Don gui (Angelica sinensis ) or Chinese Angelica is one of the most popular herbs in traditional Chinese medicine for women’s gynecological presentations (Photo source). Europe began to use it’s extract in 1800s to treat gynecological issues.
In Chinese medicine, Don gui is used in a combination with other herbs (Mayo clinic) for liver and spleen balance in relation to strengthening the blood and returning the woman’s body to it’s natural rhythm.
Dr. Li and his colleagues (2009) of the Center of Chinese Medicine of Hongkong have shown that replacing even a single herb from the traditional Chinese medicine combination of herbs in this treatment creates an inferior product, in terms of chemical and biological properties. This makes it very difficult to design a clinical trial to test the efficacy of this particular herb alone in humans. Dr Xiqin and colleagues (2002) of the Chinese academy of Sciences, Dalian, isolated and tested the plant’s extracts. Of the ten detectable components, they found ligustilide was best able to penetrate a biomembrane. They also detected ferulic acid, and3- butylidine-4, 5-dihydro-2(1,3H)-1-isobenzofuranol and seven others. Their mechanism of action alone and in combination remains to be investigated.
An inventor, Xia YongChao, of Gansu province, China has obtained a United States Patent for the ‘herbal composition for treatment of neurodegeneration and neuronal dysfunction (2008, patent) for methods to treat these diseases with herbal compositions BuNaGao (BNG), a cocktail of 14 ingredients and Don qui is one of the herbs. From this I would conclude that this inventor is confident that the Chinese angelica is effective in treating neurodegeneration and neuronal dysfunction, specifically head and spinal cord injuries, in certain proportions and the effects can be validated and have commercial value and so patent worthy. The Chinese government has given approval for the use of these methods after a peer reviewed process assessed the results of clinical trials in China from 1989-1994. Prior animal studies had revealed improved blood circulation, reduction of blood viscosity, and immune regulation. BNG is used to address ‘Qi’ deficiency, which I shall address another time. In brief, BNG treats through systemic nourishment and regulation. In 3 methods, BNG was composed of Donqui in 0.82-3.3g/Kg of body weight in combination with other herbs and the inventor gives examples of clinical trials for mental retardation in 133 children and found it to be significantly effective in comparison to control.
The Chinese angelica appears to be a versatile herb with an ability to control and regulate a woman’s gynecological condition and a human’s neuronal functions through ‘Qi’ features. I have the deepest respect for the ancient Chinese medicinal scientists who discovered the power and reach of this herb and the others it interacts with to achieve it’s optimal effect. Makes me wonder how little we really understand and how much remains to be learned.
I would trust the results presented by this inventor, who has over 30 years of clinical trial experience.
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