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Herbal Medicine: Artemisia Annua

Posted by Geoff Beaty on 8 July 2021
Herbal Medicine: Artemisia Annua

Also known as Qing Hao in Traditional Chinese Medicine, or Sweet Wormwood in Western Herbal Medicine. This herb has become notable recently because Dr Youyou Tu researched TCM's use of this herb and its significant effect on Malaria. She was able to identify the compound responsible, Artemisin, which dramatically changed the worldwide ability to combat Malaria reducing the international cases by 25%. She was awarded the Nobel Prize for Medicine in 2015.1
Sweet Wormwood has many other significant uses in addition to its ability to neutralise the malaria parasite. It is significantly anti-inflammatory, immunomodulatory, anti-parasitic, able to reduce blood sugar and cholesterol, is anti-viral, particularly against Dengue Virus.2
Of most interest to Vitawell is its effects in cancer:
1. Advanced metastatic breast cancer pKAL (a polyphenol compound in Artemisia Annua) reduced the ability of the metastatic cells to adhere to distant epithelial cells 3.
2. Another of the phytochemicals is able to cause apoptosis (cell death) in prostate cancer cells4. The same phytochemical is currently being researched because it improves the results of Doxorubicin4.
3. Artemisia annua restrains the proliferation and metastasis of human osteosarcoma cells and promotes the tumour cell apoptosis5.
4. Research into beneficial effects in Leukemia 6.
5. Induces apoptosis in Triple Negative Breast Cancer 7.
These are just a few of the many research papers available on Artemisia Annua and this is the type of information that Vitawell uses to understand Herbal Medicine and its ability to support cancer patients.

1. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4966551/
2. https://www.imedpub.com/articles/artemisia-annua-l-potential-source-ofmolecules-with-pharmacological-activity-inhuman-diseases.pdf
3. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/27151203/
4. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/26600860/
5. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/25796153/
6. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/21674435/
7. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7312517/

Author:Geoff Beaty
Tags:NewsEvidence Based ResearchCancerBreast CancerHerbal Medicine


  • The Institute for Functional Medicine
  • Society for Integrative Oncology
  • American Society of Clinical Oncology
  • Australasian Integrative Medicine Association
  • Naturopaths and Herbalists Association of Australia