Basic Information




Species                       : Berberis aristata .Roxb.ex.Dc

Local Name                : Chut ro (Nep), Sung tung kung (Lep)

Synonym                    :

Family                         : Berberidaceae

Habitat                       : A large deciduous shrub usually 1.8-3.6 m high. Found in waste grounds

                                                                                               and in cultivated fields in the Himalayan range.

Distribution    : Distributed in the areas at an elevation of 6000 to 10,000 feet.

Sikkim             : Hilley to Ribdi, Lachung to Zokophyak, Kupup, Nathang, Tamjay, Lachen -Thongu, Bakhim- Dzongri, Tholong monastery to Kisheong,

                          Syano Ringdam to 5 mysterious lake in North Siikkim.

Out side          : Jammu and Kashmir, Himachal Pradesh (Simla, Naggar, Sindh forest), Uttar Pradesh (Dunda, Ujha, Daunagiri,

                         Ranikhet, Harkidaon, Mukteshuara, Chamoli), altitude- 2000 -3000 m. Also distributed in Nepal and Bhutan.


Morphological information

Deciduous, spinous shrub; 2- 4 m tall. Bark pale-brown, closely and deeply furrowed; branches shining, reddish brown. Leaves sessile, obovate or elliptic, glossy dark green above, glossy pale green beneath. Flowers yellow in corymbose raceme. Berries oblong-ovoid, bright red.

Flowering                 : April -November

Fruiting                    : April-November

History                    : Berberis, a medicinal name, probably of Arabic origin. The wood, rootbark and extract of Indian barberry have been used in

                                Hindu medicine since time immemorial.

Parts                       : Fruits, stem and root-bark

Status                     : Vulnerable.

The species of berberis have been commercially exploited for extraction of berberine.


The plants contain berberine, oxyberberine, berbamine, aromoline, karachine, palmatine, oxyacanthine and taxilamine.



The watery extract prepared from roots, stem bark known as Rusot or Rasot, is used in various forms of eye diseases and as a febrifuge. Rasaut or Rasanjana prepared from root bark, root chips and lower stem wood, obtained by boiling with water, straining and evaporating till a dark brown sticky mass is obtained is used as a bitter tonic, in fever, disease of eye, liver and spleen, jaundice, piles. It is also used for other infections.

a) Locally applied in affections of eyelids and in chronic opthalmia.

b) In bleeding piles, administered in doses of 5 to 53 grains with butter. Solution is used as a wash for piles.

c) Ointment made with camphor and butter is applied to pimples and oily skin.

The plant is also used in Unani system of medicine in enlargements of spleen and as emmenagogue and in cardiac dysfunction.



The matured fruit is smashed and given with food in case of rabbies.


The drug is antimalarial, antiseptic, blood purifier, alterative antiphlogistic and sedative and is used in conjunctivitis, enlargement of liver and spleen, jaundice, periodic neuralgia, hemorrhoids, itching, urinogenital disorders and ulcerative conditions.


1. Savarasa (juice) of the bark of Daruharidra with equal amount of honey is to be taken twice a day in treatment of jaundice.

2. What decoction prepared from the bark, 14 ml- 28 ml is to be taken in jaundice. Decoction of the root- bark is used as a wash for ulcers.

3.Tincture made from the root bark is to be taken in cases of remittent as well as intermittent fevers and also in debility.

4. In case of malaria and other intermittent fevers, water extract is to be given twice daily. As an antiperiodic, it has some advantages over quinine and cinchona; its frequent and repeated doses do not produce depression of the heart and deafness.



1.Anonymous (1985). The Wealth of India (Vol.2). Publications and Information Directorate CSIR. New Delhi. 116-117.

2.Bentley, Robert and Trimen Henry (1989). Medicinal Plants (Vol.1). Bishen Singh Mahendraa Pal Singh, Dehradun. 102-104.

3.Chatterjee, Ashima, Satyesh Chandra Prakashi (1997).TheTreatise on Indian Medicinal Plants (Vol. 1). Publications and Information Directorate. New Delhi. 129.

4.Kumar, Sushil, Janardan Singh, N.C. Shah, Vinay Ranjan (1997). Indian Medicinal and Aromatic Plants Facing Genetic Erosion. Central Institute of Medicinal and Aromatic Plants, Lucknow 55-59.

5.Kirtikar K.R., B.D. Basu (1993). Indian Medicinal Plants (Vol.10). Bishen Singh Mahendra Pal Singh, Dehradun. 102-104.

6 Progress Report of the Project "Studies on Medicinal Plants of Sikkim"(1998-2001). State Council of Science and Technology for Sikkim.