Empire Production of Drugs Iv-Strophanthinum

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Greenway P.J.
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The genus Strophanthus is represented by some forty-four species, three in South Africa,thirty-one in Tropical Africa, two in Madagascar,and about twelve in India and the FarEast. The species of Strophanthus are shrubsor woody climbers with most attractive flowers. Various attempts have been made at Amani to grow the official and other species without much success. Those tried were: S. caudatus Kurz, planted 1904, flowered but failed to fruit; S. randiflorus (N.E.Br.) Gilg, planted in 1914, as an East African coastal species no doubt flowered and fruited freely; S. gratus (Wall. & Hook.) Franch., planted in 1902, flowered freely and failed to fruit; S. hispidus A.P. D.C., planted in 1904, flowered freely; S. Kombe, planted in 1910, was not established; and S. sarmentosus A.P. DC., in cultivation and flowered in 1908. Some African species are recorded as having toxic properties, some being used as arrow-poison.According to the British Pharmaceutical Codex "strophanthin is a mixture of "glycosides obtained from Strophanthus Kombe Oliv. It consists of cymarin, K-strophanthin-B, and other glycosides, and may be isolated from the freshly powdered seeds
East African Agricultural And Forestry Journal, VI (No 3), p. 184-185