Hong Teng, or called sargentodoxa cuneata in Latin, is literally translated as red vine in English. It takes its name from the red sap shed after the fresh vine is cut. In TCM another similar herb is the Ji Xue Teng (Millettia), which gets its name the same way. So, what are the main medicinal uses of this herb? Actually it is commonly used in daily life. As you know, there will be times when you fall accidently and end up with pain or swelling on limbs or other parts of the body. That is where the sargentodoxa vine comes in. And next let’s come to understand this herb more.
What is sargentodoxa cuneata?
Actually it refers to the dried stem of Sargentodoxa cuneata (Oliv) Rehd et Wils., a plant in the family of Lardizabalaceae. It is also commonly known as Sargentodoxae Caulis, Sargentodoxa Vine, or Sargent Glory Vine. Medicinally it is usually harvested during autumn and winter. After that, remove the lateral branches, cut into small sections, and dried.
Its plant is a deciduous woody vine, up to 10 meters. Vine Stems are glabrous, 9cm in diameter, and with dark red current-year branches and cracked old barks sometimes. Leaves are ternately compound leaf or simultaneously with single leaf. Racemes are 6 to 12cm long, with male and female flower sequence or heterologous sequence. Berry is nearly spherical, about 1cm in diameter, dark blue when ripe, and with 0.6 to 1.2cm small stalk. Seeds are ovoid, about 5 mm, and with truncate base, black bright smooth seed coat, and obvious hilum. The flowering period is from April to May and fruiting from June to September.
Sargentodoxa cuneata health benefits
Main chemical constituents are tannin, emodin, hpyscion, daucosterol, β-sitosterol, stearic acid, salidroside, and liriodendrin or d-syringaresinol bioglucosides. Next let’s see the explanation for its health benefits from its pharmacological actions.
Modern sargentodoxa vine pharmacology
1. It showed mild inhibition on isolated toad heart, manifested as decreased cardiac contractility, decreased heart rate (P <0.05), and decreased cardiac output (P <0.01); 2. It showed obvious contraction on isolated rabbit aorta; 3. It can resist potassium chloride induced contraction on isolated porcine coronary artery; 4. Its soluble extract can improve the disorder of myocardial lactate metabolism; 5. Its water-soluble extract (100mg/kg), by intravenous injection, can significantly decrease the raised ST segment on experimental myocardial infarction(MI) in rabbits; 6. Its water-soluble extract (100mg/kg) can significantly increase the cAMP of rabbit plasma; 7. Its soluble extracts showed obvious inhibition and depolymerization to ADP-induced platelet aggregation in rabbit in vitro test; 8. Its 25% decoction has extremely sensitive inhibitory effect to Staphylococcus aureus and Group B Streptococcus. And it is also has highly sensitive inhibition on E. coli, Pseudomonas aeruginosa, alpha streptococcus, Branhamella catarrhalis, and staphylococcus albus. 9. Its water extract can significantly inhibit peristalsis velocity in mice; 10. Salidroside has anti-fatigue effect and liriodendrin can inhibit cAMP phosphodiesterase.
Proven caulis sargentodoxae herbal remedies
Chinese Materia Medica says that it is bitter in flavor and neutral and no toxicity in properties. It covers two meridians of liver and large intestine. Major functions are relieving internal heat or fever to heal carbuncle, promoting blood circulation to arrest pain, dispelling wind and eliminating dampness, and killing worms. Chief sargentodoxa cuneata uses and indications are appendicitis, dysentery, breast pain, dysmenorrhea, amenorrhea, bruises, pain in rheumatoid arthritis, and parasitic abdominal pain. Recommended dosage is from 9 to 15 grams in decoction or soaked in wine.
1. For blood deficiency induced amenorrhea. Min Dong Ben Cao (East Fujian Materia Medica) recommends using this herb combining with Yi Mu Cao (Chinese Motherwort), Ye Xia Hong (Emilia sonchifolia), and Xiang Fu (Nut Grass Rhizome).
2. For vaginal bleeding. Hu Nan Yao Wu Zhi (Medicine Record in Hunan) suggests that it can works with Xian He Cao (Agrimony Grass) and Mao Gen (Japanese Blood Grass).
3. For acute and chronic appendicitis and appendicular abscess. Zhe Jiang Min Jian Chang Yong Cao Yao (Zhejiang People Commonly Used Herbs) says that combining it with Zi Hua Di Ding (Yedeon’s Violet) is a good try.
4. For roundworm induced abdominal pain in children. Zhe Jiang Zhong Yi Za Zhi (Zhejiang Journal of Chinese Medicine) uses its root powder alone and 7.5g each time.
Sargentodoxa cuneata side effects and contraindications
To this day, there are no known sargentodoxa cuneata adverse reaction and drug interaction reported. However, from TCM perspective use it with caution during pregnancy.