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Aconitum anthora

Scientific classification Kingdom: Division: Plantae Magnoliophyta

Class: Magnoliopsida Order: Ranunculales Family: Ranunculaceae Genus: Aconitum Species:A. anthora Binomial name:Aconitum anthora Aconitum anthora, variously known as Anthora, Yellow Monkshood, or Healing Wolfsbane, is a yellow flowering plant species of the genus Aconitum in the family Ranunculaceae. Its native range is widespread, but mainly in European mountains, such as the Alps and the Carpathians, and the northern parts of Asia. Like all Aconitum species, it has great variability, due to isolation and hybridisation. Because of this polymorphism, Aconitum anthora is included in the Aconitum vulparia group. It flowers from July to September. Historically, its root, which is tuberous, was reputed to be a good antidote, and a counterpoison to poisons from 'thora' or Aconitum pardalianches, whence its naming anthora or "against thora". This plant is extremely toxic to livestock and humans. Even small doses can be deadly. The root contains a large amount of volatile salt and essential oil, while the foliage and stems contain diterpenoid alkaloids. It has been used externally against rheumatism and deep pain, but it can irritate the skin.[citation needed] Internally, it has been used for weak pulse, vegetable poisons (shoot), feverish colds, pneumonia, croup, heart conditions, and cardiac arrest.[citation needed] It is considered a threatened plant in the Czech Republic.

Aconitum napellus
Aconitum napellus (Monkshood, "aconite", "Wolf's Bane", Fuzi, "Monk's Blood", or "Monk's Hood") is a species of Aconitum in the family Ranunculaceae, native and endemic to western and central Europe. It is a herbaceous perennial plant growing to 1 m tall, with hairless stems and leaves. The leaves are rounded, 510 cm diameter, palmately divided into five to seven deeply lobed segments. The flowers are dark purple to bluish-purple, narrow oblong helmet-shaped, 12 cm tall. Plants native to Asia and North America formerly listed as A. napellus are now regarded as separate species. Plants are grown in gardens in temperate zones for their spike-like inflorescences that are showy in early-mid summer and their attractive foliage. There are white and rose colored forms in cultivation too.

Uses
Aconitum napellus is grown in gardens for its attractive spike like inflorescences and showy blue flowers.[It is a cut flower crop used for fresh cutting material and sometimes used as dried material. The species has a low natural propagation rate under cultivation and is propagated by seed or by removing offsets that are generated each year from the rootstocks. The use of micropropagation protocols has been studied.This species has been crossed with other Aconitums to produce attractive hybrids for garden use, including Aconitum x cammarum

Like other species in the genus, A. napellus contains several poisonous compounds, including enough cardiac poison that it was used on spears and arrows for hunting and battle in ancient

times.A. napellus has a long history of use as a poison, with cases going back thousands of years. During the ancient Roman period of European history the plant was often used to eliminate criminals and enemies, and by the end of the period it was banned and any one growing A. napellus could have been legally sentenced to death. Aconites have been used more recently in murder plots; they contain the Chemical alkaloids aconitine, mesaconitine, hypaconitine and jesaconitine, which are highly toxic. Aconite produced from the roots of a number of different species of Aconitum is used ethnomedically in traditional Chinese medicine (TCM), to treat "coldness", general debility, and "Yang deficiency".[citation needed] Misuse of the medicinal ingredients contained in this plant can negatively affect the cardiovascular and central nervous systems, thus resulting in death.

Aconitum Ferox
Aconitum ferox also known as Aconitum virorum is a species of monkshood, in the family Ranunculaceae. It is also known as the Indian Aconite. Abundant at Sandakphu, which is the highest point of the Darjeeling Hills in the Indian State of West Bengal. A deciduous perennial that grows up to 1.0 metre tall by 0.5 metres wide and which favours many types of soil. They are handsome plants with the tall and erect stem crowned by racemes of large eye-catching blue, purple, white, yellow or pink zygomorphic flowers with numerous stamens. They are distinguished by having one of the five petaloid sepals (the posterior one), called the galea, in the form of a cylindrical helmet; hence the English name monkshood. There are 2-10 petals, in the form of nectaries. The two upper petals are large. They are placed under the hood of the calyx and are supported on long stalks. It is from Aconitum ferox that the well known Indian poison bikh, bish, or nabee is produced. It contains large quantities of the alkaloid pseudaconitine, which is a deadly poison. It was also used in European witchcraft ointments and has been used by poisoners. The symptoms of poisoning are usually seen within 45 minutes to an hour with numbness of the mouth and throat and vomiting after an hour that the sufficient dose was ingested. Respiration slows and blood pressure synchronously falls to within 30-40 beats per minute and the conscious mindedness stays until the end which is usually death by asphyxiation. This takes place before the arrest of the heart.

Aconitum ferox is considered the most poisonous plant in the world.

Detoxification Both Chinese medicine and Ayurveda have methods of processing aconite to reduce its toxicity. In Chinese medicine, the traditional pao zhi or preparation of aconite is to steam it with ginger in a fairly elaborate procedure. Due to the variable levels of toxicity in any given sample of the dried herb, there are still issues with using it. Most but not all cases of aconite toxicity in Taiwan were due to the consumption of unprocessed aconite. According to an article by the Indian scientists Thorat and Dahanukar, "Crude aconite is an extremely lethal substance. However, the science of Ayurveda looks upon aconite as a therapeutic entity. Crude aconite is always processed i.e. it undergoes 'samskaras' before being utilized in the Ayurvedic formulations. This study was undertaken in mice, to ascertain whether 'processed' aconite is less toxic as compared to the crude or unprocessed one. It was seen that crude aconite was significantly toxic to mice (100% mortality at a dose of 2.6 mg/mouse) whereas the fully processed aconite was absolutely non-toxic (no mortality at a dose even 8 times as high as that of crude aconite). Further, all the steps in the processing were essential for complete detoxification"