Taxon: Phyllanthus niruri L.

Genus: Phyllanthus
Family: Phyllanthaceae
  Subfamily: Phyllanthoideae
      Tribe: Phyllantheae
Nomen number: 28124
Place of publication: Sp. pl. 2:981. 1753
Name Verified on: 24-Aug-2005 by ARS Systematic Botanists. Last Changed: 25-Aug-2005
Species priority site is:
Accessions: 0 in National Plant Germplasm System

Common names:

  • niruri  (Source: Dict Rehm) - English
  • derrière dos  (Source: Dict Rehm) - French
  • quinine créole  (Source: Dict Rehm) - French
  • Niruri  (Source: Dict Rehm) - German
  • arranca-pedra  (Source: pers. comm.) - Portuguese (Brazil)
  • arrebenta-pedra  (Source: pers. comm.) - Portuguese (Brazil)
  • erva-pombinha  (Source: pers. comm.) - Portuguese (Brazil)
  • fura-parede  (Source: pers. comm.) - Portuguese (Brazil)
  • fura-pedra  (Source: pers. comm.) - Portuguese (Brazil)
  • quebra-pedra  (Source: pers. comm.) - Portuguese (Brazil)
  • quebra-pedra-branca  (Source: pers. comm.) - Portuguese (Brazil)
  • quinina criolla  (Source: Dict Rehm) - Spanish
  • chancapiedra  (Source: Names Soukup) - Spanish (Peru)

Economic Importance:

  • Harmful organism host: crop diseases (fide WorldWeeds 579. 1997)
  • Harmful organism host: crop pests (fide WorldWeeds 579. 1997)
  • Medicines: folklore (fide K. Jones, Cat's claw: healing vine of Peru 117-120. 1995; CRC MedHerbs ed2; Herbs Commerce ed2)
  • Weed: potential seed contaminant (fide Atlas WWeed)

Distributional Range:


  • Northern America

    • Northern Mexico: Mexico - San Luis Potosi, - Sinaloa, - Tamaulipas
    • South-Central U.S.A.: United States - Texas
    • Southern Mexico: Mexico - Chiapas, - Guerrero, - Hidalgo, - Jalisco, - Michoacan, - Nayarit, - Oaxaca, - Puebla, - Queretaro, - Veracruz
  • Southern America

    • Brazil: Brazil
    • Caribbean: Barbados; Dominican Republic; Guadeloupe; Haiti; Martinique; Puerto Rico
    • Central America: Belize; Costa Rica; El Salvador; Guatemala; Honduras; Nicaragua; Panama
    • Northern South America: French Guiana; Suriname; Venezuela
    • Southern South America: Argentina - Buenos Aires, - Chaco, - Corrientes, - Entre Rios, - Jujuy, - Misiones, - Salta, - Tucuman; Paraguay; Uruguay
    • Western South America: Bolivia; Colombia; Ecuador; Peru - Amazonas, - Cajamarca, - Cuzco, - Loreto, - San Martin


  • Angely, J. A. Flora analitica do Parana. (L Parana)
  • Boggan, J. et al. Checklist of the plants of the Guianas, ed. 2. 1997 (L Guianas ed2)
  • Brako, L. & J. L. Zarucchi Catalogue of the flowering plants and gymnosperms of Peru. Monogr. Syst. Bot. Missouri Bot. Gard. 45. 1993 (L Peru)
  • Chopra, D. & D. Simon The Chopra Center herbal handbook: forty natural prescriptions for perfect health. 2000 (Chopra Herbal)
  • Duke, J. A. et al. CRC Handbook of medicinal herbs. 2002 (CRC MedHerbs ed2)
  • Gillespie, L. J. 1993. Euphorbiaceae of the Guianas: annotated species checklist and key to the genera (Brittonia) 45:56.
  • Govaerts, R. et al. World checklist and bibliography of Euphorbiaceae. 2000 (L Euphorb)
  • Groth, D. 2005. pers. comm. (pers. comm.)
  • Holm, L. et al. A geographical atlas of world weeds. 1979 (Atlas WWeed)
  • Holm, L. et al. World weeds: natural histories and distribution. 1997 (WorldWeeds)
  • Howard, R. 1989. Flora of the lesser Antilles. 1974-1989 (F LAnt) 5:78.
  • Jones, K. 1995. Cat's claw: healing vine of Peru 117-120.
  • Jørgensen, P. M. & S. León-Yánez, eds. Catalogue of the vascular plants of Ecuador. Monogr. Syst. Bot. Missouri Bot. Gard. 75. 1999 (L Ecuador)
  • McGuffin, M., J. T. Kartesz, A. Y. Leung, & A. O. Tucker Herbs of commerce, ed. 2. 2000 (Herbs Commerce ed2)
  • Núñez Meléndez, E. Plantas medicinales de Puerto Rico: Folklore y fundamentos científicos. 1982 (Pl Med PR)
  • Personal Care Products Council International Nomenclature Cosmetic Ingredient (INCI)
  • Rehm, S. Multilingual dictionary of agronomic plants. 1994 (Dict Rehm)
  • Rzedowski, J. & G. Rzedowski, eds. Flora del Bajio y de regiones adyacentes. 1991- (F Bajio)
  • Soukup, J. Vocabulario de los nombres vulgares de la flora peruana. (Names Soukup)
  • Tirtha, SadaShiva The Ayurveda encyclopedia: Natural secrets to healing, prevention, and longevity. 1998 (Ayurveda Ency)
  • Webster, G. L. 1970. A revision of Phyllanthus in the continental United States (Brittonia) 22:66.
  • Webster, G. L. 1957. A monographic study of the West Indian species of Phyllanthus J. Arnold Arbor. 38:300.
  • Wiersema, J. H. & B. León World economic plants: a standard reference (on-line edition) [medicinal plants only]. (World Econ Pl Med)
  • Zuloaga, F. O. & O. Morrone, eds. Catálogo de las plantas vasculares de la República Argentina. I. Pteridophyta, Gymnospermae y Angiospermae (Monocotyledonae), II. Dicotyledonae. Monogr. Syst. Bot. Missouri Bot. Gard. 60, 74. 1996, 1999 (L Argent)

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