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a genus of evergreen plants of the subfamily Vacciniaceae, frequently included in the genus Vaccinium. They are primarily small creeping subshrubs with slender stems and small coriaceous leaves. The flowers are reddish pink and have four petals, four sepals, and eight stamens. The fruit is a dark red berry. There are four species, distributed in the cold and temperate regions of Eurasia and North America. Two species are found in the USSR. The species Oxycoccus quadripetalus grows widely in sphagnum and peat bogs, sometimes forming large thickets. The berries are valuable food products. They contain citric acid, benzoic acid, and other acids; pectin substances (glycoside vacciniine); and vitamins C and P. The berries, which can be kept for extended periods, are widely used in the food industry and in the production of vodka liqueurs. The berries and extract of the plant are used as cooling, antipyretic, and antiscorbutic agents, and also for intensifying the effect of antibiotics and sulfonamides. The plant increases glandular secretion in the gastrointentinal tract, and it is used for treating gastritis caused by lowered secretions. Species of Oxycoccus are cultivated in North America.
T. V. EGOROVA