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(Old World mistletoe), a genus of hemiparasitic shrubs of the family Loranthaceae. Mistletoe grows on the branches of trees and may be monoecious or dioecious. The opposite or whorled leaves are sessile, entire, and leathery. The small, unisexual flowers are greenish, yellow, or whitish. They are in clusters of three in the axils of the leaves or, less commonly, are solitary. The fruit usually is a single-seeded berry; it is white, yellow, orange, or red. The seeds are naked and have sticky flesh.

There are approximately 70 species of mistletoe, distributed primarily in the tropics and subtropics of Africa. A few species are encountered in tropical Asia, northern Australia, and Eurasia. Two species grow in the USSR: the true mistletoe, V. album, is found in the Caucasus and in the central and southern belts of the European USSR; V. coloratum grows in the Far East. The true mistletoe has three subspecies. One subspecies parasitizes pear, apple, poplar, and maple leaves, and the other grows on such conifers as pines and firs. The berries are distributed by birds; they yield birdlime, which is used to entrap small birds.

An extract prepared from the young leaves of the true mistletoe is used to treat hypertension in its early stages.


Atlas lekarstvennykh rastenii SSSR. Moscow, 1962.


References in periodicals archive ?
Mistletoe is familiar to everyone at Christmas, but despite a history in folklore and legend extending back to ancient times, relatively little seems to be known about this strange plant parasite in the UKThere is just one species of mistletoe in Britain - viscum album.
All mistletoes are parasitic shrubs, generally rooting in crevices in the bark of trees, though one tiny species, Viscum minimum , grows on the roots and stems of euphorbias.
Quinolizidine alkaloids from Viscum cruciatum, hemiparasitic shrub of Lygos sphaerocarpa.
Viscum both whistles and raps out sound signals - undoubtedly musical.
Sensitization of K562 leukemia cells to doxorubicin by the Viscum album extract," Phytotherapy Research, vol.
When referred to the folk healer, they are given two prescriptions: the first one is composed of one kilogram of Brassica alba seeds and a hundred grams of Viscum album.
Remedies: Abelmoschus, Acetic Acid, Aethusa, Ailanthus, Anantherum, Argemon, Asclepias, Tuberosa, Baptisia, Benzoic Acid, Bryonia, Carbo Vegetabilis, Carnegia gigantean, Chamomilla, Doryphora, Euphrasia, Gallic Acid, Gambogia, Helleborus, Hyoscyamus, Ipecac, Lycopus, Mancinella, Nux Moschata, Nux Vomica, Paris, Petroleum, Polystyrene, Podophyllum, Pyrogenium, Rheum, Rhus Tox, Sacchrum Album, Sulphuricum Acidum, Thyroidinum, Veratrum Veride, Viscum.
First fungalcommunity analyses of endophytic ascomycetes associated with Viscum album ssp.
Viscum album, Panax ginseng, Tinoapra coedifolia, and Asparagus racemosus, for instance, have all been shown to exert therapeutic properties (Davis and Kuttan, 2000), and Epimedium, Astragalosides, Ginsenoside and Glycyrrizae have displayed an immunological enhancement of chickens (Kong et al.