February 5, 2014 In Herbal Research

Featured articles

One of the most interesting concepts in herbalism is that of “herbal energetics,” i.e., assigning to different herbs various actions that are too complex to explain in regular physiological terms. While there are multiple theories of herbal energetics, perhaps the most popular and renowned is the one used in the traditional Chinese medical system. In one of the most recent articles, Chinese scientists went to great lengths to try to explain the “hot” and “cold” actions of herbs in the traditional Chinese energetics meaning in the terms of molecular pathways they are affecting (Abstract). Also of note in today’s update is the research on pharmacokinetic interactions of different components of Abelmoschus manihot corolla, known in Chinese medicine as huang shu kui hua, as well as evidence of interactions of compounds in a typical Chinese formula:

Herbal synergy: 1) non-flavonoid components of the corolla of Abelmoschus manihot (formerly of Hibiscus spp.) improve its flavonoids bioavailability, in rat (Abstract); 2) ferulic acid, a component of Angelica sinensis (dong quai), improved the extraction and bioactivity of components from Astragalus sp. root (Abstract)


Ocimum sanctum (tulsi, holy basil): antineoplastic effects (Abstract)

Clinical Trials

Freshol” (a herbal mouthwash): equal to or more effective than chlorhexidine in reducing the salivary Streptococcus mutans count, improving plaque and gingival status, in children (Abstract, Free full text)

Polyherbal traditional Chinese preparation MLC601: reduces vascular events after stroke (Abstract)

Polyherbal traditional Japanese remedy goshajinkigan: uncertain effects on oxaliplatin-induced peripheral neurotoxicity (Abstract)

Polyherbal traditional Iraqi remedy (Mentha longifolia, Cyperus rotundus, and Zingiber officinale): significantly improved irritable bowel syndrome symptoms after 8 weeks of treatment (Abstract)

Rosmarinus officinalis (rosemary): beneficial effects for the treatment of opiate withdrawal symptoms (Abstract)

Silymarin in the treatment of non-alcoholic steatohepatitis (fatty liver disease): after 8 weeks of treatment, the patients’ hepatic enzymes levels were significantly reduced, compared to the control group (Abstract, Free full text)

Case Report

Ginger therapy (an anthroposophic treatment): markedly improved symptoms of osteoarthritis (Abstract)


Jordan: plants with antidiabetic activity (Abstract, Free full text)

Individual Botanicals

Abelmoschus manihot (sunset hibiscus): synergistic interaction of components (Abstract)

Fucus vesiculosus (bladderwrack), Laminaria japonica (kelp): identified as  two of the most potent inhibitors of lactate dehydrogenase (LDH)-A, one of the putative targets for the treatment of advanced cancers (Abstract, Free full text)

Isolated Compounds

Luteolin: protection of normal bronchial epithelial cells from cigarette smoke-induced toxicity and apoptosis (Abstract)

Quality Control

Angelica dahurica: simultaneous determination of 50 coumarins by offline 2D-HPLC-ESI-MS(n) (Abstract)

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