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gandhaprasarini - Paederia foetida Linn.

gandhaprasarini - Paederia foetida Linn. - Rubiaceae

gandhaprasarini :

Fruit Paederia foetida is a species of plant, with common names that are variations of skunkvine, stinkvine, or Chinese fever vine. It is native to temperate, and tropical Asia; and has become naturalized in the Mascarenes, Melanesia, Polynesia, and the Hawaiian Islands, also found in North America by recent studies.

Paederia foetida is known for the strong, sulphurous odour exuded when its leaves or stems are crushed or bruised. This is because the oil responsible for the smell, and found primarily within the leaves, contains sulphur compounds, including largely dimethyl disulphide


he native range of skunk vine was determined by Puff (1991b) and by Pemberton, who examined ca. 400 skunk vine specimens in the herbaria of the National Museum of France (Paris), the Royal Botanical Garden at Kew (UK), the British Museum of Natural History (London), and the Makino Herbarium at Tokyo Metropolitan University (Japan). The plant reaches north as far as 42º at the tip of the island of Honshu in Japan. Its southern limits are Christmas Island (south of Java) and Timor in Indonesia – both at about 10ºS. To the east the plant reaches Honshu and Japan’s Bonin Islands at about 143ºE, to the west skunk vine reaches Nepal at about 85ºE.

Paederia foetida was reportedly introduced as a potential fiber plant to an unknown location in Florida by the U.S. Department of Agriculture prior to 1867 (Morton, 1976). The geographic origin of the introduced material is unknown. This plant was identified as a problematic weed as early as 1916, when it was found to have entangled ornamental plants near the city of Brooksville (Hernando County) in central western Florida (USDA, 1918). Early references to skunk vine in the region, coupled with its current geographic distribution (Fig. 2), suggest the site of original introduction and epicenter for subsequent dispersal was westcentral Florida (USDA, 1918; Small, 1933; Morton, 1976). Subsequent introductions from Darjeeling, India were made to the USDA Miami Plant Introduction Station in 1932 but the fate of these plants is unknown, as is the rationale for the introduction.

Taxonomical Classification

Kingdom: Plantae - Plants
Subkingdom: Streptophyta
Superdivision: Spermatophyta - Seed plants
Division: Magnoliophyta - Flowering plants
Class: Magnoliopsida - Dicotyledons
Family: Rubiaceae
Genus: Paederia
Species: Paederia foetida

Allied species:

Paederia chinensis Hance, Paederia scandans (Lour.) Merr.,Paederia tomentosa Blume, Apocynum foetium Burm. f


Sanskrit: Prasarini, Gandhpatra
English: Chinese flower plant Skunk Vine, Chinese fever vine, Lesser Malayan stinkwort, stink vine
Hindi: Gandhaprasarani or Pasaran
Urdu: سککا بیل
Telugu: Takkeda, Savirel
Bengali: Gandhabhaduliya, Gandhabhadule, Gandal
Marathi: Hiran- vel, Hiranvel, Haranvel
Oriya: Suprasara
Gujarathi: Gandhana, Prasarini
Tamil: Pinarisangai, Mudiyar, Kundal
Malayalam: Tala nili
Kannada: Hesarani, Prasarini bail
Punjabi: Prasarini
Sindhi: ڪڪڙ شراب
Arabic: كرمة الظربان kirmat alzurban
Spanish: vid de mofeta
Assamese: Bhedai lota or Paduri lota
Japanese: スカンクのつる Sukanku no tsuru
Chinese: Nu qing, Jie shu teng, Ji shi teng, Niu pi dong.
French: liane lingue
German: Stinktierrebe
Burma: hc k ng saw hc pyit nwalpain
Nepal: Pate biree
Persian: اسنک انگور
Sinhalese: apasu madu
Greek: paederos


प्रसारणी राजबला भद्रपर्णी प्रतानिनी 
सरणी सारणी भद्रा बला चापि कटम्भरा 
प्रसारणी गुरु वृष्या बल संधानकृत्  सरा 
वीर्योष्णा वातह्रुत् तिक्ता वात रक्त कफा पहा  - भा प्र नि 


Synonyms in Ayurveda: gandhaprasarini, gandhaprasarani, prasarani, sarani, bhadraparni, rajabala, pratanini, bhadra, bala, katambhara

The word meaning of Gandha Prasarini in Sanskrit is – it spreads bad smell! 
 Gandha means, smell and prasarini means spreading.

Paederia is from the Greek word paederosmeaning opals, for some of the species have translucent drupes. (Some say Paederia comes from the Latin paedor meaning filth or stench, 

Rasa: Tikta
Guna: Guru
Veerya: Ushna
Vipaka: Katu
Karma: Vatahara

Gandha Prasarini (Paederia foetida) is an important Ayurvedic medicinal herb. The word meaning of Gandha Prasarini in Sanskrit is – it spreads bad smell Its different parts are used in different Ayurvedic Preparations. Its leaves are used against herpes infection, roots are used for relieving pain in the chest or liver, inflammation of spleen and also used as emetic.


  • The crop can be grown under the hot and humid climatic conditions, where average relative humidity is high (85%) and maximum & minimum temperature varies between 16°C and 30°C respectively and rainfall is 150-200 cm.
  • It is cultivated in plains to a higher altitude upto 600 m above msl. Soil should be sandy-loam and acidic in nature.


Vegetative propagation by cuttings.


  • Crop Maturity and Harvesting: Crop matures after six months. First harvest of vines can be done at 6 months (March-April) from the date after transplantation; thereafter, at 4 months interval (July-August and October-November). Winter harvesting is not advisable.


Plant contains friedelan-3-one, β-sitosterol and epifriedelinol; the leaves and stem gave iridoid glycosides – asperuloside, paederoside and scandoside; sitosterol, stigmasterol, campesterol; ursolic acid, hentriacontane, hentriacontanol, ceryl alcohol, palmitic acid and methyl mercaptan.


Important Formulations
  1. Prasarini tailam
  2. Mahanarayan oil
  3. Marma gulika

Parts used for medicinal purpose

Leaves, Root, Whole plant, ,


Infusion: 12-24 ml 
Decoction: 56-112 ml 
Powder: 2-4 g


Merremia tridentata 

Commercial value:

 Introduced by the U.S. Department of Agriculture before 1897
as a potential fiber plant; by 1916 already “a troublesome weed” around the Brooksville
Field Station (Morton 1976). Noted as escaping to thickets and fence rows in peninsular
Florida by Small (1933). Considered an economically important weed by 1977 (Reed
1977). Occurs most often in tree gaps and other disturbed areas in its native range (Puff
1991). In Florida, invades various native plant communities, including sandhill, floodplain, and upland mixed forest. 


Root – Tap root 2-4 cm long, 0.5-2 cm thick, cylindrical or sub cylindrical, tortuous, having a number of branches and rootlets; dark brown; surface rough due to longitudinal wrinkles, ridges and fissures; remnants of rootlet, thin scars and numerous horizontal lenticels also present; fracture, short in bark region and somewhat fibrous in wood; odour, disagreeable and foetid more marked in fresh samples; taste, indistinct.

Stem – Slender, sub-erect with diffuse branching, upto 4 cm thick; subcylindrical showing a dumb-bell shaped appearance in transverse view due to presence of two prominant furrows running opposite each other on both surfaces, externally dark brown, longitudinal anastomosing wrinkles, ridges and a few transverse cracks and circular lenticels, fracture, fibrous; odour, foetid more marked in fresh samples; taste, indistinct.

Leaf – Simple, petiolate, stipulate; 10-15 cm long, 5-6 cm broad; somewhat glabrous; ovate, entire, base narrow or broad, apex acute or cuspidate; stipule ovate, lanceolate, bifid, entire, acute, base broad with hairy surface, texture, thin; odour, foetid more distinct in fresh samples; taste, indistinct.

Flower – Violet to pink; bracteate, pedicellate, bisexual, calyx campanulate, acutely, toothed; corolla funnel-shaped, usually pubescent, somewhat gibbous and wooly inside, limb narrow, divided into five cordate crenulate segments, lobes short; filament short, inserted irregularly about the middle of the tube, anther erect within the tube; ovary turbinate, two celled containing one ovule, each attached to the bottom of the cell; style, simple; stigma two cleft with lobes bent amongst the anther.

Fruit – Berry, orbicular, ellipsoid, compressed, smooth with five lines on each side, one celled, two seeded, 1.1 cm across, red or black.

Seed – Compressed, smooth, enlarged with somewhat membranous ring all round.


Root – Mature root shows 6-13 layers of cork, composed of tangentially elongated cells, in outer few layers somewhat collapsed, lignified and filled with brown content; cork cambium 1-2 layers; secondary cortex 5-16 layers of thin-walled; somewhat radially arranged parenchymatous cells; secondary phloem appears as wedge-shaped conical masses consisting of sieve elements and parenchyma traversed by phloem rays; major portion of phloem element thick-walled, sieve elements form collapsed masses of ceratenchyma in outer region and intact in inner most region; uni to biseriate phloem rays composed of usually thick-walled cells in outer and middle phloem region; multiseriate phloem rays composed of thin-walled parenchymatous cells showing funnel-shaped dilatation in outer phloem region; in tangential section through inner phloem region sieve cells shows beaded thickening; cambium 1-3 layered; secondary xylem consists of wide zope of lignified and non-lignified tissue traversed by xylem rays; lignified tissue consists of vessels, tracheids and fibres; non-lignified tissue consists of thin-walled parenchymatous cells; xylem vessels distributed singly or in groups of two to three having variable shape and bordered pits; tracheids long and narrow having bordered pits; fibres long, narrow having simple pits; xylem parenchyma have simple pits or reticulate thickening; xylem ray cells thin-walled, circular to somewhat radially elongated in non-lignified zone and thick-walled, lignified and radially elongated in lignified zone having simple pits; starch grains as granular masses,
oil globules as small circular bodies and raphides of calcium oxalate present in a few cells of secondary cortex, phloem, xylem and medullary rays.

Stem – Mature stem shows 7-11 layers of cork composed of rectangular cells, a few outer layers lignified; secondary cortex 6-9 layers consisting of thin-walled parenchymatous cells; pericyclic fibres present in singles or in groups of two to three, much elongated and septate with very narrow lumen; secondary phloem much similar to that of root having thick-walled phloem elements, arranged in wedged-shaped conical masses, with ceratenchyma, two types of phloem rays, sieve cells with beaded thickening; cambium 1-2 layers; secondary xylem represented by lignified and nonlignified tissues; inner most xylem composed of thin compact band of 8-9 layers of lignified tissue with primary xylem attached towards pits, xylem vessels associated with tracheids, fibres and lignified or non-lignified parenchyma; a few xylem vessels show tyloses; all elements have similar pittings as described in case of root; uni and biseriate rays thin-walled but lignified; in lignified region, multiseriate rays usually thin-walled; centre of stem occupied by small pith and a few sclereids; a few cells of secondary cortex, phloem, xylem, medullary rays and pith contain starch grains, oil globules and raphides of calcium oxalate.

Petiole – shows similar structure as midrib but differs in possesing trichomes comparatively smaller, as well as two more somewhat spherical accessory bundles, one flanking on each side of median vascular bundle close to lateral extensions where they further split after reaching distal end of petiole; starch grains, oil globules and raphides of calcium oxalate similar to those of root and stem also present in parenchymatous cells of petiole, midrib and in mesophyll cells ofleaf.

Midrib – composed of single layered epidermis covered with cuticle; ground tissue consisting of 2-5 layered of collenchyma towards upper and lower side and rest parenchyma; a larger median crescent-shaped vascular bundle consisting usual elements with xylem towards upper side and phloem towards lower side.

Lamina – shows a dorsiventral structure; epidermis single layered covered externally with striated cuticle; uniseriate covering trichomes and paracytic stomata present on both surfaces; mesophyll composed of single layered palisade cells and 3-4 layered spongy tissue; in margin of leaf mesophyll replaced by thick- walled cells; veins usually surrounded by bundle sheath, larger veins transcurrent and smaller ones embedded; vein islet number 5-10 per sq. mm., palisade ratio 6.75-14.2 .

Powder – Dark green; shows fragments of cork cells, palisade cells, raphides of calcium oxalate, oil globules and starch grains

Geographical distribution:

P. foetida is native to Bangladesh and southern Bhutan; Cambodia; Taiwan and China (in Hong Kong and Macau, and the provinces of Anhui, Fujian, Gansu, Guangdong, Guangxi, Hainan, Henan, Hubei, Hunan, Jiangsu, Jiangxi, Shaanxi, Shandong, Shanxi, Sichuan, Xizang, Yunnan, Zhejiang); India (in Andhra Pradesh, Arunachal Pradesh, Assam, Manipur, Meghalaya, Mizoram, Nagaland, Sikkim, Telangana, in the northern part of West Bengal, and the Andaman and Nicobar islands); Indonesia; Japan (in Honshu, Kyushu, Shikoku prefectures, as well as in the Ryukyu Islands); Laos; Malaysia; Myanmar; Nepal; the Philippines; Singapore; South Korea; Thailand; and Vietnam


Fast-growing; shows wide-ranging adaptability to different light, soil, and saltconditions.   Able to establish and grow above the frost line, though someleaves may turn yellow-red or drop following a freeze. 

Plant conservation:

This taxon has not yet been assessed

General Use:

Rheumatism, Paralysis, Diarrhea, Dysentery, Infertility, Flatulence, Inflammation.

Therapeutic Uses:

  • Whole plant is used in Indian System of Medicines.
  • The plant is considered specific for treating rheumatism and all types of neurological diseases.
  • It is extensively used in paraplegia, rheumatism and sciatica.

Systemic Use:

  • Anti-inflammatory activity: It has anti-inflammatory property and is useful in the treatment of edema and all other inflammatory conditions.
  • Anti-arthritic activity: It is very useful in the treatment of joint problems like arthritis and joint pain, gout etc.
  • It is useful to balance the vata and kapha doshas in body and their related disorders.
  • It also has aphrodisiac property and improves the semen quality. It has Anthelmintic activity also.
  • It helps to relieve from abdominal pain and bloating.
  • It acts as immunity enhancer and provides strength to the body against various infections.
  • It is also used to stimulate the central nervous system.
  • It is also used in the treatment of fever.
  • It also has diuretic property.
  • Its fruits are used to relieve toothache.
  • It has hepato-protective and antispasmodic activity.
  • Its oil is very beneficial in various joint disorders.
  • Most of the massage oils used for Vata balancing contain this herb as an essential ingredient. On external use, this herb relieves pain, inflammation and stiffness.


  1. infusion
  2. fresh juice
  3. decoction
  4. powder


antidiarrheal, anthelmintic, anti-inflammatory, antitussive, anticancer, cytotoxic, antithrombolytic, antidiabetic, antihyperlipidemic, antioxidant, antiulcer, cardiotonic, cardioprotective, hepatoprotective, aphrodisiac, antianxiety properties

Clinical trials:

  1. Srinivasreddy K, Sanjeevakumar A and Ganapathy S: Evaluation of anti-ulcer activity of Paederia foetida root extracts in experimentally induced gastric ulcer in rats. International Journal of Research in Ayurveda and Pharmacy 2011; 2(5): 1556-1559.
  2. Afroz S, Alamgir M, Khan MTH, Jabbar S, Nahar N and Choudhuri MSK: Anti-diarrhoeal activity of the ethanol extract of Paederia foetida Linn. (Rubiaceae). Journal of Ethnopharmacology 2006; 105(1–2): 125–130.
  3. De S and Ravishankar B: Investigation of the anti-inflammatory effects of Paederia foetida. Journal of Ethnopharmacology 1994: 43(1): 31-38.



    Sandeep Shetti 1, Dinesh Kumar Chellappan*2, Indra Prakash Sharma 1 andAnandarajagopal Kalusalingam 

  2. Paederia foetida Linn. As a potential medicinal plant : A Review  by Carol Macwan


Individuals have been found to experience some dizziness when dosage exceeds 2000mg/Kg. The Paederia Foetida does not seem to have any dangerous side effects, making it a great addition to your diet as a supplement or as a food additive.

Toxicity studies:

The oral acute toxicity studies did not show any toxic effect till the dose at 2000 mg/kg [2].

Use in other system of medicine:

- In Malaya, leaves are eaten raw or steamed.
- Cooking significantly diminishes the odor, but a mild bitterness persists.
- In northeastern India, the tender leaves are boiled and eaten with chili and salt. The Tripura tribes of India prepare


Skunk vine is a fast-growing, slender, perennial, climbing plant producing stems 1.5 - 7 metres long that twine into other plants for support. The whole plant has a foetid aroma when rubbed
A popular medicinal plant in the Orient, where it is commonly gathered from the wild and is sold as a medicinal herb in local markets. It is also often grown as an ornamental

Photos of gandhaprasarini -

Ayurvedic use Skunk Vine (Gandh Prasarani)

Kotakkal Ayurveda - Mother land of modern ayurveda