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Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM): Are Polyphenols and Saponins the Key Ingredients Triggering Biological Activities?

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The number of herbal formulae considered to be clinically effective and recorded in the Chinese medical literature is huge. The scientific basis for the remedial effects of these herbal formulae is not yet understood, nor has a clear need been given as to how to make use and combine traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) and Western medicine in an effective way. In this context, it is of interest to ascertain what individual constituents are responsible for the bioactive properties, and thus to extract the common characters of composition of huge formulae to provide a scientific explanation for their modes of action. We consider polyphenols and saponins as the key ingredients in TCM remedies responsible for most of the observed biological effects, reflecting the specific requirements within the TCM philosophy of treatment based on the investigation of its chemical composition.
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Keywords: polyphenols and tcm; traditional chinese medicine

Document Type: Review Article

Publication date: 2002-08-01

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  • Current Medicinal Chemistry covers all the latest and outstanding developments in medicinal chemistry and rational drug design. Each issue contains a series of timely in-depth reviews written by leaders in the field covering a range of the current topics in medicinal chemistry. Current Medicinal Chemistry is an essential journal for every medicinal chemist who wishes to be kept informed and up-to-date with the latest and most important developments.
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