Citrus sinensis

scientific name: 
Citrus sinensis (L.) Osbeck
synonym: 
Citrus aurantium var. sinensis L.
Botanical family: 

Botanical description

Tree 6 -12 m tall with spines. Leaves ovate or oval-elliptic 5-15 cm x 2-8 cm, glabrous dark green above, margins serrate, petiole narrowly winged and articulate; flowers axillary, born single or in small racemes, 2-3cm in diameter, white, aromatic; fruit subglobose or oval, 4-12 cm in diameter, peel thick, ripening orange colour but often remaining green in the tropics, pulp sweet and juicy, seeds nil to many obovoid.

Voucher(s)

Veloz,3010,JBSD

twist:

  fruit, juice, applied in cataplasm1-2

fever:

  peel or leaf, decoction or infusion, orally1-2

sprain:

  fruit, juice, applied in cataplasm1-2

conjunctivitis:

  fruit, juice, instillation1-2

diarrhoea:

  fruit, juice, orally1-2

flu:

  fruit, juice, orally1-2

cough:

  fruit, juice, orally1-2

headhache:

  leaf, decoction or infusion, orally1-2

flu:

  leaf, decoction or infusion, orally1-2

The fruit and the juice of Citrus sinensis are widely used for human consumption and are an industrial source of essential oil.

For headache, flu and fever:

Prepare decoction or infusion with 5-20 grams of leaf in 1 liter (4 cups) of water.  For decoction, boil for at least 10 minutes in a covered pot.  For infusion, add boiling water to the 5-20 grams of leaf, cover pot and cool down.  Drink 2-3 cups a day36.

For conjunctivitis:

Instill (apply) in the eye 2-3 drops of fresh juice of fruit, 3 times a day.

For diarrhea, flu, cough, sprain, twist and fever:

There is no available information establishing a means of preparation and dosage other than that referred to by traditional use.

According to available information:

Use for conjunctivitis, diarrhea, flu, cough, headache, sprains, strain and fever is classified as REC, based on the significant traditional use (OMS/WHO)4 documented in the TRAMIL surveys.

In any application to the eye, strict hygiene measures should be observed in order to avoid contamination or additional infection, and contact with any substance that may be irritating for the conjunctiva should be avoided.  There exists the risk or increasing irritation with the application of Citrus spp juice.

For diarrhea, the use of this resource can be considered complementary to oral re-hydration therapy.  Should there be a notable worsening of the patient’s condition, or should diarrhea last more than 3 days in adult or 2 days in children, seek medical attention.

Should there be a notable worsening of the patient’s condition, or should conjunctivitis or headache last more than 3 days, or should fever persist for more than 2 days, seek medical attention.

The essential oil of the plant can cause reactions of hypersensitivity.

TRAMIL Research37(will be translated in 3rd Edition)

La hoja fresca (liofilizada), vía oral (5000 mg/kg/día) a 10 ratones Hsd:ICR (CD-1) de 19.33 ± 1.99 g (5 machos y 5 hembras) durante 5 días con 15 días adicionales de observación, no presentó mortalidad, según el protocolo EPA.OPPTS 870.3100. El control se realizó con agua (0.4 mL/20 g de ratón) a otros 10 ratones de la misma cepa y características. Durante el ensayo ni en el periodo de observación posterior se presentó mortalidad, ni se evidenció ningún signo de toxicidad (Test Polidimensional de Irwing). No se observaron cambios en los pesos corporales más que los normales en la curva de crecimiento. La autopsia macroscópica no evidenció alteraciones en los órganos.

TRAMIL Research39(will be translated in 3rd Edition)

El jugo fresco puro del fruto, se administró en forma tópica (100 μL), en el saco conjuntival del ojo derecho, el ojo izquierdo control recibió 100 μL de agua destilada, en el modelo de irritación ocular, se observó por 72 horas sin revelar ninguna alteración ni irritación durante este período.

The fruit juice (29.5 mL/day) administered to rats inhibited the induction of colon cancer by azoxymethane31.

The fresh fruit juice (0.1 mL/plate) showed antimutagenic activity in vitro in the test for mutagenesis induced by sodium azide or 4-nitro-O-phenylenediamine in Salmonella typhimurium TA97 and TA10032.

The tincture of the green fruit peel (50 g of drug in 100 mL of ethanol 30%) demonstrated cytotoxic and genotoxic activity in vitro in Aspergillus nidulans (D30, FGSC, A593 y A594)33-34.

The tincture of the green fruit peel (50 g of drug in 100 mL of ethanol 30%) administered orally to male and female rats (2 g/kg) did not show evident signs of acute toxicity, mortality or morphological or histological injuries in the organs studied (liver, heart, kidney, stomach, small intestine, large intestine and lung).  The sub-chronic toxicity study (0.5, 1 and 2 g/kg/day) based on oral administration to male and female rats for 90 days indicated a decrease in body weight and in food intake, in the group treated with 1 and 2 g/kg, after the first month of treatment, and cycles of alternating irritability and depression in the group treated with 2 g/kg.  Hemoglobin, hematocrit, differential leukogram, glycemia, TGO, TGP and alkaline phosphatase did not vary.  No morphological or histological alterations were reported in the organs studied (liver, heart, kidney, stomach, small intestine, large intestine, lung, hypophysis, testicle and ovary).  Oral administration to mice (0.5, 1 y 2 g/kg/day) in the bone marrow micronucleus did not report significant genotoxic activity, although a rising trend was observed in micronucleus PCE in association with the dose34.

The essential oil in contact with the skin may cause hypersensitivity if the skin is exposed to the sun35.

There is no available information documenting the safety of medicinal use in children or in women during pregnancy or while breast feeding.

The leaf has been extensively studied and contains, among other components, alkaloids: caffeine4; terpenes: limonene5, b-amyrin; coumarins: herniarin, scopoletin6; flavonoids: rutin7, essential oils: linalool, sabinene8.

The fruit juice has been extensively studied and contains, among other components, vitamin C9; aliphatic compounds: ethyl butyrate, 3-methyl-butan-1-ol10; phenylpropanoids: caffeic, ferulic, p-coumaric11 and chlorogenic acids; flavonoids: naringin, quercetin, naringenin12, heptamethoxy flavone13, hesperidin, didymin14, neoeriocitrin15; carotenoids16.

TRAMIL Research37(will be translated in 3rd Edition)

La hoja fresca (liofilizada), vía oral (5000 mg/kg/día) a 10 ratones Hsd:ICR (CD-1) de 19.33 ± 1.99 g (5 machos y 5 hembras) durante 5 días con 15 días adicionales de observación, no presentó mortalidad, según el protocolo EPA.OPPTS 870.3100. El control se realizó con agua (0.4 mL/20 g de ratón) a otros 10 ratones de la misma cepa y características. Durante el ensayo ni en el periodo de observación posterior se presentó mortalidad, ni se evidenció ningún signo de toxicidad (Test Polidimensional de Irwing). No se observaron cambios en los pesos corporales más que los normales en la curva de crecimiento. La autopsia macroscópica no evidenció alteraciones en los órganos.

The fruit extract (IC = 0.186 mg/mL) inhibited cyclooxygenase in vitro in the rat platelet model17.

The fresh juice of the fruit showed antioxidant activity in vitro against the free radicals of 2,2'-azino-bis-(3-ethylbenzothiazolin-6-) sulfonic acid18, as well as antiviral activity in vitro against Poliovirus I in cell culture19.

The aqueous extract from the dried pericarp (IC50 = 10.3 µg/mL) showed antibacterial activity in vitro against Salmonella typhi on an agar plate20.

The fresh juice of the fruit (5 g/kg) administered orally to male rats significantly increased ACTH (adrenocorticotropic hormone) levels and showed agonist activity in aldosterone21.

The fresh juice of the lyophilized fruit (5 g/kg) administered orally to Wistar rat on a hyperpurinic diet reported uricosuric activity, diminished the concentration of uric acid in the blood, by an increase of hepatorenal elimination, and induced urinary excretion, with no changes in diuresis.  Urine acidity (pH) was not altered with regard to controls18.

The fresh juice of the fruit (5 g/kg/day) administered to male rats with induced hypercholesterolemia showed anti-hypercholesterolemic activity.  It reduced cholesterol levels by 35%, LDL by 46% and triglycerides by 33%, while increasing the concentration of HDL22.

The undiluted fresh juice of the fruit administered in drinking water to male rabbits with casein-induced hypercholesterolemia showed anti-hypercholesterolemic activity23.

The dried pericarp administered orally to rabbits showed anti-hepatotoxic and anti-hypercholesterolemic activity24.

The unripe fruit is claimed to have an anti-hyperglycemic effect, to induce glucagon synthesis and insulin secretion, and to have hypolipidemic effect.  It is described as an hypocholesterolemic but not as an hypotriglyceridemic25.

In a comparative study of the fruit juice of Citrus sinensis, Citrus paradisi and mineral water (350 mL/person) with itraconazole (100 mg single dose), administered orally to healthy adults, C. sinensis was found to reduce the mean life time of antifungal elimination by 56%, and the area below the curve by 41%26.

The essential oil of the various Citrus spp is claimed to have sedative and hypnotic properties27, as well as insect repellent activity28.

Citrus flavonoids have been described as increasing capillary resistance.  Pectin is believed to have local hemostatic activity with favorable effects on the digestive tract29.

Vitamin C has been described as having antiinfectious29 and antiscorbutic properties; it is an enzymatic cofactor, it is involved in the synthesis of collagen and carnitine, the transformation of folic acid into folinic acid, the microsomic metabolism of drugs, the synthesis of noradrenaline and peptidic hormones, the reduction of ferric to ferrous iron at gastric level, and the formation of suprarenal hormones30.

References:  

1 WENIGER B, ROUZIER M, 1986 Enquête TRAMIL. Service Oecuménique d'Entraide SOE, Port au Prince, Haïti.

2 WENIGER B, 1987-88 Encuesta TRAMIL. enda-caribe, Santo Domingo, Rep. Dominicana.

3 WHO, 1991 Pautas para la evaluación de medicamentos herbarios WHO/TRM/91.4 (original inglés). Programa de Medicina Tradicional, OMS, Ginebra, Suiza.

4 STEWART I, 1985 Identification of caffeine in Citrus flowers and leaves. J Agric Food Chem 33(6):1163-1165.

5 NICO KJ, CHANDLER BV, 1978 Roots as a probable site for Citrus limonoid biosynthesis. Proc Int Soc Citric. p40-42.

6 ABDEL-ALIM MA, ABDEL-HAFEZ OM, EL-KHRISY AM, 1990 The constituents of Citrus sinensis leaves. Fitoterapia 61(5):470-471.

7 SHAFT N, IKRAM M, 1982 Quantitative survey of rutin-containing plants. Part 1. Int J Crude Drug Res 20(4):183-186.

8 EKUNDAYO O, BAKARE O, ADESOMOIU A, STAHL-BISKUP E, 1990 Nigerian sweet orange leaf oil composition. J Essent Oil Res 2(5):199-201.

9 GUANGHAN L, YU W, LEIMING Y, SHUANGLONG H, 1994 Determination of ascorbic acid in fruits and vegetables by stripping voltammetry on a glassy carbon electrode. Food Chem 51:237-239.

10 RADFORD T, KAWASHIMA K, FRIEDEL PK, POPE LE, GIANTURCO MA, 1975 Distribution of volatile compounds between the pulp and serum of some fruit juices. J Agric Food Chem 22(6):1066.

11 ROUSEFF RL, SEETHARAMAN K, NAIM M, NAGY S, ZEHAVI U, 1992 Improved HPLC determination of hydroxycinnamic acids in orange juice using solvents containing thf. J Agric Food Chem 40(7):1139-1143.

12 SWATSITANG P, TUCKER G, ROBARDS K, JARDINE D, 2000 Isolation and identification of phenolic compounds in Citrus sinensis. Anal Chim Acta 417(2):231-240.

13 OOGHE WC, OOGHE SJ, DETAVERNIER M, HUYGHEBAERT A, 1995 Characterization of orange juice (Citrus sinensis) by polymethoxylated flavones. J Agric Food Chem 42(10):2191-2195.

14 OOGHE WC, DETAVERNIER CM, 1999 Flavonoids as authenticity markers for Citrus sinensis juice. Fruit Process 9(8):308-313.

15 WIDMER WW, 2000 Determination of naringin and neohesperidin in orange juice by liquid chromatography with UV detection to detect the presence grapefruit juice: collaborative study. J Assoc Offic Anal Chem Int 83(5):1155-1165.

16 GROSS J, CARMON M, LIFSHITZ A, SKLARZ B, 1975 Structural elucidation of some orange juice carotenoids. Phytochemistry 14:249-252.

17 NOGATA Y, YOZA KI, KUSUMOTO KI, KOHYAMA N, SEKIYA K, OHTA H, 1996 Screening for inhibitory activity of Citrus fruit extracts against platelet cyclooxygenase and lipoxygenase. J Agric Food Chem 44(3):725-729.

18 TROVATO A, FORESTIERI A, GALATI EM, TUMINO G, 1988 Effects of the juice of certain species of Citrus on plasma and urinary uric acid levels in rats on a hyperpurinic diet. Plant Med Phytother 22(2):92-97.

19 KONOWALCHUK J, SPEIRS JI, 1978 Antiviral effect of commercial juices and beverages. Appl Environ Microbiol 35(6):1219-1220.

20 PEREZ C, ANESINI C, 1994 In vitro antibacterial activity of Argentine folk medicinal plants against Salmonella typhi. J Ethnopharmacol 44(1):41-46.

21 TROVATO A, FORESTIERI AM, GALATI EM, TUMINO G, 1984 Influence of the fruit juice of several Citrus species on steroidogenesis in the rat. Plant Med Phytother 18(1):8-14.

22 TROVATO A, MONFORTE MT, BARBERA R, ROSSITTO A, GALATI EM,

FORESTIERI AM, 1996 Effects of fruit juices of Citrus sinensis L. and Citrus limon L. on experimental hypercholesterolemia in the rat. Phytomedicine 2(3):221-227.

23 KUROWSKA EM, BORRADAILE NM, SPENCE JD, CARROLL KK, 2000 Hypocholesterolemic effects of dietary Citrus juices in rabbits. Nutr Res 29(1):121-129.

24 HONG ND, KIM JW, KIM BW, SHON JG, 1982 Studies on the efficacy of the combined preparation of crude drugs. VI. Effect of “Saengkankunbi-Tang” on activities of the liver enzyme, protein contents and the excretory on bile juice in the serum of CCl4-intoxicated rabbits. Korean J Pharmacog 13:33-38.

25 GOTO M, INOUE H, SEYAMA Y, YAMASHITA S, INOUE O, YUMIOKA E., 1989 Comparative effect of traditional Chinese medicines (Dai-Saiko To, Hatimi-Ziogan and Byakko-Ka-Ninzin-To) on experimental diabetes and hyperlipidemia. Nippon Yakugaku Zasshi 93(3):179-186.

26 KAWAKAMI M, SUZUKI K, ISHIZUKA T, HIDAKA T, MATSUKI Y, NAKAMURA H, 1998 Effect of grapefruit juice on pharmacokinetics of itraconazole in healthy subjects. Int J Clin Pharmacol Ther 36(6):306-308.

27 ADESINA SK, 1982 Studies on some plants used as anticonvulsants in Amerindian and African traditional medicine. Fitoterapia 53:147-162.

28 GUPTA M, 1987 Essential oil: a new source of bee repellents. Chem Ind (London) 5:161-163.

29 BEZANGER-BEAUQUESNE L, PINKAS M, TORCK M, 1986 Les plantes dans la thérapeutique moderne. 2 éd. Paris, France: Ed. Maloine.

30 HARTMAN JG, LIMBIRD ILE, Eds., 1996 Goodman & Gilman, Las bases farmacológicas de la Terapéutica, 9ª edición. México, México: McGraw-Hill Editores. p1670-1671.

31 MIYAGI Y, OM AS, CHEE KM, BENNINK MR, 2000 Inhibition of azoxymethane-induced colon cancer by orange juice. Nutr Cancer 36(2):224-229.

32 BALA S, GROVER IS, 1989 Antimutagenicity of some Citrus fruits in Salmonella typhimurium. Mutat Res 222(3):141-148.

33 PORTAL JA, RAMOS A, VIZOSO A, BETANCOURT J, 1995 Estudio genotóxico in vitro de una tintura al 50 % de Citrus sinensis (L.) Osbeck. Medi Ciego 1(1):3-6.

34 PORTAL JA, 1995 Evaluación genotóxica in vitro e in vivo de una tintura al 50% de Citrus sinensis (L.) Osbeck (Tesis de Maestría). Universidad Médica de La Habana, La Habana, Cuba.

35 PELLECUER J, 1995 Aromaterapia y toxicidad de los aceites esenciales. Natura Medicatrix 37(8):36-40.

36 CANIGUERAL S, VILA R, RISCO E, PEREZ F, PORTILLO A, FREIXA B, MILO B, VANACLOCHA B, RIOS JL, MORALES MA, ALONSO JR, BACHILLER LI, PERIS JB, STUBING G, 2002 Citrus sinensis. Vademecum de Fitoterapia, Editorial Masson, Barcelona, España, Jul.20,2002. URL: http://www.masson.es/book/fitoterapia.html

37 PAZOS L, COTO T, CAIZA F, 2008

Toxicidad oral aguda, dosis repetida, en ratón, de hojas frescas de Citrus sinensis. Informe TRAMIL. Laboratorio de Ensayos Biológicos, LEBi, Universidad de Costa Rica, San Pedro, Costa Rica.

38 PAZOS L, COTO T, REYES L, 2007 Tránsito Intestinal en ratones, del jugo fresco del fruto de Citrus sinensis. Informe TRAMIL. Laboratorio de Ensayos Biológicos, LEBi, Universidad de Costa Rica, San Pedro, Costa Rica.

39 PAZOS L, COTO T, REYES L, 2007 Irritación ocular, en conejos, del jugo fresco del fruto de Citrus sinensis. Informe TRAMIL. Laboratorio de Ensayos Biológicos, LEBi, Universidad de Costa Rica, San Pedro, Costa Rica.

 

DISCLAIMER

The information provided is for educational purposes only for the benefit of the general public and health professionals. It is not intended to take the place of either the written law or regulations. Since some parts of plants could be toxic, might induce side effects, or might have interactions with certain drugs, anyone intending to use them or their products must first consult with a physician or another qualified health care professional. TRAMIL has no responsibility whatsoever towards the user for any decision, action or omission made in relation to the information contained in this Pharmacopoeia.