Chinese Medicine Treats Chemotherapy Side Effects

The Chinese herbal medicinal formula 黃芩湯, Huáng Qín Tāng, (pronounced Hwang Chin Tahng) has been studied by Dr. Cheng Yung-Chi a biochemical pharmacologist at Yale University.  He has standardized the medicinal compounds in the formula.  Dr. Cheng’s formulation has been dubbed PHY906.

In his clinical control trials with mice, the chemotherapy drug irinotecan was given to mice who had colon cancer.  Another group were given irinotecan and PHY906 (Huáng Qín Tāng).  The group that were given both the drug and the herbal formula had less vomiting and diarrhea and the effectiveness against the colon cancer was enhanced.  He performed a second experiment where one group received only the irinotecan, another received only Huáng Qín Tāng (PHY906), the third group got both the drug and the herbal formula and the last group were given no medicine. The combination of the herbal formula and the drug worked the best at reducing side effects.

Also, if one of the ingredients of PHY906 (Huáng Qín Tāng) were eliminated the effect of the herbal medicinal formula was greatly diminished.  There are at least 62 different chemical compounds in Huáng Qín Tāng that have been identified so far.

We live in interesting times.  Further and further down the road we will see a merging of Eastern and Western medicine until there will be no more East and no more West when it comes to medicine.  I have provided a few links to the articles from The Wall Street Journal and Nature.  Please click on the links and read these articles.  My brief paragraphs don’t even begin to tell the story about this amazing breakthrough.

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052702304177104577313821796467932.html

http://www.nature.com/news/2010/100818/full/news.2010.417.html

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