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Family Vitaceae
Oriental grape
Vitis flexuosa Thunb.
Gelei pu tao

Scientific names Common names
Vitis flexuosa Thunb.            Creeping grape (Engl.)
Vitis flexuosa f. typica Planch.            Creeping grapevine (Engl.)
Accepted infraspecifics (3) Oriental grape (Engl.)
Vitis flexuosa var. flexuosa Himalayan wild grape (Engl.)
Vitis cavaleriei H.Lév. & Vaniot         
Vitis cinerea Noronha             
Vitis flexuosa var. chinensis H.J.Veitch             
Vitis flexuosa var. crassifolia Uyeki             
Vitis flexuosa f. crassifolia (Uyeki) H.Hara             
Vitis flexuosa f. parvifolia (Roxb.) Planch.             
Vitis flexuosa var. parvifolia (Roxb.) Gagnep.             
Vitis flexuosa var. wallichii (DC.) F.S.Wang             
Vitis parvifolia Roxb.            
Vitis purani Buch.-Ham. ex D.Don            
Vitis succisa Hance ex Walp.       
Vitis sylvestris Blume            
Vitis truncata Blume            
Vitis vinifera var. truncata (Blume) Kuntze           
Vitis vitiginea var. truncata (Blume) Kuntze           
Vitis vulpina var. parviflora (Roxb.) Regel           
Vitis wallichii DC.            
Vitis flexuosa var. rufotomentosa Makino  
Vitis flexuosa subsp. rufotomentosa (Makino) Murata      
Vitis gilvotomentosa Makino & F.Maek.            
Vitis rufotomentosa (Makino) Makino      
Vitis flexuosa var. tsukubana Makino  
Vitis tsukubana (Makino) Maek.      
Vitis flexuosa is an accepted species. KEW: Plants of the World Online

Other vernacular names
CHINA: Ge lei pu tao.
HIMALAYA: Jangali angoor.
VIETNAM: Nho cong queo, Nho diu,, Nho dai.

Gen info
- Vitis flexuosa is a species of liana in the grape family.
- The genus has 79 accepted species of vining plants in the flowering plant family Vitaceae.

• Branchlets terete, with longitudinal ridges, with sparse arachnoid tomentum when young, becoming glabrescent; tendrils bifurcate. Leaves simple; stipules caducous; petiole 1.5-7 cm, with sparse arachnoid tomentum or subglabrate; leaf blade ovate, triangular-ovate, oval, or ovate-elliptic, 2.5-12 × 2.3-10 cm, abaxially with sparse arachnoid tomentum when young, eventually glabrescent, basal veins 5, lateral veins 4 or 5 pairs, veinlets inconspicuous, base slightly subcordate or subtruncate, rarely cordate, often asymmetrical, leaves with cordate bases with obtusely angled notch, margin with 5-12 slightly irregular teeth on each side, apex acute or acuminate. Panicle leaf-opposed, loose, 4-12 cm, basal branches well developed, or short and slender; peduncle 2-5 cm, with sparse arachnoid tomentum or nearly glabrescent. Pedicel 1.1-2.5 mm, glabrous. Buds obovoid, 2-3 mm, apex rounded and subtruncate. Calyx glabrous, undulately lobed. Filaments filiform, 0.7-1.3 mm; anthers yellow, oval, 0.4-0.6 mm. Pistil abortive in male flowers; ovary oval; style short. Berry globose, 8-10 mm in diam. Seeds obovoid, apex subrounded, chalazal knot elliptic, raphe slightly raised and surface smooth, ventral holes furrowed upward 1/4 from base. (Flora of China)

• Climber. Stem glabrous, bark peeling. Tendrils 2-furcate, to 13 cm, glabrous. Petioles 0.5–4 cm. Leaves ovate, sometimes 3- lobed, 1.5–7 × 1.5–5 cm, base cordate to truncate, apex acute to acuminate, margin serrate, puberulent on veins above with a tuft of arachnoid hairs at the base of the midrib, glabrous below with tufts of arachnoid hairs near the veins. Inflorescence a panicle of umbellate fascicles, 2–7 cm, not associated with the tendril, peduncle 0.5–5 cm, sparsely hairy with arachnoid hairs, pedicels 1–3 mm. Calyx cupuliform, entire, sinuate, glabrous. Petals 1 mm, glabrous. Filaments filiform, 1–1.5 mm, anthers ellipsoid, 0.75 mm. Disc ring-shaped, 0.5 mm wide, glabrous. Style very short. Fruit globose, 5–7 mm in diameter, glabrous, smooth, base attenuate. Seeds 2–4, obovoid, 4–5 × 3–4 mm, adaxial side with 2 pits at either side of the raphe, abaxial side convex with an elliptic chalazal knot. (Flora of Nepal)

- Native to the Philippines.
- Also native to
Assam, Bangladesh, China, Christmas I., India, Japan, Jawa, Korea, Laos, Nansei-shoto, Nepal, Taiwan, Thailand, Vietnam, West Himalaya. (1)
- In thickets about cliffs and boulders, 1000-1400 m.

- Study of stems of Vitis flexuosa isolated a novel tetrastilbenoid, flexuosol A (1) together with known gnetin A, (+)-epsilon-viniferin, vitisin A, and hopeaphenol. (3)

Study has suggested cytotoxic, antiproliferative, neuroprotective properties.

Parts used
Fruit, leaves, roots.


- Ripe fruits are edible; eaten raw or added to dessert or dried for winter use.
- Young leaves and tendrils are cooked into a delicious Himalayan dish Kachru.
- Sap from vine cuttings from new growth used to make refreshing drinks. (4)
- Fruits used for juice and wine making.
- Fruit considered restorative and tonic. Sap used to restore youth and black hair.
- Juice used for fatigue, hydrodipsia, hiccups.
- Fruits used for cough, hematemesis, dyspepsia, dysentery.
- Leaves used for dysentery, eczema, burns.
- Root or root bark used for hepatitis, arthralgias, anthracia.

- MeoRulp: Korean folk medicine 'MeoRulp', which is used to treatment of cough, rheumatism, and abdominal pain after childbirth is made from the leaves of Vitis flexuosa and Vitis amurensis. (5)

Cytotoxicity / Antiproliferative / Aerial Parts:
Study screened 280 plants extracts from traditional Korean Medicine belonging to 73 plant families and 198 species for cytotoxicity against human CCRF-CEM leukemia cells. Out of 280 extracts, 207 showed no or weak inhibition of cancer cell proliferation (<50%) at test concentration of 10 µg/mL. Thirteen, including Vitis flexuosa aerial parts (29.32%), induced proliferation of less 50% cells (IC50 <10 µg/mL.) (2)
Neuroprotective / Modulation of Neuronal Stem Cell Proliferation / Improvement in Spatial Learning / Grape Skin Extract (GSE): Study focused on  the neuroprotective effect of GSE (Grape skin extract) on human neural SH-SY5Y cells and stem cell properties in murine neurosphere primary cultures. GSE was evaluated for its effect on learning and memory and in vivo neurogenesis in SAMP8 mice, a model for aging related brain dysfunction. The grape skins used in the study were from Japanese grape varieties - a hybrid between Vitis flexuosa and Vitis vinifera 'Merlot' by Shimura Grape Laboratory. Results suggest GSE has an effect on proliferation, protection of neurons from oxidative stress and neuroinflammation associated with aging, and increases learning and memory and brain neurotransmitters. It has potential as a therapeutic agent for treatment and prevention of neurodegenerative diseases related to the ageing process. (6)

- Wild-crafted.
- Cultivated for its edible fruits.

November 2023

                                                 PHOTOS / ILLUSTRATIONS
IMAGE SOURCE: Vitis flexuosa - leaves and fruits / © Jan Richtr / Non-commercial use / image modified / click on image or link to go to source page / biolib.cz
OTHER IMAGE SOURCE: Vitis flexuosa - leaf / © Jingxin Liu / Non-commercial use / image modified / click on image or link to go to source page / Virboga.de
OTHER IMAGE SOURCE: Vitis flexuosa - leaves and fruits / © Xinya & Artemisia / Non-commercial use / image modified / click on image or link to go to source page / Zhiwutong.com

Additional Sources and Suggested Readings
Vitis flexuosa / KEW: Plants of the World Online

Cytotoxicity and Pharmacogenomics of Medicinal Plants from Traditional Korean Medicine
/ Victor Kuete, Ean-Jeong Seo, Benjamin Krusche, Mira Oswald, Thomas Efferth et al / Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine, Volume 2013; Article ID 341724 / DOI: 10.1155/2013/341724
Flexuosol A, a New Tetrastilbene from Vitis flexuosa / Wen-wu Li, Bo-gang Li, Yao-zu Chen / J Nat Prod., 1998; 61(5): pp 646-647 / DOI: 10.1021/np970457v
Vitis flexuosa / Himalayan Wild Food Plants
Pharmacognostical Studies on the Folk Medicine 'MeoRuIp' / Jong-Hee Park, Ji-Yung Bae, Seong-Ryong Kim / Korean Journal of Pharmacognosy, 2009; 40(3): pp 165-172 / pISSN: 0253-3073 / eISSN: 2288-9299
Grape skin extract modulates neuronal stem cell proliferation and improves spatial learning in senescence-accelerated prone 8 mice / Kazunori Sasaki, Noelia Geribaldi-Dolda, Francis G Szele, Hiroko Isoda / Aging, 2021; 13(14): pp 18131-18149 / DOI: 10.18632/aging.203373

DOI: It is not uncommon for links on studies/sources to change. Copying and pasting the information on the search window or using the DOI (if available) will often redirect to the new link page. (Citing and Using a (DOI) Digital Object Identifier)

                                                            List of Understudied Philippine Medicinal Plants
                                          New plant names needed
The compilation now numbers over 1,300 medicinal plants. While I believe there are hundreds more that can be added to the collection, they are becoming more difficult to find. If you have a medicinal plant to suggest for inclusion, native or introduced, please email the info: local plant name (if known), any known folkloric medicinal use, scientific name (most helpful), and, if possible, a photo. Your help will be greatly appreciated.

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