Other Names:

Scientific Names: Aniba Rosaeodora

Common names:

Ayurvedic names:

Chinese names:

Bangladesh names: shishu, shisu, sisam

Arabic names:    (عنيبة روزوود) U’neibat rosewood

Rain Forest names:


Approximate Number of Species Known:

Common Parts Used: 


Annual/Perennial: Perennial

Height: 30 m


Known Constituents: 

Constituents Explained:

Description:   (please note: this is the general characteristics –  colour, flavor etc)

Traditional Use:

Clinical Studies:

Essential oils are complex mixtures of odorous and volatile compounds derived from secondary plant metabolism. They can be isolated from many plants by mechanical pressing or hydro- and steam-distillation and are known to induce a wide range of biological effects through their antibacterial, antifungal, cytotoxic, antioxidant and antimutagenic activities. 

In order to explore their beneficial properties on human skin cells, the effects of an essential oil from rosewood Aniba rosaeodora (REO) on the human epidermoid carcinoma cell line A431, on immortal HaCaT cells thought to represent an early stage of skin carcinogenesis, on transformed normal HEK001 keratinocytes and on primary normal NHEK keratinocytes was investigated.

In a defined range of concentrations, REO selectively killed A431 and HaCaT cells. The same treatments had only a minor cytotoxic effect on HEK001 and NHEK cells. 

Preferentially in A431 and HaCaT cells, REO triggered the production of reactive oxygen species, induced depolarization of the mitochondrial membrane and caused caspase-dependent cell death characterized by phosphatidylserine externalization, an early marker of apoptosis. 

Both intrinsic and extrinsic apoptotic pathways were implicated in REO-induced cell death. The identification of selective induction of apoptosis in precancerous and cancerous skin cells by REO highlights the potential anticancer activity of this essential oil.


Soeur J, Marrot L, Perez P, Iraqui I, Kienda G, Dardalhon M, Meunier JR, Averbeck D, Huang ME. “Selective Cytotoxicity Of Aniba Rosaeodora Essential Oil Towards Epidermoid Cancer Cells Through Induction Of Apoptosis.” 2011 January



Herb Name: Rosewood

Other names: 

Bois de rose, 

pau rosa,


Scientific name: Aniba Rosaeodora

Family: Lauraceae

Common part used: 

The essential oil is extracted from the wood

Rosewood is a short tree with leaves having stipules. Flowers are solitary having white and yellow color with maroon center. Fruits are having a capsule with multiple seeds.

It is an aromatic, evergreen tree with leathery leaves and trivial, dull red flowers.

The most popular use for rosewood is in the perfume industry. There are countless perfumes that claim rosewood as one its ingredients. Rosewood is used constantly in skin products. The reason for its use is rosewood is very relaxing when applied to the skin. 

Rosewood grows in tropical climates. It is an evergreen tree with reddish bark and heartwood and yellow flowers. It can mainly be found in Brazil and Peru. Its oil is extracted from heartwood chips, by steam distillation. When combined with other oils it’s used as a base. It gives off a warm, spicy and woody aroma. 

Rosewood has been used throughout the years, mainly in perfumes; just recently it has been introduced in today’s aromatherapy. In Brazil, the Amazon Indians use it in the healing of wounds and for skin inflammations. The wood was used by the French in cabinet making, and for utensils. The Japanese also use rosewood to make chopsticks. 

Medicinal Uses: Rosewood is mostly used in aromatherapy and not really as an herb as such. It helps to relieve headaches. It has good antibacterial properties and boosts the immune system. On the skin, it acts as a cell stimulant and tissue rejuvenator, making it ideal for mature skin, but it is also well suited for dry, sensitive and inflamed skin. It has anti-depressant, antiseptic, deodorant, insecticide, stimulant and tonic properties. When over-burdened with problems, rosewood will enliven the spirit and mind, while at the same time helping to relieve headaches.  

It has good antibacterial properties and boosts the immune system, while others claim that it increases libido and fights impotence. On the skin, it acts as a cell stimulant and tissue rejuvenator, making it ideal for mature skin, but it is also well suited for dry, sensitive and inflamed skin. It has analgesic, anti-depressant, antiseptic, aphrodisiac, bactericide, cephalic, deodorant, insecticide, stimulant and tonic properties.

In aromatherapy, it is used to boost the immune system and it helps the body fight viruses. It also helps cells and tissue regenerate. It is useful in relieving headaches; it is good for jetlag also. Rosewood is also uplifting and reviving to the senses. It is used in meditations, because it is a good oil to burn that relaxes without causing drowsiness.