Erect tree growing to a height of 15-20 meters. Leaves are alternative,
smooth, dark green, elliptic to narrow-obovate with entire margins.
Flowers are greenish white in axillary clusters. Pedicels are long.
Fruit is extremely variable in size and form, oval, subglobose, pear-shaped
or spindle-shaped, with or without an pointed apex or curved beak, yellow-orange
when ripe with an edible sweet and meat pulp.
Indigenous to South America.
Introduced to the Philippines during the Spanish times.
Cultivated for its edible fruit and as shade tree.
- Fruit is edible; eaten out of hand,
laced with lime or lemon juice.
- Rich in niacin and carotene with a fair amount of vitamin C
- In other countries, frut used for jams, marmalades and flavoring for
- Food value per 100 g of edible portion: Calories, 138.8; protein, 1.68 g; fat, 0.13 g; carbohydrates, 36.69 g, calcium, 26.5 mg; calcium, 26.5 mg; iron, 0.92 mg; thiamine, 0.17 mg, riboflavin, 0.01 mg, niacin, 3.72 mg, ascorbic acid, 58.1 mg; amino acids, tryptophan 28 mg, methionine 13 mg, lysine 84 mg.
decoction of astringent bark used for fevers.
In Cuba, decoction of
bark used for skin eruptions ; seeds used for ulcers; the fruits for
Latex: In Central American, latex extracted from the tree used to adulterate chicle.
Timber: Strong, hard and heavy; valued for plank and rafter making.
Pharmaceutical: In the 70s, seed derivative investigated for its activity against seborrheic dermatitis o the scalp; the study was stalled by the difficulty of procuring sufficient seeds for the study.
Study yielded six stilbenes and six flavonoid glycosides. Stilbenes
have been shown to exhibit a wide range of biologic activities: anti-HIV,
antitumor, antiinflammatory, antimicrobial and hepatoprotective. The
distilbene ampelopsin B was found to arrest mitosis in a cell-based
• Polyphenolic antioxidants: Fresh
fruit yielded seven polyphenolic antioxidants were isolated from Pouteria
species. Highest activity was found in P sapota and lowest in P campechiana.
• Seborrheic Dermatitis:
In the 70s, preliminary findings of a study showed it to be active against seborrheic dermatitis of the scalp.
• Antibacterial: Study on the stem of Pouteria campechiana showed slight activity against E coli and P aeruginosa, the fungi C albicans and T mentagrophytes. They were inactive against S aureus, B subtilis and A niger.
• Immunomodulatory: Study of the methanolic extract of stem bark of Pouteria cambodiana showed a potent immunological effect with a good dose-dependent effect in peritoneal macrophage phagocytosis and activated lysosomal enzyme activity.