Latin Name: Arctium lappa
Burdock has been used as a blood cleanser, fever reducer, for itchy skin, and more. It is revered in Chinese medicine and has been used in blends for its anti-cancer action. Preliminary scientific studies have demonstrated anti-inflammatory, anti-infection, anti-diabetic, and hypolipidemic potential; more research is needed.
- ACHS (2017) Course Material, Herb502: Bayberry Monograph. www.achs.edu
- Natural Standards (2015). Burdock Monograph. Retrieved from www.naturalstandard.com
- In a review of research burdock root showed the following activities: anti-inflammatory, antiallergic, antidiabetic, antimutagenic, antiviral, antibacterial, antileukemic, hepatoprotective, growth stimulating, mild laxative, mild diuretic, diaphoretic, antiarthritic, and antipyretic. From: GUNA, G. (2019). THERAPEUTIC VALUE OF ARCTIUM LAPPA LINN.–A REVIEW. Asian J Pharm Clin Res, 12(7), 53-59.
- In this review, research on burdock and the following actions were discussed: blood detoxifying, improved blood circulation, improved skin, antioxidant, antidiabetic, anti-inflammatory, anti-diabetic, anti-cancer, and antimicrobial. Chan, Y. S., Cheng, L. N., Wu, J. H., Chan, E., Kwan, Y. W., Lee, S. M. Y., … & Chan, S. W. (2010). A review of the pharmacological effects of Arctium lappa (burdock).
- This study demonstrated Arctium lappa as useful in reducing dry skin and itching as an ingredient in topical cream. The study was randomized, double blind, and placebo controlled, including 66 healthy adults with dry skin. From: Lee, D. H., Seo, E. S., Hong, J. T., Lee, G. T., You, Y. K., Lee, K. K., … & Kim, N. K. (2013). The efficacy and safety of a proposed herbal moisturising cream for dry skin and itch relief: a randomised, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial-study protocol. BMC complementary and alternative medicine, 13(1), 330.
- Burdock fruit extract applied topically significantly improved the metabolism of the dermal extracellular matrix and thus a visible wrinkle reduction in vivo. From: Knott, A., Reuschlein, K., Mielke, H., Wensorra, U., Mummert, C., Koop, U., … & Wenck, H. (2008). Natural Arctium lappa fruit extract improves the clinical signs of aging skin. Journal of cosmetic dermatology, 7(4), 281-289.
- In a review of research, the arctigenin component of A. lapp has demonstrated anti-inflammatory activities, but further research is needed with alternative delivery methods. From: Gao, Q., Yang, M., & Zuo, Z. (2018). Overview of the anti-inflammatory effects, pharmacokinetic properties and clinical efficacies of arctigenin and arctiin from Arctium lappa L. Acta Pharmacologica Sinica, 39(5), 787-801.
- Drinking Arctium lappa root tea reduced inflammation and oxidative stress in 36 patients with knee osteoarthritis. From: Maghsoumi‐Norouzabad, L., Alipoor, B., Abed, R., Eftekhar Sadat, B., Mesgari‐Abbasi, M., & Asghari Jafarabadi, M. (2014). Effects of Arctium lappa L.(Burdock) root tea on inflammatory status and oxidative stress in patients with knee osteoarthritis. International journal of rheumatic diseases.
- In vivo studies demonstrated arctigenin extracted from the seeds of Arctium lappa reduced inflammatory diseases like colitis by inhibiting the PI3K pathway and changing M1 macrophages to M2-like macrophages. From: Hyam, S. R., Lee, I. A., Gu, W., Kim, K. A., Jeong, J. J., Jang, S. E., … & Kim, D. H. (2013). Arctigenin ameliorates inflammation in vitro and in vivo by inhibiting the PI3K/AKT pathway and polarizing M1 macrophages to M2-like macrophages. European journal of pharmacology, 708(1-3), 21-29.
- Burdock root crude extract reduced rat paw edema and had radical scavenging activity. From: Lin, C. C., Lin, J. M., Yang, J. J., Chuang, S. C., & Ujiie, T. (1996). Anti-inflammatory and radical scavenge effects of Arctium lappa. The American journal of Chinese medicine, 24(02), 127-137.
- Arctigenin was the active constituent in burdock, suppressing inflammation in vitro. From: Zhao, F., Wang, L., & Liu, K. (2009). In vitro anti-inflammatory effects of arctigenin, a lignan from Arctium lappa L., through inhibition on iNOS pathway. Journal of ethnopharmacology, 122(3), 457-462.
- Burdock reduced the allergic inflammatory response in mouse ear edema. From: Knipping, K., van Esch, E. C., Wijering, S. C., van der Heide, S., Dubois, A. E., & Garssen, J. (2008). In vitro and in vivo anti-allergic effects of Arctium lappa L. Experimental biology and medicine, 233(11), 1469-1477.
- Lignans extracted from burdock inhibited inflammation. From: Park, S. Y., Hong, S. S., Han, X. H., Hwang, J. S., Lee, D., Ro, J. S., & Hwang, B. Y. (2007). Lignans from Arctium lappa and their inhibition of LPS-induced nitric oxide production. Chemical and pharmaceutical bulletin, 55(1), 150-152.
- Diarctigenin from burdock seeds reduced inflammation gene expression. From: Kim, B. H., Hong, S. S., Kwon, S. W., Lee, H. Y., Sung, H., Lee, I. J., … & Ahn, B. (2008). Diarctigenin, a lignan constituent from Arctium lappa, down-regulated zymosan-induced transcription of inflammatory genes through suppression of DNA binding ability of nuclear factor-κB in macrophages. Journal of Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics, 327(2), 393-401.
- Arctigenin inhibited activation of MAP kinases. From: Cho, M. K., Jang, Y. P., Kim, Y. C., & Kim, S. G. (2004). Arctigenin, a phenylpropanoid dibenzylbutyrolactone lignan, inhibits MAP kinases and AP-1 activation via potent MKK inhibition: the role in TNF-α inhibition. International immunopharmacology, 4(10), 1419-1429.
- Root extract from burdock had an antidiabetic effect in diabetic rats. From: Cao, J., Li, C., Zhang, P., Cao, X., Huang, T., Bai, Y., & Chen, K. (2012). Antidiabetic effect of burdock (Arctium lappa L.) root ethanolic extract on streptozotocin-induced diabetic rats. African Journal of Biotechnology, 11(37), 9079.
- A compilation of research showed the following herbs to have a hypolipidemic effect: yarrow, onion, garlic, dill, celery, burdock, oats, barberry, cabbage, chili pepper, safflower, chicory, chickpea, bitter orange, orange, guggul, coriander, cranberry, melon, pumpkin, artichoke, ginseng, eugenol, schelelecht, ginkgo, soy, walnut, apple, nutmeg, red yeast rice, miswak, evening primrose, basil, bulacy, orchis, avocado, plantain, blond plotitago, green bean, purslane, black cherry, pomegranate, milk thistle, brinjal, tomato, tamarind, thea, thyme, fenugreek, bilberry, grape, ginger, and corn. From: Rouhi-Boroujeni, H., Rouhi-Boroujeni, H., Khoddami, M., Khazraei, H. R., Dehkordil, E. B., & Rafieian-Kopaei, M. (2017). Hypolipidemic herbals with diuretic effects: A systematic review. In Biol. Sci (Vol. 8, pp. 21-28).
- This study demonstrated that 1000 mg of burdock essence taken orally three times a day after meals helped against H. pylori infection and in gastric mucosal repair in those with gastric ulcers. From: Wu, Y. C., Lin, L. F., Yeh, C. S., Lin, Y. L., Chang, H. J., Lin, S. R., … & Lee, S. C. (2010). Burdock essence promotes gastrointestinal mucosal repair in ulcer patients. Fooyin Journal of Health Sciences, 2(1), 26-31.
- A fructofuranan of burdock root was antitussive in cats. From: Kardošová, A., Ebringerova, A., Alföldi, J., Nosál’ová, G., Fraňová, S., & Hřı́balová, V. (2003). A biologically active fructan from the roots of Arctium lappa L., var. Herkules. International journal of biological macromolecules, 33(1), 135-140.
- A blend with burdock (Arctium lappa ), angelica (Angelica sinensis ), gromwell (Lithospermum erythrorhizon ), and sesame oil (Sesamum indicum ) reduced Helicobacter pylori gastro-bacterial infection in this eight week double blind study with 36 subjects. It reduced inflammation and adhesion activities of the bacteria. From: Yen, C. H., Chiu, H. F., Huang, S. Y., Lu, Y. Y., Han, Y. C., Shen, Y. C., … & Wang, C. K. (2018). Beneficial effect of Burdock complex on asymptomatic Helicobacter pylori‐infected subjects: A randomized, double‐blind placebo‐controlled clinical trial. Helicobacter, 23(3), e12469.
- Extracts from burdock were effective in vitro against tested mouth bacteria. From: Gentil, M., Pereira, J. V., Sousa, Y. T., Pietro, R., Neto, M. D. S., Vansan, L. P., & de Castro França, S. (2006). In vitro evaluation of the antibacterial activity of Arctium lappa as a phytotherapeutic agent used in intracanal dressings. Phytotherapy research, 20(3), 184-186.
- Arctium lappa showed antimicrobial activity against endodontic pathogens. From: Pereira, J. V., Bergamo, D. C. B., Pereira, J. O., França, S. D. C., Pietro, R. C. L. R., & Silva-Sousa, Y. T. C. (2005). Antimicrobial activity of Arctium lappa constituents against microorganisms commonly found in endodontic infections. Brazilian dental journal, 16(3), 192-196.
- Arctigenin from the burdock plant showed in vitro antiviral activity against the influenza virus. From: Hayashi, K., Narutaki, K., Nagaoka, Y., Hayashi, T., & Uesato, S. (2010). Therapeutic effect of arctiin and arctigenin in immunocompetent and immunocompromised mice infected with influenza A virus. Biological and Pharmaceutical Bulletin, 33(7), 1199-1205.
- Arctigenin, a key constituent found in burdock, significantly reduced pneumonia symtoms caused by the influenza virus and reduced death rate in infected mice. From: Yang, Z., Liu, N., Huang, B., Wang, Y., Hu, Y., & Zhu, Y. (2005). Effect of anti-influenza virus of arctigenin in vivo. Zhong yao cai= Zhongyaocai= Journal of Chinese medicinal materials, 28(11), 1012-1014.
- Water extracts of burdock showed strong antioxidant activity. From: Duh, P. D. (1998). Antioxidant activity of burdock (Arctium lappa Linne): its scavenging effect on free-radical and active oxygen. Journal of the American Oil Chemists’ Society, 75(4), 455-461.
- Antioxidant activity and chemical constituents of burdock plant parts were assessed. From: Ferracane, R., Graziani, G., Gallo, M., Fogliano, V., & Ritieni, A. (2010). Metabolic profile of the bioactive compounds of burdock (Arctium lappa) seeds, roots and leaves. Journal of pharmaceutical and biomedical analysis, 51(2), 399-404.
- Arctigenin, a constituent of burdock, showed anti-tumor activity in bladder cancer. From: Yang, S., Ma, J., Xiao, J., Lv, X., Li, X., Yang, H., … & Zhang, Y. (2012). Arctigenin Anti‐Tumor Activity in Bladder Cancer T24 Cell Line Through Induction of Cell‐Cycle Arrest and Apoptosis. The Anatomical Record, 295(8), 1260-1266.
- Burdock showed antimutagenic activity. From: Morita, K., Kada, T., & Namiki, M. (1984). A desmutagenic factor isolated from burdock (Arctium lappa Linne). Mutation Research/Fundamental and Molecular Mechanisms of Mutagenesis, 129(1), 25-31.
- Arctigenin and matairesinol isolated from Arctium lappa showed antiproliferative activity against leukemia cells. From: Matsumoto, T., Hosono-Nishiyama, K., & Yamada, H. (2006). Antiproliferative and apoptotic effects of butyrolactone lignans from Arctium lappa on leukemic cells. Planta medica, 72(03), 276-278.
- Arctigenin from burdock showed antitumor activity by glucose starvation. From: Awale, S., Lu, J., Kalauni, S. K., Kurashima, Y., Tezuka, Y., Kadota, S., & Esumi, H. (2006). Identification of arctigenin as an antitumor agent having the ability to eliminate the tolerance of cancer cells to nutrient starvation. Cancer research, 66(3), 1751-1757.
- Root of burdock showed liver protective activity in mice. Lin, S. C., Chung, T. C., Lin, C. C., Ueng, T. H., Lin, Y. H., Lin, S. Y., & Wang, L. Y. (2000). Hepatoprotective effects of Arctium lappa on carbon tetrachloride-and acetaminophen-induced liver damage. The American journal of Chinese medicine, 28(02), 163-173.
- Burdock had a hepatoprotective, antioxidant effect in mice. From: Lin, S. C., Lin, C. H., Lin, C. C., Lin, Y. H., Chen, C. F., Chen, I. C., & Wang, L. Y. (2002). Hepatoprotective effects of Arctium lappa linne on liver injuries induced by chronic ethanol consumption and potentiated by carbon tetrachloride. Journal of Biomedical Science, 9(5), 401-409.
By: Kathy Sadowski