- Approximately 80 species of the genus Cecropia have been described. (2)
- Species was first described by Carl Linnaeus in the 1759 edition of Systema Naturae. (4)
- Genus is named after Cecrops I, the mythical first king of Athens.
Trumpet tree is a rapidly growing neotropical tree usually reaching a height of 15 meters, with a conspicuous spreading crown. Bole is usually 10 to 30 centimeters in diameter, occasionally 50 centimeters. Leaves are large, peltate, 10 to 50 centimeters in length and width, palmately divided in 8-10 lobes,with silver white lower surfaces. Petioles are 20 to 50 centimeters. Branches are green and covered with short, still hairs. Male flowers are 1 to 1.5 millimeters long, borne in spikes 10 to 60 centimeters long. Female flowers are borne in paired spikes 3 to 5 centimeters long. Fruit is an achene, about 2 millimeters long, enclosed in a fleshy jacket which forms from the perianth. (2) (4)
- Native throughout the Greater and Lesser Antiles and in Central America fro Yucatan, Mexico to Costa Rica. In South America, reported from Venezuela, Colombia, Brazil and the Guianas. (2)
- An early invader of forested areas
- Listed as one of the world's 100 worst invasive alien species.
- Chlorogenic acid and flavone C-glycosides (such as orientin, isoorientin, vitexin, isovitexin) have been consistently reported as the main compounds in C. obtusifolia, C. peltata, C. glaziovii, C. pachystachya and C. hololeuca. (6)
- In a comparative study of four Cecropia species, C. peltata (P1-P4) was found to be different from the other samples due to the high level of vitexin (16), isovitexin 2″-O-rhamnoside (19), isovitexin (21), O-methyl luteolin derivatives such as diosmetin-C-hexoside-O-deoxyhexoside (24) and diosmetin-C-hexoside (25), and malonylated C-glycosides [luteolin-O-malonyl-C-hexoside (26), apigenin-O-malonyl-C-hexoside (31), apigenin-O-deoxyhexoside-O-malonyl-C-hexoside (32), apigenin-O-malonyl-C-hexoside (34). (6)
- Study has shown the plant contains chlorogenic acid, an inhibitor of glucose-6-phosphate translocase. (7)
- A preliminary phytochemical study of leaves yielded a glycosidal material from the alcohol and aqueous extracts. No sterols or alkaloids were found.
- Studies have suggested wound healing properties, hypoglycemic, antimicrobial properties.
Roots, leaves, bark. .
- Fruit has a sweet, jelly-like flesh; eaten raw or dried as a snack.
- Flesh from fruit made into marmalade or jam.
- Young buds occasionally used as a pot herb.
- No reported medicinal use in the Philippines
- Roots used for wound healing. Leaves used as poultice to reduce swelling and as an abrasive. (2)
- Decoction of dried leaves used for back pain. Infusion of leaves used vaginally after childbirth Poultice of young shoots used as dressing for ulcers, abscesses, wounds, cuts and bush sores.
Dried leaves smoked to alleviate asthma. (4)
- Juice of leaves used as caustic to remove warts.
- Bark decoctions used to treat dysentery.
- In Latin American folk medicine, used for treatment of diabetes and hypertension.
- Ethanol extract has been used as antibilious, cardiotonic and diuretic. Leaves used to treat blenorrhea and warts
- Fiber: Inner bark of young branches yield a tough fiver, used for making sack, rope, cordage.
- Latex: Trunk yields a latex used to make crude rubber. (4)
- Sandpaper: Rough-textured leaves used as sandpaper, hence the name "sandpaper" plant. (4)
- Wood: Wood is light and soft, tough and strong for its weight. Used for making boxes, crates, paper pulp and matches. May be a substitute for balsa wood. (4)
- Crafts: The hollow stems and branches used by Mayans for blowguns and trumpets, hence the name "trumpet tree"; also used for irrigation.
• Wound Healing Potential / Leaves: Study evaluated aqueous and ethanol extracts of leaves for wound healing effects on topical and oral administration in excision wound model in rats. Carboxymethyl cellulose (1%) was used as control. Tissue contents of protein, hydroxyproline and hexosamine were determined. Results showed statistically significant (p<0.001) reduction of wound areas along with biochemistry and tissue histology outcomes consistent with changes in the treatment group. (3)
• Potential Source of Starch and Soluble Glycogen: The branched glucans glycogen and starch are the most widespread storage carbohydrates in living organisms. The factors determining the formation of glycogen or starch in plants is not fully understood. Cecropia peltata is a rare example of an organism able to make either polymer type. Study provides an overview of carbohydrate biosynthesis in a nonmodel species to uncover the molecular determinants of polyglucan structure. (5)
• Gluconeogenesis Inhibition / Antidiabetic: Previous study assessed the hypoglycemic effect in animal models and T2DM and yielded chlorogenic acid, an inhibitor of glucose-6-phosphate translocase. This study evaluated the hypoglycemic mechanism of the Ceropia peltata and C. obtusifolia. HPLC-DAD confirmed the presence of chlorogenic acid isoorientin. Gl-6-P activity was assayed in vitro with intact rat liver microsomes. Diabetic rats treated with the extracts showed a lower glucose curve. The extracts reduced the increase in blood glucose level, and inhibited glu-6-P activity with IC50s of 146 µg/ml and 150 µg/ml for aqueous and butanolic extract of C. peltata, respectively. Results showed improvement in glycemic control by blocking of hepatic glucose output, especially in the fasting state. (7)
• Hypoglycemic / Chlorogenic Acid and Isoorientin: Study evaluated the hypoglycemic effect of Cecropia. peltata aqueous and butanolic extracts in N5-STZ diabetic rats. A hypoglycemic effect was noted at 200 mg/kbw after 180 minutes. The hypoglycemic effect was attributed to chlorogenic acid and isoorientin. (8)