The dried bark of the root of Euonymus atropurpu'reus Jacquin.
BOTANICAL CHARACTERISTICS.—Tall, ornamental shrub, 6 to 14 feet high; leaves petiolate, oval-oblong; flowers dark purple, in fours; pods smooth, deeply lobed; seeds inclosed in a red aril. Ornamental in autumn from its copious crimson fruit, drooping in long peduncles.
DESCRIPTION OF DRUG.—In quilled or curved pieces about 2 mm. (1/12 in.) thick. The periderm is of an ash-gray color, covered with blackish patches or ridges, and removable in scales from the whitish or yellowish-brown inner bark; fracture, smooth and short. It contains a hygroscopic tissue, which readily absorbs moisture, thus becoming less brittle; odor distinct; taste sweetish, bitter and somewhat acrid. It is sometimes mixed with branches and pieces of the wood.
Powder.—Light brown. Characteristic elements: Sclerenchyma consisting of long, thin-walled bast fibers; ducts and wood fibers sometimes present; spherical starch grains and rosette-shaped calcium oxalate crystals also present.
CONSTITUENTS.—Its chief constituent of therapeutic value, euonymin, is bitter, amorphous, and precipitated from its solution by phosphomolybdic acid and lead subacetate. This product is not to be confounded with a resinoid of the same name (see below). The bark also contains atropurpurin, asparagin, euonic acid, fixed oil, and albumen.
Preparation of Euonymin.—Add chloroform to a dilute alcoholic tincture and shake; separate chloroformic solution and evaporate; treat residue with ether, then alcohol, and lead acetate; add H2S to precipitate lead; finally evaporate. Soluble in ether, alcohol, and water. The eclectic resinoid, by this name, is a dried precipitate, resulting when concentrated alcoholic tincture is added to water.
ACTION AND USES-A cholagogue cathartic in doses of 0.8 to 30 gr. (0.5 to 2 Gm.); also tonic and laxative.
- Extractum Euonymi (From Fl'ext.), Dose: 1 to 5 gr. (0.065 to 0.3 Gm.).
- Fluidextractum Euonymi, 1/2 to 2 fl.dr. (2 to 8 mils).
A Manual of Organic Materia Medica and Pharmacognosy, 1917, was written by Lucius E. Sayre, B.S. Ph. M.