Hibiscus rosasinensis (of the family Malvaceae) is sometimes referred to as 'China Rose' and although it is mostly a decorative flower it appears to be used in hair growth and ulcer prevention. In pakistani medicine, it is referred to as either Gurhal, Jasun, Ghorawal, or Badsha pasant where the root is used for cough and the flowers for aphrodisiac, emollient and emmenagogue.
Hibiscus rosasinensis tends to contain:
Cyanidin and Cyanin glucoside
Sabdaritrin and Gossypitrin
β-sitosterol, campesterol, stigmasterol, and ergosterol
Citric, Tataric, and Oxalic acids
A preliminary screening has noted the presence of sterols, carbohydrates, glycosides, tannins and Flavonoids.
Oral ingestion of Hibiscus rosasinensis at 250-500mg/kg in alloxan-induced diabetic rats noted that acute ingestion of this herb resulted in reduced blood glucose relative to control, and to a similar degree than the active control of glibenclamide (10m/kg). Subchronic treatment over 7 days suggested that the 500mg/kg intake was similarly effective as 10mg/kg glibenclamide in these rats.
One study conducted in rats given various extracts of Hibiscus rosasinensis noted a general body weight gain and increases in the weight of the testis, epididymis, seminal vesicle which was weakest with a cold water extract and highest with an alcoholic extract. The authors hinted at direct androgenic effects, and a possible phytoandrogen content.
At 250-500mg/kg extract weight and in response to carbachol (a cholinergic agent that can induce gastric acid secretion) China Rose was associated with less ulceration secondary to less acid secretion (dose-dependent, but to a small enough degree that both doses were similarly effect) which was thought to be due to anti-cholinergic effects.
China Rose has been found to have calcium channel antagonistic effects (via causing dose-dependent relaxation of potassium-induced contraction), and it showed dose-dependent spasmogenic effects between 1-10mg/mL yet the maximum effect (81.43 + 0.93%) was lower than that of acetylcholine; all of which were antagonized by M3 receptor antagonists (atropine).