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148 Cards in this Set

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  • Back
Define succus
* A juice made from a medicinal plant, by way of bruising or pulping and pressing out the juice, or by using a juicer.
* Most suitable for plants/herbs with a high moisture content.
* traditionally used at turn of seasons as a tonic
Define expression
Extraction of juice from fresh plant material by pupling and pressing. No solvent is used.
Define taxonomy
Law of arrangement - the way organisms are categorised for reference.
Define species
Kind - generally species share distinguishing characteristics and the ability to interbreed successfully.
Define phylogeny
Evolutionary relationships between organisms. Based on the theory of evolution.
Define anthophyta
Flowering plants.
This is the largest and most highly evolved group, and are found all over the world.
* sophisticated vascular and reproductive systems
* pollen is dispersed by wind, insects or other animals
* includes nearly all medicinal plants
* two classes - monocotyledones and dicotyledones
Briefly describe the TGA legislation as it relates to herbal medicines.
* 1989

* to ensure safety, quality and efficacy of therapeutic goods

* difficult to apply same standards for synthetic drugs to herbal medicines due to:
... normal contamination of organic matter (not produced under lab conditions)
... number of constituents (not just one or two as in synthetic drugs)
... issues relating to the classification of herbs as food or drugs (TGA vs food industry laws)

* 2 different statuses - Listed and Registered - most herbs "listed".

* TGA regs do NOT apply to products made by a practitioner, for individual supply to a patient on the basis of consultation.

* GMP = good manufacturing practice ensures efficacy, set strength, correct species, uncontaminated material
How can you ensure the quality and purity of medicines?
1) wash hands thoroughly before handling equipment or raw materials

2) Clean work surfaces and equipment thoroughly, and sterilise storage containers

3) Know plant identification and quality

4) use ingredients which are as pure as possible (organic/biodynamic, filtered water

5) store carefully

6) Label the medicine
What factors affect dosage?
organ function
absorption and metabolism
current medication
route of administration
preparation/form of medicine
timing with relation to food
Which two factors are involved in prescribing?
1) choosing the herbs
2) choosing the form in which they are to be administered
What factors influence the preparation method?
condition being treated
activity of the herb
concentration of available extracts
availability of materials
convenience of use
What two factors are critically important when making herbal medicines?
1) authenticity of herbal material
... using the right species
... selecting the right part

2) quality of herbal material
... harvesting
... drying
... storage
... growing conditions
Why are organic herbs better?
confidence of purity without contamination by potentially harmful chemicals.
How do manufacturers assess quality and authenticity?
1) macroscopical examination
2) microscopical examination
3) Thin layer chromatography to produce a banded pattern unique for each species.
4) High performance liquid chromatography to produce a HPLC fingerprint
5) sight
6) smell
7) taste
8) touch
What is the naming order of plants?
(sub family)
Describe the botanical naming system
"Latin binomial"

Generic name + specific epithet (species name)

Mentha piperita (peppermint)
What does "officinalis" or "officinale" signify?
The medicinal plant was included in the Materia Medica of the time
Describe division Bryophyta

small, simple plants
no roots, stems, vascular systems, leaves, flowers, fruits, seeds
Describe division Psilophyta
genus Psilotum (whiskfern)
genus Tmesipteris (grow on treeferns)

Rudimentary vascular system
No roots, leaves, stems, flowers, fruits, seeds
What are the divisions of Kingdom Plantae?
Describe division Lycophyta
club mosses

distinct roots, stems, leaves, vascular system
Describe division Sphenophyta
Equisetym Arvense (horsetail)

Distinctive green ridged stems
Small scale like leaves
specialised vascular system
No flower, fruits, seeds
Describe division Pterophyta

Sophisticated vascular system (because they are larger)

No flowers, fruits or seeds.
Describe division Coniferophyta
Conifers (pines, firs, cypress, juniper...)

extremely large plants
woody vascular system for support
No flowers or fruit
What are gymnosperms?
Plants that produce seeds in the open (on cone scales) rather than enclosed in another structure.
Describe division Cycadophyta

woody vascular system
No branches (leaves directly from trunk)
No flowers or fruit
Describe division Ginkgophyta
Ginkgo biloba

vascular system, roots, leaves, stems, seeds

No flowers or fruit.
Describe division Gnetophyta
Diverse division - 70 species, from deserts to tropics

Includes Ephedra sinica (ma huang).

sophisticated vascular system

No flowers or fruit.
Describe division Anthophyta
Most highly evolved plants
Flowering plants
Found all over the world

Two classes - Monocotyledones and Dicotyledones
Define "wildcrafting"
Collection of natural herbs from their natural environment
Define suspension
Solid herb stirred into liquid. Used frequently for mucilagenous herbs.
Define nomenclature
Internation standard, 2 part naming convention.
Define Latin binomial
2 word Latin plant name
Define cotyledon
embryonic leaves which produce a source of nourishment for the embryo
Define testa
seed coat; protects embryo from unfavourable conditions
Define radicle
embryonic root
Define plumule
embryonic stem
Define infusion
aqueous extract of a herb made by steeping herb in water to separate out the soluble parts of the raw herb. Best suited to delicate parts of plant, like leaves, flowers and non-woody stems.
Define decoction
Extration of the active constituents of a plant by adding cold water, and then boiling or simmering for some time. Usually used for dense plant parts, like roots, some seeds and barks.
Define adventitious roots
Roots that develop from any part OTHER than the radicle - in many monocots, they form at the bast of the stem.
Define geotropism
Growth movement of plants in response to gravity - ie, roots grow downwards in response to gravitational pull.

Relies on the presence of hormones and gravity sensors.
Define root cap
Layer of cells at the tip of the growing root:
* protects the tip
* lubricates passage
* directs growth
Define xylem
One of the two types of vascular tissue plants, that transports water and nutrients.
Define fresh plant tinctures
An extract of freshly harvested herb made by maceration.
Define maceration
soaking a herb in a menstruum to soften the herb and extract the active constituents
Define menstruum
Define tincture
Alcohol and water menstruum based plant extract, usually used for very strong acting or potentially toxic herbs. Usually made to a concentration of 1:3 or weaker.
Define axillary bud
A bud in the leaf axil, from which a lateral stem or branch may grow
Define internode
The areas of a stem between nodes
Define leaf axil
The angle between the stem and the leaf
Define node
A point of proliferation in the stem
Define phototropism
Growth directed by light(like geotropism). Relies on presence of hormone auxin.
List the 6 major groups of plant constituents.
1. gylcosides
2. alkaloids
3. volatile oils
4. tannins
5. gums
6. resins
List the properties, solubility and a few examples of glycosides
* 25-60% alcohol
* cardiac - heart and kidney stimulants. foxglove (Digitalis purpurea)
* cyanogenic heterosides - antispasmodic and sedative. Linseed (linum usitatissimum)
* sulphur heterosides - antibacterial, antifungal, stimulate mucous membranes. garlic (allium sativum)
* phenolic glycosides - antiseptic, anti-inflammatory, carminative. Willow (Salix alba)
* flavonoid glycosides - modify inflammatory response. St John's Wort (Hypericum perforatum)
* anthracenocides - laxatives. Senna (Cassia angustifolia)
* Saponins - anti-inflammatory, expectorant. Ginseng (Panax ginseng).
List the properties, solubility and a few examples of Alkaloids
* 45-70% alcohol
* action on nervous system
* caffeine, cocaine, morphine, nicotine
List the properties, solubility and a few examples of volatile oils
* at least 45% alcohol
* range of actions, common include carminative and antiseptic
* Mentha piperita, Thymus vulgaris, Rosmarinus officinalis...
List the properties, solubility and a few examples of Tannins
* 25-60% alcohol
* astringent
* Salvia officinalis, witch hazel
List the properties, solubility and a few examples of gums
* 15-25% alcohol
* demulcent and emollient
* Ulmus fulva, Althea officinalis
List the properties, solubility and a few examples of resins
* 95.8% alcohol
* Calendula officinalis
What is the ICBN?
* International Code of Botanical Nomenclature

* clearly identifies a plant
* allows clear and international exchange of information
* many plants have no common name
What is a Latin binomial?
Two word name written in italics (or underlined)

1) Generic name - capital letter (name of genus)
2) specific epithet
What does "officinalis/officinale" denote?
Official medicine
Included in materia medica of the time
What does "vulgaris" denote?
What does the abbreviation sp. mean?
undesignated member of that species
What does spp. mean?
A number of species (used when generalising about the genus)
Why are classifications/names sometimes changed?
1) to be consistent with new conventions
2) first naming
3) more information becomes available/info is reinterpreted
Describe the roots in dicots?
A tap root (eg carrot) with lateral roots developing from it
Describe the roots in monocots?
Network of evenly sized roots develops from adventitious roots growing from the base of the stem - fibrous root system (grass)
What are feeder roots?
provide large surface area for the absorption of water and nutrients
What is the function of the root cap?
specialised cells on root tip
* protects tip
* lubricates passage
* directs growth (geotropism)
What are the functions of roots?
1. anchorage and support
2. absorption of water and nutrients
3. hormone production
4. storage
Name some modified roots
Aerial roots (adventitious)
- prop roots (Zea mays)
- climbing roots (ivy)
- pneumatophores (mangroves)
Describe geotropism
The tendency of roots to grow downwards, according to gravitational pull.

Relies on gravity sensors in root cap and presence of hormone "abscisic acid"
What is the typical concentration for a liquid/fluid extract?
1:1 or 1:2 w/v
What is the typical concentration for a tincture?
1:3 w/v or weaker
What are the advantages of tinctures and fluid extracts?
very concentrated
minimal processing
alcohol preserves
readily absorbed (liquid)
versatile (for blending etc)
What are the disadvantages of tinctures and fluid extracts?
presence of alcohol
When would you chose an infusion/decoction?
* in situations where you want to increase fluid intake - diaphoretic herbs, UTIs, kidney stones...
* avoiding alcohol - alcoholism, preference, pregnancy...
* using mucilaginous herbs for demulcent action
* when you need to taste the herb (bitters)
* as an alternative hot drink
What are the disadvantages of infusions/decoctions?
* no preservative properties (24 hours max under refrigeratin)
* not very convenient
* taste
What is the therapeutic dose for infusions/decoctions?
dry herb = 1:20 w/v
fresh herb = 1:10 w/v
What is the shelf life of a succus?
24 hours unless preserved with ethanol (1:3/4 w/v ethanol)
When would you choose a succus?
For plants that are more effective fresh, like chickweed and cleavers.
Traditionally, when would you take a succus?
Turn of season, especially Spring, as a tonic
What are the advantages of powdered herbs?
* pure form of herb
* uses whole herb
* small particles = easier assimilation
* can be incorporated into food/drinks
* some powders provide fibre
What are some disadvantages of powdered herbs?
reduced shelf life
can be difficult to swallow
How would you take a powdered herb?
in food/drink
taken with water
Why would you take pills/capsules?
no alcohol
no unpleasant taste
protect stomach and throat from irritants
delay release of substances till they reach the small intestine
What are some disadvantages of using pills/capsules
* processing results in loss of some constituents
* not as readily absorbed as liquids
* low dose per capsule/tablet
* fixed formulations lack flexibility
Why would you dry herbs?
Reduce bulk
prolongs storage life
Describe guidelines for harvesting
* mid morning, after dew dries
* sharp tools
* be aware of contaminants
* prevent sweating/wilting etc
Breifly explain how and when to harvest roots and rhizomes
(eg, dandelion, ginger)

Late autumn, early spring
energy underground, sap low
Breifly explain how and when to harvest barks
(eg, cinnamon, slippery elm)

Early spring
easier to remove
Breifly explain how and when to harvest leaves
(eg, sage, dandelion)

Spring - just before flowering
Breifly explain how and when to harvest aeriel parts
(eg, peppermint)

spring or summer, prior to or during flowering depending on species
Breifly explain how and when to harvest flowers
(eg, chamomile, calendula)

Spring/summer for most species when fully developed
Breifly explain how and when to harvest fruit and seeds
(eg chilli, vitex, celery seed...)

At appropriate stage of ripeness
What are the key points to consider if wildcrafting?
* plant identification
* pollution
* health of plants
* ecology
Define bulb
Storage and propagative organs found just under the earth.
A small central stem surrounded by modified, fleshy leaves which are scaly at the top and thickened at the base.
Food is stored at the base.
Adventitious roots grow from stem.
Define claddodes
A plant in which the stem has evolved to be the photosynthetic organ. Often have modified leaves as well.
Define corm
Like bulb, except food is stored in the fleshy stem. The stem is surrounded by thin scales.
Define rhizomes
Modified underground stem, where each node can send out roots and stems and develop into a whole new plant.
Define stolon
Modified lateral stem that grows across the ground, and can send out roots and new shoots.
Define equivalent dry weight (EDW)
A convention used to state the concentration of a fresh plant tincture, taking into account the moisture content of the fresh herb.

EDW is obtained by weighing, drying and then re-weighing a small sample of the fresh herb
Define glycetract
A glycerine based extract, particularly useful for those avoiding alcohol or who have difficulty with the taste of tinctures.
Define infused oils
A medicinal oil made by macerating plant material in a suitable fixed oil for a certain length of time, at approximately 40C
Define multiple maceration
Repeated maceration with many bunches of herb in one menstruum
Define percolation
An extract made by a drip filter method of maceration
Define arrangement
The distinctive pattern of leaf growth on a stem
Define attachment
How the leaf joins the stem
Define lamina
leaf blade
Define mid-rib
the extension of the petiole along the centre of the leaf
Define petiole
the stem that carries the leaf
Define structure
a description of leaves, where they are either simple of compound
Define oxymel
A sweet tasting, liquid medicine containing vinegar and honey, which has a soothing effect on mucous membranes.
How do you calculate EDW?
1. Weigh a small sample of the fresh herb (say, 10g)
2. dry it
3. re-weigh it.

This gives the EDW and allows you to work out what % of the fresh plant is moisture (which will effect the menstruum quantities)
What are the 4 steps of percolation?
Comminution (grinding)
Describe simple percolation
1. percolate collected
2. marc pressed
3. more menstruum added till desired volume reached

No heat
final volume determines strength of extract
Describe reserve percolation
1. 75% of final volume percolated
2. herb exhausted with additional menstruum
3. Exhaust percolate concentrated by heat till it reaches 25% of total finished volume
4. two added together to make 100%

Uses heat - damage possible
Describe repercolation
1. herb divided into 3-5 portions
2. first portion percolated to the required finished volume.
3. second portion repercolated with menstruum from (2)
4. third portion repercolated with menstruum from (3) etc etc etc

No heat used
most concentrated extract created
Describe multiple maceration
1. make tincture (say 1:6)
2. strain and measure the yield
3. add 1/6th of that volume in weight in additional herb to create a 1:3 tincture
When would you use a glycetract?
1. avoiding alcohol
2. taste (& therefore compliance) - esp for kids
3. demulcent action
4. mild laxative action
5. emollient action
6. viscous liquid, not easily washed away (gargles)
How do you make a glycetract?
1. maceration using glycerine and water as solvents
2. replacement (industry method)fluid extract - heated to remove alcohol and water
3. reserve percolation using glycerine and water as solvents
How would you use infused oils?
as they are, or blended into cream & ointments
How can you make a basic infused oil?
1. chop herb finely
2. cover herb in oil (+ 1cm)
3. keep jar warm and away from lightfor 3-10 days (till it reaches desired strength)
4. Any sediment can be strained off then
Which herbs are best suited to infused oils?
St John's Wort
Describe the growth of a stem
* plumule grows upwards to form stem
* grows in series of nodes and internodes
* growth = development of structures at the node + elongation of internodes
* most of growing done at the tip
* phototropic
Describe modified stems
1. stolons (lateral runners, strawberries)
2. rhizomes (underground, ginger)
3. tubers (underground, starch storage, potato)
4. bulbs (small central stem surrounded by fleshy leaves)
5. corms (fleshy stem surrounded by scales)
6. cladodes (stem is photosynthetic organ, horsetail)
What are the functions of stems?
conduction (xylem and phloem)
What are the 6 leaf characteristics?
structure of lamina(simple/compound)
Describe a simple leaf
One continuous lamina
Describe a compound leaf
Lamina divided into leaflets
How can you tell a simple from a compound leaf?
Each leaf has one axillary bud
Describe an articulate leaf attachment
definite joint where leaf/petiole joins to stem
Describe a petiolate leaf attachment
petiole connects leaf to stem
Describe a sessile leaf attachment
leaves join straight to stem (no petiole)
Name some special leaf attachments
* Sheathing (base of petiole wraps around stem)
* decurrent (lamina extends onto the side of the stem
* perfoliate (stem grows through lamina)
Describe alternate leaf arrangement
one leaf at each node
spiral or parallel
Describe opposite leaf arrangement
2 leaves at each node
deucssate - pairs at right angles
Describe whorled leaf arrangement
More than 2 leaves growing from node
Describe basal/radical leaf arrangement
Leaves grow from base of the stem (ie, dandelion)
Define bract
Modified leaves that grow at the base of flower stalks or under the flower itself
Define involucral bracts
Bracts that appear in a whorl (rows of long, thin bracts surrounding the flower head).
Define ochrea
Membranous sheath (fused stipules) found arround the nodes of some plants
Define photosynthesis
The process by which the plant creates energy (sugar) from light (by joining C, H & O together)
Define reticulate
Venation where veins branch out from the main vein in the midrib into finer and finer traces.
Define stipules
Small leaf-like structures found in pairs at the base of the petiole.
Define venation
The pattern made by the veins in leaves
Define syrup
Concentrated aqueous solution of sucrose or other sugars. Can be made with FEs.