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Features And News

By Stefan Gafner, PhD; Mark Blumenthal; Danica Harbaugh Reynaud, PhD; Steven Foster; Natascha Techen, PhD  
A team of botanical identification, natural product, and other experts critiques an article published in the open-access journal BMC Medicine
 that found a high percentage of adulterated herbal products. This critique lists 10 problems, errors, and areas of confusion in the DNA paper, as noted in a November 5 press release from ABC.  Read more>>

On November 1, 2013, the educational nonprofit founded by Executive Director Mark Blumenthal and his esteemed colleagues celebrated a quarter century of promoting the responsible, science-based use of medicinal plants. Read more>>

By ABC Staff
The Amazon Center for Environmental Education and Research (ACEER) Foundation Read recently bestowed upon James A. Duke, PhD, its 2013 ACEER Legacy Award for his lasting, significant contributions to medicinal plant research in the Amazon. Read more>>

By Tyler Smith
Exceeding enrollment expectations and bolstered by community support, the one-year-old Bastyr University California recently completed a million-dollar expansion project, which includes a new state-of-the-art botanical medicine lab. Read more>>

By Tyler Smith
This update to the HerbalEGram article published in May includes new tables of previous National Toxicology Program (NTP) herbal studies and outcomes, and other new information that brings into question the importance of the two-year animal study on a particular Ginkgo biloba extract. Read more>>

James A. Duke, PhD

Herbal medicine kitchen.

Featured Book
The Agronomy and Economy of Turmeric and Ginger: The Invaluable Medicinal Spice Crops was written by K.P. Prabhakaran Nair and published in 2013 by Elsevier Inc. The featured book excerpt includes Chapter 1, “Turmeric: Origin and History,” and Chapter 12, “Nutraceutical Properties of Turmeric.”

Part of the Elsevier Insights series, this text discusses the medicinal, nutritional, and agricultural aspects of two globally important spice crops. The author delves into the historical significance of both plants and explores the supporting scientific research, covering details of their botany, chemistry, genetics, and agronomy.

In addition to comprehensive coverage of the spices’ medicinal and pharmacological properties, the text contains practical information on production, harvest, and marketing techniques.

Available for purchase from the publisher’s website.


Media Watch
Pathogen Control Measures in Spices 'Not Adequate', Says FDA. FDA addresses safety shortcomings in its recent draft risk profile for spice contamination.

Ginger Prices Skyrocket with Little Relief in Sight. The Produce News. Smaller ginger crops in China have caused US prices to nearly double since 2012.

Baking Blueberries Changes Their Polyphenol Content, Health Benefits. Science Daily. Researchers found that baking blueberries alters levels of health-promoting polyphenols.

Coffee Consumption May Reduce Risk of Liver Cancer
. NutraIngredients. A meta-analysis of human studies showed coffee drinkers have a 40% reduced risk of developing liver cancer.

Harvesting Cranberries for their Healing Properties
. Fox News. Medicine hunter Chris Kilham visited a Massachusetts bog to witness the harvest of this antioxidant-rich food.

When Edible Plants Turn Their Defenses On Us
. NPR. This beautifully illustrated article explores the history and chemistry of potentially poisonous plants.

The Herbal Highway — The Conservation of American Ginseng
. KPFA Berkeley [audio]. United Plant Savers’ Susan Leopold is interviewed about American ginseng conservation practices.

Popular Sports Supplements Contain Meth-Like Compound
. USA Today. New analyses have uncovered unlabeled stimulants in a supplement purported to contain “dendrobium extract.”
Community And Industry Releases

CRN Regulatory Experts Author Educational Brief on Dietary Supplement Industry RegulationPress release from the Council for Responsible Nutrition.

FDA Approves Investigational Trials Assessing Cannabidiol For Pediatric Epilepsy
Press release from the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws.

MSU Professor Wins Grant to Study How Weather Changes Impact Tea Quality
Press release from Montana State University.

AHPA Citizen Petition Requests New Policy on FDA cGMP Observations
Update from the American Herbal Products Association.

FDA Investigates Acute Hepatitis Illnesses Potentially Linked to Products Labeled OxyElite Pro
Update from the US Food and Drug Administration.

November 7-10: American Herbalists Guild Symposium. Bend, OR.
November 12-16: SupplySide West. Las Vegas, NV.

February 20-22, 2014: Integrative Healthcare Symposium. New York, NY.

More event listings can be found on ABC's website.
Herbal IQ

The nutritious seeds of pumpkin (Curcubita pepo) have been studied for what clinical benefits? Find the answer here!