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Classification System: APG IV

Superregnum: Eukaryota
Regnum: Plantae
Cladus: Angiosperms
Cladus: Eudicots
Cladus: Core eudicots
Cladus: Rosids
Cladus: Eurosids II
Ordo: Sapindales

Familia: Rutaceae
Subfamilia: Aurantioideae
Tribus: Clauseneae
Genus: Micromelum
Species: M. integerrimum – M. minutum – M. pubescens – M. scandens

Micromelum Blume

Micromelum is a genus of eight species of flowering plants in the family Rutaceae.


The genus includes evergreen and deciduous shrubs and trees. The leaves are glandular and aromatic, containing essential oils. They are alternately arranged. They are usually pinnate, divided into up to 23 leaflets, except for M. diversifolium, which sometimes has undivided leaf blades. The leaflet edges are smooth or toothed. There are sometimes glandular stipules. The inflorescence is a large panicle, sometimes flat-topped like a corymb, growing from the leaf axils or at the ends of branches. The flowers have five narrow petals in shades of green, white, or yellow, borne in a hairy, cup-like calyx with five lobes or five separate sepals. The odor of the flowers has been described as "malodorous" and "foetid".[2] There are 10 stamens and 1 to 5 styles. The genus is noted for the unusual curving or twisting of the chambers in the ovary. The fruit is a berry up to a centimeter long. It is yellow, orange, or red, and sometimes fleshy, but it lacks the pulp present in some related fruits, notably citrus. The peel is gland-dotted. Each fruit has 1 to 3 seeds.[3][4][2]

The plants vary in form, with M. hirsutum being a low shrub sometimes less than a 1 m (3 ft 3 in) tall[5] and M. integerrimum being a tree which can exceed 9 m (30 ft) in height.[3]

The genus Micromelum was first formally described in 1825 by Carl Ludwig Blume in Bijdragen tot de Flora van Nederlandsch Indie and the first species described was Micromelum pubescens, now regarded as a synonym of Micromelum minutum.[6]

There are several subfamilies in the citrus family, with genus Citrus classified in the Aurantioideae. Micromelum belongs to the other tribe in this subfamily, Clauseneae. It is the only genus of the subtribe Micromelinae that are known technically as the "very remote citroid fruit trees".[3]

Micromelum includes eight species distributed in Asia, Australia, and the Pacific Islands.[2][4][7]
Species list

The following is a list of species and varieties accepted at the Plants of the World Online as at July 2020:[8]

Micromelum compressum Blanco – Vietnam
Micromelum coriaceum Seem. – New Caledonia
Micromelum diversifolium Miq.
Micromelum glanduliferum B.Hansen – Laos, Thailand
Micromelum hirsutum Oliv. – Bangladesh, Laos, Malaya, Myanmar, Vietnam
Micromelum integerrimum (Roxb. ex DC.) Wight & Arn. ex M.Roem. – Andaman Is., Cambodia, China South-Central, China Southeast, East Himalaya, Hainan, Laos, Myanmar, Nepal, Philippines, Thailand, Tibet, Vietnam
Micromelum minutum (G.Forst.) Wight & Arn. – Assam, Bangladesh, Cambodia, China South-Central, China Southeast, Fiji, Hainan, Laos, Lesser Sunda Is., Malaya, Myanmar, New Caledonia, Niue, Samoa, Solomon Is., Thailand, Tonga, Vanuatu, Vietnam, Wallis-Futuna Is., Australia
Micromelum minutum var. ceylanicum B.C.Stone – Sri Lanka
Micromelum scandens Rech. – Bismarck Archipelago


M. minutum is used as a traditional medicine in Fiji, and in Malaysia it is used to treat fever and ringworm.[9] M. integerrimum has been used in China to treat dysentery and arthritis.[10]

The chemistry of these plants has been studied, with several known and new coumarins isolated.[9] One such coumarin from M. integerrimum, micromelin, appears to have anticancer properties.[10]

"Micromelum". Australian Plant Census. Retrieved 28 July 2020.
"Micromelum". FloraBase. Western Australian Government Department of Parks and Wildlife.
Swingle, W. T., rev. P. C. Reece. Chapter 3: The Botany of Citrus and its Wild Relatives. In: The Citrus Industry vol. 1. Webber, H. J. (ed.). Berkeley: University of California Press. 1967.
Micromelum. Flora of China.
Key to the species of Micromelum. Archived 2015-02-27 at the Wayback Machine Chapter 3: The Botany of Citrus and its Wild Relatives.
"Micromelum minutum". Australian Plant Census. Retrieved 28 July 2020.
Citrus Variety Collection. College of Natural and Agricultural Sciences. University of California, Riverside.
"Micromelum". Plants of the World Online. Retrieved 28 July 2020.
Ito, C., et al. (2000). Chemical constituents of Micromelum minutum. Isolation and structural elucidation of new coumarins. Chemical and Pharmaceutical Bulletin - Tokyo 48(3), 334-38.
He, H. P., et al. (2001). Three new coumarins from Micromelum integerrimum.[permanent dead link] Chinese Chemical Letters 12(7) 603-06.

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