Xanthium spinosum

Plant Name

Xanthium spinosum L.

Botanical Info

Annual of 20-100 cm heigh


European part of the former USSR, Western Siberia, the Far East (the plant was introduced in the South); Central Asia: all districts. Grows on garbage and waste grounds, pastures, along the roads, on water reservoir banks.

Chemical Content

An essential oil, in its composition sesquitepenoids: xantatine, xanthanol, isoxanthanol, xantinine, solstialine, stisolicine. Triterpenoids . Steroids: beta Sitosterin. Triterpenic saponins . Alkaloids. Phenolcarbonic acids and their derivatives in hydrolysate: coffee, chlorogenic. Tannins of 2.72 %. Coumarins. Flavonoids: 8 (Y.Y-dimetilallil) apigenine, in hydrolysate meletin, caempferol, chrisine. Fatty oil. An above-ground part. Sesquiterpenoids: xantatine, xantinine, epoxy-1,5-digidroxantatin, deacetylxantiuminole Flavonoids. Seeds. A fat oil, composition of acids (in %): linolic 64.6, oleinic 26.5, palmitic, stearinic.

Traditional Use and Activity

Decoction is used in the treatment of dentagra. Roots, fruits decoction – in the treatment of dysentery, diarrhea, cholera, heartburn. In the traditional medicine above-ground part is a known diuretic, sudorific; it enhances sialosis. Decoction is used to treat dysentery, diarrhea, rheumatic disease, heart and lung diseases, nephroses, thyroid gland, malaria, venereal diseases, hemorrhoids, allergies, eczema, dermatomycoses. When used externally, it treats snakes punctures and skin diseases. The sum of sesquiterpenoids shows antibacterial activity. Leaves infusion is a detoxicant for mad animals bites or punctures. The power applied externally heals wounds and baths are recommended to treat skin malignant tumors. Young leaves are edible and are used in soups and salads. Fruits control and stabilize body temperature in fevers. Juice is used externally in the treatment of pediatric diathesis, dermatomycoses. The fatty oil is nutritious. Yet it is toxic for pigs, large cattle, sheep, hens.