Revista Brasileira de Farmacognosia
versión On-line ISSN 1981-528X
EMPINOTTI, Cláudia Bonissoni y DUARTE, Márcia do Rocio. Anatomical study of the leaf and stem of Elephantopus mollis Kunth (Asteraceae). Rev. bras. farmacogn. [online]. 2008, vol.18, n.1, pp. 108-116. ISSN 1981-528X. http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/S0102-695X2008000100020.
Commonly known as erva-de-colégio in Portuguese, Elephantopus mollis Kunth (Asteraceae) is a perennial herb, with slightly lignified base, short branches and purple flowers. Its leaves are used as emollient, vulnerary and diaphoretic, and to treat bronchitis, coughs and influenza in folk medicine. The aim of this work was to study leaf and stem anatomical characters, in order to expand the knowledge for this medicinal plant identification. Adult leaves and stem fragments were fixed, sectioned and stained either with astra blue/basic fuchsine or toluidine blue. Microchemical essays and scanning electron analysis were also carried out. The leaf has wavy-contoured cells in surface view, forming a single layer and coated with striate cuticle. Non-glandular and glandular trichomes occur. The former is erect, multicellular and uniseriate. The glandular ones are capitate and biseriate. The mesophyll is dorsiventral and the midrib is traversed by collateral vascular bundles arranged in open arc. The stem, in initial secondary growth, has uniseriate epidermis coated with striate cuticle and trichomes similar to the leaf. In the cortex, annular collenchyma alternates with chlorenchyma and an endodermis with Casparian strips is found. Sclerenchymatic caps adjoin the phloem, which is formed outwards by the vascular cambia, while the xylem is produced inwards. The pith is parenchymatic. Small calcium oxalate crystals are present in the leaf and stem.
Palabras clave : Elephantopus mollis; Asteraceae; crystals; endodermis; glandular trichome; non-glandular trichome.