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Open Access Synergy in Herbal Medicines: Part 1

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In the following paper, we will review the available literature on synergy and additive effects involving medicinal herbs and herbal extracts. Several types of synergistic interactions are discussed, including apparently inactive constituents enhancing the effects of apparently active constituents within and between herbal medicines, various herbal compounds altering the absorption of others, reduction in toxicity of some herbal constituents by others, and direct synergistic therapeutic effects when active constituents are combined within and between many medicinal herbs. Species discussed include Artemisia annua (sweet Annie, qīng hāo), Ammi visnaga (khella), Glycyrrhiza glabra (licorice), G. uralensis (Chinese licorice, gān co), Panax ginseng (Asian ginseng, rén shēn), Mahonia aquifolium (Oregon grape), Berberis aetnensis (Mt. Etna barberry), B. trifoliolata (algerita), B. fendleri (Colorado barberry), and Coptis chinensis (goldthread, huáng lián). Part 2 of this article will continue this review on other medicinal herb species.
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Keywords: Artemisia annua; Coptis; Glycyrrhiza; Medicinal plants; Synergy

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 01 December 2015

More about this publication?
  • JRM is a peer-reviewed medical journal published annually by AARM. It publishes original research, reviews, and editorials that contribute to the understanding of nutritional and botanical influence on underlying mechanisms of chronic illness. The journal was established by Michaël Friedman, ND as the founding editor. The journal's current editor-in-chief is Liz Sutherland, ND of National University of Natural Medicine.
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