Ricinus communis L.

Ricinus communis L.

Kingdom:                   PlantaeRicinus communis L.

Order:                         Malpighiales

Family:                        Euphorbiaceae

Genus:                         Ricinus

Species:                       R. communis

Sindhi Name:            Haran

Urdu Name:              Arand, Arandae, Murpad, Harnoli, Murghpad, Bed Anjeer.

English Name:          Castor oil

Parts Used:                Roots, leaves, seeds


Ricinus communis L.is an erect, single-stemmed or much-branched shrubby or treelike somewhat glaucous herb. Its stems are hollow and younf shoots are pruinose. Petioles are long while petiolar glands are variously-shaped. Pedicels of male flowers are long; calyx lobes are elliptic-ovate, acute, and yellowish-green in color. Pedicels of Female flowers are long and extending upto 2 cm or more in fruit; Fruit are trilobate and smooth or sparingly to dense. It is covered with long cylindric bristle-tipped fleshy processes. Seeds are shiny, greyish, silvery or beige generally streaked, and flecked with brown1.


Ethnomedicinal Uses in Skin Diseases


  1. Ricinuscommunis L. (Castor)leaves are ground and thenfuller’s earthis added in it. The prepared formulation is applied topically daily for the treatment of scabiesin District Sukkur (Sindh).
  2. R. communisleaves are ground and boiled with large amount of water. This water is used for taking bath for 3-5 days for the treatment of scabiesinDistrict QamberShahdadkot (Sindh).


Powder of R. communisseed is applied on boilsin District Tando Muhammad Khan (Sindh).

Pustules andRingworm

Powder of R. communisis mixed with water to make a paste and applied on pustules in District Mitiari (Sindh). It is also applied topically for the treatment of ringworm in District Badin (Sindh).


Leaves ofR. communisis heated and use as a bandage for covering of wound. It is used for healing wound in District Jamshoro (Sindh).


Leaves of R. communisis fried in oil and tied on lchthyosisin District Badin (Sindh).


Seeds of R. communis is mixed with Brasiccacampestris L. (Mustard) oil and then heated. It is then applied on wounds in District Larkana (Sindh).

Itching and Chicken pox:

R. communisleaves are ground to make a paste and applied topically for the treatment of chicken poxinDistrict QamberShahdadkot (Sindh).The same remedy is used topically for the treatment of itching in district sukkur (Sindh).


Seeds of R. communisare taken orally for the treatment of itching in district sukkur (Sindh).

Chicken pox

R. communisleaves and DalbergisissooRoxb. (North Indian Rosewood) leaves are heated, and then applied on chicken pox inDistrict QamberShahdadkot (Sindh).

Onychomycosis and fungal infection

R. communisleaves are ground and mixed with butter to make a paste and applied topically for the treatment of onychomycosis and fungal infection in district sukkur (Sindh).

 Chemical Constituents:

Disaccharide glycoside rutin, gentistic acid, quercetin, and gallic acid were isolated from dried leaves of R. communis. Flavonoids (kaempferol-3-O-β-d-rutinoside and kaempferol-3-O-β-d-xylopyranoid) and tannins have been isolated from the leaves. Seeds contain ricin A, B, and C, and one ricinus agglutinin. These are toxin proteins. Indole-3-acetic acid has been extracted from the roots. Pericarps of the fruits contain ricinine2.  castor oil showed the presence of ester form of palmitic, stearic, arachidic, linoleic, linolenic, hexadecenoic, and oleic acids. Stem contain ricinine. Fucosterol, stigmasterol, Y-sitosterol, and ergost-5-en-3-ol were isolated from seeds3.

Chemical Structure:

Ricinus communis L.st

Medicinal Uses and Pharmacology/Scientific Studies:

Leaves are used as pain killer against bone strike and bronchial pneumonia4. Leaves poultices is applied externally on boils and swellings. A seeds poultice is applied to scrofulous sores and boils due to tuberculosis of lymph nodes. Castor oil is massaged over the body, before bath to keeps the skin healthy and imparts sound sleep.Oil increases growth of hair and cure dandruff5. Castor oil is used as a purgative and laxative3. The oil can be used as a vehicle for parenteral administration of steroidal hormones. Leaves poultice massaged over the breasts of women to increase the secretion of milk. Leaves decoction used internally, act as a lactagogue and emmenagogue.Fresh juice of leaves is useful in jaundice2.

R. communis is reported for various pharmacological activities such as, antioxidant, antitumour, anti-inflammatory, antidiabetic, anti-implantation, central analgesic, larvicidal, antiasthmatic, adult emergence inhibition, antinociceptive, and antiasthmatic activity2. Some phenolic compounds were responsible for the antioxidant activity of the dry leaves. Ricin A possessed antitumor activity. Ethanol extract possessed antiasthmatic activity.Methanol extract possessed antinociceptive activity6.


  1. http://www.efloras.org/florataxon.aspx?flora_id=5&taxon_id=200012604
  2. Rana, M., Dhamija, H., Prashar, B., & Sharma, S. (2012). Ricinus communis L.—a review. International Journal of PharmTech Research, 4(4), 1706-1711.
  3. Jena, J., & Gupta, A. K. (2012). Ricinus communis Linn: a phytopharmacological review. Int J Pharm PharmSci, 4(4), 25-29.
  4. http://sindhforests.gov.pk/admin/MediaLibrary/Haran.pdf
  5. Ladda, P. L., bhimashankar, R. (2014).Ricinus Communis (Castor): An Overview. International Journal of Research in Pharmacology & Pharmacotherapeutics, 3(2), 136-144.
  6. http://www.pharmaresearchlibrary.com/medicinal-importance-of-ricinus-communis-arandi/