Herb-Drug Interactions: Capsicum

Capsicum species (Solanaceae) Synonym(s) and related species Caspic, Cayenne, Cayenne pepper, Chili pepper, Chilli pepper, Hot pepper, Paprika, Red pepper, Tabasco pepper. Capsicum annuum L., Capsicum baccatum L., Capsicum chinense Jacq., Capsicum frutescens L., Capsicum minimum Roxb., Capsicum pubescens Ruiz & Pavon. Pharmacopoeias Capsicum (British Ph 2009, European Ph 2008, US Ph 32); Capsicum Oleoresin (US Ph 32); Refined and Quantified Capsicum Oleoresin (British Ph 2009, European Ph 2008); Standardised Capsicum Tincture (British Ph 2009, European Ph, 6th ed., 2008 and Supplements 6.1, 6.2, 6.3 and 6.4). Constituents The pungent principles of capsicum are the capsaicinoids (to which it may be standardised), present in concentrations up to 1.5%, but more usually around 0.1%. The major components are capsaicin, 6,7-dihydrocapsaicin, nordihydrocapsaicin, homodihydrocapsaicin and homocapsaicin. Other constituents include the carotenoid pigments (capsanthin, capsorubin, carotene, lutein), vitamins including A and C, and a small amount of volatile oil. Use and indications Capsicum possesses stimulant, antispasmodic, carminative and counterirritant effects, which has led to its use in conditions such Read more […]

Herb-Drug Interactions: Chitosan

Types, sources and related compounds Poliglusam. Pharmacopoeias Chitosan Hydrochloride (British Ph 2009, European Ph, 6th ed., 2008 and Supplements 6.1, 6.2, 6.3 and 6.4). Constituents Chitosan is a polysaccharide composed of polymers of glucosamine and N-acetylglucosamine. It is obtained from the partial deacetylation of chitin obtained from the shells of crustaceans such as shrimps and crabs. It is available in different molecular weights, viscosity grades and degrees of deacetylation. Use and indications Chitosan is used as a dietary supplement for obesity and hypercholesterolaemia. Pharmaceutically, chitosan and various derivatives are used, or being investigated, as excipients in drug formulations including oral or nasal dosage forms and gene carrier systems. Pharmacokinetics Chitosan is an absorption enhancer and increases the permeability of peptide drugs across intestinal and mucosal epithelia, which has implications for drug delivery systems. A thiolated chitosan derivative is also reported to inhibit the activity of P-glycoprotein, which has possible applications for improving the bioavailability of P-glycoprotein substrates, but note that this derivative does not appear to be used as a dietary supplement. Interactions Read more […]

Herb-Drug Interactions: Cranberry

Vaccinium macrocarpon Aiton (Ericaceae) Synonym(s) and related species Large cranberry (Vaccinium macrocarpon) is the cultivated species. European cranberry or Mossberry (Vaccinium oxycoccus) has also been used. Pharmacopoeias Cranberry Liquid Preparation (The United States Ph 32). Constituents The berries contain anthocyanins and proanthocyanidins (mainly oligomers of epicatechin), and organic acids including malic, citric, quinic and benzoic acids. Note that, although salicylic acid does not appear as a constituent of the juice in many cranberry monographs, some studies have shown low levels of salicylates in commercial cranberry juice (e.g. 7mg/L), which resulted in detectable plasma and urine levels of salicylic acid in women who drank 250 mL of cranberry juice three times daily. Use and indications The main use of cranberries and cranberry juice is for the prevention and treatment of urinary tract infections, although they have also been used for blood and digestive disorders. Cranberries are commonly used in food and beverages. Pharmacokinetics There is high absorption and excretion of cranberry anthocyanins in human urine, as shown by a study where 11 healthy subjects drank 200 mL of cranberry Read more […]