The name of kino was first conferred upon an astringent product, introduced into use by Dr. Fothergill of London, about the middle of the last century, and supposed to have been the concrete juice of Pterocarpus erinaceus, a tree growing on the western coast of Africa. But the same' name has since been extended to similar products from other sources, and may now be considered as a generic title for various concrete juices, of a reddish-brown or blackish colour and astringent taste, and existing either in the state of minute, shining, angular fragments, or of larger masses very readily breaking into such fragments. The varieties now in use are the East India kino, the West India or Jamaica kino, and the South American or Caracas kino. The East India variety is most employed.

1. East India Kino is the inspissated juice of Pterocarpus Marau-pium, a large tree growing in the mountains upon the Malabar coast of Hindostan. It is in small, irregular, angular, brittle, glistening fragments, of a dark reddish-brown almost black colour, redder and lighter in powder, inodorous, of a bitterish strongly astringent taste followed by a sense of sweetness, softening in the mouth when chewed, adhering somewhat to the teeth, and staining the saliva blood-red. Water and alcohol dissolve all its active matter, receiving from it a deep-red colour.

Its active principle is tannic acid, of the variety called kino-tannic acid, which precipitates the salts of sesquioxide of iron of a greenish or olive-black colour. This differs, moreover, from the tannic acid of galls, in being converted, by exposure to the atmospheric air, into a brick-red, tasteless, and inert matter, instead of into gallic acid. Besides this principle, there is also extractive mailer, upon which possibly the bitterness may depend.

Its chemical reactions are the same with those of the tannic acid of galls, except that the alkalies favour its solubility in water, while they destroy its astringency.

2. West India, or Jamaica Kino, is said to be an extract of the wood and bark of Coccoloba uvifera, growing in the West Indies; but this origin is somewhat doubtful; and specimens which I have seen under that name, had the appearance of an inspissated juice, and probably were so; as, on chemical examination, they were found to contain a resinous ingredient.

In sensible properties, in the characters of its active principle, in solubility, and general chemical reactions, it is not materially different from the preceding variety; except that, instead of being imported in minute fragments, it has been brought to this country in a compact mass in gourds, and breaks into rather larger and more rectangular fragments, less glistening, and not quite so dark.

3. South American, or Caracas Kino, is brought from the northern coast of South America; but its botanical source is unknown. It is in large irregular masses, which, after importation, are broken up into small irregular fragments, less sharply angular, glistening, and dark-coloured than the E. India variety, and in these respects closely resembling that from the W. Indies. In taste and smell, solubility, the character of its active principle, and in general chemical relations, it resembles the preceding variety.

Besides these varieties of kino, there is the Botany Bay kino, from Eucalyptus resinifera of New South Wales, and a product named Bu-tea gum, from Butea frondosa of Hindostan, both of which have the general properties of this drug, but are little used in the United States. (See U. S. Dispensatory).

Effects on the System

So far as they have been investigated, the effects of kino are not essentially different from those of galls; but it is doubtful whether they exert an equal influence through the circulation; as their tannic acid is not capable, like that of galls and oak bark, of being converted into absorbable gallic acid, but passes, through the reagency of oxygen, into the state of a tasteless, insoluble, and inert matter.

Therapeutic Application

Kino is one of the best of the vegetable astringents for internal use, on account of its purity, and general acceptability to the stomach. It is employed chiefly in diseases of the alimentary canal; and, though occasionally prescribed internally for haemoptysis, monorrhagia, and leucorrhoea, it probably, for reasons already given, exerts little influence in these complaints. In those forms of diarrhoea and advanced or chronic dysentery, in which astringents are indicated, it is a very useful remedy, and much employed in this country. It may also be sometimes used advantageously in epidemic cholera, in order to check the excessive evacuations. Pyrosis, haematemesis, and intestinal hemorrhage are among the complaints in which good effects may be expected from it. In the last-mentioned affection, occurring in the advanced stages of low fevers, it is an admirable remedy. I have seen it promptly check the most alarming hemorrhage attendant on enteric or typhoid fever; but it must be given very freely, much more so than under ordinary circumstances. In all these complaints it should generally be associated with opium.

Locally, in the form of powder, it is sometimes efficacious in arresting hemorrhage from bleeding surfaces. In a bloody tumour of the roof of the mouth, which bled alarmingly upon being cut into, I once succeeded in cheeking the hemorrhage, after trying other means unsuccessfully, by filling the incision with the powder, and causing a piece of patent lint, on which the powder was thickly sprinkled, to be pressed firmly by the tongue against the tumour. In the same form, it may sometimes be sprinkled beneficially upon the surface of flabby ulcers. In the form of infusion also it is sometimes topically applied, as in cases of epistaxis, relaxation of the uvula, aphthae, leucorrhoea, and obstinate gonorrhoea; but its liability to stain everything which it touches is some objection to this mode of employment Administration. The dose is from five to thirty grains, which may be repeated every two, three, or four hours incases of urgency, and three or four times a day in the more chronic. In bowel complaints, it is frequently associated with prepared chalk or oyster shell, and one of the liquid preparations of opium, in the form of mixture, made by suspending the insoluble ingredients in some aromatic water, by means of gum arabic and loaf sugar.

In the form of pill, kino may be given, combined with acetate of lead and opium, in cholera and diarrhoea. Though the salt of lead is probably decomposed by the tannic acid, experience has proved the efficacyof the combination.

Kino may also be prescribed in the form of an electuary, made by mixing the powder with syrup or molasses and powdered cinnamon, powdered opium, and prepared chalk, one or all, may be added as cir-cumstances may seem to require.

A more elegant preparation is an infusion, made in the proportion of two drachms of kino and a drachm of powdered cinnamon to eight fluid-ounces of boiling water, and filtered when cold. Of this one or two tablespoonfuls may be given for a dose, sweetened with loaf sugar, and mixed, in cases of diarrhoea, with a fluidrachm of camphorated tincture of opium, or an equivalent quantity of some other liquid preparation of that narcotic. If the effects of chalk are required, this antacid may be mixed with the infusion by the intervention of powdered gum and sugar. Tincture of Kino (Tinctura Kino, U.S.) is an officinal preparation, and, in cases where the alcoholic menstruum is not objectionable, may be given, in the dose of one or two fluidrachms, added to cretaceous mix-tures, or other liquid astringent preparation. It should, however, be used recently made; as it is apt to gelatinize by time, and to lose its astringency.