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1.  Attitude and use of herbal medicines among pregnant women in Nigeria 
The use of herbal medicines among pregnant women in Nigeria has not been widely studied.
Opinion of 595 pregnant women in three geopolitical zones in Nigeria on the use of herbal medicines, safety on usage, knowledge of potential effects of herbal remedies on the fetus and potential benefits or harms that may be derived from combining herbal remedies with conventional therapies were obtained using a structured questionnaire between September 2007 and March 2008. Descriptive statistics and Fisher's exact tests were used at 95% confidence level to evaluate the data obtained. Level of significance was set at p < 0.05.
More than two-third of respondents [67.5%] had used herbal medicines in crude forms or as pharmaceutical prepackaged dosage forms, with 74.3% preferring self-prepared formulations. Almost 30% who were using herbal medicine at the time of the study believed that the use of herbal medicines during pregnancy is safe. Respondents' reasons for taking herbal medications were varied and included reasons such as herbs having better efficacy than conventional medicines [22.4%], herbs being natural, are safer to use during pregnancy than conventional medicines [21.1%], low efficacy of conventional medicines [19.7%], easier access to herbal medicines [11.2%], traditional and cultural belief in herbal medicines to cure many illnesses [12.5%], and comparatively low cost of herbal medicines [5.9%].
Over half the respondents, 56.6% did not support combining herbal medicines with conventional drugs to forestall drug-herb interaction. About 33.4% respondents believed herbal medicines possess no adverse effects while 181 [30.4%] were of the opinion that adverse/side effects of some herbal medicines could be dangerous. Marital status, geopolitical zones, and educational qualification of respondents had statistically significant effects on respondents views on side effects of herbal medicines [p < 0.05)] while only geopolitical zones and educational qualifications seemed to have influence on respondents' opinion on the harmful effects of herbal medicines to the fetus [p < 0.05].
The study emphasized the wide spread use of herbal medicines by pregnant women in Nigeria highlighting an urgent need for health care practitioners and other health care givers to be aware of this practice and make efforts in obtaining information about herb use during ante-natal care. This will help forestall possible interaction between herbal and conventional medicines.
PMCID: PMC2808296  PMID: 20043858
2.  Flor-Essence® herbal tonic does not inhibit estrogen receptor negative mammary tumor development in a transgenic mouse model 
Journal of complementary & integrative medicine  2011;8:10.2202/1553-3840.1157.
Women who are diagnosed with breast cancer often self-administer complementary and alternative medicines to augment their conventional treatments, improve health, or prevent recurrence. Flor-Essence® herbal tonic is a complex mixture of eight herbal extracts used by cancer patients because of anecdotal evidence that it can treat or prevent disease. In this study four experimental groups of female MMTV-Neu mice were left untreated or treated with 3% Flor-Essence® in utero, from birth until 5 weeks of age, or throughout their lifetime. Palpable mammary tumor incidence and body weight was determined weekly for each group. The mice were sacrificed at 28 weeks of age and mammary tumors were enumerated to determine average tumor incidence and multiplicity for each group. Female mice exposed to Flor-Essence® herbal tonic in utero weighed significantly more than the control group (p < 0.001). The average tumor incidence and tumor multiplicity in the experimental mice treated with Flor-Essence® herbal tonic did not differ from the control animals. Flor-Essence® does not inhibit mammary tumor incidence or mammary tumor multiplicity in MMTV-Neu transgenic mice. Flor-Essence® exposure in utero causes increased body weight in experimental animals. This conclusion challenges widely available anecdotal information as well as the hopes of the consumer that this product will inhibit or suppress tumor development.
Lay Abstract
Flor-Essence® herbal tonic is a complex mixture of eight herbal extracts often used by women with breast cancer in hopes that it will help cure disease or prevent recurrence. There is currently very little scientific data to support or refute its self-administration. We tested whether Flor-Essence® would influence tumor development in the mammary glands of a mouse model of Her2/neu breast cancer. The tonic was given at different life stages to determine if timing of the exposure influenced the response to treatment. This report shows that Flor-Essence® did not inhibit mammary tumor development in the treated mice challenging anecdotal information, as well as the hopes of the consumer, that this product will inhibit or suppress tumor development. This report also shows that Flor-Essence® exposure in utero causes increased body weight in experimental animals.
PMCID: PMC3518418  PMID: 22754942
complementary and alternative medicine; MMTV-Neu; herbal tonic; mammary tumors; transgenic; mouse; dietary supplement; essiac
3.  Periplasmic protein related to the sn-glycerol-3-phosphate transport system of Escherichia coli. 
Journal of Bacteriology  1976;126(2):951-958.
Two-dimensional gel electrophoresis of shock fluids of Escherichia coli K-12 revealed the presence of a periplasmic protein related to sn-glycerol-3-phosphate transport (GLPT) that is under the regulation of glpR, the regulatory gene of the glp regulon. Mutants selected for their resistance to phosphonomycin and found to be defective in sn-glycerol-3-phosphate transport either did not produce GLPT or produced it in reduced amounts. Other mutations exhibited no apparent effect of GLPT. Transductions of glpT+ nalA phage P1 into these mutants and selection for growth on sn-glycerol-3-phosphate revealed a 50% cotransduction frequency to nalA. Reversion of mutants taht did not produce GLPT to growth on sn-glycerol-3-phosphate resulted in strains that produce GLPT. This suggests a close relationship of GLPT to the glpT gene and to sn-glycerol-3-phosphate transport. Attempts to demonstrate binding activity of GLPT in crude shock fluid towards sn-glycerol-3-phosphate have failed so far. However, all shock fluids, independent of their GLPT content, exhibited an enzymatic activity that hydrolyzes under the conditions of the binding assay, 30 to 60% of the sn-glycerol-3-phosphate to glycerol and inorganic orthophosphate.
PMCID: PMC233233  PMID: 770459
4.  Herbal medicine use among urban residents in Lagos, Nigeria 
Over three-quarter of the world's population is using herbal medicines with an increasing trend globally. Herbal medicines may be beneficial but are not completely harmless.
This study aimed to assess the extent of use and the general knowledge of the benefits and safety of herbal medicines among urban residents in Lagos, Nigeria.
The study involved 388 participants recruited by cluster and random sampling techniques. Participants were interviewed with a structured open- and close-ended questionnaire.
The information obtained comprises the demography and types of herbal medicines used by the respondents; indications for their use; the sources, benefits and adverse effects of the herbal medicines they used.
A total of 12 herbal medicines (crude or refined) were used by the respondents, either alone or in combination with other herbal medicines. Herbal medicines were reportedly used by 259 (66.8%) respondents. 'Agbo jedi-jedi' (35%) was the most frequently used herbal medicine preparation, followed by 'agbo-iba' (27.5%) and Oroki herbal mixture® (9%). Family and friends had a marked influence on 78.4% of the respondents who used herbal medicine preparations. Herbal medicines were considered safe by half of the respondents despite 20.8% of those who experienced mild to moderate adverse effects.
Herbal medicine is popular among the respondents but they appear to be ignorant of its potential toxicities. It may be necessary to evaluate the safety, efficacy and quality of herbal medicines and their products through randomised clinical trial studies. Public enlightenment programme about safe use of herbal medicines may be necessary as a means of minimizing the potential adverse effects.
PMCID: PMC3252251  PMID: 22117933
5.  Fever and immunoregulation. III. Hyperthermia augments the primary in vitro humoral immune response 
The Journal of Experimental Medicine  1983;157(4):1229-1238.
We have examined the possibility that hyperthermia, such as that occurring during fever, may benefit the immune response. The effect of temperature on the in vitro immune response of unprimed murine spleen cells against the antigen sheep erythrocytes was tested. Hyperthermia potently augmented the plaque-forming cell response. Temperature- sensitive events occurred early in the culture period. Subsets of lymphocytes were independently assessed for effects of temperature on their activation and function. We showed that the beneficial effect of elevated temperature on the plaque-forming cell response probably occurs during the priming stage of T helper cells, and neither improves the delivery of help or the activation of B cells, nor impairs suppressor T cell generation or function. We propose that this powerful immunopotentiating effect of hyperthermia may account for the selective value of the fever response. This suggests taht the monokine interleukin 1, which is the endogenous mediator of fever, may promote immune responses both through a direct action on lymphocytes, and indirectly by an action on the central nervous system resulting in fever.
PMCID: PMC2186992  PMID: 6220108
6.  Conjugation in Agrobacterium tumefaciens in the absence of plant tissue. 
Journal of Bacteriology  1976;127(3):1331-1336.
A general, reliable conjugation system for Agrobacterium tumefaciens in the absence of plant tissue is described in which A. tumefaciens can serve either as the donor or recipient of plasmid deoxyribonucleic acid with reasonable efficiency. Plasmid RP4 was transferred from Escherichia coli to A. tumefaciens and from strain of A. tumefaciens. Both RP4 and the A. tumefaciens virulence-associated plasmids were detected by alkaline sucrose gradients in A. tumefaciens strains A6 and C58 after mating with E. coli J53(RP4). The pathogenicity (tumor foramtion) of strains A6 and C58 and the sensitivity of strain C58 to bacteriocin 84 were unaffected by the acquistion of RP4 by the Agrobacterium strains. Plasmid R1drd-19 was not transferred to A. tumefaciens. Transformation experiments with plasmid deoxyribonucleic acid were unsuccessful, even though, in the case of RP4, conjugation studies showed taht the deoxyribonucleic acid was compatible with that of the recipient strains.
PMCID: PMC232928  PMID: 783141
7.  Assessment of health claims, content, and safety of herbal supplements containing Ginkgo biloba  
Food & Nutrition Research  2010;54:10.3402/fnr.v54i0.5221.
European Regulation 1924/2006 states that all health claims made on foods need to be substantiated scientifically.
To apply the PASSCLAIM criteria for the scientific substantiation of health claims on foods to herbal supplements containing Ginkgo biloba. Evaluation of three selected claimed health effects for G. biloba (improvement of blood circulation, improvement of symptoms of old age, and improvement of memory) was achieved through review of publicly available scientific data. A total of 35 human intervention studies were evaluated. Commercially available products claimed to contain mainly G. biloba (N=29) were randomly sampled in the Netherlands and analyzed for their content on ginkgo extract. Also, a toxicological risk assessment was performed.
The three selected health claims investigated could not be substantiated. This was mainly because of a lack of data from studies in healthy volunteers. In most studies results performed with a 24% standardized G. biloba extract were described. However, our chemical analysis showed that 25 of the 29 sampled products did not contain the required minimum 24% standardized extract. Moreover, in most preparations the content of substances typical for G. biloba did not conform to what was declared on the label. Since toxicity data for G. biloba are very limited, a safety limit could not be established.
Evidence is lacking for three health claims of herbal products with G. biloba. Neither safety nor efficacy can be guaranteed at the recommended daily dose. The multidisciplinary approach described in this paper provides good insight into issues that are relevant for the evaluation of health claims for herbal food supplements.
PMCID: PMC2950792  PMID: 20927202
Ginkgo biloba; health claims; substantiation; botanicals; content; safety
8.  An in vitro study of neuroprotective properties of traditional Chinese herbal medicines thought to promote healthy ageing and longevity 
Age is the leading risk factor for acute and chronic neurodegenerative diseases. The Shen Nong Ben Cao Jing, the oldest known compendium of Chinese materia media, lists herbal medicines that were believed to exert neither fast acting pharmacological effects nor discernible toxicity, but to promote general health and longevity. In modern terms, these herbal medicines could be considered as complementary health care products for prevention rather than treatment of diseases. In the present study, we examined whether a selection of 13 such herbal medicines exhibited neuroprotective activity.
The antioxidant capacity of the herbal extracts was determined using three non-cellular assays measuring the total phenol content (FCR assay), 2,2-diphenyl-1-picrylhydrazyl (DPPH) radical scavenging capacity and oxygen radical absorbance capacity (ORAC). Cytotoxic effects of the herbal extracts were assayed in cultured mouse cortical neurons and their neuroprotective activities were studied using staurosporine-induced apoptosis of the cultured neurons.
Most of the herbal extracts showed negligible toxic effects at 100 μg/ml. However, Polygonum multiflorum and Rhodiola rosea exhibited some neurotoxicity at this concentration. Extracts of Ganoderma lucidum, Glycyrrhiza glabra, Schizandra chinensis, and Polygonum cuspidatum inhibited staurosporine-induced apoptosis by 30 – 50% in a dose-dependent manner. The neuroprotective effects of Polygonum cuspidatum were predominantly due to its major ingredient, resveratrol. The effective herbal extracts showed various levels of reactive oxygen species (ROS) scavenging capacity, which was significantly correlated with their neuro- protective activity. However, P. multiflorum and R. rosea extracts proved to be the exception as they exhibited a high level of antioxidant capacity, but did not exhibit neuroprotective effects in cell-based assay.
This in vitro study provides evidence for neuroprotective activity of some Chinese herbal medicines traditionally used to promote healthy ageing and longevity. Our results provide a justification for further study of these herbal extracts in neurodegenerative animal models to assess their safety and effectiveness as a basis for subsequent clinical trials. These herbal medicines might potentially offer a novel preemptive neuroprotective approach in neurodegenerative diseases and might be developed for use in persons at risk.
PMCID: PMC3880008  PMID: 24373151
Neuroprotection; Chinese herbal medicine; Herbal extract; Apoptosis; Resveratrol
9.  Ayurvedic treatments for diabetes mellitus 
Patients with diabetes frequently use complimentary and alternative medications including Ayurvedic medications and hence it is important to determine their efficacy and safety.
To assess the effects of Ayurvedic treatments for diabetes mellitus.
Search methods
We searched The Cochrane Library (issue 10, 2011), MEDLINE (until 31 August 2011), EMBASE (until 31 August 2011), AMED (until 14 October 2011), the database of randomised trials from South Asia (until 14 October 2011), the database of the grey literature (OpenSigle, until 14 October 2011) and databases of ongoing trials (until 14 October 2011). In addition we performed hand searches of several journals and reference lists of potentially relevant trials.
Selection criteria
We included randomized trials of at least two months duration of Ayurvedic interventions for diabetes mellitus. Participants of both genders, all ages and any type of diabetes were included irrespective of duration of diabetes, antidiabetic treatment, comorbidity or diabetes related complications.
Data collection and analysis
Two authors independently extracted data. Risk of bias of trials was evaluated as indicated in the Cochrane Handbook for Systematic Reviews of Intervention.
Main results
Results of only a limited number of studies could be combined, in view of different types of interventions and variable quality of data. We found six trials of proprietary herbal mixtures and one of whole system Ayurvedic treatment. These studies enrolled 354 participants ( 172 on treatment, 158 on controls, 24 allocation unknown). The treatment duration ranged from 3 to 6 months. All these studies included adults with type 2 diabetes mellitus.
With regard to our primary outcomes, significant reductions in glycosylated haemoglobin A1c (HbA1c), fasting blood sugar (FBS) or both were observed with Diabecon, Inolter and Cogent DB compared to placebo or no additional treatment, while no significant hypoglycaemic response was found with Pancreas tonic and Hyponidd treatment. The study of whole system Ayurvedic treatment did not provide data on HbA1c and FBS values. One study of Pancreas tonic treatment did not detect a significant change in health-related quality of life. The main adverse effects reported were drug hypersensitivity (one study, one patient in the treatment arm); hypoglycaemic episodes (one study, one participant in the treatment arm; none had severe hypoglycaemia) and gastrointestinal side effects in one study (1 of 20 in the intervention group and 0 of 20 participants in the control group). None of the included studies reported any deaths, renal, hematological or liver toxicity.
With regard to our secondary outcomes, post prandial blood sugar (PPBS) was lower among participants treated with Diabecon, was unchanged with Hyponidd and was higher in patients treated with Cogent DB. Treatment with Pancreas tonic and Hyponidd did not affect lipid profile significantly, while patients treated with Inolter had significantly higher HDL- and lower LDL-cholesterol as well as lower triglycerides. Cogent DB treated participants also had lower total cholesterol and triglycerides.
Studies of treatment with Diabecon reported increased fasting insulin levels; one study of treatment with Diabecon reported higher stimulated insulin levels and fasting C-peptide levels in the treatment group. There was no significant difference in fasting and stimulated C-peptide and insulin levels with Hyponidd, Cogent DB and Pancreas tonic treatment. The study of Inolter did not assess these outcomes.
No study reported on or was designed to investigate diabetic complications, death from any cause and economic data.
Authors’ conclusions
Although there were significant glucose-lowering effects with the use of some herbal mixtures, due to methodological deficiencies and small sample sizes we are unable to draw any definite conclusions regarding their efficacy. Though no significant adverse events were reported, there is insufficient evidence at present to recommend the use of these interventions in routine clinical practice and further studies are needed.
PMCID: PMC3718571  PMID: 22161426
10.  Chemical and Biological Assessment of Angelica Roots from Different Cultivated Regions in a Chinese Herbal Decoction Danggui Buxue Tang 
Roots of Angelica sinensis (Danggui) have been used in promoting blood circulation as herbal medicine for over 2000 years in China. Another species of Angelica roots called A. gigas is being used in Korea. To reveal the efficiency of different Angelica roots, the chemical and biological properties of Angelica roots from different cultivated regions were compared. Roots of A. sinensis contained higher levels of ferulic acid, Z-ligustilide, and senkyunolide A, while high amounts of butylphthalide and Z-butylenephthalide were found in A. gigas roots. The extracts deriving from A. gigas roots showed better effects in osteogenic and estrogenic properties than that of A. sinensis from China. However, this difference was markedly reduced when the Angelica roots were being prepared in a Chinese herbal decoction together with Astragali Radix as Danggui Buxue Tang. In contrast, the herbal decoction prepared from A. sinensis roots showed better responses in cell cultures. In addition, the extracts of A. gigas roots showed strong cell toxicity both as single herb and as Danggui Buxue Tang. This result revealed the distinct properties of Angelica roots from China and Korea suggesting the specific usage of herb in preparing a unique herbal decoction.
PMCID: PMC3576791  PMID: 23476692
Lymphoma 6C3HED-OG cells, known from previous work to be susceptible to the effects of guinea pig serum in vivo and dependent upon extrinsic asparagine for protein synthesis and growth in vitro, remained for the most part morphologically intact and countable in the electronic cell counter following exposures of 1 and 2 hr to the effects of heated (56°C, 30 min) guinea pig serum injected into the peritoneal cavities of mice in which the lymphoma cells were growing rapidly; after exposures of 4 and 6 hr the bulk of the -OG cells remained still intact and countable in the cell counter, though by this time a small proportion of them (5 to 12%) proved stainable with eosin in wet preparations) hence were presumably nonviable. After 12, 16, and 24 hr of exposure, however, the bulk of the -OG cells were either lysed or fragmented, to the extent that they did not register in the cell counter. Morphologic studies of the cells exposed 16 and 24 hr to the effects of heated guinea pig serum in vivo, disclosed that most of the cells then remaining were either frankly necrotic or greatly altered otherwise, marked vacuolation of the cytoplasm being the most conspicuous alteration in cells not yet obviously necrotic. Long before the bulk of the Lymphoma 6C3HED-OG cells had become conspicuously changed morphologically following exposure to the effects of heated guinea pig serum in vivo, they manifested striking alterations in protein metabolism, as was disclosed by "pulse" studies with radioactive valine. For example, the protein metabolism of -OG cells, as measured by their incorporation of L-valine-C14, was sharply curtailed following 15 min of exposure to heated guinea pig serum in vivo, as compared with valine incorporation by cells labeled immediately after exposure to the guinea pig serum. Following exposure to heated guinea pig serum during 60 min, -OG cells incorporated less than half as much L-valine-C14 as did cells labeled immediately after exposure, and the incorporation of L-valine-C14 was still less after 120 min of exposure. By contrast, Lymphoma -RG1 cells, known from previous work to be wholly insusceptible to the effects of guinea pig serum in vivo and independent of need for extrinsic asparagine for protein synthesis and growth in vitro, showed no curtailment whatever of protein synthesis following exposures to the effects of heated guinea pig serum in vivo during periods of 15, 60, and 120 min. Reasons are given for considering the prompt inhibition of protein synthesis in the asparagine-dependent -OG cells a direct result of asparagine-deprivation induced in vivo by the injected guinea pig serum, the L-asparaginase of which presumably converted the available L-asparagine of the host to L-aspartic acid that was not taken up by the -OG cells. The synthesis of deoxyribonucleic acid by Lymphoma 6C3HED-OG cells, as measured by the incorporation of thymidme-H3, determined with the aid of liquid scintillation counting and autoradiography, was also altered by exposure of the lymphoma cells to the effects of heated guinea pig serum in vivo, though not during exposures of 15 and 60 min; only after an exposure of 120 min did the population of -OG cells incorporate notably less thymidine-H3 than did control populations, though after 240 min of exposure the -OG cells incorporated less than one-fifth as much tritiated thymidineas had -OG cells exposed to heated guinea pig serum for 60 min or to heated horse serum for periods up to 240 min. Autoradiographs indicated that DNA synthesis by -OG cells normally proceeds at an intense level that leads to some 60% of these cells being heavily labeled in autoradiographs at any given time; after exposure to the effects of heated guinea pig serum during 2 and 4 hr in vivo, however, the lymphoma cells lost their ability to incorporate enough tritiated thymidine to become heavily labeled, but approximately the same proportion of them (56 to 58%) retained their ability to incorporate sufficient tritiated thymidine to become lightly labeled. The possibility is considered that the inhibition of DNA synthesis in the asparagine-dependent -OG cells exposed to the effects of heated guinea pig serum in vivo may be secondary to the previously manifest inhibition of protein synthesis. Further, in tests of ribonucleic acid metabolism of Lymphoma 6C3HED-OG cells after exposure to the effects of heated guinea pig serum in vivo during periods of 15, 60, 120, and 240 min, the findings indicated that the ability of the lymphoma cells to synthesize RNA, as measured by their capacity to incorporate uridine-5-H3, remained unaltered during the exposures of 15, 60, and 120 min, but was substantially reduced following 240 min of exposure. The findings are considered in relation to the probability, disclosed in part by previous studies, that heated guinea pig serum brings about its effects upon Lymphoma 6C3HED-OG cells in vivo by providing active L-asparaginase in large amounts, which presumably converts the available (extracellular) asparagine of the host to aspartic acid, the latter not being taken up by the lymphoma cells in vivo or in vitro. Hence it seems likely that heated guinea pig serum in this way brings about a state of asparagine deprivation that is responsible for the sequential metabolic and morphologic alterations that become manifest in asparagine-dependent Lymphoma 6C3HED-OG cells following their exposure to the effects of guinea pig serum in vivo, as here described.
PMCID: PMC2138125  PMID: 5902571
12.  Effect of aqueous fraction of Rosa damascena on ileum contractile response of guinea pigs 
Objective: The use of drugs with herbal origin is increasing for treatment of gastrointestinal (GI) disorders. Rosa damascena (R. damascena) is a well-known plant suggested to have beneficial effect on GI system. In this study, the effect of aqueous fraction of R. damascena on the contractions of isolated guinea pig ileum was investigated.
Materials and Methods: Aqueous fraction of plant was obtained from ethanolic extract after ethyl acetate and n-butanol fractions were discarded. To evaluate effect of this fraction on ileum contraction, guinea pig ileum was removed and mounted on organ bath and its contraction was recorded. Effect of various concentrations (0.66, 0.83, and 1.3 mg/ml) of aqueous fraction on ileum contraction in comparison with Ach in presence and absence of atropine, a muscarinic antagonist of cholinergic, was evaluated. The response of ileum to 1 µg/ml of acetylcholine was considered as 100% response.
Results: Our results showed that aqueous fractions of R. damascena dose-dependently increased basal guinea pigs ileum contractions (p<0.05 to p<0.001). Maximal contraction of fraction (1.3 mg/ml) induced 23.4 % of maximal Ach response. The contraction of ileum to aqueous fraction was significant decreased in presence 0.001 µg/ml of atropine.
Conclusion: It is concluded that aqueous fraction of R. damascena has mild excitatory effect on ileum contraction and this fraction may be beneficial as a mild laxative agent.
PMCID: PMC4075714  PMID: 25050281
Aqueous Fraction; Cholinergic System; Guinea Pig; Ileum; Rosa damascena
13.  Assessment of Pharmacists Knowledge, Attitude and Practices Regarding Herbal Drug Information Services 
Research suggests that increased consumption of herbal drugs is raising important public health concerns such as safety issues that may involve adverse effects and herb-drug interactions. The main objective of this study is to investigate the role of Pharmacists in herbal drug information dissemination.
We investigated the demographics, knowledge, attitude and practices regarding herbal drug information and regulatory laws among Pharmacists living in the six (6) States that constitute the Niger-Delta region of Nigeria. A total of 300 self-administered questionnaires were distributed to Pharmacists aged 21 years and above.
About half of the respondents (48.72 %) were Hospital based Pharmacists. Knowledge of herbal drugs was 46.33 % while 64 .0 % showed positive attitude towards its use. Most of the information on herbal drugs were sourced from the internet (23.08 %) while 53.48 % were aware of the laws and regulations controlling herbal drugs in Nigeria. 88.64 % were in favour of the establishment of a National Herbal Drug Research and Development Agency and 55.68 % strongly agreeing to the setting up of a Herbal Drug Information Centre.
The availability of herbal drug information services will not only enhance the performance of the Pharmacists, but will also add value to the life of the patients.
PMCID: PMC3979237  PMID: 24826042
Drugs; Herbal; Pharmacist; Information services
14.  Buyer beware? Does the information provided with herbal products available over the counter enable safe use? 
BMC Medicine  2011;9:94.
Herbal products obtained over the counter are commonly used in Europe, North America and Australia. Although there is concern about a lack of information provided to consumers to allow the safe use of these products, there has been no published research to confirm these fears. In this study, we evaluated written information provided with commonly used herbal products in the UK in advance of a European Union Directive issued in April 2011 that tightened regulations for some herbal products, including requirements to provide safety information.
Five commonly used herbal products were purchased from pharmacies, health food shops and supermarkets: St John's wort, Asian ginseng, echinacea, garlic and ginkgo. Written information provided with the products (on the package or on a leaflet contained in the package) was evaluated for inclusion of each of the key safety messages included in the monographs of the US National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine. Specifically, we looked for information on precautions (such as Asian ginseng not being suitable for people with diabetes), interactions with conventional medicines (such as St John's wort with the contraceptive pill and warfarin) and side effects (such as ginkgo and allergic reactions).
Our analysis showed that, overall, 51 (75%) of 68 products contained none of the key safety messages. This included 4 of 12 St John's wort products, 12 of 12 ginkgo products, 6 of 7 Asian ginseng products, 20 of 21 garlic products and 9 of 13 echinacea products. The two products purchased that are registered under the new European Union regulations (for St John's wort) contained at least 85% of the safety messages.
Most of the herbal medicine products studied did not provide key safety information which consumers need for their safe use. The new European Union legislation should ensure that St John's wort and echinacea products will include the previously missing information in due course. The legislation does not apply to existing stock. Depending on therapeutic claims made by manufacturers, garlic, ginkgo and Asian ginseng products may not be covered by the legislation and can continue to be bought without the safety information. Also, consumers will still be able to buy products over the internet from locations outside European Union jurisdiction. Potential purchasers need to know, in both the short term and the long term, how to purchase herbal products which provide the information they need for the safe use of these products.
PMCID: PMC3180693  PMID: 21827684
15.  Species and tissue-specificity of prokinetic, laxative and spasmodic effects of Fumaria parviflora 
Fumaria parviflora Linn. (Fumariaceae), is a small branched annual herb found in many parts of the world including Saudi Arabia and Pakistan. This study was designed to provide pharmacological basis for the medicinal use of Fumaria parviflora in gut motility disorders.
The in-vivo prokinetic and laxative assays were conducted in mice. Isolated intestinal preparations (ileum and jejunum) from different animal species (mouse, guinea-pig and rabbit) were separately suspended in tissue baths containing Tyrode's solution bubbled with carbogen and maintained at 37°C. The spasmogenic responses were recorded using isotonic transducers coupled with PowerLab data acquisition system.
The aqueous-methanol extract of Fumaria parviflora (Fp.Cr), which tested positive for the presence of alkaloids, saponins, tannins and anthraquinones showed partially atropine-sensitive prokinetic and laxative activities in the in-vivo in mice at 30 and 100 mg/kg. In the in-vitro studies, Fp.Cr (0.01-1 mg/ml) caused a concentration-dependent atropine-sensitive stimulatory effect both in mouse tissues (jejunum and ileum), and rabbit jejunum but had no effect in rabbit ileum. In guinea-pig tissues (ileum and jejunum), the crude extract showed a concentration-dependent stimulatory effect with higher efficacy in ileum and the effect was partially blocked by atropine, indicating the involvement of more than one types of gut-stimulant components (atropine-sensitive and insensitive). This could be a plausible reason for the greater efficacy of Fp.Cr in gut preparations of guinea-pig than in rabbit or mouse.
This study shows the prokinetic, laxative and spasmodic effects of the plant extract partially mediated through cholinergic pathways with species and tissue-selectivity, and provides a sound rationale for the medicinal use of Fumaria parviflora in gut motility disorders such as, indigestion and constipation. This study also suggests using different species to know better picture of pharmacological profile of the test material.
PMCID: PMC3324389  PMID: 22405321
16.  Use of herbal medicinal products among children and adolescents in Germany 
Germany is a country with a high use of herbal medicinal products. Population-based data on the use of herbal medicinal products among children are lacking. The aim of this study is to investigate the prevalence, patterns and determinants of herbal medicine use among children and adolescents in Germany.
As data base served the German Health Interview and Examination Survey for Children and Adolescents (KiGGS), a representative population based survey conducted 2003–2006 by the Robert Koch Institute. 17,450 boys and girls aged 0–17 years provided information on drug use in the preceding seven days. Herbal medicinal products were defined according to the European and German drug laws. SPSS Complex Sample method was used to estimate prevalence rates and factors associated with herbal medicine use.
The prevalence rate of herbal medicinal product use amounts to 5.8% (95% confidence interval 5.3-6.3%). Use of herbal medicine declines along with increasing age and shows no difference between boys and girls in younger age groups. Teenage girls are more likely to use herbal medicines than teenage boys. Two thirds of herbal medicines are used for the treatment of coughs and colds; nearly half of herbal medicines are prescribed by medical doctors. Determinants of herbal medicinal product use are younger age, residing in South Germany, having a poor health status, having no immigration background and coming from a higher social class family. Children’s and parents-related health behavior is not found to be associated with herbal medicine use after adjusting for social class.
Use of herbal medicinal products among children and adolescents between the ages of 0 and 17 years in Germany is widely spread and shows relatively higher rates compared to international data. This study provides a reference on the use of herbal medicinal products for policy-makers, health professionals and parents. Further studies are needed to investigate the effectiveness and safety of specific herbal medicinal products, potential effects of long term use as well as possible interactions of herbal medicinal products with concomitantly used conventional medicines.
PMCID: PMC4091953  PMID: 24988878
Herbal medicinal products; Children; KiGGS; Germany
17.  Prokinetic and laxative effects of the crude methanolic extract of Viola betonicifolia whole plant in rodents 
The present study was aimed to provide ethnopharmacological basis for the medicinal use of Viola betonicifolia whole plant in indigestion and constipation.
Mice were used in in-vivo prokinetic and laxative studies while in-vitro experiments were conducted on isolated tissues of rabbit and guinea-pig gut preparations suspended in a tissue bath to measure isotonic contractions.
The crude methanolic extract of Viola betonicifolia (VBME) showed partially atropine-sensitive prokinetic (50 and 100 mg/kg) and laxative (30 and 100 mg/kg) activities in mice. When tested in isolated rabbit jejunum and guinea-pig ileum, VBME caused dose-dependent contractions at 0.01-0.3 mg/mL and 0.03-5 mg/mL, respectively. The spasmogenic effect was partially sensitive to atropine, while the presence of pyrilamine, SB203186 or hexamethonium had no effect in both gut preparations. VBME partially inhibited acetylcholinesterase enzyme (19%) in the in-vitro assay. The spasmodic effect of VBME was more efficacious in guinea-pig ileum than rabbit jejunum preparation. The phytochemical analysis of the crude methanolic extract for total alkaloids and saponins revealed that the VBME is a rich source of alkaloids and saponins.
This study showed the prokinetic and laxative effects of Viola betonicifolia in mice, partially mediated through cholinergic action. The in-vitro spasmodic effect of the plant extract was also partially sensitive to atropine indicating more than one mechanisms in the gut stimulant effect. This study provides a rationale for the medicinal use of Viola betonicifolia in indigestion and constipation.
PMCID: PMC3626539  PMID: 23530615
Viola betonicifolia; Prokinetic; Laxative; Cholinergic; Jejunum; Ileum
18.  Alteration in brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) after treatment of mice with herbal mixture containing Euphoria longana, Houttuynia cordata and Dioscorea japonica 
Literature data indicate that brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF), cyclic-AMP response element-binding protein (CREB) and phospho-CREB (pCREB) may have a place in depression. BDNF belongs to the neurotrophin family that plays an important role in proliferation, survival and differentiation of different cell populations in the mammalian nervous system. The herbal mixture used in the present study consists of Euphoria longana, Houttuynia cordata and Dioscorea japonica. The purpose of the present study was to determine the neuroprotective effect of herbal mixture. We also tested the hypothesis that administration of herbs reverses memory deficits and promotes the protein expression of BDNF in the mouse brain.
Mice were randomized into four different treatment groups (n = 10/group). Normal and stress groups received regular lab chow without stress and under stress conditions, respectively, for 3 weeks. The animals in the stress group were immobilized for 4 hours a day for 2 weeks. Different doses of herbal mixture (206 and 618 mg/kg) were administered for 3 weeks to those mice under stress conditions. Mice were analyzed by behavioral tests and immunoblotting examination in the hippocampus and cortex. An additional in vitro investigation was performed to examine whether herbs induce neurotoxicity in a human neuroblastoma cell line, SH-SY5Y cells.
No significant toxicity of herbs on human neuroblastoma cells was observed. These herbs demonstrated an inductive effect on the expression of BDNF, pCREB and pAkt. For spatial working memory test, herbal mixture fed mice exhibited an increased level of spontaneous alternation (p < 0.01) compared to those in stress conditions. Moreover, herbal mixture produced highly significant (p < 0.01) reduction in the immobility time in the tail suspension test. Mice in the herbal mixture groups demonstrated lower serum corticosterone concentration than mice in the stress group (p < 0.05). Effects of the oral administration of herbal mixture on protein levels of BDNF in the hippocampi and cortices were significant.
Our study showed that herbal mixture administration has antidepressant effects in mice. It is proposed that adverse events such as stress and depression can modulate the expression of molecular players of cellular plasticity in the brain.
PMCID: PMC4268823  PMID: 25431319
Stress; Depression; BDNF; Memory; Euphoria longana; Houttuynia cordata; Dioscorea japonica
19.  Preclinical safety evaluation of the aqueous acetone extract of Chinese herbal formula Modified Huo Luo Xiao Ling Dan 
To investigate the safety of oral administration of Modified Huo Luo Xiao Ling Dan (HLXLD), a compound traditional Chinese herbal medicine.
The toxicological information of HLXLD and its individual constituent herbs was searched in cintcm or TCMlars (, PubMed (MEDLINE), Chinese Herbal Medicine (1999) and WHO Monographs on Selected Medicinal Plants (Vol. I—III). Single-dose acute toxicity was assessed by using the highest possible dosage. Motor function test was used to determine whether the herbal formula might cause motor impairment. Nine-day HLXLD repeat-dose sub-chronic toxicity/adverse effects, and 42-day chronic toxicity/adverse effects in rats were also assessed.
The literature searches showed that HLXLD and its eleven ingredient herbs had no side/adverse effects listed in the traditional Chinese medicine literature. Under the dosages proposed in the formula, the HLXLD formula had no side/adverse effects according to MEDLINE, Chinese Herbal Medicine and WHO Monographs on Selected Medicinal Plants. The studies in rats showed: (1) in single-dose acute toxicity assessment, the maximal feasible single oral dose, 9.20 g/kg HLXLD, showed no significant effect on clinical signs, or body weight and mortality over a 14-day period in rats; (2) during motor function test, nine-day repeat-dose of daily HLXLD treatment at 4.60 g/kg did not cause motor impairment; (3) in nine-day HLXLD repeat-dose sub-chronic toxicity/adverse effects assessment, there were no noticeable abnormal behavioral changes or obvious adverse reactions and signs in complete Freund's adjuvant inflamed rats (highest observed dosage: 4.60 g/kg), and no noticeable adverse effects were observed during, or 14 days after nine-day treatment at 4.60 g/kg in non-inflamed rats; (4) during 42-day chronic toxicity/adverse effects assessments, no noticeable abnormal behavioral changes, no obvious adverse reactions and signs were observed in normal rats administered with HLXLD at a dose of 2.30 g/kg and the values of serum biochemistry and histopathology were in normal range.
Both existing information and animal data support that Modified HLXLD is a safe herbal product for clinical application.
PMCID: PMC3739922  PMID: 20456842
Chinese herb formula; Modified Huo Luo Xiao Ling Dan; Safety; Literature investigation; Acute toxicity tests; Motor function; Sub-acute toxicity; Chronic toxicity tests; Rats
20.  Evaluation of Antiseizure Activity of Essential Oil from Roots of Angelica archangelica Linn. in Mice 
In the present study, the effect of essential oil of the root of Angelica archangelica Linn. was evaluated against electrically and chemically induced seizures. The seizures were induced in mice by maximal electroshock and pentylenetetrazol. The effect of essential oil of the root of Angelica archangelica on seizures was compared with standard anticonvulsant agents, phenytoin and diazepam. The essential oil of the root of Angelica archangelica suppressed duration of tonic convulsions and showed recovery in maximal electroshock induced seizures while it delayed time of onset of clonic convulsions and showed mortality protection in pentylenetetrazol induced seizures. The essential oil of the root of Angelica archangelica also produced motor impairment at the antiseizure doses. The study indicated that the essential oil exhibited antiseizure effect. The antiseizure effect may be attributed to the presence of terpenes in the essential oil.
PMCID: PMC3003174  PMID: 21188050
Angelica archangelica (Umbelliferae); convulsions; pentylenetetrazol; medicinal plants; maximal electroshock
21.  Anti Cariogenic Efficacy of Herbal and Conventional Tooth Pastes - A Comparative In-Vitro Study 
Background: An upsurge of herbal products in various catalogues of fast moving consumer goods is evident. Dental creams or pastes which have numerous brands since years, have addition of many more herbal tooth pastes. Main claim of these herbal tooth pastes being effective reduction in cavities and plaque control. Proven fact is that proper brushing with a tooth brush and tooth paste brings down the caries incidence, and there is a substantial amount of contribution made by indispensable ingredient i.e, tooth pastes and their antibacterial component.
Aim: To evaluate the antibacterial efficacy of various herbal tooth pastes available in the market and compare it with a conventional tooth paste with known antibacterial effect.
Materials & Methods: The antibacterial efficacy of five herbal tooth pastes and two conventional tooth pastes with different ingredients was evaluated by the zone of inhibition created around the disc on the culture plates against streptococcus mutans and lactobacillus acidophilus.
Results: The herbal tooth pastes showed similar efficacy as that of the conventional tooth pastes. One herbal tooth paste with multiple herbal ingredients had greater zone of inhibition compared to the conventional tooth pastes and other herbal tooth pastes.
Conclusion: Herbal tooth pastes have similar antibacterial effect as conventional tooth pastes. Tooth paste with multiple herbal ingredients is more efficient than the tooth pastes with fewer herbal ingredients in an anticariogenic property.
How to cite this article: Mohan Kumar K P, Priya N K, Madhushankari G S. Anti Cariogenic Efficacy of Herbal and Conventional Tooth Pastes - A Comparative In-Vitro Study. J Int Oral Health 2013; 5(2):8-13.
PMCID: PMC3768065  PMID: 24155585
Anti-carcinogenicity; Herbal tooth pastes; Plaque Control
22.  Effects of Chinese herbal medicine on plasma glucose, protein and energy metabolism in sheep 
The use of antibiotics in animal diets is facing negative feedback due to the hidden danger of drug residues to human health. Traditional Chinese herbal medicine has been used to replace antibiotics in the past two decades and played an increasingly important role in livestock production. The present study was carried out to assess the feeding effects of a traditional nourishing Chinese herbal medicine mixture on kinetics of plasma glucose, protein and energy metabolism in sheep. Ruminal fermentation characteristics were also determined.
Four sheep were fed on either mixed hay (MH-diet) or MH-diet supplemented with 2% of Chinese herbal medicine (mixture of Astragalus root, Angelica root and Atractylodes rhizome; CHM-diet) over two 35-day periods using a crossover design. The turnover rate of plasma glucose was measured with an isotope dilution method using [U-13C]glucose. The rates of plasma leucine turnover and leucine oxidation, whole body protein synthesis (WBPS) and metabolic heat production were measured using the [1-13C]leucine dilution and open circuit calorimetry.
Body weight gain of sheep was higher (P = 0.03) for CHM-diet than for MH-diet. Rumen pH was lower (P = 0.02), concentration of rumen total volatile fatty acid tended to be higher (P = 0.05) and acetate was higher (P = 0.04) for CHM-diet than for MH-diet. Turnover rates of plasma glucose and leucine did not differ between diets. Oxidation rate of leucine tended to be higher (P = 0.06) for CHM-diet than for MH-diet, but the WBPS did not differ between diets. Metabolic heat production tended to be greater (P = 0.05) for CHM-diet than for MH-diet.
The sheep fed on CHM-diet had a higher body weight gain and showed positive impacts on rumen fermentation and energy metabolism without resulting in any adverse response. Therefore, these results suggested that the Chinese herbal medicine mixture should be considered as a potential feed additive for sheep.
PMCID: PMC3901844  PMID: 24344643
Chinese herbal medicine; Glucose metabolism; Heat production; Protein metabolism; Ruminal fermentation characteristics; Sheep
23.  Safety Profile of a Polyherbal Formulation (Gynocare capsules) in Female Rats by Subchronic Oral Toxicity Study 
Toxicology International  2012;19(2):106-111.
Gynocare capsules, is a polyherbal formulation, are used as uterine tonic and for treating gynaecological ailments like infertility, leucorrhea, and menstrual disorders. The formulation contains ingredients of herbal origin, such as, extracts of Ashoka, Vasaka, Durva, Chandan, Musk, and so on. It was evaluated for its safety at the therapeutic dose level by a repeated dose oral toxicity study in albino Wistar rats. The herbal formulation was administered orally at a therapeutic dose of 100 mg/kg/day, for 90 days. All animals were monitored daily for their health status and signs of abnormalities. The body weight, water consumption, and food intake were measured once weekly. At the end of the experimental period, various hematological and biochemical parameters were estimated and histopathologies of selected organs were conducted. The study resulted from the long-term oral administration of Gynocare capsules (100 mg/kg), did not cause any relevant signs of toxicity nor significant changes in the physical, hematological and biochemical parameters. However, statistically significant differences were seen in the relative organ weights of adrenal gland, ovary, and serum creatinine levels. The reduction in ovary weight revealed the possibility of the drug targeting the ovary. Moreover, no pathological features were identified in the treated group as monitored by the histopathological analysis of the internal organs. The study established that Gynocare capsules at the dose given (100 mg/kg) did not induce any remarkable or significant toxic effects, indicating that it was safe in rats following oral administration for 90 consecutive days.
PMCID: PMC3388751  PMID: 22778505
Polyherbal formulation; repeated dose oral toxicity; sub-chronic oral toxicity
These studies have shown that the bones of guinea pigs given daily injections of parathormone from the age of 2 to 7 days to the age of 110 to 120 days, show relatively very little effect after receiving 20 units daily during the last 65 to 87 days of treatment. But it is probable that their bones underwent decalcification early in the treatment and that subsequently the parathormone, continued at the same dosage, did not maintain the effects on the bones. Healing finally occurred despite it. The bones of guinea pigs treated with intermittent injections of large doses of parathormone from the time they were 1 week old to the age of 95 to 145 days also showed relatively few changes at the end of the treatment. The injections were given at intervals of 7 to 11 days, and were stepped up from 60 units to 140 units. From our previous experience (1) we infer that the earlier injections of parathormone produced very extensive bone changes which healed in the intervals between the injections. As the guinea pigs became older the injections of parathormone did not produce as severe effects. We have found in our studies of experimental hyperparathyroidism that the bone changes after a single large dose of parathormone in young guinea pigs are soon healed. The study of a series of animals shows that healing begins at about the 48th hour after injection, and proceeds rapidly. Between the 8th and 14 days, callus may be observed at the costochondral junctions, where fractures had occurred. Now the endosteum may be lined by osteoblasts and the vessel canals by new formed bone. In adult guinea pigs extremely large single doses had little effect on the bones in 48 hours, even though the dose killed the animal. It was only when three doses pyramided over a period of 48 hours and totaling 2580 units of parathormone were given, that moderately severe bone resorption could be demonstrated in the adult. The elevation of serum calcium may be considered as one of the indices of calcium mobilization in experimental hyperparathyroidism. When the rate of calcium excretion exceeds the rate of its mobilization, or when the animal is on a low calcium diet, hypercalcemia may be absent. It is possible to raise the serum calcium of adult guinea pigs by large single doses of parathormone, but the resulting rise is not as great as in the young (2). This is confirmatory evidence of the fact that calcium is mobilized much less rapidly from the bones of old animals than from those of young ones. Collip pointed out that young normal dogs are more susceptible to parathormone (6). This observation was corroborated by Morgan and Garrison (7). We found that the same difference held also in experimental hyperparathyroidism produced in dogs by repeated doses of parathormone (8). In man, clinical experience likewise indicates the necessity of using relatively large doses of parathormone to raise the serum calcium of adults. The serum calcium of middle-aged or old adults does not rise significantly unless as much as 100 units or more of parathormone are given daily for a number of days. Charts VI and VII, in a recent paper by Merritt and Bauer (9), support our findings of the relative difficulty of obtaining a significant elevation of serum calcium in adults. If adult guinea pigs are given daily injections of parathormone which are rapidly stepped up, the animals may be killed by the ensuing acute hyperparathyroidism, only slight bone changes being produced. However, a careful avoidance of the induction of acute hyperparathyroidism by gradual stepping up of the parathormone dose permits the employment of doses continued over a long period of time that could not possibly have been tolerated otherwise. Furthermore, healing of the lesions thus produced may occur, in spite of the continuance of parathormone at this level. It seems likely that the difference in response of young and old guinea pigs to single doses of parathormone, as indicated by the bone changes, as well as by the serum calcium and phosphorus, is related to the more rapid rate of mineral metabolism in the young, actively growing animals. The calcium mobilizing effect of parathormone is most prominent in actively growing young animals, the calcium being withdrawn from the most readily available stores—the regions of most active new bone formation and most active bone reconstruction (10). In the adult animal the calcium reserves (in the formed bone) are less susceptible to the calcium mobilizing effect of parathormone. The adult guinea pig will show relatively slight bone changes even as a result of extremely large, fatal doses of parathormone. Repeated doses, as is well known, will produce, by pyramiding, greater effects than the entire amount administered at one time. In this type of experiment the young again show greater susceptibility of the bone than the adult. In time, however, some compensation takes place, and the effects of the same doses are decreased until finally healing may occur in spite of the continued treatment. Increase of the dose, however, again elicits the parathormone effects upon the bone, as well as upon the serum calcium and phosphorus, without toxic changes (1, 8). It would seem that some compensation sets in which may be overcome by increasing the dose. This compensation is especially evident in the experiments in which the parathormone doses were stepped up gradually from small amounts. In addition to the compensation observed in young and adult animals as a result of repeated injections of parathormone, we must also consider the possibility that there is a compensating mechanism in adult animals more effective than in the young. That compensation occurs is unquestionable but its nature is not clear. Apparently it is less effective during pregnancy, doses of parathormone which produce only slight bone changes in ordinary adults causing very severe lesions in advanced pregnancy (11). Parathormone has been shown to produce only one primary effect on bone, and that is decalcification. This may come about as the result of a change in the circulating tissue fluids, the salts being dissolved out of the organic matrix, and the latter disappearing secondarily. The process is most rapid in the vicinity of most active bone formation. The osteoblasts disappear from the surfaces of bone where dissolution is occurring, and at the same time the marrow connective tissue proliferates. Fusion of cells produces osteoclasts (12), which then proceed to remove the decalcified organic matrix, with the production of the deep lacunae of Howship. Frequently leucocytes are also observed actively phagocyting the decalcified organic matrix, and often leucocytes are observed within the osteoclasts (12). Healing is associated with the complete reversal of the process. The osteoclasts disappear, the connective tissue diminishes, osteoblasts reappear, and bone formation is resumed. As we have previously stated (13), parathormone produces a more continuous effect than experimental acidosis and greater changes than are seen in experimental osteoporosis. A pronounced decalcification results from it which, with its sequelae, simulates von Recklinghausen's disease. The emphasis which the older pathologists laid on osteoclasts as a special feature of ostitis fibrosa cystica is justified, for in the experimental condition the appearance of great numbers of osteoclasts is a constant feature, whenever decalcification occurs (13). There seems to be no doubt that the giant cell tumors found in ostitis fibrosa cystica are expressions of the same pathological response. The other features of the bone changes of hyperparathyroidism—marrow hemorrhage, cysts, fractures, and osteoid proliferation—are secondary to the primary decalcification. Progress of the pathological changes leads to circulatory stasis and cyst formation. Stresses and strains exerted on the progressively weakening bone may result in microscopical or gross fractures. Osteoid tissue is, as we have previously pointed out (13), merely reparative in nature, being laid down as support to the weakened or fractured bone, or as a part of healing. Osteoid borders appear on bone surfaces 48 hours after one large dose of parathormone. The mosaic picture which we have observed in the bones of some of our animals is produced by short and irregularly disposed cement lines resulting from rapid bone transformation. Schmorl (14) recently emphasized the mosaic-like appearance of the newly formed lamellar bone in Paget's disease (ostitis fibrosa deformans). The mosaic-like appearance of bone has also been described in local bone conditions, as e.g. syphilitic periostitis, and in bone in the vicinity of cysts and giant cell tumors in von Recklinghausen's disease (ostitis fibrosa cystica). However, Schmorl claims that in no disease is the mosaic appearance so constant and the arrangement of the cement lines so irregular as in Paget's disease. In chronic experimental hyperparathyroidism (von Recklinghausen's disease), the mosaic structure is not a prominent feature because of the progressive decalcification. But the bones of our young guinea pigs which received intermittent injections showed a mosaic-like appearance indicative of the periodic decalcifications and restorations which they had undergone.
PMCID: PMC2132070  PMID: 19869973
25.  Factors associated with herbal use among urban multiethnic primary care patients: a cross-sectional survey 
The use of herbal supplements in the United States has become increasingly popular. The prevalence of herbal use among primary care patients varies in previous studies; the pattern of herbal use among urban racially/ethnically diverse primary care patients has not been widely studied. The primary objectives of this study were to describe the use of herbs by ethnically diverse primary care patients in a large metropolitan area and to examine factors associated with such use. The secondary objective was to investigate perceptions about and patterns of herbal use.
Data for a cross-sectional survey were collected at primary care practices affiliated with the Southern Primary-care Urban Research Network (SPUR-Net) in Houston, Texas, from September 2002 to March 2003. To participate in the study, patients had to be at least 18 years of age and visiting one of the SPUR-Net clinics for routine, nonacute care. Survey questions were available in both English and Spanish.
A total of 322 patients who had complete information on race/ethnicity were included in the analysis. Overall, 36% of the surveyed patients (n = 322) indicated use of herbs, with wide variability among ethnic groups: 50% of Hispanics, 50% of Asians, 41% of Whites, and 22% of African-Americans. Significant factors associated with an individual's herbal use were ethnicity other than African-American, having an immigrant family history, and reporting herbal use by other family members. About 40% of survey respondents believed that taking prescription medications and herbal medicines together was more effective than taking either alone. One-third of herbal users reported using herbs on a daily basis. More Whites (67%) disclosed their herbal use to their health-care providers than did African-Americans (45%), Hispanics (31%), or Asians (31%).
Racial/ethnic differences in herbal use were apparent among this sample of urban multiethnic adult primary care patients. Associated factors of herbal use were non-African-American ethnicity, immigrant family history, and herbal use among family members. Whereas Hispanics and Asians reported the highest rates of herbal use, they were the least likely to disclose their use to health-care professionals. These findings are important for ensuring medication safety in primary care practices.
PMCID: PMC539258  PMID: 15575960

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