Artemisinin gel

Artemisinin gel is a type of gelatinous substance which contains the drug known as Artemisinin. This is a certain drug that is usually utilized for effective operation against mutant strains of offalciparum malaria which have grown resistant. This certain chemical can be found in the plant known as Artemisia annua, or in other words known as annual wormwood. However one has to be able to identify which plant contains the drug, since it is not prevalent in all species. Many experts believe that the existence of this compound in a certain species of plant can only be confirmed if the plant has undergone an experience of conditions like biotic and abiotic stresses. This particular drug can also be derived via synthesis from a compound known as artemisinic acid.

Before delving into the features of this particular drug, one should be aware of the fact that World Health Organization dissuades the usage of artemisinin as a component of a monotherapy. Opting for a variety of combinational therapies will deter the malarial parasites from forming recombinant resistant strains.

From the pages of history, it can be found that the drug Artemisia was made use of by the Chinese for thousands of years in the cure of diseases like malaria. The tablet titled ‘Fifty-Two Prescriptions’ that had been discovered in the tombs of the Mawangdui Han dynasties, bear witness to the fact that this amazing drug has been in circulation within the human community for years, as a cure for malaria. A famous book of medicine written by Ge Hong in the fourth century, known as ‘The Handbook of Prescriptions for Emergencies’ has also mentioned this particular drug. It is claimed by many, that no other known drug destroys the malarial parasites in the body faster, than artemisinin. This in itself is a surprising fact seeing that one of the components of artemisin, peroxide, should make it too unstable to be reliable as a drug. Another important feature of the herb is its prevalence. This herb can be found in many places in the world and is quite widely prevalent.

Several studies also show that research is being done to test the effectiveness of artemisinin in the destroying of cancerous cells. The key to the problem lies in the compound of artemisinin belonging to the peroxide lactone group. This particular group of compounds is showing surprising reactivity levels with high concentrations of iron, which results in an unstable compound. This instability makes the compound discharge high concentrations of species of oxygen of a reactive kind. These high concentrations of iron are usually prevalent in cancerous cells.

However, many experts suggest that recent strains of malarial parasites are now showing a resistance to as strong a drug as artemisinin even. This claim is supported by researches done in Cambodia.

Many groups of people have also complained about the presence of side effects in artemisinin suage. Although experts suggest that the levels of artemisinins that are given to patients of malaria for treatment are supposed to be taken well by the body, many have complained about the prevalence of symptoms of side-effects. These include anorexia, dizziness, lightheadedness, nausea, vomiting and weakness. Liver inflammation is also a possible side effect. Blood abnormalities and allergic reactions are also possibilities. Often it is seen that the worst cases of side effects occur when the drugs are taken as monotherapies. Thus, this is such that combination therapies provide some relief from the occurrence of such side effects. The prevalence of side effects also increases as the nature of the disease starts steering toward the spectrum of acute cases.

Last updated on Sep 8th, 2010 and filed under Drugs and Medications. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

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