ENGLISH NAME : Love vine
BOTANIC NAME : Cassytha filiformis
HABIT: It is a perennial, herbaceous and leafless climber, spread over small bushes, woody shrubs and grass lands.
It is semi parasitic plant; survive up to 3 months with out host plant.
PLANT: A slender, thread like, multi-branched, semi parasitic vine.
LEAF : Leaves reduced to minute scales.
FLOWER: Small creamy white, Sessile, few in spicate inflorescences of 1-2 cm long and seen throughout year.
FRUIT/SEED: Small, fleshy and berry like. Only one seed is seen in a fruit.
PROPAGATION : By seed.
Finely grinded Paste of Cassytha is applied for skin diseases,
It is used as a medicine for hair loss due to fungal infection and for strengthening hair.
Stem powdered and mixed with sesamum oil, are used as hair tonic.
In African tribal medicine Cassytha is used to treat Cancer.
It was reported to be used as a medicine against gonorrhoea, kidney ailments and as a diuretic.
Preparations of stem used as eye wash for cleaning inveterate ulcers.
It is reported to be used for the treatment of some human birthing issues.
It is a rich source of aporphine alkaloids.
Componds named Cassyformine , Filiformine , and Lignan were isolated from this plant.
In recent studies two aporphine alkaloids along with 22 known compounds were isolated from this plant.
A compound named “Ocoteine” is isolated from Cassytha was found to be an alpha 1 adrenoceptor blocking agent in rat thoracic aorta .
It is found to be potential applications for inhibiting certain carcinomas such as Prostrate Cancer.
LOCAL NAMES: Greek kasytas , Devils guts, Dodder laurel, Devils twine, False Dodder, cassitha (English),
Moodilla thali (Malayalam),
Amaravalli, Khavalli (Sanskrit),
Amaravel, Aakashbela (Hindi),
Nulu thega (Telugu),
Liane parasite (French),
Foot note: Alkaloid "Laurotetamine" may cause cramp or even death in large doses.
It is a food plant for the larval stages of the Small Dusty Blue Butterfly.
Diffrence between Cassytha filiformis and Cuscutta
Cassytha filiformis belongs to family Lauraceae whereas Cuscuta comes under Convolvulaceae.
The stem colour of Cassytha filiformis is green to orange whereas Cuscuta is seen in pale yellow colour.
The flowers of Cassytha filiformis is spicate inflorescence whereas flowers of cuscuta were seen in globose clusters.
Cassytha filiformis were showing the habit of climbing and spreading whereas Cuscuta mainly spreading across groundcovers.