Uncaria gambir, the gambier or gambir, is a species in the genus Uncaria found in Southeast Asia, mainly Malaysia and Indonesia. Gambier is a climbing or straggling shrub, with square young stems bearing horizontal branches with recurved hooks (which are actually modified peduncles of the inflorescences) that help the plant cling on to supports. Gambier is harvested from the wild for local use and trade, mainly as a medicine and source of tannins. The resinous substance extracted from the leaves and young branches of gambier is crystallized and traded in small cubes or blocks. This is a rich source of tannins and can be used for preserving ropes and nets, and as a dye in the traditional batik industry and for dyeing silk black. Gambier extract or katha is used or has been used as a catechu for chewing with areca and betel, for tanning and dyeing, and as herbal medicine. Gambier extract was also used by native people in as a medical treatment / prevention for miasma (unhealthy smell). Gambier is said to be useful as an astringent and styptic. An infusion of the extract is given as a supportive treatment against diarrhoea and dysentery. This infusion is also used as a gargle for sore throats and inflamed gums. Externally It is applied in lotions for burns and in a paste for scurf (dry skin due to dandruff or fungal infections). External application also may help against sciatica and lumbago.