"Kaladana consists of the dried seeds of Ipomoea hederacea, Jacq." Br.
Closely allied to Ipomoea hederacea is I. muricata, the seeds of which are largely imported into Bombay, from Persia, under the name of tukm-i-nil. The juice of this plant is employed to destroy bedbugs, and the seeds are said to be identical in their medicinal properties with those of the official plant.
Ipomoea hederacea Jacq. (I. caerulea Kon.; Pharbites Nil, Choissy) is a twining annual plant belonging to the Convolvulaceae. It has large blue flowers whence the specific name Nil which signifies in Hindustani blue. The leaves are three-lobed and the plant, while common throughout India, is found throughout the tropical regions of both hemispheres. Flückiger found it to contain 8.2 per cent. of resin which corresponded in its various properties to the resin of jalap.
Kaladana seeds are in the form of the segment of a sphere, black, somewhat hairy, weighing from one-half drachm to nearly one drachm.
They are described by the British Pharm., 1914, as follows: "Seeds in the form of a segment of a sphere; usually about five millimetres long, but sometimes much smaller; nearly black. In transverse section, minute dark resin-cells in the plaited cotyledons. Slight odor; taste acrid." Br.
From them is prepared pharbitisin, kaladana resin (Kaladanae Resina, Br.), by digesting the seed with alcohol until exhaustion, and precipitating with distilled water.
Uses.—Kaladana seeds were used by the Arabian physicians, under the name of Habbun-nil, and have been recommended as a safe and active cathartic by various English physicians resident in India. Their action is probably similar to that of jalap.
Dose, thirty to forty-five grains (2-3 Gm.).
The Dispensatory of the United States of America, 1918, was edited by Joseph P. Remington, Horatio C. Wood and others.