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Overview

Comprehensive Description

Description

Annual herb, up to 70 cm tall. Leaves varying from deeply pinnatifid to almost entire, slightly blue-green, mostly hairless. Flowers in elongated terminal heads, yellow. Fruit narrowly cylindric, 2.5-5 cm long, tapering to a beaked apex.
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Derivation of specific name

juncea: Juncus- or rush-like
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Miscellaneous Details

"Notes: Along Lakeshores and River banks, Cultivated"
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Brief

Flowering class: Dicot Habit: Herb Distribution notes: Exotic
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Distribution

Worldwide distribution

Originally native to Asia but grown almost worldwide as a vegetable and occasionally found as a naturalised escape.
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National Distribution

Canada

Origin: Exotic

Regularity: Regularly occurring

Currently: Present

Confidence: Confident

United States

Origin: Exotic

Regularity: Regularly occurring

Currently: Unknown/Undetermined

Confidence: Confident

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"Maharashtra: Kolhapur Karnataka: Chikmagalur, Coorg, Hassan, Shimoga Kerala: Alapuzha, Idukki, Kollam, Kottayam, Kozhikode, Pathanamthitta, Palakkad, Thiruvananthapuram"
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"
Global Distribution

Central and East Asia and Europe, cultivated

Indian distribution

State - Kerala, District/s: Kollam, Wayanad, Idukki, Palakkad

"
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Distribution in Egypt

Nile region.

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Global Distribution

South and east Asia, cultivated and naturalized in many temperate and warm regions.

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Distribution: Probably wild in C. Asia (Asiatic origin) ; cultivated extensively and introduced in most parts of the world. Often found as an escape from cultivation.
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Physical Description

Morphology

Description

Erect annual, 30-90 (-200) cm tall, branched, + sparsely hairy below, glabrous above, with simple hairs. Lower leaves distinctly stalked, lyrate-pinnati¬fid, 2-3-jugate; margin irregularly and coarsely dentate; middle leaves ± simple, oblong-ovate, dentate; upper leaves oblong-linear, acute, narrowed at the base into a short stalk, entire or subentire. Racemes 20-40-flowered, lax, increasing up to 30 cm in fruit. Flowers c. 7 mm across, golden yellow; pedicel 5-8 mm long, increasing up to 15 mm in fruit, glabrous, ascending. Sepals 4-6 mm long, 1-1.5 mm broad, oblong, subequal, apex rounded or obtuse, yellowish, glabrous. Petals 6-9 mm long, 2.5-3 mm broad, obovate, clawed, apex rounded. Stamens 4-6:5-8 mm long; anthers about 2 mm long, obtuse with apex often curved. Siliquae 25-50 mm long, 2-3 mm broad, linear, subtetragonous, suberect, + torulose, narrowed into a 5-10 mm long seedless beak, glabrous; valve with a prominent mid-rib, yello¬wish; style 1.5-2.5 mm long with a short stigma; septum white, membranous. Seeds 10-20 in each locule, c. 1 mm in diam., globose, reddish-brown.
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Description

Herbs annual, (20-)30-100(-180) cm tall, pubescent or rarely glabrous, glaucous or not, sometimes with fleshy taproots. Stems erect, branched above. Basal and lowermost cauline leaves long petiolate; petiole (1-)2-8(-15) cm; leaf blade ovate, oblong, or lanceolate in outline, (4-)6-30(-80) × 1.5-15(-28) cm, lyrate-pinnatifid or pinnatisect; terminal lobe ovate, repand, dentate, or incised; lateral lobes 1-3 on each side of midvein, much smaller than terminal lobe, crisped incised, dentate, repand, or entire. Upper cauline leaves petiolate or subsessile, oblanceolate, oblong, lanceolate, or linear, to 10 × 5 cm, base cuneate to attenuate, margin entire or repand, rarely dentate. Fruiting pedicels straight, divaricate, (0.5-)0.8-1.5(-2) cm. Sepals oblong, (3.5-)4-6(-7) × 1-1.7 mm, spreading. Petals yellow, (6.5-)8-11(-13) × 5-7.5 mm, ovate or obovate, apex rounded or emarginate; claw 3-6 mm. Filaments 4-7 mm; anthers oblong, 1.5-2 mm. Fruit linear, (2-)3-5(-6) cm × 3-4(-5) mm, terete or slightly 4-angled, sessile, divaricate or ascending; valvular segment (1.5-)2-4.5 cm, 6-15(-20)-seeded per locule; valves with a prominent midvein, slightly torulose; terminal segment conical, (4-)5-10(-15) mm, seedless; style often obsolete. Seeds dark to light brown or gray, globose, 1-1.7 mm in diam., minutely reticulate. Fl. Mar-Jun, fr. Apr-Jul. 2n = 36*.
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Diagnostic Description

Diagnostic

"Annual erect herbs, to 1 m or more tall, densely long-branched especially above, glabrous, subglaucous. Leaves alternate: lower and basal petiolate with lamina up to 20 x 10 cm, irregularly dentate, with 1-3 pairs of lateral lobes, not auriculate; upper 5-10 x 1.5-3 cm, petiolate to subpetiolate, lanceolate or oblanceolate and acute, to obovate and obtuse, coarsely dentate to subentire, not auriculate. Inflorescence 15-30 cm long in fruit; pedicels 5-12 mm long, ascending. Sepals 3.5-4 mm long, oblong. Petals bright yellow, 4.5-8(-10) mm long, clawed with obovate limb. Anthers 1.5-2 mm broad with conical beak 5-7 mm long, midvein prominently keeled. Seeds 12-20, c. 1 mm diameter, dark reddish-brown, globose, finely reticulate."
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Diagnostic

Habit: Herb
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Ecology

Habitat

General Habitat

Cultivated
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Weed of cultivation.

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Habitat & Distribution

Fields, waste places, roadsides. Cultivated throughout China, sometimes naturalized especially in SW China [widely cultivated and naturalized elsewhere].
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Associations

Foodplant / parasite
Erysiphe cruciferarum parasitises live Brassica juncea

Plant / associate
larva of Eutrias tritoma is associated with Brassica juncea

Foodplant / spot causer
colony of Pseudocercosporella anamorph of Mycosphaerella capsellae causes spots on live leaf of Brassica juncea

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Population Biology

Frequency

Occasional
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Life History and Behavior

Cyclicity

Flowering and fruiting: May-July
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Flower/Fruit

Fl. Per.: March-May.
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Life Expectancy

Annual.

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Molecular Biology and Genetics

Molecular Biology

Barcode data: Brassica juncea

The following is a representative barcode sequence, the centroid of all available sequences for this species.


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Statistics of barcoding coverage: Brassica juncea

Barcode of Life Data Systems (BOLDS) Stats
Public Records: 5
Specimens with Barcodes: 9
Species With Barcodes: 1
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Conservation

Conservation Status

National NatureServe Conservation Status

Canada

Rounded National Status Rank: NNA - Not Applicable

United States

Rounded National Status Rank: NNA - Not Applicable

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NatureServe Conservation Status

Rounded Global Status Rank: GNR - Not Yet Ranked

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Management

These species are introduced in Switzerland.
  • Aeschimann, D. & C. Heitz. 2005. Synonymie-Index der Schweizer Flora und der angrenzenden Gebiete (SISF). 2te Auflage. Documenta Floristicae Helvetiae N° 2. Genève.   http://www.crsf.ch/ External link.
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Relevance to Humans and Ecosystems

Benefits

Uses

Medicinal
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Wikipedia

Brassica juncea

This article is about the plant. For other uses, see Mustard.

Brassica juncea, mustard greens, Indian mustard, Chinese mustard, or leaf mustard is a species of mustard plant. Subvarieties include southern giant curled mustard, which resembles a headless cabbage such as kale, but with a distinct horseradish-mustard flavor. It is also known as green mustard cabbage.

Uses[edit]

Food[edit]

The leaves, the seeds (Raai in Gujarati), and the stem of this mustard variety are edible. The plant appears in some form in African, Italian, Indian, Chinese, Japanese, Korean, and soul food cuisine. Cultivars of B. juncea are grown as greens, and for the production of oilseed. In Russia, this is the main variety grown for production of mustard oil, which after refining is considered[according to whom?] one of the best vegetable oils. It is widely used in canning, baking and margarine production in Russia, and the majority of table mustard there is also made from this species of mustard plant.

The leaves are used in African[1] cooking, and leaves, seeds, and stems are used in Indian cuisine, particularly in mountain regions of Nepal, as well as in the Punjab cuisine of India and Pakistan, where a famous dish called sarson da saag (mustard greens)[2] is prepared.[3] B. juncea subsp. tatsai, which has a particularly thick stem, is used to make the Indian pickle called achar, and the Chinese pickle zha cai. The mustard made from the seeds of the B. juncea is called brown mustard.[4] The leaves & seeds (Raai in Gujarati)are used in many Indian dishes.

The Gorkhas of Darjeeling and Sikkim prepare pork with mustard greens (also called rayo in Nepali). It is usually eaten with relish with steamed rice, but could also be eaten with chapati (griddle breads).

Brassica juncea is more pungent than the closely related Brassica oleracea greens (kale, cabbage, collard greens, et cetera), and is frequently mixed with these milder greens in a dish of "mixed greens", which may include wild greens such as dandelion. As with other greens in soul food cooking, mustard greens are generally flavored by being cooked for a long period with ham hocks or other smoked pork products. Mustard greens are high in vitamin A and vitamin K.

Fried mustard green dish from Assam, India
Cantonese-style braised mustard greens, with wolfberries

Chinese and Japanese cuisines also make use of mustard greens. In Japanese cuisine it is known as Takana and is often pickled and used as filling in onigiri or as a condiment. A large variety of B. juncea cultivars are used, including zha cai, mizuna, takana (var. integlofolia), juk gai choy, and xuelihong (雪里红 or 雪里蕻; var. crispifolia). Asian mustard greens are most often stir-fried or pickled. A Southeast Asian dish called asam gai choy or kiam chai boey is often made with leftovers from a large meal. It involves stewing mustard greens with tamarind, dried chillies and leftover meat on the bone.

Food supplement[edit]

B. juncea can hyperaccumulate cadmium and many other soil trace elements. Specially cultured, it can be used as a selenium, chromium, iron and zinc food supplement.

Green manure[edit]

A bunch of fresh mustard greens from the United States
Mustard greens, cooked, boiled, drained, without salt
Nutritional value per 100 g (3.5 oz)
Energy110 kJ (26 kcal)
4.51 g
Sugars1.41 g
Dietary fiber2 g
0.47 g
2.56 g
Vitamins
Vitamin A equiv.
(77%)
618 μg
(69%)
7400 μg
10400 μg
Thiamine (B1)
(4%)
0.041 mg
Riboflavin (B2)
(5%)
0.063 mg
Niacin (B3)
(3%)
0.433 mg
(2%)
0.12 mg
Vitamin B6
(8%)
0.098 mg
Folate (B9)
(2%)
9 μg
Vitamin C
(30%)
25.3 mg
Vitamin E
(12%)
1.78 mg
Vitamin K
(564%)
592.7 μg
Trace metals
Calcium
(12%)
118 mg
Iron
(7%)
0.87 mg
Magnesium
(4%)
13 mg
Phosphorus
(6%)
42 mg
Potassium
(3%)
162 mg
Sodium
(1%)
9 mg
Zinc
(2%)
0.22 mg

Percentages are roughly approximated using US recommendations for adults.
Source: USDA Nutrient Database

Vegetable growers sometimes grow mustard as a green manure. Its main purpose is to act as a mulch, covering the soil to suppress weeds between crops. If grown as a green manure, the mustard plants are cut down at the base when sufficiently grown, and left to wither on the surface, continuing to act as a mulch until the next crop is due for sowing, when the mustard is dug in. In the UK, summer and autumn-sown mustard is cut down from October. April sowings can be cut down in June, keeping the ground clear for summer-sown crops.[citation needed] One of the disadvantages of mustard as a green manure is its propensity to harbor club root.

Phytoremediation[edit]

This plant is used in phytoremediation to remove heavy metals, such as lead, from the soil in hazardous waste sites because it has a higher tolerance for these substances and stores the heavy metals in its cells. The plant is then harvested and disposed of properly. This method is easier and less expensive than traditional methods for the removal of heavy metals. It also prevents erosion of soil from these sites preventing further contamination.[citation needed]

See also[edit]

For other edible plants in the family Brassicaceae, see cruciferous vegetables.

References[edit]

Sources[edit]

  1. ^ Grubben, G.J.H. & Denton, O.A. (2004) Plant Resources of Tropical Africa 2. Vegetables. PROTA Foundation, Wageningen; Backhuys, Leiden; CTA, Wageningen.
  2. ^ "Sarson Ka Saag". Retrieved 14 February 2014. 
  3. ^ Chandrassekaran, V. K. (February 24, 2013). "Flavour of Punjab". The Hindu. Retrieved 6 March 2013. 
  4. ^ Sakorn, P.; Rakariyatham, N. (June 13, 2012). "Biodegradation of glucosinolates in brown mustard seed meal (Brassica juncea) by Aspergillus sp. NR-4201 in liquid and solid-state cultures.". PubMed 13 (6): 395–9. PMID 12713131. 

Further reading[edit]

  • Everitt, J.H.; Lonard, R.L.; Little, C.R. (2007). Weeds in South Texas and Northern Mexico. Lubbock: Texas Tech University Press.  ISBN 0-89672-614-2
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Epidemic dropsy

Epidemic Dropsy
Classification and external resources
1-s2.0-S0304416504003162-gr1.jpg
Epidemic dropsy patients with the characteristic bilateral pitting edema of the extremities (indicated by arrows)
ICD-10T62.8
DiseasesDB32789

Epidemic dropsy is a form of edema of extremities due to intoxication with Argemone mexicana (Mexican prickly poppy).[1][2]

Epidemic dropsy is a clinical state resulting from use of edible oils adulterated with Argemone mexicana seed oil.

Sanguinarine and dihydrosanguinarine are two major toxic alkaloids of argemone oil, which cause widespread capillary dilatation, proliferation and increased capillary permeability. When mustard oil is adulterated deliberately (as in most cases) or accidentally with argemone oil, proteinuria (specifically loss of albumin) occurs, with a resultant edema as would occur in nephrotic syndrome.

Other major symptoms are bilateral pitting edema of extremities, headache, nausea, loose bowels, erythema, glaucoma and breathlessness.

Leakage of the protein-rich plasma component into the extracellular compartment leads to the formation of edema. The haemodynamic consequences of this vascular dilatation and permeability lead to a state of relative hypovolemia with a constant stimulus for fluid and salt conservation by the kidneys. Illness begins with gastroenteric symptoms followed by cutaneous erythema and pigmentation. Respiratory symptoms such as cough, shortness of breath and orthopnoea, progressing to frank right-sided congestive cardiac failure, are seen.

Mild to moderate anaemia, hypoproteinaemia, mild to moderate renal azotemia, retinal haemorrhages, and glaucoma are common manifestations. There is no specific therapy. Removal of the adulterated oil and symptomatic treatment of congestive cardiac failure and respiratory symptoms, along with administration of antioxidants and multivitamins, remain the mainstay of treatment.[1]

Epidemic dropsy occurs as an epidemic in places where use of mustard oil, (from the seeds of Brassica juncea commonly known as Indian mustard ) as cooking medium is common.[2]

Prevalence[edit]

Besides India, widespread epidemics have been reported from Mauritius, Fiji Islands, Northwest Cape districts of South Africa, Madagascar and also from Nepal. Apart from a South African study, where the epidemic occurred through contamination in wheat flour, all the epidemics occurred through the consumption of mustard oil contaminated with argemone oil.[2]

In these populations mustard oil is the prime edible oil by culture.

The earliest reference to argemone oil poisoning was made by Lyon,[3] who reported four cases of poisoning in Calcutta in 1877 from the use of this oil in food.

Since then, epidemic dropsy has been reported from Bengal, Bihar, Orissa, Madhya Pradesh, Haryana, Assam, J&K, Uttar Pradesh, Gujarat, Delhi and Maharashtra, mainly due to consumption of food cooked in argemone oil mixed with mustard oil or occasionally by body massage with contaminated oil.[2]

The epidemic in 1998 at New Delhi, India is the largest so far, in which over 60 persons lost their lives and more than 3000 victims were hospitalized.[2]

Even after that the epidemics occurred at alarming frequency in Gwalior (2000), Kannauj (2002) and Lucknow (2005) cities of India.[4]

Argemone mexicana Linn[edit]

Argemone mexicana (family Papaveraceae), a native of West Indies and naturalized in India, is known as “Shailkanta” in Bengal and “Bharbhanda” in Uttar Pradesh. It is also popularly known as “Pivladhatura” or “Satyanashi”, meaning devastating. The plant grows wildly in mustard and other fields. Its seeds are black in colour and are similar to the dark coloured mustards seeds (Brassica juncea) in shape and size. Adulteration of argemone seeds in light yellow colored mustard seeds (Brassica compestris) can easily be detected, but these seeds are rather difficult to visualize when mixed with dark coloured mustard seeds.

Argemone seeds yield approximately 35% oil. Alkaloid content in argemone oil varies from 0.44% to 0.50%. Argemone seeds find use as a substitute because of the easy availability, low cost and their complete miscibility of their oil with mustard oil.[2]

Mechanism of toxicity[edit]

Mortality is usually due to heart failure, pneumonia, respiratory distress syndrome or renal failure and is around 5%.Long-term follow-up studies are scanty so the long-term effects of argemone oil toxicity have not been documented. Its been reported that 25% of cases will have oedema beyond 2 months and 10% beyond 5 months.Pigmentation of skin and excessive loss of hair, which lasted 4–5 months following the disease. The majority of patients completely recover in about 3 months.[1]

ROS and Oxidative stress : Studies in the blood of dropsy patients has revealed that there is extensive ROS production (singlet oxygen and hydrogen peroxide) in the argemone oil intoxication leading to depletion of total antioxidants in the body and especially lipid soluble antioxidants such as vitamin E and A (tocopherol and retinol).[4] There is an extensive damage to the anti-oxidant defense system (anti-oxidant enzymes and anti-oxidants) of blood. Prior, in vitro studies have shown that reactive oxygen species (ROS) are involved in AO induced toxicity causing peroxidative damage of lipids in various hepatic sub-cellular fractions including microsomes and mitochondria of rats. The damage in hepatic microsomal membrane causes loss of activity of cytochrome P-450 and other membrane bound enzymes responsible for xenobiotic metabolism which leads to delayed bioelimination of sanguinarine and enhances its cumulative toxicity.[5] Several lines of evidence have been shown to explain the mechanism of toxicity of argemone oil/alkaloid.[6] The toxicity of sanguinarine has been shown to be dependent on the reactivity of its iminium bond with nucleophilic sites like thiol groups, present at the active sites of the enzymes and other vital proteins and thus suggesting the electrophilic nature of the alkaloid.

Pulmonary Toxicity: The decrease in glycogen levels following argemone oil intoxication could be due to enhanced glycogenolysis leading to the formation of glucose-1-phosphate, which enters the glycoltic pathway resulting in accumulation of pyruvate in the blood of experimental animals and dropsy patients. The enhancement of glycogenolysis can further be supported by the interference of sanguinarine in the uptake of glucose through blocking of sodium pump via Na+-K+-ATPase and thereby inhibiting the active transport of glucose across intestinal barrier. It is well established that increased pyruvate concentration in blood uncouples oxidative phosphorylation, and this may be responsible for thickening of interalveolar septa and disorganized alveolar spaces in lungs of argemone oil-fed rats and the breathlessness as has been observed in human victims.[2]

Cardiac Failure:The inhibition of Na+-K+-ATPase activity of heart by sanguinarine is due to interaction with the cardiac glycoside receptor site of the enzyme,which may be responsible for producing degenerative changes in cardiac muscle fibers in the auricular wall of rats fed argemone oil and could be related to tachycardia and cardiac failure in Epidemic Dropsy patients.[7]

Delayed clearance:Destruction of hepatic cytochrome P450 significantly affects the metabolic clearance by liver,.[8][9] The retention of sanguinarine in the GI tract, liver, lung, kidney, heart, and serum even after 96 hrs of exposure indicates these as the likely target sites of argemone oil toxicity.[2]

Treatment[edit]

Withdrawal of the contaminated cooking oil is the most important initial step. Bed rest with leg elevation and a protein-rich diet are useful. Supplements of calcium, antioxidants (vitamin C and E),and thiamine and other B vitamins are commonly used. Corticosteroids and antihistaminics such as promethazine have been advocated by some investigators,but demonstrated efficacy is lacking. Diuretics are used universally but caution must be exercised not to deplete the intravascular volume unless features of frank congestive cardiac failure are present, as oedema is mainly due to increased capillary permeability. Cardiac failure is managed by bed rest, salt restriction, digitalis and diuretics. Pneumonia is treated with appropriate antibiotics. Renal failure may need dialysis therapy and complete clinical recovery is seen. Glaucoma may need operative intervention, but generally responds to medical management.[1]

Prevention[edit]

  • Selective cultivation of yellow-seeded mustard with which neither black-coloured Argemone seeds nor dark-brown Argemone oil mixes well so that adulteration can easily be detected even with the naked eye.
  • A strict ban on the sale of unbranded and unpacked mustard oil, and a statutory certificate from manufacturers of labelled mustard oils about the freedom of the contents from Argemone alkaloids.
  • Education and motivation of farmers to cultivate yellow-seeded mustard and to make them aware of the identity of Argemone plants which grow as weeds in mustard fields.
  • Government agencies involved in enforcing the provisions of the Prevention of Food Adulteration Act must be made accountable in the event of occurrence of such epidemics. This means exemplary punishments for unscrupulous traders.[1]

References

  1. ^ a b c d e Sharma, B. D.; Malhotra, S.; Bhatia, V.; Rathee, M. (November 1999). "Epidemic dropsy in India". Postgraduate Medical Journal 75 (889): 657–661. doi:10.1136/pgmj.75.889.657. PMC 1741391. PMID 10621875. 
  2. ^ a b c d e f g h Das, M.; Khanna, S. K. (1997). "Clinicoepidemiological, Toxicological, and Safety Evaluation Studies on Argemone Oil". Critical Reviews in Toxicology 27 (3): 273–297. doi:10.3109/10408449709089896. PMID 9189656. 
  3. ^ Lyon, I. B. (1889). Textbook of Medical Jurisprudence for India (1st ed.). p. 214. 
  4. ^ a b Das, M.; Babu, K.; Reddy, N. P.; Srivastava, L. M. (2005). "Oxidative Damage of Plasma Proteins and Lipids in Epidemic Dropsy Patients: Alterations in Antioxidant Status". Biochimica et Biophysica Acta 1722 (2): 209–217. doi:10.1016/j.bbagen.2004.12.014. PMID 15715957. 
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Variation in the basal leaf morphology of Brassica juncea is tremendous, and minor variants have been recognized at specific, subspecific, and varietal ranks. All these "taxa" have 2n = 36, and they can be readily crossed and produce fully fertile offspring. Seven varieties and three species were recognized in FRPS. Of these, only three major types are recognized here as varieties. Brassica juncea var. megarrhiza and B. napiformis represent one taxon (var. napiformis), while B. juncea var. tumida is quite distinct in leaf morphology. Both varieties are recognized here. The other varieties, which are based solely on the type of leaf margin, are reduced to the synonymy of var. juncea. These include var. gracilis (margin doubly serrate or incised), var. multisecta (margin with linear or filiform lobes), var. foliosa (margin sinuate-dentate), var. crispifolia (margin sharply dentate or incised), and var. multiceps (margin unlobed, slightly incised, or irregularly doubly serrate). Brassica integrifolia was described from European plants of B. juncea that became naturalized in St. Croix, an island in the Caribbean Sea. It is said to differ from B. juncea in having undivided leaves and smaller fruit, but these alleged differences are unrealistic, and B. integrifolia does not merit any taxonomic status.
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Some authors recognize three varieties, glabrous, sparsely hispid, and hispid (Blatter in J. Bombay Nat. Hist. Soc., 34 (3) : 299, 1930) which are of doubtful taxonomic value, as it is impossible to draw a definite line between these indumen¬tum characters and their constancy. Much honey is collected by insects from its flowers and seeds are oil producing (both fatty oil and volatile “mustard” oil.
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