Tag Archives: Artemisinin

Argyi wormwood(Artemisia argyi)

 

Botanical Name : Artemisia argyi
Family: Asteraceae
Genus: Artemisia
Species: A. argyi
Kingdom: Plantae
Order: Asterales
Commopn Names:Argyi wormwood, In Japan it is known as Gaiyou and in China as Ai Ye.

Habitat :Argyi wormwood   is native to China, Japan and the far east parts of the former Soviet Union.This wormwood is a xerophile, growing on dry mountain slopes, steep river banks, the edges of oak woods, coastal scrub, wasteland and along road and railway verges. The plants do better and are more aromatic when they grow on poor dry soil.It grows on waste places, roadsides, slopes, hills, steppe and forest steppe at low elevations to 1500 metres in most areas of China.

Description:
Argyi wormwood is an upright, greyish, herbaceous perennial about one metre tall, with short branches and a creeping rhizome. The stalked leaves are ovate, deeply divided and covered in small, oil-producing glands, pubescent above and densely white tomentose below. The lower leaves are about six centimetres long, bipinnate with wide lanceolate lobes and short teeth along the margins. The upper leaves are smaller and three-partite, and the bracteal leaves are simple, linear and lanceolate. The inflorescence is a narrow leafy panicle. The individual flowers are pale yellow, tubular, and clustered in spherical turned-down heads. The central flowers are bisexual while the marginal flowers are female. The petals are narrow and folded cylindrically and the bracts have a cobwebby pubescence. The whole plant is strongly aromatic.

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Propagation:
Seed – surface sow spring in a greenhouse. Do not allow the compost to dry out. When large enough to handle, prick the seedlings out into individual pots and plant them out in early summer.

Medicinal use:
Argyi wormwood is used in herbal medicine for conditions of the liver, spleen and kidney.
Wormwood leaves are gathered on a warm dry day in spring and summer when the plant is in flower and dried in the shade. In traditional Chinese medicine, they are considered to have bitter, pungent and warm properties and to be associated with the liver, spleen and kidney meridians. The leaves are used as an antiseptic, expectorant, febrifuge and styptic.  The herb is considered to increase the blood supply to the pelvic region and stimulate menstruation, help treat infertility, dysmenorrhea, asthma and coughs. Another use is in moxibustion, a form of healing in which the herb is burned in cones or sticks or on the tip of an acupuncture needle. Boiling water can be poured onto the ground up leaves and used in a decoction, alone or with other substances, and the fresh leaf can be crushed and blended and a juice extracted. A volatile oil can be extracted from the leaves and used in the treatment of asthma and bronchitis for which purpose it is sprayed onto the back of the throat and brings rapid relief. The leaves have an antibacterial action and have been shown to be effective against Staphylococcus aureus, Bacillus dysenteriae, Bacillus subtilis, Bacillus typhi, Escherichia coli and Pseudomonas.

The leaves have been found to have an antibacterial action, effective against Staphylococcus aureus, Bacillus typhi, B. dysenteriae, E. coli, B. subtilis, Pseudomonas etc.    The leaf stalks used to treat chronic dysentery, eye disease. Seeds are used to treat sweating at night, excessive gas in the system, tuberculosis, indigestion

Research:
*Ninety six volatile constituents have been identified from the leaves of A. argyi and certain other species of wormwood including alpha-thujene, 1,8-cineole, camphor and artemisia alcohol.

*Nearly fifty volatile constituents have been identified from A. argyi flowers and it is suggested that therapeutic use of the flowers may be just as effective as using the leaves.

*A methanol extract prepared from aerial parts of the plant strongly reduced the mutagenicity of Salmonella typhimurium.

*An extract of A. argyiwas shown to have antifungal activity against Botrytis cinerea and Alternaria alternata which cause deterioration of fruit and vegetables in storage.

*Flavones isolated from an extra of the herb were shown to have an anti-tumour effect.

*A study examined the clinical efficacy of moxibustion, analyzed the chemical compositions of the leaf of different strains of A. argyi, examined the best mode of delivery and how to enhance the therapeutic effects of this treatment.
Known Hazards : Although no reports of toxicity have been seen for this species, skin contact with some members of this genus can cause dermatitis or other allergic reactions in some people.

Disclaimer:
The information presented herein is intended for educational purposes only. Individual results may vary, and before using any supplements, it is always advisable to consult with your own health care provider.

Resources:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Artemisia_argyi
http://www.herbnet.com/Herb%20Uses_AB.htm
http://www.pfaf.org/user/Plant.aspx?LatinName=Artemisia%20argyi

http://www.fzrm.com/plantextracts/plantextract/artemisia%20argyi%20Levl.%20et%20Vant..htm

http://www.asiancancerherb.info/Ai.htm

http://www.pfaf.org/user/Plant.aspx?LatinName=Artemisia+argyi

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Sweet Wormwood(Artemisia annu)

Botanical Name:Artemisia annu

Family: Asteraceae
Genus: Artemisia
Species: A. annua
Kingdom: Plantae
Order: Asterales

Common Names:Sweet Wormwood, Sweet Annie, Sweet Sagewort or Annual Wormwood.   Annual sagebrush ,  Chinese wormwood,   qing hao

Habitat :Sweet Wormwood is a common type of wormwood that is native to temperate Asia, but naturalized throughout the world.

Description:
It has fern-like leaves, bright yellow flowers, and a camphor-like scent. Its height averages about 2 m tall, and the plant has a single stem, alternating branches, and alternating leaves which range 2.5–5 cm in length. It is cross-pollinated by wind or insects. It is a diploid plant with chromosome number, 2n=18.Sweet Wormwood  has leaves that are mildly perfume scented.
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Medicinal uses:
Medicinal properties: bitter   febrifuge   antimalarial   antibiotic
Parts Used: Leaves

Sweet Wormwood was used by Chinese herbalists in ancient times to treat fever, but had fallen out of common use, but was rediscovered in 1970’s when the Chinese Handbook of Prescriptions for Emergency Treatments (340 AD) was found. This pharmacopeia contained recipes for a tea from dried leaves, prescribed for fevers (not specifically malaria).

Extractions:
In 1971, scientists demonstrated that the plant extracts had antimalarial activity in primate models, and in 1972 the active ingredient, artemisinin (formerly referred to as arteannuin), was isolated and its chemical structure described. Artemisinin may be extracted using a low boiling point solvent such as diethylether and is found in the glandular trichomes of the leaves, stems, and inflorescences, and it is concentrated in the upper portions of plant within new growth.

Parasite treatment:
It is commonly used in tropical nations which can afford it, preferentially as part of a combination-cocktail with other antimalarials in order to prevent the development of parasite resistance.

Malaria treatment:
Artemisinin itself is a sesquiterpene lactone with an endoperoxide bridge and has been produced semi-synthetically as an antimalarial drug. The efficacy of tea made from A. annua in the treatment of malaria is contentious. According to some authors, artemesinin is not soluble in water and the concentrations in these infusions are considered insufficient to treatment malaria. Other researchers have claimed that Artemisia annua contains a cocktail of anti-malarial substances, and insist that clinical trials be conducted to demonstrate scientifically that artemisia tea is effective in treating malaria. This simpler use may be a cheaper alternative to commercial pharmaceuticals, and may enable health dispensaries in the tropics to be more self-reliant in their malaria treatment. In 2004, the Ethiopian Ministry of Health changed Ethiopia’s first line anti-malaria drug from Fansidar, a Sulfadoxine agent which has an average 36% treatment failure rate, to Coartem, a drug therapy containing artemesinin which is 100% effective when used correctly, despite a worldwide shortage at the time of the needed derivative from A. annua.

Cancer treatment:
The plant has also been shown to have anti-cancer properties. It is said to have the ability to be selectively toxic to some breast cancer cells [Cancer Research 65:(23).Dec 1, 2005] and some form of prostate cancer, there have been exciting preclinical results against leukemia, and other cancer cells.

Mechanism:
The proposed mechanism of action of artemisinin involves cleavage of endoperoxide bridges by iron producing free radicals (hypervalent iron-oxo species, epoxides, aldehydes, and dicarbonyl compounds) which damage biological macromolecules causing oxidative stress in the cells of the parasite.[citation needed] Malaria is caused by Apicomplexans, primarily Plasmodium falciparum, which largely resides in red blood cells and itself contains iron-rich heme-groups (in the from of hemozoin).

Precaution:During pregnancy this herb should not used.

Other uses:
In modern-day central China, specifically Hubei Province, the stems of this wormwood are used as food in a salad-like form. The final product, literally termed “cold-mixed wormwood”, is a slightly bitter salad with strong acid overtones from the spiced rice vinegar used as a marinade. It is considered a delicacy and is typically more expensive to buy than meat.

Disclaimer:The information presented herein is intended for educational purposes only. Individual results may vary, and before using any supplements, it is  always advisable to consult with your own health care provider.

Resources:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Artemisia_annua
http://www.crescentbloom.com/Plants/Specimen/AO/Artemisia%20annua.htm

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Huang Lian (Coptis chinensis)

Botanical Name : Coptis chinensis
Family: Ranunculaceae
Genus: Coptis
Kingdom: Plantae
Division: Magnoliophyta
Class: Magnoliopsida
Order: Ranunculales
Species: C. chinensis
syn. : Coptis teeta Wallich var. chinensis Finet & Gagnepain
Common Name : Huang Lian
Other Name :Chinese goldthread

Habitat : Native to China.Damp coniferous woods and bogs. Forests, shaded places in valleys at elevations of 500 – 2000 metres.  Slow-growing and sensitive plant provides a rich yellow rhizome and thread-like rootlets.


Description:

Perennial forest dweller. Does well in pots. An evergreen Perennial growing to 0.2 m (0ft 10in) by 0.2 m (0ft 6in).
It is hardy to zone 6. It is in leaf 12-Jan It is in flower from Feb to March, and the seeds ripen from Apr to May. The flowers are hermaphrodite (have both male and female organs) and are pollinated by Insects.

CLICK TO SEE THE PICTURES…...(01).....(1)..…....…(2)..…..(3)…..……………..

The plant prefers light (sandy), medium (loamy) and heavy (clay) soils.The plant prefers acid soils..It can grow in semi-shade (light woodland) or no shade.It requires moist or wet soil.

Cultivation :

Succeeds in a light moist humus-rich slightly acidic soil with a northerly aspect or light shade. Plants are hardy to at least -15°c.Sow seeds in fall or very early spring with germination in the spring as the ground warms up. Keep well-watered, protected and shaded until seedlings are established. Plant prefers rich, acid loam with moisture and shade.

Propagation
Seed – best sown in a greenhouse as soon as it is ripe in an ericaceous compost. Seal the pot in a polythene bag until germination takes place, which is usually within 1 – 6 months at 10°c. Stored seed should be sown as early in the year as possible. Four weeks cold stratification may be beneficial. Prick out the seedlings into individual pots when they are large enough to handle and grow on in a shady part of the greenhouse for at least their first winter. Plant them out in mid-autumn or in spring. Division in spring.

Chemical Constituents:Among other active compounds that Coptis chinensis contains is berberine and coptisine.

Medicinal uses.

Anaesthetic;  Analgesic;  Antibacterial;  Antidote;  Antipyretic;  Antispasmodic;  Bitter;  Blood tonic;  Carminative;  Cholagogue;  Digestive;
Sedative;  Skin;  Stomachic;  Tonic;  Vasodilator.

Huang Lian is commonly used in Chinese herbalism, where it is considered to be one of the 50 fundamental herbs. The root is a pungent, very bitter, cooling herb that controls bacterial and viral infections, relaxes spasms, lowers fevers and stimulates the circulation. It is one of the most frequently used herbs in prescriptions for the treatment of diabetes mellitus. The root is analgesic, locally anaesthetic, antibacterial, antidote, antipyretic, bitter, blood tonic, carminative, cholagogue, digestive, sedative, stomachic, tonic and vasodilator. It is particularly helpful in the treatment of diarrhoea, acute enteritis and dysentery, whilst it is also used in the treatment of insomnia, fidget, delirium due to high fever, leukaemia and otitis media. Externally it is used to treat various skin problems such as acne, boils, abscesses and burns whilst it is also used as a gargle for mouth and tongue ulcers, swollen gums and toothache. As an eyewash it is used to treat conjunctivitis. The root is harvested in the autumn and used fresh or dried

It acts on Hearts, Large Intestine, Liver, Stomach

It is one of the 50 fundamental herbs used in traditional Chinese medicine, where it is called duan è huánglián . One study found Coptis chinensis to be effective against the gastrointestinal parasite Blastocystis hominis.

You may click to see : Pharmacological & Clinical Research on Coptis chinensis & Coptis rhizome  :

Other Uses
Dye;  Ground cover.

A bright yellow pigment found in the roots can be used for dyeing. Can be grown as a ground cover plant in the peat garden.


Known Hazards:
Although no specific mention of toxicity has been found for this species, it belongs to a family that contains many species that are mildly toxic and so it is wise to treat this plant with some caution.

Disclaimer:
The information presented herein is intended for educational purposes only. Individual results may vary, and before using any supplements, it is always advisable to consult with your own health care provider.

Resources:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Coptis_chinensis
http://www.crimson-sage.com/shop/?shop=1&itemid=100150
http://www.pfaf.org/user/Plant.aspx?LatinName=Coptis%20chinensis

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Ancient Chinese Salad Plant Yields Cancer-Killing Compound

Some elements for :fr:Médecine chinoise in :fr...

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Researchers have used a traditional Chinese medicine to create a compound that is more than 1,200 times more specific in killing certain kinds of cancer cells than currently available drugs.

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The new compound is derived from artemisinin, which is made from the sweet wormwood plant (Artemisia annua L), an herb that has been used in Chinese medicine for at least 2,000 years, and is eaten in salads in some Asian countries.

The scientists attached a chemical homing device to artemisinin that targets the drug selectively to cancer cells, sparing healthy cells. “The compound is like a special agent planting a bomb inside the cell,” said chemistry professor Tomikazu Sasaki, who worked on developing the compound.

The compound Sasaki and his colleagues developed kills about 12,000 cancer cells for every healthy cell.

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