There is no mention
of Nux-vomica in the earliest sanskrit and medical writing. There
can be little doubt that nux-vomica was not used medicinally by ancient
Hindus. However, the Hindi name 'Kuchila' or 'Kuchula' occurs in ancient
Persian and Arabian literature. In 'Raja Nighanta' two varieties of
the herb are mentioned.
throughout tropical India up to an altitude of 1360 meters.
Morphology Description (Habit)
an evergreen or deciduous tree. The leaves are glabrous, 8-15 cm.
long, broadly elliptic obtuse or acute, entire and with prominent
central nerves. The flowers are greenish white in terminal compound
cymes. Corolla tube is cylindrical. The Style is filiform and stigma
is undivided. The berries are globose. Seeds are discoid (coin-like),
covered with fine and silky hair, embedded in white, bitter pulp.
The seeds contain
strychnine, brucine and vomicine as major alkaloids and a -colubrine,
ß-colubrine, pseudostrychnine and sec-pseudobrucine as minor
has relatively more powerful stimulant action on the motor-cells of
the central nervous system.
Strychnine, one of the major alkaloids, is
toxic in large doses.
It is stimulant,
tonic and prescribed for nervous disorders. It is used as an aphrodisiac.