Haemopoiesis was studied in 88 patients with lung cancer during combination treatment with chemotherapy and a 5. balcalensls extract. Administration of the plant preparation was associated with haemopoiesis stimulation, intensification of bone marrow erythrocytopoiesis and granulocytopoiesis, and increased numbers of circulating precursors of erythroid and granulomonocytic colony-forming units (Goldberg et al 1997).
EPILEPSY (IN COMBINATION WITH OTHER HERBS)
Saiko-keishi-to, a spray-dried decoction of Bupleurum, (cinnamon, peony, ginger, licorice, ginseng, pinellia, zizyphus and baical) was administered to 24 people with epilepsy, who had frequent uncontrollable seizures (3-5 seizures per day in the most severe case and 5 seizures per month in the mildest case) of various types, despite treatment with pharmaceutical anticonvulsants. Of them, 6 were well controlled with Saiko-keishi-to whereas 13 experienced improvement and 3 showed no effect. No patients experienced worsening of their condition. Two patients dropped out during treatment (Narita et al 1982).
CHRONIC ACTIVE HEPATITIS (IN COMBINATION WITH OTHER HERBS)
In a double-blind, multicentre clinical study of 222 patients with chronic active hepatitis, Sho-saiko-to was found to significantly decrease AST and ALT values compared with placebo. The difference between the treatment and placebo groups in the mean value was significant after 12 weeks. In patients with chronic active type B hepatitis, a tendency towards a decrease of HBeAg and an increase of anti-HBe antibodies was also observed. No remarkable side effects were noticed (Hirayama et al 1989).
LIVER FIBROSIS (IN COMBINATION WITH OTHER HERBS)
Minor Bupleurum Combination (Sho-saiko-to) has been shown to play a chemopreventive role in the development of hepatocellular carcinoma in cirrhotic patients in a prospective study and several studies have demonstrated the preventive and therapeutic effects of Sho-saiko-to on experimental hepatic fibrosis (Shimizu 2000). Sho-saiko-to has been shown to inhibit the activation of hepatic stellate cells, the major collagen-producing cells. Sho-saiko-to has a potent antifibrotic effect by inhibiting oxidative stress in hepatocytes and hepatic stellate cells. It is proposed that the active components are baical in and baicalein, because they both have chemical structures very similar to silybinin, the active compound in Silybum marianum (St Mary's thistle), which exhibits antifibrotic activities.
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