The genus Epimedium: an ethnopharmacological and phytochemical review.
ABSTRACT Epimedium (Berberidaceae), is a genus of about 52 species in the family Berberidaceae, which also known as Rowdy Lamb Herb, Xianlinpi, Barrenwort, Bishop's Hat, Fairy Wings, Horny Goat Weed, and Yangheye or Yin Yang Huo (Chinese: ). Many plants have been proven to possess efficacy on sexual dysfunction and osteoporosis in traditional Chinese medicine (TCM). The paper reviews the ethnopharmacology, the biological activities and the correlated chemical compounds of Epimedium species. More than 260 compounds have been isolated; among them prenyl-flavonoids are the major constituents and also important chemotaxonomic markers. Modern pharmacology studies and clinical practice demonstrated that Epimedium and its active compounds possess wide pharmacological actions, especially in strengthening yang, hormone regulation, anti-osteoporosis, immunological function modulation, anti-oxidation and anti-tumor, anti-aging, anti-atherosclerosis and anti-depressant activities. Currently, effective monomeric compounds or active parts have been screened for pharmacological activity from Epimedium in vivo and in vitro.
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ABSTRACT: According to our best knowledge, this is the first and also a relatively comprehensive review on the cold and hot (or warm) nature of common Iranian traditional herbal medicines, based on the evidence-based and directly collected from the user and native-healers, instead of reviewing the classical texts of Iranian traditional medicine. This column resulted from a wide field study on the common Iranian traditional herbal medicine for their so-called effects of cold, hot and also balanced natures, used currently among ethno-pharmacologists, herbal-drug sellers and rural native-healers.Methods The junior medical students were grouped into several groups for data collection. The information gathered from ethno-pharmacologists, herbal-drug sellers and rural native-healers, from different regions of Iran, especially Northwest, Southwest, Central and Northern provinces. For each repeated report of a certain indication, we added “a point” to the specification of that plant. If the number of every reported indication was, more than 5–20 times we reported that indication or pharmacological effect in our final report in this article.ResultsHere we presented 61 plants currently used in Iranian traditional herbal medicine. The data recorded for every plant included: scientific name, family names, English name, Persian name, therapeutic nature (cold, hot or balanced), suggested actions and pharmacology, indication and usage, used parts/preparation, mode of administration. The plants were grouped into 25 families. Of a total 61 plants 16 were with cold (26%) and 43 were with hot nature (70%) and the rest were with balanced nature (4%).Conclusions Almost of them have been long used as the components of the ancient receipts, hence, they may be more readily tried as suitable candidates in the future modern pharmacological investigations. Nevertheless, almost of them have been already evaluated in pharmacological laboratories, and their efficient properties have been confirmed. Considering the pharmacological properties of these plants, for finding a clear correlation of the pharmacological activities with the hot or cold nature, more detailed studies need to be conducted.Asian Pacific Journal of Tropical Biomedicine 02/2012; 2(2).
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ABSTRACT: Icaritin (ICT) is a major bioactive prenylflavonoid derivative contained in the Epimedium which is a widely used herbal medicine for the treatment of infertility, impotence, cardiovascular and skeletal diseases listed in the Chinese Pharmacopoeia. The aim of this study is to investigate the tissue distribution of ICT in rats by ultra-performance liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry (UPLC-MS/MS) MATERIALS AND METHODS: ICT was intraperitoneally administrated to rats for 7 consecutive days at dose levels of 20, 40 and 60mg/kg/day, respectively. Various tissue homogenates were pretreated by protein precipitation with acetonitrile. ICT and internal standard coumestrol were separated on a BEH C18 column with a gradient mobile phase and detected using precursor-product ion transitions of m/z 367.1→297.1 for ICT and 267.0→211.1 for coumestrol at the negative ionization mode, respectively.Journal of Ethnopharmacology 07/2014; · 2.94 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: In the practice of traditional Chinese medicine, many Yang-tonic herbs have been used for retarding the decline in bodily function and delaying the onset of age-related diseases. Our earlier studies have demonstrated that Yang-invigorating herbs/formulations protect against oxidative injury in various organs and also extend the median lifespan in mice. This lifespan extension was associated with an upregulation of cellular antioxidant status including that of mitochondria whose functional capacity is also increased by "Yang-invigorating" herbs/formulations. In this paper, we propose that triterpenes and phytosterols, which are ubiquitously found in Yang-tonic herbs, may be the chemical entities responsible for enhancing mitochondrial functional and antioxidant capacity and thus the "Yang-invigorating" action. The biochemical mechanism underlying this "Yang-invigorating" action may involve a sustained production of low levels of mitochondrial reactive oxygen species (ROS) secondary to an increased activity of the electron transport chain, with the possible involvement of mitochondrial uncoupling. The increase in mitochondrial functional capacity can retard the decline in bodily function during aging, whereas the mitochondrial ROS production is instrumental in eliciting a glutathione antioxidant response via redox-sensitive signaling pathways, which can delay the onset of age-related diseases.Evidence-based complementary and alternative medicine : eCAM. 01/2014; 2014:856273.