Gloriosa Superba. S: Niyangala. T: Akkinichilam, Anaravam, Illangali, Iradi
Photographed in Pidurangala - Anu Weerasuriya
A poisonous plant, the Gloriosa Superba is fairly common creeper in wild and semi-wild terrain.
Tubers of `niyangala', (Tamil: Akkinichilam, Anaravam, Illangali, Iradi), was a common suicidal poison in rural areas before pesticides were easily available. Accidental `niyangala' poisoning is also reported. All parts of the Niyangala plant are poisonous. Toxicity of `niyangala'is due mainly to the alkaloid colchicine. It is estimated that 10 g of the fresh tuber contains about 6 mg of colchicine. The lethal dose of colchicine varies from 6 to 20 mg. For children, the lethal dose in between 0.5 and 0.8 mg/kg. However, survival has been reported after ingestion of as much as 60 mg of colchicine. The toxicity is related to the irritant effects and the effects of colchicine on normal cell division.- http://www.cmb.ac.lk/academic/medi/dept/fmtoxi/toxico_projects/doc72.htm