Voacanga africana is a tropical tree native to West Africa reaching up to 6 meters in height with a low widely spreading crown. The leaves are opposite, obovate and acuminate. They are dark green and glossy above a greenish-green below and usually stalk-less.
The flowers are white borne in axillary or terminal loosely branched glabrous inflorescences. The fruits occur mainly in pairs, spherical, mettled green with seeds wrapped in yellow pulp. The seeds are the most economically important part of the plant.
The seeds are numerous, dark brown and ellipsoid in shape and embedded in pulp. A mature plant yield between 2000 to 3000 fruit pods. About 110 -120 pods yield a kilogram of the dry seeds with an estimated yield of 10 — 23 kg/tree of seeds per plant.
Its flowers blossom between February and April and the fruits mature between June and September.
Applications of Voaganca africana seed extract
Cognitive function loss has become a major health concern due to the large number of individuals experiencing dementia, memory loss and other such difficulties, and also due to the lack of effective medical treatment.
Even though it is often passed off as a natural part of aging, the use of ingredients produced from Voacanga africana seed extracts has been found to enhance cognitive function and, very importantly, reverse and prevent cognitive dysfunction.
The seed extract contains the alkaloid tabersonine which is used for the production of vincamine and vinpocetine. Vincamine was the first natural ingredient found to be effective in retarding the effects of the multiple mechanisms and factors responsible for cognitive decline.
Vinpocetine is a peripheral vasodilator that increases cerebral blood flow, activates cerebral metabolism with neuroprotective effects and supports brain functions such as concentration and memory. It has also been identified as astrong anti-inflammatory agent. More recently, it has been considered as a potential candidate in the treatment of Parkinson’s disease.