Botanical Name : Mollugo verticillata
Family :Molluginaceae – Carpet-weed family
Genus: Mollugo L. – carpetweed
Species :Mollugo verticillata L. – green carpetweed
Kingdom : Plantae – Plants
Subkingdom: Tracheobionta – Vascular plants
Superdivision: Spermatophyta – Seed plants
Division : Magnoliophyta – Flowering plants
Class: Magnoliopsida – Dicotyledons
Order : Caryophyllales
Common Name: Carpetweed, Indian Chickweed, Green carpetweed
Habitat :Carpetweed is native to tropical America. In eastern North America it is a common weed growing in disturbed areas. It forms a prostrate circular mat that can quickly climb over nearby plants and obstacles. It grows in sandy river banks, roadsides and cultivated ground. Weedy in fields, gardens, roadsides, moist to dry soils and sand; from sea level to 3000 metres.
Carpetweed is a rapidly spreading annual plant.It is a common weed growing in disturbed areas. It forms a prostrate circular mat that can quickly climb over nearby plants and obstacles.
Carpetweed has narrow, whorled leaves of 3-8 at each node. Leaves are about 1-3 cm in length. The flowers are usually in clusters of 2-5, blooming from July through September. They are white or greenish white with tiny 5-15 mm stalks. Flowers quickly turn into fruit that is egg shaped and 1.5-4 mm in length. The seeds are 0.5 mm long and are orange-red.
Edible Uses: Used as a pot herb
In experiments with mice, Nitric oxide (NO) release was evaluated in mice peritoneal cell cultures treated in vivo using the ethanolic extract of M. verticillata with and without BCG. The plant extract showed immunostimulatory activity when peritoneal cells were stimulated in vitro with BCG antigen only. However, mice peritoneal cells treated with M. verticillata plus BCG showed a drastic reduction in NO production when they received the additional stimulus in vitro with BCG. Ethanolic extracts of M. verticillata could directly increase NO release by peritoneal cells, but suppress the immune response of these cells when treated with BCG antigen and Mycobacterium tuberculosis whole antigen (TB). Preliminary phytochemical tests allowed the detection of quercetin and triterpenoid glycosides in the ethanolic extract of M. verticillata, and those compounds are probably responsible for the effect of this plant material on the immune system.
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