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Reading: Poisoning of 'binthamburu' (Ipomoea asarifolia) due to misidentification as 'kankun' (Ipomoe...

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Poisoning of 'binthamburu' (Ipomoea asarifolia) due to misidentification as 'kankun' (Ipomoea aquatica)

Authors:

A Ratnatilaka ,

Medical Unit, Teaching Hospital Kurunegala, LK
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D Yakandawala,

Faculty of Science, University of Peradeniya, LK
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N Pupasinghe,

Medical Unit, Teaching Hospital Kurunegala, LK
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K Ratnayake

Medical Unit, Teaching Hospital Kurunegala, LK
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Abstract

Ingestion of ‘Binthamburu’ (Ipomoea asarifolia) by
misidentification as ‘kankun’ (Ipomoea aquatica) as a
leafy vegetable causes acute gastrointestinal symptoms
and confusion. The authors have encountered four such
cases in the past. All cases have been recorded from the
dry zone of the country. Both plants are two trailing vines
similar in their appearance and preferring the wet
habitats. During the course of the day when exposed to
sunlight, ‘binthamburu’ leaves mimic ‘kankun’ leaves
by folding the leaf margins making it difficult to separate
the two during harvest and only a closer examination will reveal the difference in their leaf shapes. Ipomoea
asarifolia
toxicity in human has not been recorded but
animal toxicity in North Brazil due to ingestion of Ipomoea
asarifolia
had been investigated and linked to a toxic
substance identified as lectin or LTS.

Index words: Ipomoea asarifolia; food poisoning

DOI: 10.4038/cmj.v55i2.2004

Ceylon Medical Journal Vol.55(2) 2010 pp.54-56
DOI: https://doi.org/10.4038/cmj.v55i2.2004
How to Cite: Ratnatilaka, A., Yakandawala, D., Pupasinghe, N. and Ratnayake, K., 2010. Poisoning of 'binthamburu' (Ipomoea asarifolia) due to misidentification as 'kankun' (Ipomoea aquatica). Ceylon Medical Journal, 55(2), pp.54–56. DOI: http://doi.org/10.4038/cmj.v55i2.2004
Published on 17 Jun 2010.
Peer Reviewed

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