Introduction of Ku Xin Ren:Semen Armeniacae Amarum or Bitter Apricot Seed.

TCM Herbalism:Medicinals and Classifications. ✵The TCM herbalism is also known as pharmaceutics of Traditional Chinese Medicine, or Chinese pharmaceutics, is the branch of health science dealing with the preparation, dispensing, and proper utilization of Chinese herbs. It is majorly composed of Introduction of Chinese Medicinals, Classification of Chinese Herbs, Formulas, and Patent medicines.

Classifications of Herbs:Antitussives Herbs.

 TCM Herbs Icon02 Introduction: Antitussives herbs: an agent or substance herbs that stops coughing.

 
Semen Armeniacae Amarum(Bitter Apricot Seed).

Bitter Apricot Seed Pin Yin Name: Kǔ Xìnɡ Rén.
 English Name: Bitter Apricot Seed.
 Latin Name: Semen Armeniacae Amarum.
 Property and flavor: slight warm, bitter, mild toxicity.

 Brief introduction: The herb Semen Armeniacae Amarum is the dried ripe seed or kernel of Prunus armeniaca L.var.ansu Maxim., Prunus sibirica L., Prunus mandshurica(Maxim.) Koehne or Prunus armeniaca L.(family Rosaceae), used to relieve cough and dyspnea with profuse expectoration, and also to relieve constipation. The herb is commonly known as Semen Armeniacae Amarum, Bitter Apricot Seed, Kǔ Xìnɡ Rén.

 Botanical source: The herb Semen Armeniacae Amarum(Bitter Apricot Seed) is the dried ripe seed or kernel of the (1). Prunus armeniaca L., or (2). Prunus armeniaca L.var.ansu Maxim., or (3). Prunus sibirica L., or (4). Prunus mandshurica(Maxim.) Koehne., they are plants of the Prunus genus, the Rosaceae family of the Rosales order.

(1).Prunus armeniaca L.


 Prunus armeniaca L. Botanical description: The Prunus armeniaca L., is a plant of the Rosaceae family and Prunus genus, it is commonly known as "Prunus armeniaca", "Almond Tree", or "Xing Shu", trees, 5~8 (12) m tall; round crown, oblate or oblong; bark grayish brown, longitudinally split; perennial branches light brown, large lenticels, annual branches light reddish brown, shiny , Hairless, with many small lenticels. Leaves broadly ovate or ovate, 5~9 cm long, 4~8 cm wide, apex acute to short acuminate, base rounded to subcordate, leaf blade obtusely serrate, both surfaces glabrous or veined below Periods pilose; petiole 2~3.5 cm long, glabrous, base often with 1~6 glands. Flowers solitary, 2~3 cm in diam., open before leaves; pedicels short, 1~3 mm long, pubescent; calyx violet-green; calyx tube cylindric, outer base pubescent; bracts ovate to Ovate oblong, apex acute or obtuse, reflexed after anthesis; petals rounded to obovate, white or reddish, with short claws; stamens ca. 20~45, slightly shorter than petals; ovary pubescent Style longer or several as long as stamens, lower ones pilose. Fruit spherical, dilute to obovate, ca. 2.5 cm in diameter or more, white, yellow to yellow-red, often blushing, slightly pubescent; fruit juicy, mature without cracking; nuclear oval or oval, flat on both sides, top round blunt, symmetrical base, thin asymmetry, slightly rough or smooth surface, round ribs round, often slightly blunt, dorsal ribs straight, ventral keel-like edges; kind of bitter or sweet. It is flowering from March to April, fruiting from June to July. 2n=16.

 Growth characteristics: The tree is cultivated in low mountain or hilly country.

 Characters of herbs: The seeds are flat and heart-shaped. The outer skin is yellow-brown to brown. The top is slightly pointed, the bottom is obtuse round and thick. The seed coat is thin. Two cotyledons can be seen after the removal of the seed coat, which is milky white. The seed has no smell, bitter taste.

 Pharmacological actions: ①.slightly inhibit the respiratory center; ②.inhibitory effect on Ascaris, hookworm, pinworm, typhoid, and paratyphoid, lubricating and relaxing the bowels; ③.weak anticancer effect; ④.enhance immunity; ⑤.over dosage will cause poisoning.

 Medicinal efficacy: Downbear Qi(sending down abnormally ascending), relieving cough and asthma, relaxing bowel, indicated for the treatment of cough and asthma, fullness in the chest with much phlegm, blood deficiency and exhaustion of body fluid, dryness of the intestine and constipation.

 Administration of Semen Armeniacae Amarum(Kǔ Xìnɡ Rén): 
 
Reference: Administration Guide of Semen Armeniacae Amarum(Kǔ Xìnɡ Rén)
TCM Books: Internally:4.5~9 grams(CP) or 3~10 grams(CHMM), water decoction, raw herb decoct later. Internal administration should not be over dosage, so as to avoid poisoning.
 Precautions and Adverse Reactions: should not be used overdose internally, to avoid poisoning.

(2).Prunus armeniaca L.var.ansu Maxim.


 Prunus armeniaca L.var.ansu Maxim. Botanical description: The Prunus armeniaca L.var.ansu Maxim., is a plant of the Rosaceae family and Prunus genus, it is commonly known as "Bitter Almond" or "Montain Almond",or "Shan Xing", Shrubs or small trees, 2~5 m tall; bark dark gray; branchlets glabrous, sparsely pubescent when young, grayish brown or reddish brown. Leaf blade ovate or suborbicular, 5~10 cm long, 4~7 cm wide, apex long acuminate to tip, base rounded to subcordate, leaf blade margin obtusely serrate, both surfaces glabrous, veins submerged below Intersected pubescent; petiole 2~3.5 cm long, glabrous, with or without small glands. Flowers solitary, 1.5~2 cm in diam., open before leaves; pedicels 1~2 mm long; calyx purple, calyx tube-shaped, base minutely pubescent or glabrous; sepals oblong-elliptic, apex pointed, Reflexed after flowering; petals suborbicular or obovate, white or pink; stamens nearly as long as petals; ovary pubescent. Fruit oblate spheroid, 1.5~2.5 cm in diam., yellow or orange-red, sometimes with blush, pubescent; fruit flesh thin and dry, cracking at maturity, taste sour, inedible, cracking along abdominal lines at maturity; nuclei spheroid, easy to separate from the flesh, both sides of the flat, top round, base side deflection, asymmetry, the surface is relatively smooth, ventral surface is wide and sharp and bitter taste. It is flowering from March to April, fruiting from June to July.

(3).Prunus sibirica L.


 Prunus sibirica L. Botanical description: The Prunus sibirica L., is a plant of the Rosaceae family and Prunus genus, it is commonly known as "Prunus sibirica" or "Siberian Almond", or "Xi Bo Li Ya Xing", deciduous shrub plant, 1~2 meters high. Leaves alternate, leaves broadly ovate, with finely blunt serrated edges. Flowers solitary, petals white or pink. Drupe subglobose, slightly flattened on both sides, yellow and reddish, pubescent, short pedicel, flesh thin and dry, off the nucleus. Its flowering period is in May, its fruiting period is from July to August.

(4).Prunus mandshurica(Maxim.)Koehne.


 Prunus mandshurica Maxim.Koehne Botanical description: The Prunus mandshurica(Maxim.) Koehne., is a plant of the Rosaceae family and Prunus genus, it is commonly known as "Prunus mandshurica", trees, 5~15 meters high; bark wood with well-developed cork, deeply split, dark gray; twigs glabrous, reddish-brown or slightly greenish. Leaf blade broadly ovate to broadly elliptic, 5~12 cm long, 3~6 cm wide, apex acuminate to caudal, base broadly cuneate to rounded, sometimes cordate, leaf blade with irregularly slender, sharply serrated In childhood, the two masked hairs gradually fell off. When old, only the underside of the veins were pilose; petiole length 1.5~3 cm, often 2 glands. Flowers solitary, 2~3 PCT in diameter, open before leaves; pedicels 7~10 mm long, glabrous or sparsely pubescent when young; calyx reddish brown, often glabrous; calyx tube-shaped; bracts long Round or elliptic oblong, apex obtuse or acute, often with inconspicuously small serrations; petals broadly obovate or suborbicular, pink or white; stamens numerous, nearly as long as or slightly longer than petals; Room densely pubescent. Fruit nearly spherical, 1.5~2.6 cm in diam., yellow, sometimes with sunny blush or red spots, pubescent; fruit slightly fleshy or dry, pickled or slightly bitter, large fruit type edible, scented; nuclear near Spherical or broadly elliptic, 13~18 mm long, 11~18 mm wide, flat on both sides, blunt or slightly pointed at the top, proximal symmetry, micro-wrinkled surface, ventral blunt, lateral ridges not developed, with a shallow longitudinal groove, the back edge is nearly round; the taste is bitter, or bitter-sweet. It is flowering in April, its fruiting period is from May to July.
 
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References:
  • 1.Introduction of Ku Xin Ren:Semen Armeniacae Amarum or Bitter Apricot Seed.
  • 2.TCM Books:DCTM(Dictionary of the Chinese Traditional Medicine),CHMM(Chinese Herbal Materia Medica).

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