HOME      •      SEARCH      •      EMAIL    •     ABOUT

Family Solanaceae
Solanum mammosum Linn.

Wu jiao qie

Scientific names Common names
Solanum corniculatum C.Huber Tagotong (S. L. Bis.)
Solanum cornigerum André Talong susu (Tag.)
Solanum globiferum Dunal Utong (Tag.)
Solanum mammosum Linn. Apple of Sodom (Engl.)
Solanum mammosum var. corniculatum Ridl. Breast berry (Engl.)
Solanum mamosissimum Ram.Goyena Cow's udder (Engl.)
Solanum platanifolium Sims Five-fingered eggplant (Engl.)
Solanum villosissimum Zuccagni Fox face (Engl.)
  Fox head (Engl.)
  Love apple (Engl.)
  Macaw bush (Engl.)
  Mickey mouse plant (Engl.)
  Nipple fruit (Engl.)
  Nipple fruit nightshage (Engl.)
  Tit fruit (Engl.)
  Titty fruit (Engl.)
Mickey mouse plant/ bush is a common name shared by (1) Ochna serrulata (bird's eye bush). and (2) Solanum mammosum (utong ).
Solanum mammosum is an accepted species. KEW: Plants of the World Online

Other vernacular names
BOLIVIAN: KU;bu;re, Pimento, Popatoa, Tetilla, Toro torito, Vaca vaquita.
BRAZIL: Jurubeba-do-para, Peito-de-moca.
CHINESE: Wu jiao qie, Wu zhi qie, Huang jin guo, Niu tou qie.
COLUMBIA: Friega platos, Hoja de lun, Ku-ku-na, Lulo de perro, Pepito, Tetilla.
COSTA RICAN: Pichichinchivo, Pichichio.
CUBA: Gurito, Gurito espinoso, Pantomina, Pechito, Pecho de doncella.
FRENCH: Tétons de jeune fille, Morelle à fruit ornemental, Morelle molle.
GERMAN: Zitzen Nachtschatten, Euter-nachtschatten.
GUATEMALAN: Chica, chichigua, Kekchi rantu, Tetereta.
GUYANA: Jumby bybby, Tuwawa.
HATIAN: Amourette batarde, Morelle molle, Tetan, Tete jeune fille, Tetin jeune fille.
INDONESIAN: Terung susu, Tioeng londo.
JAPANESE: Kanaria nasu.
MALAYSIAN: Terong susu, Terung tujang, Terong semangat.
MEXICO: Berenjena, Kan'tzu.
PERU: Teta de vaca.
SAMOAN: Lapiti, Lau lau faiva.

SPANISH: Tetilla, Berenjena de gallina. Berenjena peluda, Berenjena de teta.

SWEDEN: Karingtomat.
TURKEY: Sofur.
VENEZUELAN: Tuna, Una de gata.

Gen info
- Solanum mammosum is an annual in the family Solanaceae, and part of the genus Solanum, making  a relative of the eggplant, tomato, and potato.
- Etymology: The genus name Solanum is derived from Latin solamen, "comfort, solace, or soothing", referring to is sedative and healing effects. The species epithet mammosum refers to the nipple-shaped fruit.

• Utong is a coarse and branched half-woody plant, prickly or unarmed, growing to a height of 0.4 to 1 meter. Stems are prickly and covered with soft short hairs. Leaves are ovate to oblong-ovate, broad as they are long, 10 to 25 centimeters long, armed on both surfaces with long, stout spines, stellate-hairy beneath, and irregularly and shallowly lobed at the margin. Inflorescences are umbelliform and lateral, with 1 to 6 flowers. Flowers are axillary, about 2.5 centimeters long, purplish or bluish. Fruit is fleshy, smooth, purple when ripe, up to 25 centimeters long, extremely variable in shape, rounded, oblong, or cylindric-oblong. Seeds are compressed, purple-brown, 2-4 millimeters in diameter. Fruit flesh is white.

- Introduced into the Philippines from Tropical America.
- In thickets and waste places along the roads at low altitudes in Leyte; Zamboanga, Mindanao, and Jolo.
- Cultivated in some gardens in Manila and neighboring towns as a curiosity because of the shape of the fruit.
- Propagated by seeds.

- Fruit contains trigonelline, choline, vitamins A, B, and C; fat 0.1 percent, and protein 2.2 percent.
- Fruit considered toxic, containing solanine saponin, mallic and gallic acids.
- Fruit yields a glycoalkaloid, solamargine.

- Nutrient analysis per 1 cup/100 g fruit yielded: protein 0.96 g, total dietary fiber 0.78 g, total sugars 3.23 g, calcium 7 mg, vitamin C 0.05 mg, and 4 ug of beta-carotene.
- S. mammosum fruit extract yielded secondary metabolites such as alkaloids, saponins, tannins, terpenoids, coumarins, cardiac glycosides, steroids-triterpenoids, flavonoids, and phenolic compounds. Total polyphenols and flavonoid content were 275 mg GAE/g extract and 676 mg QE/g extract, respectively. (see study below)  (16)

- Fruit considered purgative, phlegmatic, generative.
- Leaves are anodyne, narcotic.
- Studies have suggested repellent, insecticidal, antifungal, antiproliferative, antioxidant, antimalarial, molluscicidal, anticancer, larvicidal properties.

Parts used
Roots, leaves, fruits.

- Caution: There are conflicting reports on the fruit's edibility. Some list it as inedible; some as toxic and poisonous; many list it as edible, with nutrient benefits to boot, with the caution to be eaten only when unripe.
- Fruit makes an excellent vegetable, the elongated kind is most cultivated, eaten before it ripens, before the seed hardens. (Some list it as inedible.)
- Good source of calcium, phosphorus, iron, and vitamin B.
- The green leaves are a good source of vitamin C.
- Root decoction taken for asthma and as general stimulant.
- Leaves used for hemorrhoids.
- In Costa Rica, decoction of leaves used as remedy for diseases of the kidney and bladder.
- In El Salvador, seeds used as a remedy for colds.
- In Yucatan, decoction of leaves used for cleansing wounds.
- Root, boiled with sour milk and grain porridge used to treat syphilis.
- Juice of fruit with pounded leaves and roots used for a variety of skin diseases.
- Roots, dried stalk, and leaves used in decoction for washing sores.
- Astringent for bladder hemorrhage.
- Decoction or infusion of leaves used for stomach problems.
- Burnt fruit used for liver problems.
- Fruit is cooling, and when bruised with vinegar, is used as a poultice for abscesses and cracked nipples.
- Fruit used for phthisis, cough and loss of appetite.
- The peduncle (stalk of flower or fruit) when burned is used for piles, toothache and intestinal hemorrhages.
- Seeds are used as stimulant but may cause dyspepsia and constipation.
- In Belize, leaf juices rubbed to afflicted areas with athlete's foot.
- In Bolivia, fruit used for scabies.

- In Peru, used in traditional medicine to treat fungal and respiratory disorders via topical application. (15)
- Decorative: Fruit collected ripe with the branches used for interior decoration.
- Repellent / Insecticide: Kofan people of Columbia and Ecuador use the plant as insect repellent especially against cockroaches. (7)
- Poison concerns: Parts of the plant are toxic. Species used as poison against cockroaches, rats, and insects. (Chanel et al, 2001) ( 11) In Columbia, identified as poisonous to cattle, causing prostration. (13)
- Rituals: Fruits and foliage use as floral arrangements for religious festivals. Fruits use during Chinese Lunar New Year celebrations with the fruit color symbolizing wealth. (Lim, 2013) (11)(12)
- Detergent: The juice of the fruit can be used as detergent, similar to soap nut.

Antiproliferative / Indioside D: Study isolated indioside D, a furostanol glycoside from Solanum mammosum and was found to possess antiproliferative activity toward a panel of human cancer cell lines. Results showed indioside D induced apoptosis in HeLa cells via both intrinsic and extrinsic cell death pathways. (1)
Anticancer / Saponins / Solamargine: Of saponins isolated from the fruit, solamargine showed highest toxicity towards HeLa cell line followed by inidioside D, protodioscin, solasonine and pseudoprotodioscin. (7)
Antimalarial: In a study of 46 different species screened for antimalarial activity, Solanum mammosum fruit extract was one of those found moderately active. (2)
Antioxidant Activity: Study by Weitwitayaklung and Phaechamud (2011) reported low antioxidant activity of S. mammosum fruit, with a total phenolic content of 3.08 g/100 g crude extract gallic acid. (7)
Molluscicidal: Steroidal glycoalkaloid mixed from fruits, solasonine and solamargine and the stereoisomeric glycosidic alkaloid tomatine were toxic to Lymnaea cubensis and Biomphalaria glabratus.
• Solasodine in Steroid Production:Solasodine, present in Solanum mammosum, can be a potential alternative for the high-revenue synthesis of steroid hormones. Study reports on the use of added methyl jasmonate, cholesterol, and L-arginine into the modified liquid full-strength MS medium could influence the solasodine production in the hairy roots of S. mammosum. The amount of solasodine was five times higher than those without both elicit or and precursor treatment. The improved solasodine production with high biomass growth can reduce the production cost of steroid synthesis in the long run. (8)
• Microbicidal Synergism Against Potomac Catalina: The species Solarium mammosum, S. saponaria and Jatropha curcas have shown molluscicidal properties against Pomacea canaliculata. Study evaluated a mixture of aqueous extracts of the three plants for synergistic effect between them. All were diluted to 500 ppm. Mixes with best results on mortality were choses to determine the LD50. The formulations of S. saponaria (100%) and S. mammosum and S. saponaria (50%-50%) showed best results with LD 50 of 24.04 ppm and 17.78 ppm, respectively, with no significant statistical differences between each other to a confidence of 95%. While no synergistic effect was found between mixture of aqueous extracts of the three species, the mixing of Sapindus saponaria and Solanum mammosum can be useful in areas where the effectiveness of S. saponaria is restricted by environmental conditions, such as low availability of oxygen in the water. (9)
• Microbicidal Steroid Alkaloids: Steroidal alkaloids mixture from fruits (solasonine 1 and solamargine 2) and the stereoisomeric glycosidic alkaloid tomatine 3 are toxic at 10 and 25 ppm to Lymnaea cubensis and Biomphalaria glabratus, respectively Their aglycones solasodine 4 and tomatidine 5 obtained by hydrolysis of glycosides showed no toxicity to either mollusk. (14)

• Antifungal / Solamargine / Fruits: In Peru "teta de vaca" is traditionally used to treat fungal infections.  In this study, the antifungal activity of TDV was determined against Trichophyton mentagrophyte and Candida albicans Bioautography-TLC-HRMS identified solamargine as the main compound responsible for the anti-T. mentagrophytes (MIC 64 µg/ml) and anti-C. albicans (MIC 64 µg/ml) activities at very low concentration (1.6 µg/ml). Solamargine significantly reduced procyanin production and biofilm formation. Results might the traditional use of fruits for treatment of fungal infections and respiratory disorders. (15)
• Insecticidal / Fruit fly / Fruit: Study evaluated the insecticidal activity of S. mammosum fruit extract against fruit fly, Drosophila melanogaster, as model The fruit extract exhibited lethal effect to 2nd instar and reduced pupae formation rate. The extract was more effective in suppression of pupae eclosion than Ascend (commercial pesticide).  The activities of esterases and phosphatases were inhibited in Drosophila by intake of S. mammosum. Results suggest great potential as an insecticidal agent. (see constituents above) (16)
• Anticancer / Betulinic Acid / HeLa Cell Line: One of the natural compounds reported to have cytotoxic activity against various cancer cells with high selectivity is betulinic acid. Study evaluated the anticancer activity of acetone extract of S. mammosum as well as betulinic acid. TLC densitometry of the acetone extract yielded 1.2% w/w betulinic acid. MTT assay of the acetone extract showed anticancer activity against HeLa cancer cells with IC50 of 120.5 µg/mL, less active than betulinic acid with IC50 of 19.3 µg/mL. Both samples were non-toxic on Vero normal cells. (17)
• Silver Nanoparticles / Larvicidal Against Ae. aegypti / Fruit: Study reports on the green synthesis of silver nanoparticles using aqueous fruit extracts of S. mammosum and evaluated its insecticidal activity against 3rd instar Ae. aegypti larvae. Results showed both aqueous extract and  AgNPs were toxic to the larvae, with the NPs exhibiting much higher level of toxicity than the extract alone, with LC50s of 0.06 ppm vs 1631.27 ppm, respectively. Results suggest a potential alternative source against insect vectors of human disease. (18)
• Gold and Silver Nanoparticles / Anti-SARS-CoV-2 Surrogates / Fruit, Leaves, and Essential Oil: Study evaluated and compared gold (AuNPs) and silver (AgNPs) for antiviral activity and affinity with the coronavirus spike protein using PhiX174 and enveloped Phi6 bacteriophages as models. The leaves were most effective on Phi6. FT-IR spectra showed presence of large proportion of polyphenolic compounds, and antioxidant analysis confirmed the antiradical activity. Results showed both the extract and NPs have greater antiviral effect on the surrogate Phi bacteriophage, which is an appropriate model for studyi8ng SARS-CoV-2. (19)

- Despite known toxicity, some reports list the fruits and leaves as palatable. (Lim, 2013) (12) (11)

- Wild-crafted.
- Seeds in the cybermarket.

Updated October 2023 / January 2019 / November 2017
March 2014

Photos © Godofredo Stuart / StuartXchange
OTHER IMAGE SOURCE: / Seeds / Solanum mammosum L. - nipplefruit /Jose Hernandez @ USDA-NRCS PLANTS Database / USDA
OTHER IMAGE SOURCE: Solanum mammosum / Flower and stem / KENPEI / CC BY-SA 3.0 / click on image or link to go to source page / Wikipedia

Additional Sources and Suggested Readings
Comparative Proteomic Analysis of Indioside D-Triggered Cell Death in HeLa Cells / Chin Chun Wong et al / J. Proteome Res., 2008, 7 (5), pp 2050–2058 / DOI: 10.1021/pr800019k

The search for natural bioactive compounds through a multidisciplinary approach in Bolivia. Part II. Antimalarial activity of some plants used by Mosetene indians / Muñoz V, Sauvain M et al / J Ethnopharmacol. 2000 Feb;69(2):139-55.
Indigenous Plants and Schistosomiasis Control in South Africa Molluscicidal Activity of Some Zulu Medicinal Plants / John Ojewole /
Solanum mammosum as a source of solasodine in the lowland tropics / L. Telek, H. Delpin and E. Cabanillas / ECONOMIC BOTANY, Volume 31, Number 2 (1977), 120-128, DOI: 10.1007/BF02866581
Isolation of saponins from Solanum mammosum and characterization of their anticancer activity by proteomics / Chi-Chun Wong, Ãpë /
Sorting EGGPLANT names / /Maintained by: Michel H. Porcher / MULTILINGUAL MULTISCRIPT PLANT NAME DATABASE / Copyright © 1995 - 2020 / A Work in Progress. School of Agriculture and Food Systems. Faculty of Land & Food Resources. The University of Melbourne. Australia.
Edible Medicinal And Non-Medicinal Plants: Volume 6, Fruits, Volume 6
/ Tong Kwee Lim / Google Books
The influence of methyl jasmonate, cholesterol and l-arginine on solasodine production in hairy root culture of Solanum mammosum / Chai Theam Ooi, Ahmad Syahida, Johnson Stanslas, Mahmood Maziah / Engineering in Life Science / DOI: 10.1002/elsc.201500083
Molluscicidal activity of the aqueous extracts from Solanum mammosum L., Sapindus saponaria L. and Jatropha curcas L. against Pomacea canaliculata / M. Quijano, C. Riera-Ruiz, A. Barragan, M. Miranda, T. Orellana, P. Manzano / Emir. J. Food Agric. 2014; 26(10): pp 871-877 / doi10.9755/ejfa.v26i10.18804
Solanum mammosum / Synonyms / KEW: Plants of the World Online
Solanum mammosum / CABI
Edible medicinal and non-medicinal plants, Vol 6. Dordrecht, Netherlands: Springer
Ethnobotanical Study of Plants Poisonous to Cattle in Eastern Columbia / Paola Torres, Gonzalo J. Diaz, Edgar Cardenas, and Maria C. Lozano / IJPPR, Fall 2012; Vol 2
Molluscicidal steroid glycoalkaloids possessing stereoisomeric spirosolane structures / Arnaldo Alzerreca and Gerogina Hart / Toxicology Letters, July 1982; 12(2-3): pp 151-155 / http://doe.org/10.1016/0378-4274(82)80178-3
Pharmacological validation of Solanum mammosum L. as an anti-infective agent: Role of solamargine / Billy Cabanillas, Francois Chassagne, Pedro Vasquez-Ocmin, Mohamed Haddad et al / Journal of Ethnopharmacology, 2021; Volume 280: 114473 / DOI: 10.1016/j.jep.2021.114473
Evaluation of the insecticidal activity of Solanum mammosum (L.) fruit extract againstDrosophila melanogaster / Tran Thanh Men, Tang Huyen Co, Tran Duy Binh et al / Journal of Animal Behaviour and Biometeorology, 2022; 10(2) / DOI: 10.31893/jabb.22018
In vitro anticancer property of solanum mammosum callus culture against hela and vero cell lines / Suciati, Lusiana Arifianti, Andiena Eksafira, Lovely Q Ilmiah / Journal of Research in Pharmacy, 2020; 24(2): pp 218-224 / DOI: 10.35333/jrp.2020.138
Green synthesis of silver nanoparticles using Solanum mammosum L. (Solanaceae) fruit extract and their larvicidal activity against Aedes aegypti L. (Diptera: Culicidae) / Fernanda Pilaquinga, Bianca Morejon, Danny Ganchala, Marco Neira et al / PLOS ONE, 2019 / DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0224109
High in vitroactivity of gold and silver nanoparticles from Solanum mammosum L. against SARS-CoV-2 surrogate Phi6 and viral model PhiX174 / Fernanda Pilaquinga, Rafael Bosch, Jeroni Morey, Maria de las Nieves Piña et al / Nanotechnology, 2023; 34(17): 175705 / DOI: 10.1088/1361-6528/acb558



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 1,400 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 know of a plant to suggest for inclusion, 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.

HOME      •      SEARCH      •      EMAIL