Many Albizia species exist. Albizia julibrissin is known as Persian silk tree or mimosa and is native to southwestern and eastern Asia Albizia gummifera is native to Ethiopia and Kenya. Albizia adianthifolia is native to eastern South Africa and Tropical Africa (1). In South Africa and Nigeria A. adianthifolia extracts is used in the management of memory loss and neurodegenerative disorders. Albizia species are used against bacterial infections causing diarrhoea, dysentery, and stomach ache in DRC, Madagascar, Mozambique, South Africa, and Tanzania. in South Africa Albizia is used to treat syphilis. Albizia is traditionally indicated to treat diabetes in the DRC and Nigeria.
In Traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) Albizia julibrissin is called He Huan Hua 合欢花. The flower and stem bark have similar effects. He Huan Hua is said to be sweet and neutral and to enter the Stomach, Liver and Heart meridians. He Huan Hua calms the Spirit and moves Liver Qi to treat insomnia, irritability and depression, and alleviates stomach disorders due to Liver Qi stasis. He Huan Hua also clears Heat to arrest cough and alleviate wheezing, moves the Blood to relieve pain, clears the eyes to alleviate blurred vision and eye redness or pain from Wind-Heat, and astringes the Essence to treat premature ejaculation (2).
The Albizia species contains several phytochemicals mainly including triterpenoid saponins, lignanoids, flavonoids, and phenolic glycosides, and possesses diverse pharmacological properties such as antitumor, antidiabetic, antimicrobial, anti-inflammatory, antifertility, antianxiety, antidepressant, immunomodulatory and hepatoprotective activities (3).
The antifungal activity of Albizia species extracts has been demonstrated against Aspergilus parasiticus, Aspergilus Niger, Candida albicans, Aspergillus effusus, Fusarium solani and Saccharomyces cerevisiae (4).
The stem bark of A. adianthifolia has demonstrated antimicrobial activity against Enterococcus faecalis, Staphylococcus aureus, Pseudomonas aeruginosa, Escherichia coli, Klebsiella pneumoniae, Proteus mirabilis, Shigella flexneri, and Salmonella typhi, Proteus mirabilis, and Shigella flexneri (5). Methanol extract of Albizia gummifera had significant antimicrobial activity against four Salmonella serovars (6). Antibacterial and antibiotic-modifying activities of fractions and compounds from Albizia adianthifolia against multidrug-resistant (MDR) gram-negative infection causing enteric bacteria have been demonstrated (7). The stem bark of Albizia gummifera has demonstrated antimicrobial activity against Escherichia coli (ESBL‐producing) and Staphylococcus aureus (methicillin-resistant) (8).
1. Authors W. List of Albizia species 2022 [Available from: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Albizia_species.
2. MedicineTradition. Albizia Flower, Silk-Tree flower, He Huan Hua Melbourne, Australia. : Adam Tate; 2022 [Available from: https://www.medicinetraditions.com/albizia-flos-he-huan-hua.html.
3. He Y, Wang Q, Ye Y, Liu Z, Sun H. The ethnopharmacology, phytochemistry, pharmacology and toxicology of genus Albizia: A review. Journal of ethnopharmacology. 2020;257:112677.
4. Shahid SA, Firdous N. Antimicrobial screening of Albizia lebbeck (l.) Benth. and Acacia leucophloea (Roxb.). African journal of pharmacy and pharmacology. 2012;6(46):3180-3.
5. Maroyi A. Albizia Adianthifolia: Botany, Medicinal Uses, Phytochemistry, and Pharmacological Properties. ScientificWorldJournal. 2018;2018:7463584.
6. Mahlangu ZP, Botha FS, Madoroba E, Chokoe K, Elgorashi EE. Antimicrobial activity of Albizia gummifera (J.F.Gmel.) C.A.Sm leaf extracts against four Salmonella serovars. South African Journal of Botany. 2017;108:132-6.
7. Tchinda CF, Sonfack G, Simo IK, Celik I, Voukeng IK, Nganou BK, et al. Antibacterial and antibiotic-modifying activities of fractions and compounds from Albizia adianthifolia against MDR Gram-negative enteric bacteria. BMC Complement Altern Med. 2019;19(1):120.
8. A.C. H. Systematic review and meta-analysis of plant-derived antimicrobials in WHO priority pathogens. Int J Complement Alt Med. 2022 Jun;15:122-37.