HerbClip summaries and reviews are typically focused on thegrowing body of human clinical trials for herbs and phytomedicinal products, includingsystematic reviews and meta-analyses of such clinical trials. These articlesare drawn from a wide variety of peer-reviewed scientific and medical journals,as well as occasional monographs, government documents, special reports, tradejournals, and news articles. In addition to summarizing the original article,HerbClips often include insights, perspectives, criticism, and links to otherarticles or resources.
Per ABC style, HerbClip reviews always provide the trade name ofthe medicinal product on which the study is based — including the name of thecompany that produced the tested material or product — as well as a descriptionof the product, extract, or material so that the reader is able to have a betterunderstanding of the potential significance of the study’s results. HerbClipsummaries and reviews are vetted by editors and peer reviewers before they arepublished to help ensure their accuracy.
“Inthis era of ever-expanding information, it becomes increasingly difficult toremain apprised of such varied content without some assistance that provides anoverview of pertinent material. HerbClips have served that need for me,” saidFrancis Brinker, ND, HerbClip Consulting Editor, Clinical Assistant Professorin the Department of Medicine at the University of Arizona College of Medicine,and an ABC Advisory Board member. “HerbClips have been a steady andwide-ranging supply of information on botanicals that otherwise would haveoften passed me by.”HerbClip’s roots stretch back to 1993, just five years after ABCwas founded. At the time, ABC Founder and Executive Director Mark Blumenthalwould often photocopy and share relevant news articles with numerous friendsand professional colleagues. When the cost of toner for ABC’s copier becameprohibitively expensive, inspiration struck. Blumenthal called two closefriends in the herb industry and asked if they would be willing to pay for aservice to send them articles summaries of the latest herb research and relateddevelopments. The friends agreed, and HerbClip was born.
In the beginning, HerbClip involved mailing summaries and reviewsof herbal literature to ABC colleagues in the academic and scientific communities,as well as key members of industry. At the time, no such service existed in thenatural medicine and herbal supplement industry. The groundbreaking HerbClipsoffered not only summaries and reviews, but also the original articles on whichthey were based when such permissions were granted by the articles’ publishers.In 2005, ABC started to include HerbClip News with each mailing — a column ofcommentary from HerbClip Managing Editor Lori Glenn. Two years later, the firstelectronic HerbClips were sent to ABC members, dramatically expanding readership.By 2009, all HerbClips were delivered electronically, which further solidifiedthe organization’s commitment to environmental sustainability.
“There has been a virtual explosion of scientific and clinicalpublications on herbs, medicinal plants, phytomedicines, essential oils,so-called ‘functional foods,’ and medicinal fungi in the past several decades,”noted Blumenthal. “HerbClip is probably one of the most robust databasesavailable anywhere that provides researchers and other interested parties amuch deeper dive into the herbal science and clinical literature than merelyreading a study’s abstract”
“I would like to take this opportunity to formally thankHerbClip’s Managing Editor Lori Glenn for her long time service to ABC and theherbal community for her stewardship of HerbClip for over 11 years,” addedBlumenthal. “ABC also gratefully acknowledges HerbClip writers Heather Oliff,PhD, who has written over 1,120 HerbClips since 1999, and MariannGarner-Wizard, who has written more than 1,000 HerbClips since 1999.”
“HerbClip has an amazing group of writers and consulting editors,”said Glenn. “The peer reviewers, who provide their expertise to the varioussubjects covered in HerbClip, are an integral part of the process and theirinput is vital to the quality of the summaries and critical reviews produced.Tamarind Reaves, the assistant editor, consistently and thoroughly examineseach HerbClip prior to the production process. I am most appreciative of allthe time and effort from those who are part of the HerbClip EducationalService.”
“Wow6,000 HerbClips!” exclaimed Heather Oliff, PhD, of California-based ScienceConsulting Group, LLC. “Reading HerbClip is an easy way to keep abreast of thelatest research in the industry. I appreciate that the HerbClip writers critiquethe reports so that readers can quickly see the value of a study. I am so proudto have written more than one-sixth of the total HerbClips.”HerbClip summaries and reviews are available online through theABC website, www.herbalgram.org. The entire database of 6,000 articles is searchable bycommon and Latin names of herbs, author names, journal and article titles,pharmacological actions, clinical endpoints, conditions, and more.
Fifteen new HerbClips and an HerbClip News article are producedtwice monthly. At least four HerbClips from each installment are available tothe public for free; ABC members at the Academic level and above can access theentire HerbClip database. Sponsor members also receive HerbClips and, whenavailable, the PDF versions of the original articles on which they are based.