Strychnos castelnaei Wedd.
Strychnos castelnaeana is a climbing shrub producing stems up to 12 metres long and about 35mm in diameter that clamber into the surrounding vegetation, supporting themselves by means of tendrils[
The plant is one of the sources of curare, used in the Amazon as an arrow poison and also used in modern medicine as a sedative and anticonvulsant.
The bark is one of the sources of 'Curare', an arrow poison produced in the jungles of the Amazon. Curare has a number of applications in modern medicine[
The bark contains the alkaloid curarine, which paralyses the peripheral nerves so voluntary muscles for respiration cease action and asphyxiation occur[
S. America - Amazonian region of Brazil and Peru.
Curare, obtained from the bark of the stems, is a very toxic substance used in the Amazon as an arrow poison. It does also have medicinal applications; as a sedative, anticonvulsive etc. However, the toxic does is very near the pharmacological does and so it has to be used with great care.
Curare is a powerful paralyzing agent of the motor nerves. Its active principle is Curarin[
]. Toxic doses cause death by paralysis of the organs of respiration[
Curare has been reported effectual in two cases of hydrophobia, and has been successful in the treatment of tetanus[
The bark, applied externally, is said to be a good remedy for foul ulcers[
The bark is one of the most potent sedatives in nature and, could it be safely managed, would no doubt become a valuable remedial agent in the treatment of convulsive and spasmodic disorders[
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