Welcome to HerbClip Online
Published by the American Botanical Council
HerbClip Reaches 5000 Online
The nonprofit American Botanical Council (ABC) proudly announces the publication of its 5,000th HerbClip on June 29, 2012. HerbClips are two-to-three-page summaries and critical reviews of seminal articles covering medicinal plant-related clinical research, regulation, market information, and conservation and sustainability.
HerbClip summaries and critical reviews are typically based upon human clinical trials, systematic reviews and meta-analyses of such clinical trials, and other articles dealing with ethnobotany, conservation and sustainability, and regulation of herbs and medicinal botanical products. These articles are drawn from a wide variety of peer-reviewed scientific and medical journals, monographs, government documents, special reports, trade journals, and the mainstream media. In addition to summarizing the original article, an HerbClip may include insights, perspectives, criticism, and/or links to other articles and issues. HerbClip summaries and reviews are examined by consulting editors and peer reviewers before they are published to help ensure their accuracy.
HerbClip’s roots stretch back to 1993, just five years after ABC was created.
At the time, Founder and Executive Director Mark Blumenthal would often copy
and then share relevant news articles with numerous friends and professional
colleagues. When the cost of toner for ABC’s copier reached what at that time
was a prohibitive $200 per month, inspiration struck. Blumenthal called two
close friends in the herb industry and asked if they would be willing to pay
for a service to send them articles related to herb research,
regulation, etc. The friends agreed and HerbClip was born.
In the beginning, HerbClip involved mailing summaries and reviews of herbal literature to ABC colleagues in the academic and scientific communities, as
well as key members of industry. At the time, no other such service existed in the natural medicine and herbal supplement industry. The groundbreaking HerbClips
offered not only summaries and reviews, but also the original articles on which they were based when such permissions were granted by the articles’ publishers.
In 2005, ABC started to include HerbClip News with each mailing. The year 2007
saw the first electronic HerbClips sent to ABC members, dramatically expanding the number of people receiving HerbClip. By 2009, all HerbClips were being
delivered electronically. This change not only saved ABC the printing and postage fees of regular mailings, but further solidified the organization’s
commitment to environmental sustainability.
“As one of ABC’s unique seminal publications,
HerbClip has been integral to fulfilling our mission of providing reliable educational resources
using science-based information to promote the responsible use of herbal
medicine,” said Blumenthal. “Reaching the 5,000th HerbClip is a gratifying milestone for a
project that started out as simply as my sharing news with a few friends and
colleagues,” continued Blumenthal. “The increase in media articles and
published clinical trials over the last two decades has been absolutely
astounding, though, making the need for such a service greater than ever
“We now release 30 HerbClips each month and it is still not possible for us to
cover every relevant publication, especially now that we are so firmly
entrenched in the digital world. With this in mind, we will continue our
commitment to bring the latest news and information, along with thoughtful
analyses and summaries, to our members.”
As HerbClip marks this
milestone, Managing Editor Lori Glenn says she is “deeply grateful to
all the wonderful writers, consulting editors, peer reviewers, and ABC staff
who have been a part of the HerbClip process. Their time and dedication have
been beyond valuable in the almost decade that I have been the HerbClip
To HerbClip readers, Glenn says, “More often than not, I am unaware of the
stories of the people who access HerbClip as a learning tool for themselves and
for others, but I appreciate their dissemination of the information provided in
HerbClips and hope that the knowledge they obtain aids them, whether it be for
academic knowledge, commercial applications, or personal healing.”
Blumenthal added another note of acknowledgement. “We are deeply grateful to
Lori Glenn for almost 10 years of service to ABC as the HerbClip Managing Editor,
and to Mariann Garner-Wizard and Heather S. Oliff, PhD, who have each written hundreds of HerbClips for over 10 years.”
Francis Brinker, ND, HerbClip Consulting Editor, Clinical Assistant Professor at the Department of Medicine at the University of Arizona College of Medicine,
and ABC Advisory Board member, says “A great challenge of modern herbal science
is trying to keep up with the wide array of pioneering investigations on botanicals… as well as environmental, regulatory, and trade issues, etc. Long
before I became a consulting editor for HerbClip, I relied on the steady supply
of these diverse and pertinent herbal article summaries to help keep me abreast
of important movements in advancing the knowledge of herbs, and I still do.”
Tieraona Low Dog, MD,
Director of the Fellowship, Arizona Center for Integrative Medicine, Clinical
Assistant Professor, Department of Medicine, University of Arizona Health
Sciences Center, and also an ABC Advisory Board member, believes “HerbClips are
an invaluable resource for busy clinicians who are trying to keep up-to-date with the research on herbal medicines. They are a tremendous contribution to the field, which is why we offer them to all of our Fellows at the University
of Arizona center for Integrative Medicine.” More comments from
some of HerbClip’s readers and reviewers on the ABC Advisory Board can be found
HerbClip summaries and
reviews are available online through the ABC website, www.herbalgram.org. The entire database of 5,000 articles is
totally searchable by any search term, including the common and Latin names of the herbs, names of authors of the originally cited article, journal titles,
pharmacological actions, and/or clinical endpoints tested in clinical trials, and more.
Fifteen new HerbClips and an HerbClip news article are produced twice monthly.
All ABC members, and non-members, have access to at least two free HerbClips
from each installment; all ABC members at the Academic level and above can
access all HerbClips; Sponsor members receive HerbClips and, when available,
the PDF versions of the original articles on which they are based.