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Scientific Name(s): Albizia julibrissin Durazz
Common Name(s): Mimosa, Persian silk tree, Pink silk tree, Powder-puff tree, Shabkhosb, Silk tree

Medically reviewed by Last updated on May 16, 2022.

Clinical Overview


In vitro studies document anticancer activity of the various julibrosides against numerous cancer cell lines. The herb is often marketed for relieving anxiety, depression, and stress.


The herb is available from commercial manufacturers, and the most common dosage forms are liquids and capsules. Manufacturers suggest 3 to 6 mL of 1:2 mimosa liquid extract daily or 1 capsule 3 times daily with meals. However, capsule formulations are proprietary herbal blends and are available in several strengths. Powders, teas, and tinctures are also available.


Avoid use with a known allergy or hypersensitivity to any mimosa constituents.


Information regarding safety and efficacy in pregnancy and lactation is lacking.


None well documented.

Adverse Reactions

Research reveals limited information regarding adverse reactions with the use of mimosa.


Clinical studies are limited.

Scientific Family

  • Fabaceae


Mimosa is native to Iran, China, and Japan, and is also found in northern, southern, and western United States.(Chang 2011, Nehdi 2011, USDA 2011, Wang 2007) There are approximately 150 species in the genus Albizia, and 17 species are found in southern China.(Nehdi 2011, Wang 2007) Mimosa is a small umbrella-shaped tree growing less than 15 m in height with a broad crown of level or arching branches.(Irwin 2003, Nehdi 2011, Pardini 2007) The bark is dark green to grey in color and may have vertical stripes. The bipinnately compound leaves are 20 to 45 cm long and divided into 4 to 12 pairs of pinnae, each with 10 to 30 pairs of leaflets.(Chen 1984, Nehdi 2011) Mimosa begins to flower in May to early June and through July.(Chang 2011) Ivory, pink, or reddish sweetly scented flowers occur in inflorescences and are a rich nectar source for honeybees, bumblebees, butterflies, and hummingbirds.(Nehdi 2011, Pardini 2007) Three to 9 fruits often mature within the inflorescences, and oval-shaped seeds can be seen from June to February.(Nehdi 2011, Pardini 2007) Mimosa are used in gardens for ornamental purposes, in sandy areas to prevent erosion, and along roadways.(Chang 2011, Irwin 2003, Nehdi 2011, Pardini 2007)


The stem bark has been used as a sedative for hundreds of years as recorded in the Pharmacopeia of the People's Republic of China(Nehdi 2011, Zheng 2006, Zheng 2010) and as an anti-inflammatory agent for swelling and pain in the lungs and to treat skin ulcers, wounds, bruises, abscesses, boils, hemorrhoids, and fractures, as well as to remove carbuncles. The dried stem bark is used as a tonic in China and Japan.(Ikeda 1997) Indigenous people living in the southern mountainous region of Korea prepare the root as an infusion for bone diseases.(Kim 2011) In India, a chloroform and methanol seed extract has been used to treat bronchitis, asthma, leprosy, and glands infected by tuberculous.(Gautam 2007) A bark extract to treat insomnia, diuresis, asthenia, and confusion has been used in Asia.(Nehdi 2011) The plant's flowers have been used to treat symptoms associated with palpitations, anxiety, depression, and insomnia.(Nehdi 2011, Samwald 2010) It’s common name of Shabkhosb (good night’s sleeper) in Iran is indicative of its use to treat insomnia.(Ebrahimzadeh 2017)

The seed oil is a source of food for livestock and wildlife. The proteolytic enzymes in the seeds may also reduce bitterness in some cheeses. Mimosa may be used commercially as a promising seed oil crop for making soap, hair shampoo, and ultraviolet protectors in cosmetics, and in nutritional products due to its high level of polyunsaturated fatty acids.(Nehdi 2011)


Numerous studies on the phytochemistry of the stem bark, flowers, and seed oil of mimosa have been documented. Most of the studies focus on the various julibrosides, which are triterpenoid saponins that inhibit the growth of several cancer cell lines.(Cao 2007, Liang 2005, Liang 2003, Zheng 2006, Zheng 2010, Zou 2005, Zou 2000, Zou 2006, Zou 2004) One study also reviewed structural and cytotoxic activity among julibrosides and their prosapogenins.(Ikeda 1997)

Radical scavenging activity was associated with phenolic glycosides albribrissinosides A and B, hyperoside, quercitrin and quercetin.(Jung 2004, Lau 2007) The free fatty acid content of mimosa seed oil (2.54%) is greater than that of soybean oil (0.86%). The oil and moisture content of the seeds are 10.5% and 1.56%. The primary fatty acids in the seed oil are linoleic acid (58.58%), palmitic acid (13.86%), and oleic acid (10.47%). The saponification value of the oil indicates utility in industrial applications, such as liquid soap and shampoo.(Nehdi 2011) This plant species also contains deterrent chemical constituents against caterpillars.(Lind 2010)

Uses and Pharmacology

In vitro studies document the anticancer activity of the various julibrosides against numerous cancer cell lines.(Cao 2007, Liang 2005, Tong 2003, Zheng 2006, Zheng 2010, Zou 2005, Zou 2000, Zou 2006, Zou 2004)


The roots of mimosa inhibit the growth of streptomycetes.(Hartel 1992) Mimosa also inhibits the growth of oral streptococci.(Palombo 2011) Activity against Bacillus megaterium, Bacillus subtilis, Salmonella typhi, and Staphylococcus aureus has been documented.(Lv 2011)


A mimosa ethanol bark extract ranging from 5 to 20 mg/kg exhibited anti-inflammatory activity on ear edema in mice in a dose-dependent manner.(Qiao 2007)


A dried methanolic stem bark extract displayed radical scavenging activity possibly attributable to its glycoside flavonoids.(Jung 2004, Lau 2007) An ethyl ether pod extract exhibited greater antioxidant activity compared with an extract made with petroleum ether.(Lv 2011) Mimosa foliage, flower, and whole-plant water extracts were tested for inhibition of low-density lipoprotein oxidation.(Vaughn 2007) The foliage water extracts possessed the highest inhibition, which was standardized at 2.5 mcM of flavonoids. Biomarkers of oxidative stress (ie, malonedialdehyde, catalase, protein carbonyl formation) were significantly improved with a methanolic extract of A. julibrissin flowers administered in an emesis animal model.(Ebrahimzadeh 2017)


In vitro and animal data

Antitumor activity is associated with julibrosides J1, J2, and J3 against breast, prostate, and uterine cervical carcinoma cells.(Zheng 2006) Julibrosides J8 and J13 from an ethanol stem bark extract showed cytotoxic activity against hepatocarcinoma cells at 100 mcg/mL.(Zou 2005) Cytotoxic activity is also documented for julibroside J21 against hepatocarcinoma cells.(Zou 2006)

Julibrosides J1 and J9 from an ethanol stem bark extract showed cytotoxic activity against epidermoid carcinoma cell lines.(Zou 2000) Julibroside J28 showed antitumor activity against prostate, hepatocarcinoma, and uterine cervical carcinoma cells(Roy 2008); with inhibitory rates of 80.47%, 70.26%, and 58.53%.(Liang 2005)

Julibroside J8 also inhibited growth of a human gastric cancer cell line and may induce apoptosis in uterine cervical carcinoma cells through the caspase pathway, which is involved in programmed cell death.(Zheng 2006) Solid tumor growth was suppressed in mice treated with julibroside J8. The rate of inhibition for 0.5, 1.5, and 3 mg/kg of julibroside J8 treatment was 16.7%, 35.2%, and 67.5%.(Hua 2009) The anticancer activity may involve inhibition of growth, migration, and tube formation in the human dermal microvascular endothelial cell line.(Hua 2009) Another study in mice documents anticancer activity of mimosa's polysaccharides on sarcoma 180 solid form cancer cells.(Moon 1985)

HaBC18, an active substance isolated from mimosa dried stem bark powder, induced apoptotic DNA fragmentation of human acute leukemia Jurkat T cells through mitochondria-dependent activation of the caspase cascade.(Won 2006)


Animal data

A study in rats pretreated with mimosa documented anxiolytic-like effects potentially mediated by changes in the serotonergic nervous system, especially 5-hydroxytryptamine 1A receptors.(Jung 2005, Samwald 2010) Another study in chronically stressed rats found that mimosa alleviated growth inhibition caused by stress and regulated levels of monoamine brain neurotransmitters.(Zhand 2006) Meanwhile, in a sleep-deprived memory loss model, pre-treatment with mimosa (A. julibrissin) extract improved 3-hour memory impairment without affecting learning and memory in the non-sleep deprived group.(Chang 2019)

Antiemetic effects of mimosa have been observed in an emesis-induced animal model with administration of a methanolic extract of A. julibrissin flowers (total flavonoid content of quercetin equivalent 113 mg/g of extract). Significant reductions in emesis occurred at 50-, 100-, and 200-mg/kg doses of mimosa (P<0.001 for each) with up to a 60% and 69% reduction in retching caused by ipecac and copper sulfate, respectively, also observed.(Ebrahimzadeh 2017)

Clinical data

Mimosa is often marketed for relieving anxiety, depression, and stress. A pharmacoepidemiologic study in 2002 found that mimosa was the third most commonly prescribed Chinese herbal medicine for treating insomnia.(Chen 2011)

Diabetes and metabolic syndrome

In vitro data

Compounds extracted from A. julibrissin were found to have high insulin secretion stimulator properties in vitro without significantly affected cell viability.(Hager 2021)


In vitro data

Compounds extracted from A. julibrissin bark (also known as Albiziae cortex extract) significantly reversed free fatty acid-induced lipogenesis in hepatocytes in vitro (P<0.05). High glucose-induced oxidative stress was also mitigated by 3 of the 5 compounds extracted.(Shi 2019)

Vaccine adjuvant

Animal and experimental data

In animal models, antigen-specific antibody titers to inactivated H9N2 avian influenza vaccine formed significantly faster and higher with the use of a purified mimosa saponin fraction compared to the commercial oil adjuvant. Significant responses were documented at 7, 10, and 14 days after a single vaccination dose (P<0.05, P<0.01, and P<0.001, respectively).(Sun 2020) Similarly, the addition of the purified mimosa saponin fraction as a vaccine adjuvant led to significant increases in antigen-specific antibody titers to the Newcastle disease virus-based recombinant influenza vaccine (P<0.01). Titers were measured 2 weeks after the booster shot, which was given 14 days after the initial vaccination.(Du 2020)


The herb is available from commercial manufacturers, and the most common dosage forms are liquids and capsules. Manufacturers suggest 3 to 6 mL of 1:2 mimosa liquid extract daily or 1 capsule 3 times daily with meals. However, capsule formulations are proprietary herbal blends and available in several strengths. Powders, teas, and tinctures are also available.

Pregnancy / Lactation

Information regarding safety and efficacy in pregnancy and lactation is lacking.


Use caution in patients taking mimosa with anticancer, anti-inflammatory, antidepressant, and antibacterial medications because information on potential drug-herb interactions is limited.

Adverse Reactions

Research reveals limited information regarding adverse reactions with the use of mimosa.


Clinical studies are limited.



This information relates to an herbal, vitamin, mineral or other dietary supplement. This product has not been reviewed by the FDA to determine whether it is safe or effective and is not subject to the quality standards and safety information collection standards that are applicable to most prescription drugs. This information should not be used to decide whether or not to take this product. This information does not endorse this product as safe, effective, or approved for treating any patient or health condition. This is only a brief summary of general information about this product. It does NOT include all information about the possible uses, directions, warnings, precautions, interactions, adverse effects, or risks that may apply to this product. This information is not specific medical advice and does not replace information you receive from your health care provider. You should talk with your health care provider for complete information about the risks and benefits of using this product.

This product may adversely interact with certain health and medical conditions, other prescription and over-the-counter drugs, foods, or other dietary supplements. This product may be unsafe when used before surgery or other medical procedures. It is important to fully inform your doctor about the herbal, vitamins, mineral or any other supplements you are taking before any kind of surgery or medical procedure. With the exception of certain products that are generally recognized as safe in normal quantities, including use of folic acid and prenatal vitamins during pregnancy, this product has not been sufficiently studied to determine whether it is safe to use during pregnancy or nursing or by persons younger than 2 years of age.

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