Chinese herbal medicine has recently become a hot research field internationally; an increasing number of pharmaceutical researchers
and scientists have dedicated themselves to such research work. Based on papers in the American Journal of Chinese Medicine from 2002 to 2004, 60% of papers published in the journal were sponsored by different institutions in the authors’ countries.
This fact indicates that researchers receive sponsorship for their work, and sponsors should pay more attention on the control
of the researchers to use financial support more efficiency. This study applied Analytic Hierarchy Process, AHP to evaluating
the performance of sponsored Chinese herbal medicine research, and this method can help sponsors weight evaluation elements
without having to change the system of every category of research. To explain the process and application of AHP, a Taiwanese
case study is presented. The analytical results presented in this study, provide a reference for institutes supporting research
on Chinese Herbal Medicine.
Authors:H. Moreira, M. Vasconcellos, E. Alves, F. Santos, and M. Saiki
In Brazil, the use of herbal medicines is very popular due to its immense flora, cultural aspects and to the popular belief
that herbs, which are of natural origin, are safe and without undesirable side effects. Aside from that public interest in
natural therapies, the use of herbal medicines has increased expressively due to the high cost of synthetic medicines. In
this study, elemental compositions of herbal medicines from the species Ginseng, Ginkgo biloba, Centella asiatica, Mulberry and Aloe vera supplied by different suppliers were evaluated by neutron activation analysis. The concentrations of As, Ba, Br, Ca, Cl,
Co, Cr, Cs, Fe, Hf, K, Mg, Mn, Na, Rb, Sb, Sc, Th, Zn and some lanthanides were determined in these samples. Comparisons made
between the results indicated differences in their elemental contents depending on the plant species, origins of the samples
and the age of the leaves. The results also showed that the herbal medicines contain elements such as Ca, Co, K, Fe, Mg and
Zn known as essential to humans and for treatment and prevention of diseases. Toxic elements such as Hg, Cd and Cu were not
detected. Elements As and Sb were detected in some samples but at very low concentrations at the μg kg−1 levels. Herbal medicine results were also compared to literature values. Biological certified reference material was analyzed
for quality control of the analytical results.
Authors:W. Zhou, X. Y. Zhang, Y. P. Lv, X. D. Liu, C. Xu, and G. L. Duan
Radix Isatidis has widely useful activities including anti-virus, anti-bacterial. Tryptanthrin, indigo, and indirubin are active ingredients in R. Isatidis. Response surface methodology (RSM)-optimized infrared-assisted extraction (IRAE) was developed and combined with HPLC for simultaneous determination of tryptanthrin, indigo, and indirubin from R. Isatidis. IRAE were investigated through extraction yields of the three components and optimized by RSM. The optimum conditions were as follows: infrared power of 129 W, solid/liquid ratio of 1:40 g/mL, and irradiation time of 22.5 min. IRAE conditions obtained by RSM were not only accurate, but also had practical value reflecting the expected optimization. Subsequently, this novel IRAE method was evaluated by extraction yield of the components of R. Isatidis samples from different regions. Compared with common extraction methods including maceration extraction (ME), reflux extraction (RE), ultrasound-assisted extraction (UAE), and microwave-assisted extraction (MAE), IRAE showed higher yield with advantages of no limitation of solvent selection, low cost, convenience under optimum extraction conditions. These results suggested the potential of RSM-optimized IRAE for extraction and analysis of the water-/fat-soluble compositions of Chinese herbal medicine. A simple chromatographic separation for simultaneous determination of tryptanthrin, indigo, and indirubin from Chinese herbal medicine R. Isatidis was performed on a C18 column (Diamonsil 150 mm × 4.6 mm i.d., 5 μm) with a mobile phase isocratic consisting of methanol and water at a flow-rate of 0.8 mL min−1. The retention times of tryptanthrin, indigo, and indirubin were 15.4, 31.9, and 58.6 min, respectively. The linear equations were obtained as follows: y = −3094.5744 + 21208.792x for tryptanthrin (R = 0.9998, 0.9–18.0 μg mL−1), y = 4730.0448 + 30180.567x for indigo (R = 0.9997, 0.5–10.0 μg mL−1) and y = −6582.9045 + 67069.312x for indirubin (R = 0.9997, 0.4–8.0 μg mL−1). The result showed that RSM-optimized IRAE was a simple, efficient pretreatment method for the analysis of complex matrix.
Authors:Mohammad Wasim, Muhammad Daud, Mohammad Arif, Rameez ul-Islam, Sajid Iqbal, and Yasir Anwar
In the under developed countries, the people of far-flung rural areas still depend to a large extent upon herbal medicines.
At the foundation of usage of herbal medicine is the experience of thousands of years. The present paper deals with the characterisation
of exotic fruits for essential and toxic elements. The samples include Morus nigra, Morus alba, Salvadora persica and Carissa opaca (from low and high altitude). Two standardizations of neutron activation analysis, that is, semi-absolute k0-instrumental neutron activation analysis (k0-INAA) and epithermal neutron activation analysis (ENAA) were employed for the quantification of elements. The analysis methodologies
were validated by analyzing the IAEA-336 (lichen) and NIST-SRM-1572 (citrus leaves). Sixteen elements including Br, Ca, Cl,
Co, Cr, Fe, I, K, Mg, Mn, Na, Rb, Sb, Sc Sr, and Zn were determined in all samples. Daily intakes of various elements from
the samples were measured and compared with the dietary reference intakes. Additionally, principal component analysis was
performed to extract information regarding samples and elements.
DSC and TG studies were carried out on γ -radiation processed Indian natural products of medicinal importance, namely Ashwagandha
(Withania Somnifera), Amla (Emblica Officinalis) and Hartiki (Terminalia chebula). DSC thermoanalytical curves were recorded
from 35 to 400C in air and nitrogen atmosphere. Similarly, TG thermoanalytical curves were taken from 35 to 700C in air
and nitrogen atmosphere. Irradiated products gave significantly different thermoanalytical profiles in comparison to non-irradiated
samples. The differences were observed above decomposition temperature of 200C and were non-linear with respect to radiation
dose. Partial oxidation of the products during irradiation in air could be responsible for the observed differences.
Authors:Zehui Li, Xi Bai, Qingling Ma, Haji Akber Aisa, and Maitinuer Maiwulanjiang
Schizonepeta annua (Pall.) Schischk. is an endemic annual plant from the Lamiaceae family and it has been employed to cure tracheitis in traditional herbal medicine. Its essential oil exhibited a strong antimicrobial and antioxidative effect. Next, high-performance thin-layer chromatography-bioautography was applied for investigation of the bioactive compounds of S. annua, and gas chromatography-quadrupole time-of-flight mass spectrometry was used to perform subsequent targeted identification of compounds. Three active components were characterized, and two of them were tentatively identified as thymol and carvacrol. S. annua has the potential to be a good alternative for synthetic disinfectants and antioxidants.