Cornutia pyramidata

scientific name: 
Cornutia pyramidata L.
Botanical family: 

Botanical description

Tree or shrub, at least 5 m in height, branches erect, square.  Leaves single, opposite, pubescent, ovate to elliptic, 6 to 20 cm in length, margin entire.  Panicles pyramidal, terminal, 10 to 40 cm in length; flowers blue or purple, numerous, 10 to 12 cm in length.  Drupe bluish to black, spherical, 3 to 6 mm in diameter.



nervous breakdown:

  root, decoction, orally1

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

According to published and other information:

Use for nervous breakdown is classified as REC, based on the significant traditional use documented in the TRAMIL surveys, toxicity studies, scientific validation and available published scientific information.

Not for use concurrently with alcoholic beverages or drugs that are depressants of the central nervous system.

Not for use during pregnancy, during lactation or by children under 5 years old.

Should there be a notable worsening of the patient’s condition, or should the nervous breakdown last more than 5 days, seek medical attention.

Not for use for more than seven consecutive days.

TRAMIL Research4

The aqueous extract from the root (decoction) administered orally to mice reached an LD50 higher than 25 g/kg of dried root; by intraperitoneal administration, LD50 = 13.7 ± 0.2 g/kg.

The aqueous extract from the root (6.25, 12.50 and 18.75 g/kg), administered orally to mice for 30 and 60 days, did not show signs of subchronic toxicity.

There is no available information documenting the safety of medicinal use in children or in pregnant or lactating women.

TRAMIL Research2

The preliminary phytochemical screening (stem and leaves) did not indicate the presence of alkaloids.

The leaf contains diterpenes: cornutines C-L3.

TRAMIL Research4

The aqueous extract (decoction) from the root administered orally to albino mice (5 females, 5 males) of similar weight, in a logarithmic series of up to 25 g/kg dosage, caused overall depressant effects, particularly in the areas of consciousness, motor activity, motor coordination, muscular tone and, to a lesser degree, in reflexes and the autonomous nervous system.  Depression lasted 24 hours and caused marked hypothermia.




1 CHARLES C, 1988 TRAMIL survey. Movement for Cultural Awareness MCA, Roseau, Dominica.

2 PINEDA M, 1990 Fitoquímica de algunas plantas TRAMIL. Laboratorio de enda-caribe, Santo Domingo, Rep. Dominicana.

3 JENETT-SIEMS K, KÖHLER I, KRAFT C, SIEMS K, SOLIS PN, GUPTA MP, BIENZLE U, 2003 Cornutins C–L, neo-clerodane-type diterpenoids from Cornutia grandifolia var. intermedia. Phytochemistry 64(3):797–804.

4 HERRERA J, 1990 Determinación de actividades biológicas de vegetales utilizados en medicina tradicional. Informe TRAMIL. Dep. de Farmacología, Facultad de Salud, Universidad del Valle, Cali, Colombia.



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.