Larrea tridentata Coville (Zygophyllaceae)
Larrea divaricata Cav. (formerly regarded as the same species as Larrea tridentata), Larrea mexicana Moric, Larrea tridentate var. glutinosa Jeps.
Chaparral contains lignans, the major compound being nordihydroguaiaretic acid (NDGA). The herb also contains flavonoids, which include isorhamnetin, kaempferol and quercetin, and their derivatives. There is also a volatile oil present containing calamene, eudesmol, limonene, alpha- and β-pinene, and 2-rossalene. A cytotoxic naphthoquinone derivative, larreantin, has been isolated from the roots.
Use and indications
Chaparral has been used in the treatment of bowel cramps, arthritis, rheumatism and colds. It has also been used to treat other diseases such as cancer, venereal disease and tuberculosis. Its use as a herbal remedy is not recommended due to reports of hepatotoxicity and renal toxicity.