Dang Gui

Radix Angelicae Sinensis, Chinese Angelica Root

Dosage

Decoction: 6-12g, or pill or powder form.

Toxicity

LD50 (mice): 80-100g/kg (IV/herb solution); 298g/kg (hypodermic injection/volatile oil), 960g/kg (oral/volatile oil). (1) Dang Gui's toxicity is low. For intravenous injection in mice LD 50 value is 80-100g/kg. For subcutaneous injection and stomach administration of volatile oil, the LD50 values are 298g/kg and 960g/kg, respectively. (2)

Chemical Composition

Carvacrol; Phenol; O-cresol; P-cresol; Guaiacol; 2,3-dimethylphenol; P-ethyl phenol; M-ethyl phenol; 4-ethyl resorcinol; Isoeugenol; Vanillin; Ligustilide; (-pinene; Myrcene; (-ocimine-X; Alloocimene; Bicycloeleme-ne; Acetophenone; (-bisabolene; Acoradiene; Isoacoradiene; Trans-(-farnesene; (-elemene; Cuparene; (-cedrene; Senkyunolide; N-butylphthalide; N-butylidenephthalide; Angelic ketone; Camphoric acid; Anisic acid; Azelaic acid; Sebacic acid; Myristic acid; Phthalic anhydride; Verbenone; Safrole; P-ethyl bensaldehyde; Eucarvone; Copaene; (-selinene; Bergamotene; Cadinene; 1-tetradecanol; Palmitic acid; Angelicide; Vanillic acid; Ferulic acid; Nicotinic acid; Succinic acid; Brefeldin A; b-sitosterol; Daucosterol; Adenine; Uracil; Sucrose; Glucose; Fructose; Lysine; Arginine; Threonine; Tyrosine; Proline; Glycine; Alanine; Cystine; Valine; Leucine; Isoleucine; Tryptophane; Phenylalanine; Aspartic acid; Serine; Glutamic acid; Methionine; Histidine; Sphingomyelin; Phosphatidylcholine; Phosphatidylinositol; Phosphatidylserine; Phosphatidylglycerol; Diphosphatidylglycerol; Phosphatidic acid; Galactose; Arabinose; Xylose; Glucuronic acid; Galacturonic acid; Umbelliferone I; Bergapten II; Imperatorin III; Isoimperatorin IV; Xanthotoxin V; Scoparone VI; Columbianadin VII; Nodakenetin VIII; Xanthotoxol IX; Decursinol X; Scopoletin XI; Nodakenin XII; Ligustilide dimer; 2-Methyl-dodecane-5-one; Lysophosphatidyl choline; Phosphatidyl ethanolamine; 3,4-dimethyl benzaldehyde; 2,4-dihydroxyacetophenone; 6-n-butyl-1,4-cycloheptdiene; 2,4,6-trimethyl benzaldehyde; 6-methoxy-7-hydroxycoumarin; 1,1,5-trimethyl-2-formylcyclohexa-2,5-diene-4-one me. (3) , (4) , (5) , (6) , (7) , (8) , (9) , (10) , (11)

Inorganic Chemicals

K, Na, Ca, Mg, Si, P, Fe, Mn, Ni, Cu, Zn, As, Mo, Sn, Re, Ba, Se, Sr, V, Cr.

Precautions

Patients suffering from bleeding due to overabundance of heat should avoid using this herb. Patients suffering from excessive dampness and loose stool should use with caution. There has been one case of allergic reaction shock caused by Dang Gui injection, and one case of abdominal pain upon oral administration of Dang Gui. (12) There have also been reports of loss of eye brows. (13)

Pharmacology

Effects on blood and the hematopoietic system

Dang Gui polysaccharide has a significant stimulatory effect on the proliferation of meganucleus progenitor cells in normal, bone marrow-inhibited, and anemic mice, but does not significantly affect peripheral blood platelets, indicating that it may directly or indirectly activate lymphocytes to produce hematopoietic modulators. (14) Dang Gui injection can regulate prostacyclin---thromboxane A2 balance and inhibit platelet aggregation. (15) Dang Gui can increase the plasma-keto-prostacyclin level, and decrease the plasma thromboxane level in hypertension patients. (16)

Effects on immuno-regulation

In-vitro experiments show that alcohol-based extract of Dang Gui of 0.16-2.50mg/mL can, either by itself or working with ConA/LPS, enhance the proliferation of spleen and thymus T-, B lymphocytes. And it can counteract HP-induced inhibition on ConA-induced proliferation of spleen and thymus T lymphocytes. (17) At the appropriate dosage, Dang Gui polysaccharide can significantly promote the abdominal phagocytes' production of monoxide and interleukin in mice. (18) , (19)

Counteracting fatique and oxygen deprivation

Administered to mice at 3g/kg, Dang Gui decoction (1ml containing 0.1g of herb) 3g/kg can significantly lengthen their swimming time and survival time from oxygen deprivation under normal pressure (P

Effects on the cardiovascular system

Dang Gui can protect blood vessels' endothelial cells from damages caused by oxidized low density lipid (ox-LDL), an effect possibly linked with Dang Gui's anti-oxidation effect. (20) Abdominal injection of Dang Gui (0.6g raw herb/kg) can significantly decrease rate arrhythmia. (21)

Antiradiation effect

Experiments show that treating the ovaries of 60Co-g radiation-damaged mice with Dang Gui can help restore the number of follicles to the normal level, and increase the average follicle surface area. (22)

Anti-inflammatory effect

Administered by stomach infusion at 8g/kg, Dang Gui has a significant inhibitory effect on Forssman skin vasculitis in hamsters and on reverse skin allergic reactions and passive Arthus reaction in rats. This suggests that Dang Gui has suppressive effects on II and III type allergic reactions. (23)

Protection against cerebral ischemia

In one experiment, the right common carotid arteries and the middle cerebral arteries of rats were blocked for 90 minutes before blood was allowed to flow in again, and then the rats were treated by IV injection with 7.5mL of 25 Dang Gui solution for six hours. Eight days later, the volume of the cerebral infarction was measure with imaging technologies, and the results showed that the Dang Gui treatment significantly decreased the cerebral infarction volume. (24)

References

  1. Chen Ke Ji, et al. Research on Blood Stasis and Its Treatment. Shanghai: Science and Technology Press; 1990.
  2. Chen Yong Yi, et al. Guangxi Journal of Health. 1973;(6):47.
  3. Yuan Jiu Ron, et al. China Journal of Chinese Medicine. 1998;23(10):601-603.
  4. Yan Zhong Kai, et al. China Journal of Chinese Medicine. 1990;15(7):419-421.
  5. Kang Ting Guo. Journal of Traditional Chinese Medicine Material. 1990;13(3):28-29.
  6. Wang Hai Yan, et al. China Journal of Chinese Medicine. 1998;23(3):167-168.
  7. Yang Xiu Wei, et al. Journal of Traditional Chinese Medicine Material. 1994;17(4):30-32.
  8. Lu Tu Lin, et al. Journal of Shizhen Medicinal Material Research. 1996;7(3):163.
  9. Kang Ting Guo, et al. Journal of Chinese Materia Medica. 1990;21(3):43.
  10. Guo Cheng, et al. China Journal of Chinese Medicine. 1991;16(12):741-742.
  11. Lu Tu Lin, et al. Journal of Shizhen Medicinal Material Research. 1996;7(3):163.
  12. Wu Zi Ming, et al. Hunan Journal of Medicine. 1981;8(2):48.
  13. Zhou Rong Geng. Shanghai Journal of TCM. 1990;(11):7.
  14. Wang Ya Ping, et al. Journal of Pharmacology and Clinical Application of TCM. 1992;8(4):13-15, 29.
  15. Li Zi Cheng, et al. China Journal of Hospital Pharmacy. 1997;17(5):210-211.
  16. Huang Wen Zeng, et al. Journal of Clinical Application in Angiocardiopathy. 1999;15(2):70-71.
  17. Xia Xue Yan, et al. Journal of Chinese Materia Medica. 1999;30(2):112-115.
  18. Wang Jin, et al. Yunnan Journal of TCM and Chinese Drug. 1999;20(4):34-36.
  19. Lu Shi Jing, et al. China Journal of Experimental Clinical Immunology. 1997;9(5):61-63.
  20. Yan Xiao Hong, et al. Journal of Hubei Medical Univerisity. 1999;20(3):181-183, 193.
  21. Zhuang Xue Yan, et al. Journal of Integrated Medicine. 1991;11(6):360-361, 326.
  22. Zhang Duan Lian, et al. Journal of Chinese Materia Medica. 1997;28(3):156-158.
  23. Hu Hui Juan, et al. Journal of Traditional Chinese Medicine Material. 1993;16(1):39-40.
  24. Liao Wei Qing, et al. Journal of Chinese Materia Medica. 1999;30(4):273-275.