters followed by permanent scars on their faces (Mair 1968). Formerly the juice was used for treating warts on the fingers; blistering of the lips and tongue occurred if the fingers were subsequently sucked (North 1967).

Severe kerato-conjunctivitis can result in man from exposure of the eye to this plant but, experimentally, rabbits were not susceptible (Guggenheim 1926, Lampe & Fagerström 1968, Grant 1974).

Hurst (1942) notes that Euphorbia helioscopia has been suspected as a cause of dermatitis in cows.

Kinghorn & Evans (1975a) demonstrated the irritancy of the latex in a mouse ear irritancy assay; irritancy was subsequently attributed to the presence of 12-deoxyphorbol esters (Schmidt & Evans 1980).



Euphorbia heptagona L.

Pammel (1911) lists this species as being irritant.



Euphorbia heterodoxa Muell. Arg.

Pammel (1911) lists this species as being acrid.



Euphorbia heterophylla L.
(syn. Poinsettia heterophylla Klotzsch & Garcke)
Painted Leaf, Wild Poinsettia, Mexican Fire Plant, Cruel Plant

This plant, a common native weed of Florida, has an abundant milky sap which is irritant (Morton 1962a) and can produce dermatitis (Allen 1943, Orchard 1954, Pope 1968). von Reis Altschul (1973) records that in El Salvador the latex was reported to be very irritant, but in Mexico the milk of this plant is used for washing the eyes, and in Indonesia the milky sap is used instead of castor oil (Ricinus communis L.).

The latex of the plant is used as an antidote for the irritation produced by other species of Euphorbia L. (Watt & Breyer-Brandwijk 1962).

Brache & Aquino (1976) note that this spurge is among the 14 commoner causes of plant dermatitis in the Dominican Republic.



Euphorbia hoffmanniana Boiss.

This species is abundant in central Costa Rica, especially in fence rows, and is said to cause swelling and inflammation but the people seem to pay little attention to the shrub (Standley 1927).



Euphorbia hyberna L.
(syn. Tithymalus hiberna Raf.)

Pammel (1911) lists this species as being irritant. Kinghorn & Evans (1975a) demonstrated the irritancy of the latex in a mouse ear irritancy assay.



Euphorbia ipecacuanhae L.
(syn. Tithymalus ipecacuanhae Klotzsch & Garcke)
Wild Ipecac

The plants are irritant to those who collect and handle them (White 1887). Pammel (1911) lists the species as being irritant.



Euphorbia jolkini Boiss.

The irritant properties of this species may be ascribed to the presence of ingenol esters (Uemura & Hirata 1973).



Euphorbia kamerunica Pax
(syn. Euphorbia barteri N.E. Br.)

The latex is caustic (Dalziel 1937). Kinghorn & Evans (1975a) demonstrated the irritancy of the latex in a mouse ear irritancy assay. The presence of ingenol esters in this species was subsequently reported (Evans & Kinghorn 1977, Abo & Evans 1982).



Euphorbia kansui Liou

Esters of ingenol and related polyols have been reported from this species (Uemura et al. 1974, Hirata 1975).



Euphorbia kotschyana Fenzl
(syn. Tithymalus kotschyanus Klotzsch & Garcke)

Kinghorn & Evans (1975a) demonstrated the irritancy of the latex in a mouse ear irritancy assay.




Richard J. Schmidt [Valid HTML 4.01!]



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