The dried leaves and flowering or fruiting tops, containing not less than .065 p. c. of alkaloids.
Habitat. Europe, Asia, waste places, neglected ruins, old gardens, sandy soil; naturalized in N. America (New England to Michigan); cultivated in England, etc.
Syn. Hyosc, Henbane, Black Henbane, Hog's-bean, Poison Tobacco, Fetid (Stinking) Nightshade, Insane-root, Henbell; Br. Hyoscyami Folia; Fr. Jusquiame noire, Feuilles Jusquiame noire, Belene, Chenile; Ger. Bilsenkrautblatter.
Hy-os-cy'a-mus. L. fr. Gr
a hog, +
a bean, hog bean - i. e., its fruit (bean) acts on swine and fowls, as a poison or intoxicant, but cows, horses, dogs, and goats can tolerate a great quantity.
Ni'ger. L. black - i. e., inside throat of flowers purplish-black.
Hen'bane. Hen + bane - i. e., whole plant fatal to poultry - bane to hens.
Plant. - Biennial herb, .6-1.3 M. (2-4°) high; stem subcylindrical, somewhat compressed, longitudinally wrinkled, green, appearing 2nd year, covered with long, soft, jointed, glandular, white hairs, viscid, clammy, fetid odor; root large, brown, interior white, wrinkled, compact, fibrous; flowers May-June, 3 Cm. (1 1/5) long, anthers and style purple. Leaves, usually much wrinkled (with numerous stems and flowering or fruiting tops), 25 Cm. (10') long, 10 Cm. (4') broad, ovate-oblong, inequilateral, lower with short petiole, upper sessile, acute, coarsely and angularly 1-4-toothed (lobed), grayish-green, glandular-hairy, particularly lower surface; flowers nearly sessile with urn-shaped (urceolate), unequally 5-toothed calyx, yellowish, campanulate, purple net-veined corolla; fruit 2-locular, globular pyxis (capsule), 12 Mm. (1/2') thick, enclosed in large urn-shaped, 5-toothed calvx; 34 stems 3-10 Cm. (1 1/5-4') long, 2-5 Mm. (1/12-1/5') thick, odor heavy, distinctive; taste somewhat bitter, acrid. Powder, grayish-green; microscopically - calcium oxalate crystals (prisms, twins, rosette aggregates), numerous hairs (glandular and non-glandular), stomata, tracheae, sclerenchymatous fibres, pollen grains; H. mu'ticus (leaves, powder) recognized by characteristic, branching, non-glandular hairs. Solvents: diluted alcohol; boiling water partially. Dose, gr. 2-10 (.13-.6 Gm.).
Fig. 356. - Hyoscyamus niger: flowering branch.
Fig. 357. - Hyoscyamus calyx, containing capsule, natural size.
Commercial. - Plant by cultivation has become so diversified as to give varieties and almost species, all differing somewhat in medicinal strength; the annual form is usually .3-6 M. (1-2°) high, having smaller parts, leaves less toothed, and corolla faintly or not purple-veined; the biennial form produces in the first year a fleshy fusiform root (resembling that of parsley, for which it has been eaten with serious results), and a radical rosette of large, coarsely toothed (lobed), long petioled leaves, and in the second year the flowering and fruiting stem, after which it dies; in this latter stage the root is spongy, hollow, while the radical leaves are wanting, those of the stem being broader, shorter petioled, and sessile at apex. The stem leaves of the biennial plant are, as a rule, stronger and should be collected when two-thirds of the flowers have expanded; leaves of the first year, as also those of the annual plant, are often of equal strength; the perfect biennial root is three times richer than any other portion.
Constituents. - Mydriatic alkaloids .3-557 p. c: Hyoscyamine, Scopolamine (Hyoscine), Hyoscipicrin, choline, mucilage, albumin, chlorophyll, potassium nitrate 2 p. c, ash 30 p. c. In the seeds also fixed oil 25 p. c.
Hyoscyamine, C17H23NO3. - A crystalline alkaloid obtained from the mother-liquors of atropine, or by freeing hyoscyamus seeds of fat by petroleum benzin, drying, exhausting with alcohol (85 p. a), adding hydrochloric acid, reclaiming alcohol, treating filtered residue again with petroleum benzin (fat, coloring matter), rendering alkaline with ammonia or potassium carbonate, shaking with repeated portions of chloroform, evaporating chloroformic solution, purifying by solution in dilute sulphuric acid, filtering, crystallizing; to obtain alkaloid render aqueous solution alkaline, extract with chloroform, evaporate; yield - leaves: .042-224 p. c; seed: .08-.16 p. c; root: .006-307 p. c. Occurs in white silky needles; if impure, deliquescent, becoming brown;
Fig. 358. - Hyoscyamus: view of upper side of leaf revealing through epidermis the stomata and crystals (K) and paiisade cells (p), and fibro-vascular bundles (fv).
identical with duboisine, isomeric with atropine, into which it is converted by heating to 120° C. (248° F.) for 6 hours; it also splits into tropine, C8H15NO, and tropic acid, C9H10O3, and forms numerous salts (hydrobromide, hydrochloride, sulphate, etc.).
Hyoscyaminae Hydrobromidum, Hyoscyamine Hydrobromide, C17H23NO.HBr, official. - (Syn., Hyoscyamin. Hydrobr., Hyoscyamine Bromide, Hyoscyaminae Hydrobromas; Fr. Bromure d'Hyos-cyamine; Ger. Hyoscyaminum hydrobromicum, Hyoscyaminbromid.) This hydrobromide of the preceding alkaloid is obtained by dissolving hyoscyamine (10) in 25 p. c. hydrobromic acid (11), concentrating, crystallizing; it is in white, prismatic crystals, odorless, deliquescent, soluble in water, alcohol (2.5), chloroform (1.7), ether (2260); aqueous solution (1 in 20) neutral, laevorotatory, melts at 152° C. (306° F.). Tests: 1. Aqueous solution + silver nitrate T. S. - yellowish-white precipitate, insoluble in nitric acid. 2. Shake 1 Ml. (Cc.) of aqueous solution (1 in 10) with chloroform 2 Ml. (Cc), + few drops of chlorine water - chloroform brownish. 3. Add .01 Gm. to 5 drops of nitric acid, evaporate to dryness; residue + alcoholic potassium hydroxide T. S. - violet color; incinerate .1 Gm. - ash non-weighable. Impurities: Atropine, scopolamine, alkaloids, carbonizable substances. Should be kept dark, in well-closed containers. Dose, gr. 1/120-1/60 (.0005-001 Gm.).