Gum Sterculia. Sterculia Gum. Indian Gum Tragacanth. Indian Gum.—A number of trees belonging to the genus Sterculia in India, particularly Sterculia urens and Cochlospermum gossypium, Africa, and Australia yield gums in considerable quantity, most of which resemble in their appearance tragacanth, some of which have remarkable adhesive properties and in some of which the adhesive power is lacking but the swelling power when moistened with water is enormous. These gums have been much used of recent years, frequently under the unqualified name of tragacanth. They are employed frequently as a filler in the manufacture of ice cream and even desserts where vegetable gums are found to be of service in preventing the product from losing its form as it melts. The difference between the sterculia gums and true tragacanth can be readily proved by a distillation test with water and the determination of the acidity which is due to acetic acid. (See P. J., Nov., 1889; A. J. P., Jan., 1900; 1912, pp. 155 and 393; Drug. Circ., 1909, p. 116.)
The Dispensatory of the United States of America, 1918, was edited by Joseph P. Remington, Horatio C. Wood and others.