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Pimpinella Anisum and Illicium Verum: The Multifaceted Role of Anise Plants



The role of dietary active compounds in human nutrition is an important area of investigation in the field of nutritional science. In this perspective, functional foods play a relevant role, offering a new kind of health tool that promises specific effects related to particular food components. Anise plant has a long cultural tradition in various countries all over the world, both as food and as drug. The essential oil of anise, extracted from the dry ripe fruits of Illicium verum and Pimpinella anisum , contains anethole, an active chemical compound that showed several functional properties including antimicrobial, antioxidant, hypoglycemic, hypolipidemic and oestrogenic properties. To date, studies conducted on the properties of anise, demonstrated the efficacy of the plant in the improvement of physiological condition in human and the possibility to exploit the active compounds of anise for the treatment of several chronic diseases. The aim of this review is to collect data on anise in order to evaluate its pharmacological properties.
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DOI: 10.2174/1874331501610010084
Pimpinella Anisum and Illicium Verum: The Multifaceted Role of
Anise Plants
Maria Gabriella Vecchio1,*, Achal Gulati2, Clara Minto3 and Giulia Lorenzoni3
1ZETA Research Ltd, Trieste, Italy
2Department of Otorhinolaryngology (ENT), Maulana Azad Medical College, Bahadur Shah Zafar Marg, New Delhi,
3Unit of Biostatistics, Epidemiology and Public Health, Department of Cardiac, Thoracic and Vascular Sciences,
University of Padova, Padova, Italy
Received: December 4, 2015 Revised: February 9, 2016 Accepted: February 9, 2016
Abstract: The role of dietary active compounds in human nutrition is an important area of investigation in the field of nutritional
science. In this perspective, functional foods play a relevant role, offering a new kind of health tool that promises specific effects
related to particular food components. Anise plant has a long cultural tradition in various countries all over the world, both as food
and as drug. The essential oil of anise, extracted from the dry ripe fruits of Illicium verum and Pimpinella anisum, contains anethole,
an active chemical compound that showed several functional properties including antimicrobial, antioxidant, hypoglycemic,
hypolipidemic and oestrogenic properties.
To date, studies conducted on the properties of anise, demonstrated the efficacy of the plant in the improvement of physiological
condition in human and the possibility to exploit the active compounds of anise for the treatment of several chronic diseases. The aim
of this review is to collect data on anise in order to evaluate its pharmacological properties.
Keywords: Anethole, Anise, Antioxidant, Functional properties, Illicium verum, Pimpinella Anisum.
The role of dietary active compounds in human nutrition is an important area of investigation in the field of
nutritional science. Nowadays, the demand for foods and beverages improving the health status has increased
worldwide, due to the rise of healthcare costs and the desire for a higher quality of life [1]. In this perspective,
functional foods play a relevant role, offering a new kind of health tool that promises specific effects related to
particular food components [2]. The first definition of functional food was introduced in 1980 in Japan and it was
referred to processed foods that support specific body functions, in addition to their nutritional properties [3].
Nowadays, there is no universally accepted definition of functional food but several organizations gave their own
explanation. The Institute of Medicine of the US National Academy of Sciences defined functional food as the food that
encompass potentially healthful products, including any modified food or food ingredient that may provide a health
benefit beyond its nutrient content. In Korea, functional foods are defined as dietary supplement with the purpose to
supplement the normal diet, marketed in measured doses such as in pills [4]; for the European Commission’s Concerted
Action on Functional Food Science in Europe (FuFoSE), functional foods have beneficial actions on one or more body
functions beyond adequate nutritional effects and act by improving state of health and well-being and/or by reducing the
risk of disease [1]. For centuries plant-based medicines have been used traditionally for the treatment of a wide range
of diseases, including gastrointestinal [5] disorders such as dyspepsia, gastritis and peptic ulcer [6, 7]. Nowadays,
* Address correspondence to these authors at the Zeta Research Ltd, Via A. Caccia, 8, 34129 Trieste - Italy; Mobile: +39 3938908862; Tel/Fax: +39
040 358980; Email:
82 The Open Agriculture Journal, 2016, Volume 10 Vecchio et al.
phytotherapy compounds are used as an alternative treatment option, because they may offer advantages in terms of
safety, tolerability, and costs, improving patient compliance especially in chronic disorders and long-term treatments
[8]. Anise is an example of plant used for different purposes all over the world, because of its healthy and functional
properties. Pimpinella anisum (green anise or aniseed) and Illicium verum (star anise or Chinese star anise) are both
identified under the name anise, but each one presents different botanical and functional characteristics. Both plants are
commonly used in Iranian traditional medicine as antimicrobial [9]; P. anisum is used in Turkey for its stomachic,
carminative and appetizing effects [10] and in Egyptian medicine for the treatment of respiratory diseases [11].
Furthermore, I. verum has long been used in traditional Chinese medicine with the actions of dispelling cold and
relieving pain [12].
The aim of the present paper is to describe the traditional use, the phytochemical characteristics and the
pharmacological properties of P. anisum and I. verum, presenting the multifaceted role of these medicinal plants, used
in the traditional culture of several countries.
Botany and Plant Description
I. verum Hook. f. is classified in the division Magnoliophyta, class Magnoliopsida, subclass Magnoliidae, order
Austrobaileyales, family Illiciaceae. The plant is a medium sized tree, 8-15 m tall and 30 cm depth. The bark is white to
bright grey. Leaves are 6-12 cm long, alternate, simple, leathery, entire, shining, glabrous, usually crowded in bundles
at the end of the branches. Flower is large, bisexual, 1-1.5 cm in diameter, white pink to red or greenish yellow, axillary
and solitary. Fruit is capsule like, aggregate is star shaped. Each arm is seed pod. Fruits are picked before they ripe and
dried. Seeds are shiny brown or reddish with high oil content [13, 14]. Flowers bloom from March to May, and the
fruits ripe from September to October.
Common name of I. verum has many synonyms in different areas: Chinese star anise or Bajiaohuixiang in China;
Anis de la Chine, Anise etoile or Badiane in France; Dai-uikyo or Hakkaku-uikyo in Japan; Sternanis in Germany;
Anice stellato in Italy; Sonf or Anasphal in India; Anis estrellado in Spain; Bunga lawing in Indonesia and Malaysia
P. anisum L., is classified in the division Magnoliophyta, class Magnoliopsida, subclass Rosidae, order Apiales,
family Apiaceae (also known as Umbelliferae). It is an herbaceous annual plant with stem about one foot high, erect,
smooth, slightly branched. Leaves are numerous, lower ones are cordate and cuneate-lobed, middle ones are pinnate-
lobed, and upper ones are trifid. The flowers are small and white;, the fruits are oval, striate with five ridges, with a few
scattered hairs of a peculiar greenish tint. P. anisum is endemic in Asia Minor, Egypt (where it is used since ancient
times as aromatic herb), and Greece, certain areas of Europe (Spain, Italy, Germany, Southern Russia) and South
America. It is cultivated in Turkey, Russia, South Africa, Latin America, and Brazil. Anise fruits, which are
commercially called “seeds”, are used as flavorings and crude drug. The essential oil from anise fruits is used in food
processing, perfumes, toothpaste, and in medicine [15].
Chemical Constituent and Use of Anise
The essential oil (anisi aetheroleum) extracted from steam distillation of ripe fruits of both I. verum and P. anisum
[16] contains trans-anethole from 80% to 95% or more (responsible for its characteristic taste and smell, as well as for
its medicinal properties [17, 18]), followed by chavicol methyl ether (estragole), anisaldehyde and cis-anethole [19].
P. anisum composition includes, in addition, coumarins (umbelliferone, umbelliprenine, bergapten, and scopoletin),
lipids (fatty acids, beta-amyrin, stigmasterol and its salts), flavonoids (flavonol, flavone, glycosides, rutin, isoorientin,
and isovitexin), proteins and carbohydrates [17]. P. anisum is well known as a carminative and an expectorant, and it is
also used to decrease bloating, especially in pediatric patients. At higher doses, it is used as an antispasmodic and
antiseptic [17, 18], and in vitro studies have also reported an antimicrobial action [17].
The fruits of I. verum contain, besides volatile oil, resin, fat, tannin, pectin and mucilage [20], making the plant
efficacious in the treatment of dyspeptic complaints, catarrhs of the respiratory tract [21], rheumatism and otalgia. The
fruits are also used for their antiseptic, digestive, diuretic, and deodorant properties [22]. I. verum is also used as
aromatic spice for food and cosmetic preparations, representing an ingredient of the traditional five-spice powder (a
mixture of star anise, clove, cinnamon, pepper and fennel) of Chinese cooking, especially for meat and soup [20]; the
seeds are used in baked goods and confections [23] and in the West, I. verum is added in fruit compotes and jams and in
the manufacture of anise-flavoured liqueurs (anisette) [20].
The Multifaceted Role of Anise Plants The Open Agriculture Journal, 2016, Volume 10 83
Anti-oxidant Effect
Free radicals, in particular the reactive oxygen species -ROS- haves been shown to cause cellular injury and haves
been considered as one of the most important factors in the etiology of various diseases like diabetes mellitus, cancer
and stroke. Free radicals determine damage to cellular DNA and are the precursors of carcinogenesis. A substantial
amount of data from epidemiological studies indicate that diet has positive impact on the multistage process of chemical
carcinogenesis [24]. In scientific literature, several studies demonstrated the influence of anise and I. verum on cells
oxidation, showing the beneficial effect of anethole on the interruption of carcinogenesis [25]. Yadav et al.
demonstrated that treatment with star extracts reduced the mean nodular volume as well as the development of nodules
in the liver of rats with induced carcinogenesis, and that the nodule incidence was significantly lowered after star
treatment in rats [26]. Gulcin et al. evaluated the antioxidant properties of water and ethanolic extracts of P. anisum,
comparing the activities with synthetic antioxidants such as butylated hydroxyanisole (BHA), butylated hydroxytoluene
(BHT), and α-tocopherol. Both extracts of P. anisum showed strong antioxidant activity, reducing superoxide anion
scavenging, hydrogen peroxide scavenging, and metal chelating activities compared to BHA, BHT, and α-tocopherol
Antibacterial Activity
Numerous wild plants show antimicrobial properties, particularly in blocking the bacterial reproduction and their
development. The antibacterial effects of the individual components of anise oil varied depending upon their chemical
structure, functional groups and configuration as well as doses used. Singh et al. showed that the antibacterial activity of
P. anisum can be exploited against Stafilococco aureus responsible for bases, sepses and skin infection; Streptococcus
haemolyticus causing infection of the throat and nose; and Bacillus subtilis responsible for infection in immune
compromised patients. The oil can also be used to control Pseudomonas aeruginosa which causes hospital acquired
infection; Escherichia coli, responsible for urinogenital tract infections and diarrhea; Klebsella spp and Proteus vulgaris
[28]. These results are confirmed by Abu-Darwish, showing the antibacterial activity of anise by demonstrating that the
plant has a relevant role against clinical and standard strains of S. aureus and E. coli [29]. Anise plant, thanks to its
active compounds, could be used in pharmaceutical preparations as natural antibiotics.
Effect on Gastrointestinal Disorder
The beneficial effects of anise in the treatment of gastrointestinal disorder are reported in several studies. Al Mofleh
and coworkers demonstrated the antacid action of the plant, showing that anise suspension enhances ethanol-induced
gastric wall mucus depletion in rats, confirming the ability of anise to prevent and/or ameliorate the effects of damaging
agents on gastric mucosa [30].
Furthermore, the methanol extract of P. anisum seeds inhibits the in vitro growth of Helicobacter pylori, the gram-
negative bacterium which represents an etiological factor for gastrointestinal disorders, representing a potential
compound useful in the treatment of gastric diseases [5].
Estrogenic Effect
P. anisum has been used as estrogenic agents for millennia especially due to the anethole, which is considered the
active estrogenic agent. Albert-Puleo in his study demonstrated the estrogenic role of the plant, which increase the milk
secretion, promote menstruation, facilitate birth, alleviate the symptoms of the male climacteric, and increase libido
[31]. The estrogenic role of anise is also showed by Nahidi and colleagues, which demonstrated, in a double blind
clinical trials on 72 postmenopausal women, that the consumption of 300mg of anise extract for 4 weeks, leads to
significant reduction in hot flash frequency, caused by the decrease and cessation of estrogen secretion [32].
Effect on Glucose Absorption and Diabetes
The effect of P. anisum oil on glucose absorption was studied by Kreydiyyeh et al. The study showed that the oil
added to the perfusion buffer and administered in rats’ jejunum increase significantly the absorption of glucose from the
small intestine.
The absorption mechanism is due to the stimulation of the Na+-K+ ATPase, mediated by P. anisum oil, which
increases the sodium gradient that gears the mucosal glucose transport [33].
The role of anise in people affected by diabetes is reported in a work of Rajeshwari and colleagues. They showed
84 The Open Agriculture Journal, 2016, Volume 10 Vecchio et al.
that the administration of 5 gr per day of anise seed powders for 60 days decrease the fasting blood glucose, the serum
cholesterol and triglycerides, and improve the serum high density lipoprotein (HDL) in type 2 diabetes patients. The
antidiabetic and hypolipidemic activities exhibited by the seeds are a result of the synergistic action of the bioactive
compounds present in the seeds, and demonstrate the possible use of anise seed in the treatment of hyperglycemia [34].
Effect on Constipation
In a randomized clinical trial conducted on 20 patients with chronic constipation, the laxative effect of a
phytotherapic compound containing P. anisum L., Foeniculum vulgare Miller, Sambucus nigra L., and Cassia
augustifolia was investigated.
The two endpoints of the study were the measurement of the colonic transit time and the number of evacuation per
day. The results revealed the laxative effect of phytotherapic compound compared to the placebo, demonstrating the use
of this compound as a possible cure for constipation [35].
Other Effects
In 1985, Reiter et al. describe the effects of volatile oil of this plant on the relaxation of the tracheal isolated muscles
of guinea pig [36] and after them, the antispasmodic effect of anise’s compounds was evaluated in several other studies.
An example of a latest study on antispasmodic effect was conducted by Tirapelli and coworkers, which demonstrated
the reduction of anococcygeus smooth muscle contraction in rat induced by acetylcholine, due to three hidroalcoholic
extract of P. anisum at different concentration (40%, 60% and 80%) [37]. The effect demonstrated by this study justifies
its use in the folk medicine as an antispasmodic agent. Despite the healthy effect of P. anisum and I. verum
demonstrated by scientific literature, that conferred to the plants the characteristic of “harmless medicine”, some cases
of intoxication were registered. The major part of these cases, among infants and child, were reported because the I.
verum tea is often used in various cultures for the treatment of infant colic pains. In particular, the toxicity is due to the
contamination of I. verum by Japanese star anise or Illicium anisatum L, which contains several neurotoxins (anisatin,
neoanisatin, and pseudoanisatin) causing serious neurologic and gastrointestinal symptoms [38]. Furthermore, the effect
of I. anisatum on people exposed to the substance contained in the contaminated beverage was really serious, consisting
of signs of acute-onset irritability, jitteriness, clonus or myoclonus, increased deep tendon reflexes, nystagmus,
vomiting, and seizures [39]. In this perspective, the knowledge of the effect of eventual contamination of herbal teas
with Japanese star anise is a cardinal point to prevent such events.
Anise belongs to a family of spices with a long history. In addition to their traditional uses, P. anisum and I. verum
have multiple applications in botany, chemistry and pharmacology. Several studies were performed to identify the
chemical compounds and the pharmacological properties of the plant demonstrating that its action is mostly due to
anethole, the major component of essential oil, which showed a great scientific interest worldwide. In this paper the
antimicrobial and antioxidant effects of anise were reported. Furthermore, the review also revealed the use of plant as
gastric protector, oestrogenic agent and its employment in the treatment of diabetes due to its hypoglycemic and
hypolipidemic effects. Considering the multifaceted activity and the beneficial properties of anise, the plant could be
used for the control and the cure of several human diseases. Despite anise has a broad spectrum of pharmacological
effects, very few clinical studies were performed on this plant. In future, the identification of active compounds of this
plant which can lead to the synthesis of new drugs is necessary, as well as clinical trials, for the evaluation of the
beneficial effects of P. anisum and I. verum in human models.
The authors confirm that this article content has no conflict of interest.
The work has been partially supported by an unrestricted grant of the Italian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the
Indian Ministry of Science & Technology.
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... Furthermore, its leaves are 6-12 cm long, alternate, simple, leathery, entire, glabrous, shining, usually crowded in bundles at the end of the branches. It also has large flower, bisexual, 1-1.5 cm in diameter, white pink to red or greenish yellow, axillary and solitary (Vecchio et al., 2016). Fruit is capsule like, aggregate is star shapes; each arm is seed pod. ...
... Other usages of star anise oil are in fevers, scabies, constipation and insomnia. Vecchio et al. (2016) noted that Pimpinella anisum (anised or green anise) and Illicium verum (Chinese star anise or star anise) are both under the name of anise, but each one presents different functional and botanical characteristics. Both Chinese star anise and anise have been widely used in Iranian traditional medicine for antimicrobial effects (Yazdani et al., 2009). ...
... Yadav and Bhatnagar (2007) indicate that the treatment with star anise rescues the tumor burden, lowers oxidative stress and increases the level of phase II enzymes, which may contribute to its anti-carcinogenic. Both the essential oil from Chinese star anise fruit and trans-anethole are major constituents and exhibit potent inhibitory effect against all test fungi indicating that most of the observed antifungal properties was due to the presence of trans-anethole in the oil, which could be developed as natural fungicides for plant disease control in fruit and vegetable preservation (Huang et al., 2010;Vecchio et al., 2016). ...
Full-text available
Botanical insecticides keep attracting more attention from environmental and small farmers worldwide as they are considered as a suitable alternative to synthetic insecticides. The outstanding properties of pyrethrum include rapid action, low mammalian toxicity, broad spectrum of activity, lack of insect immunity, lack of persistence and of course effective insect repellent. Pyrethrum is a natural insecticide which has many properties, but the most important are rapid action, very low toxicity for mammalian, lack of insect immunity, broad of activity, lack of persistence and quick degradation by UV-sunlight and very effective insect repellent. Using natural pesticide may lead to organic farming, and advantage of organic farming is more beneficial to biodiversity and the environment, which reduces dietary exposure to pesticides. Chinese star anise has anti-bacterial and anti-fungal characters. It is useful in treatment of diseases like asthma, bronchitis and dry cough. One of its most compounds is Shikimic acid which is used as a drug in curing influenza and flu virus. It also consists of Linalool which is good for overall health because of its anti-oxidants characters. Its seeds are good source of minerals like calcium, iron, copper, potassium, manganese, zinc, and magnesium. The seeds are a great source of essential B-complex vitamins such as pyridoxine, niacin, riboflavin and thiamin. Chinese star anise is also a good source of anti-oxidant vitamins such as vitamin-C and vitamin-A. The essential oil of Star anise contains anethole which has shown several functional properties including antimicrobial, antioxidant, hypoglycemic, hypolipidemic and oestrogenic properties. Star anise primarily contains anethole and fatty oil. Its essential oil has a sweetish, burning flavor and a highly aromatic odor. Organic farmers may use these two ancient Chinese herbs which can lead to industrial sustainability.
... To date, studies conducted on the properties of Pimpinella anisum (anise), demonstrated the efficacy of the plant in the improvement of physiological condition in human and the possibility to exploit the active compounds of anise for the treatment of several chronic diseases such as dyspepsia epilepsia, diabetes, leucorrhea, IBS; it also contains analgesic, muscle relaxant, antioxidant, antiviral, antifungal, antimicrobial, antianxiety and antidepressant effects [10][11][12][13][14][15][16][17][18]. ...
... In a review article about the properties of Anise, it has been mentioned that, despite the broad spectrum of pharmacological effects of Anise, limited clinical studies have been conducted on this plant. So, active compounds of this plant should be identified which could lead to synthesis of new drugs and to evaluate the beneficial effects of Anise, more clinical trials should be conducted in this regard [18]. ...
Background Premenstrual syndrome (PMS) has a high prevalence among women of reproductive ages but despite its high prevalence, it has no determined and absolute treatment, so far. So, the aim of the present study was to compare the effect Pimpinella Anisum (Anise) with placebo on the intensity of the symptoms of PMS. Methods The present study was a randomized double-blind controlled clinical trial. College students who were suffering from PMS and had the inclusion criteria were selected and randomly assigned into two groups of intervention (Anise) and control (placebo). Participants in the intervention group, received 110 mg capsules of Anise three times day (a total dose of 330 mg per day); the control group received similar capsules with the same dosing that contained starch. Consumption of the capsules was started 7 days before the start of the menstruation and continued until 3 days after, which was a total of 10 days during two consecutive menstruation cycles. The intensity of the symptoms of premenstrual syndrome was measured using Premenstrual Symptoms Screening Tool (PSST). To compare the intensity of the symptoms between the two study groups, generalized estimating equation statistical method was used. Results Eventually, sixty-seven 18–35 year old college students who were suffering from premenstrual syndrome were enrolled in the study. Comparing the mean score of the intensity of the syndrome between the two groups after the first and the second menstruation cycles showed a decrease in the intervention group to 13.9 (p-value<0.001; 95% CI: 16.5,−11.4) and 9.8 (p-value<0.001; 95% CI: 12.4,−7.3), respectively. Conclusion Results of the study showed that, in general, Anise was effective in decreasing the symptoms of premenstrual syndrome in comparison to placebo.
... The leaves are 6-12 cm tall, sturdy, alternate, simple, complete, glabrous, very bright, and usually packed with bundles at the end of the branches. The flower is large, diameter is 1-1.5 cm, bisexual, white-pink to red to greenish-yellow, axillary, and lonely [962]. Dry fruits and seeds of star anise are popular as a spice in Chinese cuisine. ...
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Medicinal or herbal spices are grown in tropical moist evergreen forestland, surrounding most of the tropical and subtropical regions of Eastern Himalayas in India (Sikkim, Darjeeling regions), Bhutan, Nepal, Pakistan, Iran, Afghanistan, a few Central Asian countries, Middle East, USA, Europe, South East Asia, Japan, Malaysia, and Indonesia. According to the cultivation region surrounded, economic value, and vogue, these spices can be classified into major, minor, and colored tropical spices. In total, 24 tropical spices and herbs (cardamom, black jeera, fennel, poppy, coriander, fenugreek, bay leaves, clove, chili, cassia bark, black pepper, nutmeg, black mustard, turmeric, saffron, star anise, onion, dill, asafoetida, celery, allspice, kokum, greater galangal, and sweet flag) are described in this review. These spices show many pharmacological activities like anti-inflammatory, antimicrobial, anti-diabetic, anti-obesity, cardiovascular, gastrointestinal, central nervous system, and antioxidant activities. Numerous bioactive compounds are present in these selected spices, such as 1,8-cineole, monoterpene hydrocarbons, γ-terpinene, cuminaldehyde, trans-anethole, fenchone, estragole, benzylisoquinoline alkaloids, eugenol, cinnamaldehyde, piperine, linalool, malabaricone C, safrole, myristicin, elemicin, sinigrin, curcumin, bidemethoxycurcumin, dimethoxycurcumin, crocin, picrocrocin, quercetin, quercetin 4’-O-β-glucoside, apiol, carvone, limonene, α-phellandrene, galactomannan, rosmarinic acid, limonene, capsaicinoids, eugenol, garcinol, and α-asarone. Other than that, various spices are used to synthesize different types of metal-based and polymer-based nanoparticles like zinc oxide, gold, silver, selenium, silica, and chitosan nanoparticles which provide beneficial health effects such as antioxidant, anti-carcinogenic, anti-diabetic, enzyme retardation effect, and antimicrobial activity. The nanoparticles can also be used in environmental pollution management like dye decolorization and in chemical industries to enhance the rate of reaction by the use of catalytic activity of the nanoparticles. The nutritional value, phytochemical properties, health advantages, and both traditional and modern applications of these spices, along with their functions in food fortification, have been thoroughly discussed in this review
... 15 I. verum has potent antimicrobial, antirheumatic, antiseptic, and diuretic properties. 16 The constituents responsible for the anti-QS activities in I. verum largely remain unexplored to the best of our knowledge. Here, we determined the antibiofilm and antivirulence properties of I. verum against S. aureus using in silico, in vitro, and in situ investigations. ...
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Biofilm-producing Staphylococcus aureus (S. aureus) is less sensitive to conventional antibiotics than free-living planktonic cells. Here, we evaluated the antibiofilm activity of Illicium verum (I. verum) and one of its constituent compounds 3-hydroxybenzoic acid (3-HBA) against multi-drug-resistant S. aureus. We performed gas chromatography−mass spectroscopy (GC-MS) to identify the major constituents in the methanolic extract of I. verum. Ligand−receptor interactions were studied by molecular docking, and in vitro investigations were performed using crystal violet assay, spreading assay, hemolysis, proteolytic activity, and growth curve analysis. The methanolic extract of I. verum inhibited S. aureus at 4.8 mg/mL, and GC-MS analysis revealed anethole, m-methoxybenzaldehyde, and 3-HBA as the major constituents. Molecular docking attributed the antibiofilm activity to an active ligand present in 3-HBA, which strongly interacted with the active site residues of AgrA and SarA of S. aureus. At a subinhibitory concentration of 2.4 mg/mL, the extract showed biofilm inhibition. Similarly, 3-HBA inhibited biofilm activity at 25 μg/mL (90.34%), 12.5 μg/mL (77.21%), and 6.25 μg/mL (62.69%) concentrations. Marked attrition in bacterial spreading was observed at 2.4 mg/mL (crude extract) and 25 μg/mL (3-HBA) concentrations. The methanol extract of I. verum and 3-HBA markedly inhibited β-hemolytic and proteolytic activities of S. aureus. At the lowest concentration, the I. verum extract (2.4 mg/mL) and 3-HBA (25 μg/mL) did not inhibit bacterial growth. Optical microscopy and SEM analysis confirmed that I. verum and 3-HBA significantly reduced biofilm dispersion without disturbing bacterial growth. Together, we found that the antibiofilm activity of I. verum and 3-HBA strongly targeted the Agr and Sar systems of S. aureus.
... Diallyl disulfide is an organosulfur compound found commonly in onions, garlic, and a few other plants in the genus Allium. This substance is reportedly toxicity to mosquito larvae [23]. ...
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Aedes aegypti, also called the dengue or yellow fever mosquito, is a significant vector species of several viruses especially the dengue virus. Reducing Ae. aegypti population can directly reduce dengue outbreaks in the community. The research aim is to assess the efficacy of commercial botanical pure essential oils of garlic (Allium sativum) and anise (Pimpinella anisum) against Ae. aegypti larvae, the mortality of larvae was monitored after 24- and 48-h of exposure. The larvicidal activity of garlic oil after 24-h exposure was 0.005 ppm for LC25, 0.006 ppm for LC50, and 0.012 ppm for LC90, and after 48 h exposure was 0.004 ppm for LC25, 0.006 ppm for LC50, and 0.014 ppm for LC90. Meanwhile, the larvicidal activity of anise oil after 24-h exposure was 0.016 ppm for LC25, 0.023 ppm for LC50, and 0.043 ppm for LC90, and after 48-h exposure was 0.014 ppm for LC25, 0.020 ppm for LC50, and 0.037 ppm for LC90, whereas, Aedes larval mortalities increased with an increase in the concentration of garlic and anise essential oils after both 24- and 48-h exposure. The results of this study were clear evidence for the efficiency of commercial plant oil for dengue vector larval control, especially garlic essential oils.
... [52,70] Trans-anethole is the main bioactive component of I. verum. [71][72][73] In the study of Özguven (2012), extracts of star anise (seed) contains anethole and estragole which shows to be the cause of hepatoxicity in rodents. [74] Both phytoconstituents are structurally similar to safrole, a recognized hepatotoxic and carcinogen. ...
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Introduction: In the Philippines, spices such as Cinnamomum mindanaense (CM), Illicium verum (IV), and Ocimum spp. (OS) are used for culinary purposes and in traditional herbal medicine practice. These spices have claimed health benefits, but toxicity evaluation of their bioactive constituents have not been thoroughly explored. This study aimed to evaluate the toxicity and teratogenicity of these selected indigenous spices. Materials and Methods: The toxicity of these spices was evaluated using Brine Shrimp Lethality Assay (BSLA, LC50) and Zebrafish Assay (hatchability, morphological abnormalities, and mortality) under a Complete Randomized Design. Results and Discussion: The results in BSLA revealed that the LC50 of CM leaf extract (6.961 μg/ml), IV leaf extract (10.434 μg/ml) and OS leaf extract (15.737 μg/ml) were considered highly toxic, following a linear dose-response trend. Evidence revealed that there was a significant difference (p ≤ 0.05) in the toxicity and teratogenicity of the selected indigenous spices against zebrafish embryo/larvae as evidenced by less hatchability, morphological abnormalities, and high mortality. The LC50 value of CM leaf extract (230.497 μg/ml) and IV leaf extract (278.328 μg/ml) registered medium toxicity. Conclusion: This study provided additional evidence on the suspected toxicities of some indigenous spices when consumed at higher concentrations. Additional studies using other animal models and chronic testing through longitudinal time consideration are needed to further elucidate the consistency of its effect across different vertebrate models.
... Star anise (Illicium verum Hook. f.) is one of the most famous evergreen tree which has originally distributed in tropic and subtropic areas of Asia, especially China, and it is famous as in traditional Chinese medicine as well as traditional Asian medicine (Yokoyama et al., 2002;Yokoyama et al., 2003;Thuat and Ngoc, 2010;Sung et al., 2012;Zhongliang, 2012;Vermaak et al., 2013;Vecchio et al., 2016;Zhou et al., 2016Yoshikawa et al., 2018). Its fruit also commonly used spice. ...
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Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) has been used for thousands of years by different generations in China and other Asian countries as foods to promote good health and as drugs to treat disease. Goji berry (Lycium barbarum), as a Chinese traditional herb and food supplement, contains many nutrients and phytochemicals, such as polysaccharides, scopoletin, the glucosylated precursor, amino acids, flaconoids, carotenoids, vitamins and minerals. It has positive effects on anitcancer, antioxidant activities, retinal function preservation, anti-diabetes, immune function and anti-fatigue. Widely used in traditional Chinese medicine, Goji berries can be sold as a dietary supplement or classified as nutraceutical food due to their long and safe traditional use. Modern Goji pharmacological actions are improving function, enhances the body ,s ability to adapt to a variety of noxious stimuli; it significantly inhibits the generation and spread of cancer cells and can improve eyesight and increase reserves of muscle glycogen and liver glycogen which may increase human energy and has anti-fatigue effect. Goji berries may improve brain function and enhances learning and memory. It may boost the body ,s adaptive defences, and significantly reduce the levels of serum cholesterol and triglyceride, it may help weight loss and obesity and treats chronic hepatitis and cirrhosis. Today they are considered functional food with many beneficial effects, which is why they have become more popular recently, especially in Europe, North America and Australia, as they are considered as superfood with highly nutritive and antioxidant properties. Geographical origin of Goji berries are one of the most important quality parameters in TCM since the differences in climate, soil, and cultivation methods cause differences in the chemical composition of the plants. Goji berry has huge health benefits that attract good international markets. Goji berry which is as knows as the super fruit and super food in TCM for the claimed health benefits and it should be part of daily diet. Ginger (Zingiber officinale) has been used as a spice and a medicine for over 200 years in Traditional Chinese Medicine. Ginger is an important plant with several medicinal, and nutritional values used in Asian and Chinese Tradition medicine. Ginger and its general compounds such as Fe, Mg, Ca, vitamin C, flavonoids, phenolic compounds (gingerdiol, gingerol, gingerdione and shogaols), sesquiterpenes, paradols has long been used as an herbal medicine to treat various symptoms including vomiting, pain, cold symptoms and it has been shown to have anti-inflammatory, anti-apoptotic, anti-tumor activities, anti-pyretic, anti-platelet, anti-tumourigenic, anti-hyperglycaemic, antioxidant anti-diabetic, anti-clotting and analgesic properties, cardiotonic, cytotoxic. It has been widely used for arthritis, cramps, sprains, sore throats, rheumatism, muscular aches, pains, vomiting, constipation, indigestion, hypertension, dementia, fever and infectious diseases. Ginger leaves have also been used for food flavouring and Asian Traditional Medicine especially in China. Ginger oil also used as food flavouring agent in soft drink, as spices in bakery products, in confectionary items, pickles, sauces and as a preservatives. Ginger is available in three forms, namely fresh root ginger, preserved ginger and dried ginger. The pharmacological activities of ginger were mainly attributed to its active phytocompounds 6-gingerol, 6-shogaol, zingerone beside other phenolics and flavonoids. Gingerol and shogaol in particular, is known to have anti-oxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. In both Traditional Chinese Medicine, and modern China, Ginger is used in about half of all herbal prescriptions. Traditional medicinal plants are often cheaper, locally available and easily consumable raw and as simple medicinal preparations. Ginseng is the most famous of the Chinese herbs throughout the world, and has been one of the most valued herb in China. Traditional Chinese Medicine as an important component of complementary and alternative medicine, evolved over thousands of years with its own unique system of theories, diagnostics and therapies in Asian countries, especially China. In most parts of the world, especially western countries, Ginseng has been increasingly used in the last decades and has become well known for its significant role in preventing and treating so many diseases. Ginseng species are Panax ginseng C. A. Meyer (Korean ginseng), Panax japonicas C. A. Meyer (Japanese ginseng), Panax major Tings, Paanx notoginseng (Burkill) F. H. Chen (Sanchi ginseng), Panax omeiensis J. Wen, Panax pseudoginseng Wallich, Paanx quinquefolius L. (American ginseng), Panax sinesis J. Wen, Panax trifolius L (Dwarf ginseng), Panax wangianus Sun, Panax zingiberensis C. Y. Wu & K. M. Feng, Panax vietnamensis Ha et Grushv. (Vietnamese ginseng) and etc. But the most important species are Panax ginseng (Chinese ginseng), and Panax quinquefolius (American ginseng). Panax ginseng has consisted of a number of active constituents, such as saponins or ginsenosides, carbohydrates, nitrogenous substances, phytosteril, essential oils, organic acids, amino acids, peptidoglycans, carbohydrate, nitrogen-containing compounds, fatty acids, vitamins, minerals and other phenolic compounds. Ginsenosides are classified into two main groups known as protopanaxadiol (PPD), and protopanaxatriol (PPT). Pharmacological activities of ginseng extracts are effects on the central nervous system; antipsychotic action; tranquilizing effects; protection from stress ulcers; increase of gastrointestinal motility; anti-fatigue action; endocrinological effects; enhancement of sexual behaviour; acceleration of metabolism; or synthesis of carbohydrates, lipids, RNA, and proteins. In Traditional Chinese Medicine, ginseng help to maintain a healthy immune system. Ginseng contains an abundance of diversified chemical elements hardly found in other medicinal herbs. More clinical studies are necessary to uncover the numerous substances and their effects in ginseng that contribute to public health. Astragalus is a common Traditional Chinese Medicinal plant which is a widely used herbal product in China, other Asian countries and some western countries. Astragalus has been used for almost 2000 years in China to boost the body ,s general vitality and strengthening resistance to exogenous pathogens. Saponins, polysaccharides, amino acids, flavonoids, organic acid, glycosides, alkaloid, and trace elements, are the major class of chemical compounds occurring in species of Astragalus genus, the largest one in the family of Leguminosae. In Traditional Chinese Medicine, Astragalus considers to used in the treatment of diabetes, mellitus, nephritis, leukemia, uterine cancer, besides its tonic agent and diuretic effects. Astragalus polysaccharide, the active component extracted from Astragali Radix which is the root of Astragalus membranaceus Bunge. Some uses of Astragalus are in kidney and urinary problems, Digestion, liver problems, female reproductive system problems, muscular, skin problems, cardiovascular and blood, immune and lymphatic system, nervous system, respiratory system, and for some specific disease. It helps protect the body against various types of stress such as physical and emotional stress. Astragalus root including anti-aging properties, and also helping to prevent bone loss. In TCM, huang qi is never administered as a mono drug, but forms part of mixtures depending on the indications. Astragali Radix, the root of Astragalus membranaceus Bunge, has been reported to exert hepatoprotective effects, antioxidative effects, antiviral activity, anti-oxidative effects, anti-hypertensive effects, and immunostimulant properties; it has also been reported to strengthen superficial resistance, drainage action and new tissue growth. Although, TCM in China is partly integrating with western medicine science, researchers should learn more from TCM and carry out more studies.
... Star anise (Illicium verum Hook. f.) is one of the most famous evergreen tree which has originally distributed in tropic and subtropic areas of Asia, especially China, and it is famous as in traditional Chinese medicine as well as traditional Asian medicine (Yokoyama et al., 2002;Yokoyama et al., 2003;Thuat and Ngoc, 2010;Sung et al., 2012;Zhongliang, 2012;Vermaak et al., 2013;Vecchio et al., 2016;Zhou et al., 2016Yoshikawa et al., 2018). Its fruit also commonly used spice. ...
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The objective of this study was to investigate the estrogenic action of rosella calyx and anise seed on male Japanese quail in terms of maturity (%), testes weight and length, cloacal gland (foam gland) weight and foam weight, juxta-testicular duct system (epididymis) weight, ductus deferens weight, time to copulation, final body weight, and carcass weight. In the experiment, 84 male Japanese quails 2-week-old were assigned randomly into seven groups (n= 12 in three replicates). The experiment was extended to the 18th week of age. Experimental groups were as follow: Group (T1) served as non-treated control fed on basal diet, Group (T2) fed on basal diet + 0.5% rosella, Group (T3) fed on basal diet + 1% rosella, Group (T4) fed on basal diet + 0.5% anise, Group (T5) fed on basal diet + 1% anise, Group (T6) fed on basal diet + 0.5% rosella + 0.5% anise, and Group (T7) fed on basal diet + 1% rosella + 1% anise. The results indicated that the addition of rosella calyx and anise seed did not have a significant effect on body weight and carcass weight during the trial period. However, the results revealed that the age of sexual puberty was delayed as a result of the inclusion of rosella calyx and anise seed in high concentrations. Moreover, testicular weight and its ratio to body weight were negatively affected in the groups fed on a diet containing the high concentrations of rosella calyx and anise seed that were used in this study. on the other hand, the length of the testicles, the cloacal gland (foam gland) weight, the foam weight, the ductus deferens weight, the juxta-testicular duct system (epididymis) weight, and their ratio to the body weight were not affected by the additives used in all the treated groups compared to the control group. Besides, adding rosella calyx and anise seed did not affect the time required for mating in the males of the treated groups compared with the control males. Key words: Rosella - Anise - Japanese quail - Estrogenic effect
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Introduction: Star anise has traditional usages and multiple applications in botany, chemistry, pharmacology and therapy. Chinese star anise has antioxidant, antibacterial, fungicidal, anti-inflammatory, anesthetic and anti-nociceptive effects. Methods: A literature search was conducted in Medline, PubMed, Science direct and Google scholar databases. Results: The seeds are good source of the minerals calcium, iron, copper, potassium, manganese, zinc and magnesium. The seeds are also a good source of the essential B-complex vitamins pyridoxine, niacin, riboflavin and thiamin. Chinese star anise is also a good source of anti-oxidant vitamins including Vitamin-C and Vitamin-A. The essential oil of Chinese star anise contains anethole which has shown several functional properties including antimicrobial, antioxidant, hypoglycemic, hypolipidemic and oestrogenic properties. Chinese star anise also contains shikimic acid, which has become a major weapon against global influenza. Moreover, it contains bioactive compounds possessing insecticidal properties which can be used as natural grain protectants. The most important compounds of Chinese star anise are α
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Purpose To draw the frontiers of the functional food universe, to identify concepts that should be included in a broadly accepted functional food definition and to propose a definition. Design/methodology/approach Based on a review of the literature and the Delphi technique with a group of North American and European experts. Findings Four concepts were identified: the nature of food, health benefits, functions and regular consumption. Two dimensions, physiological effects and functional intensity, were developed to define the frontiers of the functional food universe and a definition is suggested. Practical implications A large number of definitions as well as great variations within definitions make it difficult to provide industry partners with robust information on market trends and market potential, or to appropriately protect consumers through legislation. This paper should contribute to the debate surrounding the type of food that should be considered a functional food and surrounding the lack of a common definition for functional foods. Originality/value This paper is the first one, to our knowledge, that attempts to conceptually define the frontiers of the functional food universe and to provide a definition of functional food which is not sensitive to cultural differences, can accommodate temporal variations and rely on previous knowledge (definition) as well as experts' opinions.
1. The Functional Food Science in Europe (FUFOSE) project was introduced, evaluated and accepted by the EU DG XII FAIR Programme as a Concerted Action. Its aim was to develop and establish a science-based approach for the emerging concepts in functional food development. Over the last three years of this EU Concerted Action co-ordinated by ILSI Europe, scientific data have been evaluated and new concepts have been elaborated. This Consensus Document is the culmination of the EU Concerted Action and its key points and recommendations are summarized here. It is by no means the end of the process, but, rather, an important starting point and the stimulus for functional food development. 2. Considerable progress has been made in scientific knowledge leading to the identification of functional food components which might eventually lead to an improved state of health and well-being and/or reduction of risk of disease. Consumers are becoming more aware of this development as they seek a better-quality, as well as a longer, life. The food industry has an opportunity to provide products that are not only safe and tasty, but also functional. The originality of the approach in this EU Concerted Action is that it is function-based, rather than product-based. The latter approach would have to be influenced by local considerations of different cultural as well as dietary traditions, whereas the function-based approach starts from the biologically based science that is universal. Furthermore, and most importantly, the function-based approach in this EU Concerted Action has allowed the development of ideas that suggest a unique way in which to link this scientific basis of functional foods with the communication about their possible benefits to consumers. 3. This EU Concerted Action has adopted the following working definition, rather than a firm definition, for functional foods: A food can be regarded as 'functional' if it is satisfactorily demonstrated to affect beneficially one or more target functions in the body, beyond adequate nutritional effects in a way that is relevant to either an improved state of health and well-being and/or reduction of risk of disease. 4. Functional foods must remain foods and they must demonstrate their effects in amounts that can normally be expected to be consumed in the diet. They are not pills or capsules, but part of a normal food pattern. A functional food can be a natural food, a food to which a component has been added, or a food from which a component has been removed by technological or biotechnological means. It can also be a food where the nature of one or more components has been modified, or a food in which the bioavailability of one or more components has been modified; or any combination of these possibilities. A functional food might be functional for all members of a population or for particular groups of the population, which might be defined, for example, by age or by genetic constitution. 5. The development of functional foods must rely on basic scientific knowledge of target functions in the body that are relevant to an improved state of health and well-being and/or the reduction of risk of diseases, the identification of validated markers for these target functions and the evaluation of sound scientific data from human studies for their possible modulation by foods and food components. This EU Concerted Action has proposed that markers can be classified according to whether they are markers of exposure to the functional food component whether they are markers that relate to target function or biological response or whether they are intermediate markers of the actual disease endpoint or health outcome. 6. Consumers must be made aware of the scientific benefits of functional foods and this requires clear and informative communication through messages (claims) on products and in accompanying materials. This EU Concerted Action has identified two types of claims that are vital to functional food development and has provided a scientific basis for them to help those who have to formulate and regulate the claims. Claims for 'Enhanced Function Claims' (Type A) should require that evidence for the effects of the functional food is based on establishment and acceptance of validated markers of Improved Target Function or Biological Response, while claims for the Reduced Risk Of A Disease (Type B) should require that evidence is based on the establishment and acceptance of Markers of Intermediate Endpoints of Disease. These markers must be shown to be significantly and consistently modulated by the functional food or the functional food component for either type of claim to be made. This EU Concerted Action has therefore proposed a scheme whereby the scientific basis of functional food development can be linked to the communication of their benefits to the public. If the principles of such a scheme can be universally adopted then this should ultimately improve communication to consumers and minimize their confusion. 7. Functional foods must be safe according to all standards of assessing food risk and new approaches to safety might need to be established. This EU Concerted Action proposes that the development of validated markers as described above should, if possible, be used and integrated in the safety assessment with particular attention being paid to long-term consequences and interactions between components. 8. The development of functional foods, with their accompanying claims, will proceed hand in hand with progress in food regulation, which is the means to guarantee the validity of the claims as well as the safety of the food. Science in itself cannot be regulated and functional food science provides only the scientific basis for these regulations. 9. The Individual Theme Group papers, which are the science base for this Concerted Action, represent the critical assessment of the literature by European experts.
Ces dernières années, plusieurs publications ont rapporté des cas d’enfants ayant présenté des symptômes neurologiques et gastro-intestinaux suite à l’ingestion d’infusions d’anis étoilé. De telles préparations sont parfois conseillées en médecine populaire lors de coliques du nourrisson. Dans la plupart des cas, l’intoxication est due à la contamination de la badiane de Chine (Illicium verum) par l’anis étoilé du Japon (Illicium anisatum). Nous rapportons le cas d’un nourrisson de 2 mois amené aux urgences pour des épisodes répétés, spontanément résolutifs, de cyanose centrale avec tétanie des membres. L’examen neurologique était perturbé entre les épisodes mais il s’était amélioré progressivement durant les heures suivantes. Le reste de l’examen clinique, ainsi que le bilan biologique et l’électroencéphalogramme étaient normaux. L’ingestion d’anisatine, substance toxique contenue dans l’anis étoilé du Japon, et la contamination de la préparation de badiane de Chine par de l’anis étoilé du Japon ont pu être prouvées. L’évaluation des malaises du nourrisson devrait toujours tenir compte de la possibilité d’une intoxication. L’anis étoilé est généralement considéré comme une substance inoffensive. Toutefois, elle peut parfois être à l’origine d’intoxications sévères avec des symptômes neurologiques et gastro-intestinaux. Afin de prévenir de tels événements, non seulement les parents, mais également le personnel de vente et le personnel de santé, devraient être informés des effets secondaires potentiels liés à l’ingestion de badiane de Chine en trop haute concentration ou à sa contamination par l’anis étoilé du Japon. Un meilleur contrôle par les autorités sanitaires des préparations en vente est également nécessaire.
Background : Non-ulcer dyspepsia is predominantly a self-managed condition, although it accounts for a significant number of general practitioner consultations and hospital referrals. Herbal medicinal products are often used for the relief of dyspeptic symptoms. Aims : To critically assess the evidence for and against herbal medicinal products for the treatment of non-ulcer dyspepsia. Methods : Systematic searches were performed in six electronic databases and the reference lists located were checked for further relevant publications. No language restrictions were imposed. Experts in the field and manufacturers of identified herbal extracts were also contacted. All randomized clinical trials of herbal medicinal products administered as supplements to human subjects were included. Results : Seventeen randomized clinical trials were identified, nine of which involved peppermint and caraway as constituents of combination preparations. Symptoms were reduced by all treatments (60–95% of patients reported improvements in symptoms). The mechanism of any anti-dyspeptic action is difficult to define, as the causes of non-ulcer dyspepsia are unclear. There appear to be few adverse effects associated with these remedies, although, in many cases, comprehensive safety data were not available. Conclusions : There are several herbal medicinal products with anti-dyspeptic activity and encouraging safety profiles. Further research is warranted to establish their therapeutic value in the treatment of non-ulcer dyspepsia.