Toluifera Balsamum,


A balsam.

Habitat. S. America (Venezuela, Colombia, Peru); high rolling countries. Syn. Bals. Tolu., Tolu Balsam; Fr. Baume - du Tolu - de Carthagene; Ger. Tolubalsam.

Bal'sa-mum. L. fr. Gr.

Balsamum Tolutanum Balsam Of Tolu 422

for balsam, name of balsam tree - i. e., from its characteristic secretion.

Tol-u-ta'num. L. adj. form. fr. tolutanus, of or pertaining to Tolu (Santiago de Tolu, Colombia, whence it first entered commerce) - i. e., the secretion.

Plant. - Evergreen tree 24 M. (80°) high, often branchless for 15 M. (50°) above ground, roundish spreading head; bark smooth, yellowish-brown, with numerous white lenticels; leaves having 4-7 leaflets; flowers upon smooth pedicels, dense racemes, 10-12.5 Cm. (4-5') long; calyx broadly tubular upon hispid pedicel, mouth 3-4-lobed; anthers versatile; fruit 10-12.5 Cm. (4-5') long. Balsam (of Tolu) is a yellowish-brown plastic solid, brittle when old, dried, or exposed to cold, transparent in thin layers; odor pleasant, aromatic, vanilla-like; taste mild, aromatic; soluble in alcohol, chloroform, ether, solutions of fixed alkalies, usually leaving insoluble residue; nearly insoluble in water, petroleum benzin; alcoholic solution acid. Tests: 1. Shake 1 Gm. with carbon disulphide (25), let stand 30 minutes, filter, evaporate 15 Ml. (Cc.) to dryness, dissolve residue in glacial acetic acid, + few drops of sulphuric acid - not green; shake remainder of filtrate with equal volume of aqueous solution of copper acetate (1 in 1000) - not green (abs. of rosin, copaiba). Dose, gr. 5-30 (.3-2 Gm.).

Adulterations. - Turpentine - blackish instead of cherry-red with sulphuric acid, soluble in carbon disulphide; sweet gum - yields styracin to hot benzin, crystallizing when cold; storax, rosin, copaiba, saponifi-able substances, various other resins. A factitious balsam has been found containing storax 63 p. c.

Commercial. - Plant resembles Toluifera Pereirae in flowers and fruit but differs from it in having shorter leaves, smaller and fewer leaflets, recurved with non-puckered margin, non-hairy rachis and petiole, and less prominent glands. Balsam - a physiological product in very young tissues, thereafter becoming pathological, possibly an antiseptic protective against depleting local injury - is collected by making V-shaped incisions through the bark and hollowing out the wood below each to support a small calabash cup for catching the flow, there often occurring 20-30 of these from the ground upward (2.5-3 M.; 8-10°), the higher being cut from ladders or scaffolds. Bleeding continues, July-April, at the rate of filling the cups "each moon," they being emptied as occasion demands into rawhide flask-shaped bags (carried by donkeys) which when filled are sent to ports along the Magdalena and Orinoco Rivers where the balsam is transferred to cylindrical tins (10-25 pounds; 4.5-11.5 Kg.), formerly calabashes or baked earthen jars, and as such enters commerce via Carthagena.

Fig. 195.   Toluifera Balsamum: twig one third natural size, with fruit.

Fig. 195. - Toluifera Balsamum: twig one-third natural size, with fruit.

Constituents. - Resin 75-80 p. c., Cinnamic and Benzoic acids 18-20 p. c, Volatile oil 1 p. c, Vanillin .5 p. c., benzylic cinnamate and benzylic benzoate, the last two forming an acid, aromatic oily liquid 7.5 p. c.

Resin, C18H20O5. - Chief constituent, consisting of tolu-resinotannol combined with benzoic and cinnamic acids; it is amorphous, black, brittle, similar to that of T. Pereirae, having a portion soluble in carbon disulphide, which upon evaporation yields a crystalline, nearly colorless residue about 25 p. c. of the balsam; a portion of the resin is sparingly, and another readily, soluble in alcohol.

Volatile Oil. - Obtained by distilling with water; chiefly tolene, C10H16, hardening by exposure, odor pleasant, sp. gr. 0.858.

Acids. - Obtained by distillation - benzoic, cinnamic, with benzylic ethers of both, the benzyl cinnamate predominating. Trommsdorf found resin 88 p. c, volatile oil .2 p. c., cinnamic acid 12 p. c., this latter coming over as a heavy oil condensing into white crystalline mass. Dry distillation gives the above acids and ethers, also styrol, phenol, toluol - this latter being found in coal tar, wood tar, organic compounds, balsams (Peru, etc.) and resins; it is a colorless, oily liquid, readily convertible into benzoic acid.

Preparations. - 1. Tinctura Tolutana. Tincture of Tolu. (Syn., Tr. Tolu., Tolu Tincture; Fr. Teinture de Baume de Tolu; Ger. Tolubalsamtinktur.)

Manvfacture: 20 p. c. Similar to Tinctura Aloes, page 110; menstruum: alcohol. Dose, x-30 (.6-2 Ml. (Cc.)).

Prep.: 1. Syrupus Tolutanus. Syrup of Tolu. (Syn., Syr. Tolu.; Fr. Sirop (balsamique) - de Baume de Tolu; Ger. Tolubalsam-sirup.) Manufacture: 1 p. c. Rub tincture of Tolu 5 Ml. (Cc.) with magnesium carbonate 1 Gm., sugar 6 Gm., gradually add, constantly triturating, water 43 Ml. (Cc.), filter, dissolve in clear filtrate, gently heating, sugar 76 Gm., strain syrup (hot), add water q. s. 100 Ml. (Cc.). Dose, 3j-4 (4-15 Ml. (Cc.)). 2. Tinctura Benzoini Composita, 4 p. c. Unoff. Preps.: Emulsion. Inhalations. Lozenges. Properties. - Stimulant, expectorant, disinfectant, vulnerary, stomachic.

Uses. - Much less decided than balsam of Peru, but similar, bronchial affections, diphtheritic deposits, catarrh, coughs, flavoring, perfumery.

Incompatibles: Water and aqueous preparations with the tincture. Synergists: Balsams, aromatic drugs, volatile oils, stimulant expectorants.

Allied Plants: