Monographs Details: Strychnos cogens Benth.
Authority: Krukoff, Boris A. 1965. Supplementary notes on the American species of Strychnos VII. Mem. New York Bot. Gard. 12: 1-94.
Description:Distribution and Ecology - Brazil: Amazonas, basin of Rio Amazonas (Parintins), Pires 1279; basin of the lower Rio Negro (near Manaos), Ducke 1986, 2120; basin of Rio Jandiatuba, Froes 23900.Distribution: Known from Venezuela (Bolivar and Amazonas), British Guiana and Brazil. In Brazil it has been collected in the Territory of Rio Branco and in the State of Amazonas (Parintins, basins of the upper and lower Rio Negro and of Rio Solimoes, including basins of its tributaries, Rio Tonantins, Rio Jandiatuba, and Igarape Belem). Doubtless occurs also in adjacent Colombia and Peru. Sterile specimen with young leaves (Schultes & Black 8525 from Colombia, Amazonas, Loretoyacu River, alt. about 100 m) was identified by us with doubts as of this species.
Discussion:Corollas were not seen by us in 1942 and Ducke recently described them on the basis of Ducke 2150 from Parintins, Amazonas, Brazil (33:79). As per Ducke, corolla “pulverulento-tomentelo” without; corolla-tube 6-7 mm long, glabrous at base, “lenhoso” at the middle; corolla-lobes 3-4 mm long, subglabrous; anthers included, 1 mm long, filaments 1 mm long; ovary pilose; style pilose at the basal part.
For information on the position of this species in Ducke’s key made on the basis of fruit characters, see under S. rondeletioides.
According to the Schomburgk brothers, the species provides, under the name “Arimaru,” an ingredient of curare of the Macusi Indians in British Guiana (1: 304). It is also reported to be used in preparation of curare in the basin of Rio Cuchivero, Bolivar, Venezuela (L. Williams 13378) (2: 23).
Fanshawe (34: 67) gives the following information on the local names, on the field characters of this bush-rope, on its distribution in British Guiana and on its alkaloids, probably on the authority of Dr. King:
“Local names: Devildoer; kwabanara (Arawak) ; kumarawa (Akawayo, Are-kuna, Pat amona, Macushi).
“A canopy climber, to 4 inches in diameter.
“It occurs rarely by ponds in the Rupununi savannas and in seasonal forest on the foothills of the Kanuku Mountains.
“It contains alkaloids with a curare-like action, i.e., paralyzing the peripheral nerves. It is used by the Macushi Indians in the preparation of a blowpipe poison called kumarawa, which is distinct from and inferior to the curare poison.”
This species was studied by Marini-Bettolo, Bovet and their coworkers. For the alkaloid content, toxicity and curare activity of the total extracts see (95: 1142-1144). In another paper the same authors state: “alcaloides seulement en traces” (108: 269). The above referred to work was done on stem bark collected by Ducke on Rio Taruma, near Manaos, Amazonas, Brazil in May 1953 (95: 1145; 108: 269).
Distribution:Venezuela South America
| Guyana South America
| Brazil South America
| Colombia South America
| Peru South America