Actinidia polygama (Sieb. & Zucc.) Maxim. - syn. Trochostigma polygama Sieb. and Zucc. - Actinidiaceae
silver vine, Japanischer Strahlengriffel
Perennial climber, native to Japan, Korea, Manchuria, Central and West China; pith of branches white, solid; leaves long-petioled, broadly ovate to ovate-oblong, to 6 in. long, rounded or subcordate at base, obtuse or abruptly acuminate, serrate, often variegated with white or pale yellow, the young leaves of the staminate plant often silvery-white; flowers white 0.75 in. across, solitary, fragrant; anthers yellow; ovary bottle-shaped; fruit a many-seeded berry, ovoid, yellow, about 0.75-1 in. long.
„Silver vine has long been known to elicit euphoric response in cats. It is the most popular cat treat in Asia…“ http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Actinidia_polygama
Actinidia polygama, young leaves and twigs are applied as cardiotonic, diuretic and as a general tonic. [CRC]
„Domestic cats and other felids rub their faces and heads against catnip (Nepeta cataria) and silver vine (Actinidia polygama) and roll on the ground as a characteristic response. While this response is well known, its biological function and underlying mechanism remain undetermined. Here, we uncover the neurophysiological mechanism and functional outcome of this feline response. We found that the iridoid nepetalactol is the major component of silver vine that elicits this potent response in cats and other felids. Nepetalactol increased plasma β-endorphin levels in cats, while pharmacological inhibition of μ-opioid receptors suppressed the classic rubbing response. Rubbing behavior transfers nepetalactol onto the faces and heads of respondents where it repels the mosquito, Aedes albopictus. Thus, self-anointing behavior helps to protect cats against mosquito bites. The characteristic response of cats to nepetalactol via the μ-opioid system provides an important example of chemical pest defense using plant metabolites in nonhuman mammals.“
„The neurophysiological and functional significance of silver vine response in cats.
The olfactory system in cats detects cis-trans nepetalactol emitted from silver vine leaves and then stimulates release of β-endorphin. Activation of μ-opioid receptors by a high level of β-endorphin evokes rubbing and rolling, which is inhibited by naloxone, an antagonist of μ-opioid receptors. Face rubbing and rolling over transfer nepetalactol with repellent activity against A. albopictus from the leaves onto the cat’s face, head, and body fur where it helps to protect them from mosquito bites. Photo credit: Reiko Uenoyama, Iwate University.“ CC-BY-SA 4.0
[Reiko Uenoyama et al., „The characteristic response of domestic cats to plant iridoids allows them to gain chemical defense against mosquitoes“1, Science Advances 20 Jan 2021: Vol. 7, no. 4, eabd9135]