Monographs Details: Strychnos melinoniana Baill.
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 - Surinam: Lanjouw & Lindeman 2621. Brazil: Territory of Amapa: basin of Rio Oiapoque, Froes 25789 (US).This is the first record of the species from the Territory of Amapa.Distribution: Known only from the three Guianas and Amazonian Brazil. In Brazil it has been collected in the State of Para (basin of the middle Rio Tocantins) and on the authority of Ducke on a plateau between the rivers Xingu and Tapajos where it is rather common (33: 80); also in the Territory of Amapa.
Discussion:Ducke in his paper (31: 37) states: “S. Melinoniana . até há pouco tempo era so conhecido nas très Guianas e parte adjacente do Brasil (Território do Rio Branco: Rio Cotingo, segundo Sandwith).” In his letter, to me of Nov. 4, 1963, N. Y. Sandwith wrote: “Ducke’s citation of Rio Cotingo under S. pedunculata, following my identification, is his way of transferring to Brazil (perhaps rightly: look at the map) Schomburgk’s B.G. locality cited by me as ‘Cotinga River, W. of Pirara’ (see Kew Bull. 1933, p. 397). However, in doing the same thing for S. Melinoniana, he seems to have slipped up: I never cited Schomburgk’s specimen from the Cotinga River under S. Melinoniana, either in Hook. Ic. Pl. or Kew Bull., and there is no such specimen in the Kew Herbarium.” This statement requires no comments.
For information on the position of this species in Ducke’s key made on the basis of fruit characters, see under S. rondeletioides.
The collector states on the label “Warrow's ourali” (Jenman 5198 (1: 305).
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: White devildoer; kwabanaro (Arawak); kumarawa (Akawaio, Arekuna, Patamona, Macushi).
“A grey canopy climber, to 6 inches in diameter; bark creamy, or grey, rough.
“It occurs occasionally in mora or rain-forest, usually on mora trees on low-lying loam or clay soils in the North Central district and the Arakari mountains.
“It contains an alkaloid without any curare-like action.”
As per King, the alkaloid content of this species was found to be “+ +” (74). In another paper by the same author (75), the alkaloid content is given as “ + ,” curare action, “none.” All this work was done on For. Dept. 2260, 2279, 2286 and 2303 (from British Guiana). The first collection is cited in (4: 347) whereas the third collection in (5: 13). The other two specimens were determined by N. Y. Sandwith (his letter to me of Nov. 4, 1963). It is not known what part of the plant was used for this work, presumably stem bark.
This species was studied also chemically and pharmacologically by Sehlittler and Hold (84). Two quaternary alkaloids were isolated (melinonine A and B) which do not possess any curare action. The above referred to work was done on the material (? stem bark) collected in Surinam.
A few years later Karrer, Schmid and their coworkers isolated various other alkaloids from this species (C-fluorocurine, C-mavacurine, melinonine E, F, G, H, I, K, L, and M) (90).
All of the alkaloids from this species were isolated and not only demonstrated by paper chromatography. As per Karrer & Schmid (93: 441) melinonine A = N-metho-pytetrahydro-alstonine; melinonine F = Harman-N(b)-methosalt and melinonine G = flavo-pereirine.
Distribution:Suriname South America
| Brazil South America