Gossypium hirsutum

Gossypium hirsutum.Linn


Botanical Name:       Gossypium hirsutum L. Gossypium hirsutum L.

Synonyms:                Gossypium hirsutum var. album Tod.

Kingdom:                  Plantae

Order:                       Malvales

Family:                     Malvaceae

Species:                   G. hirsutum

Genus:                     Gossypium

Local Name:             Cotton

Sindhi Name:            Kappah

English Name:          Cotton

Parts Used:               Bark of root, Seeds and Oil


G. hirsutum is a hairy shrub. Leaves are alternate, and petiolate. Flowers are axillary, large, and yellow without a crimson spot. Fruits are capsulated, ovate, and globose. Seeds are greenish with white cotton.1


G. hirsutum is widely cultivated in Tropical North and Central America.2 It is extensively cultivated in Pakistan, India, USA, Russia, China, Brazil, Egypt, Turkey, Mexico, and Sudan. In Pakistan, it is found in Punjab province.3

 Ethnomedicinal Uses in Skin Diseases:

Ringworm and Abscess

Ghee is applied on G. hirsutum and tie on the area of infection for the treatment of ringworm and abscess in District Tandojam (Sindh).


Ash of G. hirsutum is mix with oil and applied on the affected areas for the treatment of wounds in District Kashmore (Sindh).


Gossypol is the major constituent of G. hirsutum.4 Oil contains fatty acids like myristic, palmitic, palmitoleic, stearic, oleic, and linoleic acids. It also contains amino acids like isoleucine, leucine, threonine, methionine, phenylalanine, lysine, histidine, and arginine. Root bark also contains a peculiar acid resin, gum, tannin, fixed oil, sugar, chlorophyll, isoquercitrin, quercimeritin, quercetin-3-glucoside, hirsutrin, serotonin, and gossypicyanin. Other constituents of various parts include flavonoids, quercetin, betaine, choline, and salicylic acid.5


Chemical Structures:

Gossypium hirsutum L. st


Medicinal Uses and Pharmacological/Scientific Studies:

Root decoction of G. hirsutum is used for the treatment of asthma, diarrhea, and dysentery. Root bark is also used to stimulate secretion of breast milk.4 Seeds are used for the treatment of swelling and ulceration of female organs, and urinary diseases. Extract of seed coat is used for the treatment of fungal infections. Oil is used as emollient, lubricant, and as a vehicle for injections in pharmaceutical industries.1 It is also used for surgical dressings and also use to absorb blood, mucus, and pus.6 It is reported that women use G. hirsutum for their menstrual disorders and for the symptoms of menopause. They also used it to bring on labor and childbirth.7



  1. Pullaih, T. (2006). “Encyclopedia of World Medicinal Plants”, 1 p: 1034, Regency Publications New Delhi, India.
  2. http://www.efloras.org/florataxon.aspx?flora_id=5&taxon_id=200013695.
  3. http://www.valleyirrigationpakistan.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/09/COTTON-CULTIVATION-IN-PAKISTAN.pdf.
  4. Thomas, S., C., Li. (2000).Medicinal Plants: Culture, Utilization and Phytopharmacology”, p: 22, CRC Press, Boca Raton, London, New York, Washington, D.C.
  5. Ezekiel, O. O., and Oriku, A. A. (2013). “Effect of Processing on Sensory Characteristics and Chemical Composition of Cottonseed (Gossypium hirsutum) and Its Extract”. International Journal of Biological, Biomolecular, Agricultural, Food and Biotechnological Engineering, 7(3). p:103-108.
  6. Ali, M. (2007). “Textbook of Pharmacognosy”. CBS Publishers and Distributors, New Delhi, Second p: 403-404.
  7. http://www.webmd.com/vitamins-supplements/ingredientmono-416-cotton.aspx?activeingredientid=416&activeingredientname=cotton.