Chichua - Maytenus guyanensis Klotzsch

Chichua - Maytenus guyanensis Klotzsch - Organic 

This study consists of a literature review on the traditional use of the medicinal plant CHICHUA or XIXUA which was carried out using the databases: and PubMed. M. guianensis is popularly known as xixuá and occurs throughout the tropical and subtropical band of the world. 

In Brazil, its leaves, bark, and roots are used as a tea or macerated for the treatment of inflammation and infections in general. It is also popularly used to treat rheumatism and worm infections. These medicinal uses which have experimental support seem to be mainly associated with the presence of triterpenes.

Plants belonging to the genus Maytenus (Celastraceae) are routinely used in folk medicine in Brazil and other countries to treat a variety of illnesses, the most common of which are gastric disorders. Several studies have reported on the importance of these biological effects, and the chemical substances, mostly terpenoids and flavonoid glycosides, responsible for them.

Most of the drugs currently available for clinical use today are either natural products or synthetic analogs of these. Despite the many new drugs on the market today, medicinal plants are still routinely used throughout the world. Many of the substances they produce are also valuable because they provide the raw materials with which to produce new medicines.

In recent years, there has been a significant increase in interest in plants of the Maytenus genus, especially in Brazil. The Maytenus genus is a member of the Celastraceae family, which comprises approximately 50 genera and more than 800 species of plants. These occur mostly in Pan Tropical regions, with 40% occurring in tropical regions. In Brazil, there are 76 recognized species of Maytenus.

Where to find? 
These occur in a variety of habitats, ranging from Amazon and Atlantic forests, brush, high altitude grasslands and scrublands and can reach up to 15m in height


According to South American folklore, a number of medicinal uses have been attributed to several species of Maytenus. It is widely used in traditional medicine for the treatment of gastric disorders, such as gastric ulcers. One of the more commonly used species for these purposes is M. ilicifolia. This specie occurs in Argentine, Paraguay and Uruguay, is known by several common names, including congorça, erva-cancerosa, espinhode-deus, salva-vidas, quebrachillo, sombra-de-toro, and concorosa. Espinheira-Santa seems to be, however, the most commonly usedvernacular name for this and other species, e.g., M. aquifolium, M. robusta and M. truncata.

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