Open AccessMeeting Report
Report from the BIT’s 4th Annual World Congress of High-Tech Acupuncture and Integrative Medicine Held in Xi’an, China, 25–27 September 2017
Medicines 2017, 4(4), 76; doi:10.3390/medicines4040076 -
Abstract
High-tech acupuncture is an example of a very successful cross-over between tradition and innovation. “The Annual World Congress of High-Tech Acupuncture and Integrative Medicine” was successfully organized on four occasions, and attracted more than 800 participants from 55 countries [...]
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Open AccessReview
Ethnomedicinal, Phytochemical and Ethnopharmacological Aspects of Four Medicinal Plants of Malvaceae Used in Indian Traditional Medicines: A Review
Medicines 2017, 4(4), 75; doi:10.3390/medicines4040075 -
Abstract
The ethnomedicinal values of plants form the basis of the herbal drug industry. India has contributed its knowledge of traditional system medicines (Ayurveda and Siddha) to develop herbal medicines with negligible side effects. The World Health Organization has also recognized the benefits of
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The ethnomedicinal values of plants form the basis of the herbal drug industry. India has contributed its knowledge of traditional system medicines (Ayurveda and Siddha) to develop herbal medicines with negligible side effects. The World Health Organization has also recognized the benefits of drugs developed from natural products. Abutilon indicum, Hibiscus sabdariffa, Sida acuta and Sida rhombifolia are ethnomedicinal plants of Malvaceae, commonly used in Indian traditional system of medicines. Traditionally these plants were used in the form of extracts/powder/paste by tribal populations of India for treating common ailments like cough and cold, fever, stomach, kidney and liver disorders, pains, inflammations, wounds, etc. The present review is an overview of phytochemistry and ethnopharmacological studies that support many of the traditional ethnomedicinal uses of these plants. Many phytoconstituents have been isolated from the four ethnomedicinal plants and some of them have shown pharmacological activities that have been demonstrated by in vivo and/or in vitro experiments. Ethnomedicinal uses, supported by scientific evidences is essential for ensuring safe and effective utilization of herbal medicines. Full article
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Open AccessReview
Scientific Study of Gentiana kurroo Royle
Medicines 2017, 4(4), 74; doi:10.3390/medicines4040074 -
Abstract
The present investigation was carried out to review and highlight the potential phytochemicals and medicinal phenomena of the critically endangered medicinal plant, Gentiana kurroo Royle of the western and north-western Himalayas. The medicinal plant is heavily exploited for root and rhizome. Due to
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The present investigation was carried out to review and highlight the potential phytochemicals and medicinal phenomena of the critically endangered medicinal plant, Gentiana kurroo Royle of the western and north-western Himalayas. The medicinal plant is heavily exploited for root and rhizome. Due to its endemic nature and the high rate of exploitation from its natural habitat, this species had become critically endangered. The phytochemical screening of the plant revealed that the plant contains some vital phyto-constituents (iridoids, xanthones, C-glucoxanthone mangiferin, and C-glucoflavones) that have a medicinal value for various acute and chronic diseases. Several researchers have carried out experimental work to validate the folkloric use of the medicinal plant for different ailments like antibacterial, antioxidant, anti-arthritic, anti-inflammatory, analgesic activities and anti-diabetic activity. However, it is yet to be confirmed the antifungal activity of the same plant. Because of endemic nature and high rate of exploitation there is need for alternative method called bio-prospecting of Endophytes from the plant, to carry out the production and characterization of bioactive metabolites for pharmacological uses and can become a conservative tool for the medicinal plant. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Anti-Diabetic Potential of Ocimum gratissimum Leaf Fractions in Fortified Diet-Fed Streptozotocin Treated Rat Model of Type-2 Diabetes
Medicines 2017, 4(4), 73; doi:10.3390/medicines4040073 -
Abstract
Background: Ocimum gratissimum (OG) is used in the traditional management of diabetes in Nigeria. This study investigated the anti-diabetic potential of OG leaf fractions (OGLF) in a rat model of Type-2 diabetes (T2D). Method: Methanol crude extract of OG leaf was
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Background: Ocimum gratissimum (OG) is used in the traditional management of diabetes in Nigeria. This study investigated the anti-diabetic potential of OG leaf fractions (OGLF) in a rat model of Type-2 diabetes (T2D). Method: Methanol crude extract of OG leaf was fractionated with solvents of increasing order of polarity (n-hexane, chloroform, ethyl-acetate, n-butanol and water). The anti-diabetic potential of the fractions was evaluated in vivo. T2D was induced in Albino Wistar rats and treated with OGLF. Result: The T2D rats showed significant elevation in serum levels of fasting blood glucose (FBG), liver and kidney function biomarkers. At 4-weeks of intervention with OGLF, the untreated diabetic control group maintained severe hyperglycaemia in the presence of 61.7% serum insulin, 17.3% pancreatic β-cell function (HOMA-β) and 51.5% Insulin sensitivity. The glucose tolerance ability was enhanced in the n-butanol-fraction (OGb) treated group. With 74.8% available serum insulin and 38.6% improvement in insulin sensitivity, the OGb treated group had a 63.5% reduction in FBG and it was found to be most effective as it ameliorates a majority of the changes caused in the studied parameters in diabetic rats. Conclusions: The data from this study suggest that OGb fraction is a potential candidate for the development of an effective drug for the management of T2D. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Adapting Tai Chi for Upper Limb Rehabilitation Post Stroke: A Feasibility Study
Medicines 2017, 4(4), 72; doi:10.3390/medicines4040072 -
Abstract
Background: Tai chi (TC) has been reported as being beneficial for improving balance post stroke, yet its utility in upper limb rehabilitation remains unknown. Methods: Twelve chronic stroke survivors with persistent paresis of an upper limb underwent 60 minutes of adapted TC twice
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Background: Tai chi (TC) has been reported as being beneficial for improving balance post stroke, yet its utility in upper limb rehabilitation remains unknown. Methods: Twelve chronic stroke survivors with persistent paresis of an upper limb underwent 60 minutes of adapted TC twice a week for eight weeks, with a 4-week follow up. A 10-min TC home program was recommended for the days without sessions. TC level of performance, attendance to the sessions, duration of self-practice at home, and adapted TC movements used were recorded. Results: Eleven participants completed the study. A clinical reasoning algorithm underlying the adaptation of TC was elaborated throughout the trial. Participants with varying profiles including a severely impaired upper limb, poor balance, shoulder pain, and severe spasticity were not only capable of practicing the adapted TC, but attended all 16 sessions and practiced TC at home for a total of 16.51 ± 9.21 h. The degree of self-practice for subgroups with low upper limb function, shoulder pain, or moderate-to-severe spasticity was similar to that of subgroups with greater upper limb function, no shoulder pain, and minimal-to-no spasticity. Conclusion: Adapted TC seems feasible for upper limb rehabilitation post stroke. Although the study was based on a small sample size and requires confirmation, low upper limb function, insufficient balance, spasticity, and shoulder pain do not appear to hinder the practice of TC. Full article
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Open AccessReview
Qigong Exercise and Arthritis
Medicines 2017, 4(4), 71; doi:10.3390/medicines4040071 -
Abstract
Background: Arthritis is a chronic condition resulting in considerable disability, particularly in later life. Aims: The first aim of this review was to summarize and synthesize the research base concerning the use of Qigong exercises as a possible adjunctive strategy for promoting well-being
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Background: Arthritis is a chronic condition resulting in considerable disability, particularly in later life. Aims: The first aim of this review was to summarize and synthesize the research base concerning the use of Qigong exercises as a possible adjunctive strategy for promoting well-being among adults with arthritis. A second was to provide related intervention directives for health professionals working or who are likely to work with this population in the future. Methods: Material specifically focusing on examining the nature of Qigong for minimizing arthritis disability, pain and dependence and for improving life quality was sought. Results: Collectively, despite almost no attention to this topic, available data reveal that while more research is indicated, Qigong exercises—practiced widely in China for many centuries as an exercise form, mind-body and relaxation technique—may be very useful as an intervention strategy for adults with different forms of painful disabling arthritis. Conclusion: Health professionals working with people who have chronic arthritis can safely recommend these exercises to most adults with this condition with the expectation they will heighten the life quality of the individual, while reducing pain and depression in adults with this condition. Full article
Open AccessConcept Paper
Meditative Movement, Energetic, and Physical Analyses of Three Qigong Exercises: Unification of Eastern and Western Mechanistic Exercise Theory
Medicines 2017, 4(4), 69; doi:10.3390/medicines4040069 -
Abstract
Abstract: Qigong is the meditative movement and therapeutic exercise of Eastern medicine. A growing body of evidence is validating its health benefits leading to mechanistic questions of how it works. The purpose of this article is to explore mechanisms of action related
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Abstract: Qigong is the meditative movement and therapeutic exercise of Eastern medicine. A growing body of evidence is validating its health benefits leading to mechanistic questions of how it works. The purpose of this article is to explore mechanisms of action related to Qigong, with the intent of unifying Eastern and Western exercise theory and to present a model for Qigong exercise analysis. Three exercises from a standardized Qigong form: ‘Plucking the Stars’, ‘Lotus Leaves Rustle in the Wind’, and ‘Pacing Forwards and Backwards’ were selected for meditative, energetic, and physical analyses. Meditative aspects include relaxation response, interoception and exteroception. Energetic aspects include stimulation of meridians through mental intent, acupressure, and self-massage. Physical aspects include flexibility, strength, articular stimulation, neuro-integration, respiratory effect, fascial stretch, visceral massage, balance challenge CranioSacral pump, lymphatic and venous return and glandular stimulation, and physiologic response to relaxation. Knowledge of mechanisms of action for specific Qigong exercises can guide operational definition of Qigong, selection of outcomes assessment in future research, inform prescriptive practice addressing clinical health issues, and advance adoption of Qigong practice within integrative health care. The model of analysis demonstrated in this discussion may assist in these endeavors. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Chemical Composition, Enantiomeric Distribution, and Antifungal Activity of the Oleoresin Essential Oil of Protium amazonicum from Ecuador
Medicines 2017, 4(4), 70; doi:10.3390/medicines4040070 -
Abstract
Background:Protium species (Burseraceae) have been used in the treatment of various diseases and conditions such as ulcers and wounds. Methods: The essential oil from the oleoresin of Protium amazonicum was obtained by hydrodistillation and analyzed by GC-MS, GC-FID, and chiral GC-MS. P.
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Background:Protium species (Burseraceae) have been used in the treatment of various diseases and conditions such as ulcers and wounds. Methods: The essential oil from the oleoresin of Protium amazonicum was obtained by hydrodistillation and analyzed by GC-MS, GC-FID, and chiral GC-MS. P. amazonicum oleoresin oil was screened for antifungal activity against Candida albicans, Aspergillus niger, and Cryptococcus neoformans. Results: A total of 54 components representing 99.6% of the composition were identified in the oil. The essential oil was dominated by δ-3-carene (47.9%) with lesser quantities of other monoterpenoids α-pinene (4.0%), p-cymene (4.1%), limonene (5.1%), α-terpineol (5.5%) and p-cymen-8-ol (4.8%). Chiral GC-MS revealed most of the monoterpenoids to have a majority of levo enantiomers present with the exceptions of limonene and α-terpineol, which showed a dextro majority. P. amazonicum oleoresin oil showed promising activity against Cryptococcus neoformans, with MIC = 156 μg/mL. Conclusions: This account is the first reporting of both the chemical composition and enantiomeric distribution of the oleoresin essential oil of P. amazonicum from Ecuador. The oil was dominated by (−)-δ-3-carene, and this compound, along with other monoterpenoids, likely accounts for the observed antifungal activity of the oil. Full article
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Open AccessReview
Esophageal Cancer: Genomic and Molecular Characterization, Stem Cell Compartment and Clonal Evolution
Medicines 2017, 4(3), 67; doi:10.3390/medicines4030067 -
Abstract
Esophageal cancer (EC) is the eighth most common cancer and is the sixth leading cause of death worldwide. The incidence of histologic subtypes of EC, esophageal adenocarcinoma (EAC) and esophageal squamous carcinoma (ESCC), display considerable geographic variation. EAC arises from metaplastic Barrett’s esophagus
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Esophageal cancer (EC) is the eighth most common cancer and is the sixth leading cause of death worldwide. The incidence of histologic subtypes of EC, esophageal adenocarcinoma (EAC) and esophageal squamous carcinoma (ESCC), display considerable geographic variation. EAC arises from metaplastic Barrett’s esophagus (BE) in the context of chronic inflammation secondary to exposure to acid and bile. The main risk factors for developing ESCC are cigarette smoking and alcohol consumption. The main somatic genetic abnormalities showed a different genetic landscape in EAC compared to ESCC. EAC is a heterogeneous cancer dominated by copy number alterations, a high mutational burden, co-amplification of receptor tyrosine kinase, frequent TP53 mutations. The cellular origins of BE and EAC are still not understood: animal models supported a cellular origin either from stem cells located in the basal layer of esophageal epithelium or from progenitors present in the cardia region. Many studies support the existence of cancer stem cells (CSCs) able to initiate and maintain EAC or ESCC. The exact identification of these CSCs, as well as their role in the pathogenesis of EAC and ESCC remain still to be demonstrated. The reviewed studies suggest that current molecular and cellular characterization of EAC and ESCC should serve as background for development of new treatment strategies. Full article
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Open AccessReview
The Genus Artemisia: a 2012–2017 Literature Review on Chemical Composition, Antimicrobial, Insecticidal and Antioxidant Activities of Essential Oils
Medicines 2017, 4(3), 68; doi:10.3390/medicines4030068 -
Abstract
Essential oils of aromatic and medicinal plants generally have a diverse range of activities because they possess several active constituents that work through several modes of action. The genus Artemisia includes the largest genus of family Asteraceae has several medicinal uses in human
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Essential oils of aromatic and medicinal plants generally have a diverse range of activities because they possess several active constituents that work through several modes of action. The genus Artemisia includes the largest genus of family Asteraceae has several medicinal uses in human and plant diseases aliments. Extensive investigations on essential oil composition, antimicrobial, insecticidal and antioxidant studies have been conducted for various species of this genus. In this review, we have compiled data of recent literature (2012–2017) on essential oil composition, antimicrobial, insecticidal and antioxidant activities of different species of the genus Artemisia. Regarding the antimicrobial and insecticidal properties we have only described here efficacy of essential oils against plant pathogens and insect pests. The literature revealed that 1, 8-cineole, beta-pinene, thujone, artemisia ketone, camphor, caryophyllene, camphene and germacrene D are the major components in most of the essential oils of this plant species. Oils from different species of genus Artemisia exhibited strong antimicrobial activity against plant pathogens and insecticidal activity against insect pests. However, only few species have been explored for antioxidant activity. Full article
Open AccessArticle
Chemical Composition and Monoterpenoid Enantiomeric Distribution of the Essential Oils from Apharsemon (Commiphora gileadensis)
Medicines 2017, 4(3), 66; doi:10.3390/medicines4030066 -
Abstract
Background:Commiphora gileadensis (Hebrew: apharsemon) has been used since Biblical times to treat various ailments, and is used today in the traditional medicine of some Middle Eastern cultures. Methods: The essential oils from the stem bark, leaves, and fruits of Commiphora gileadensis—collected
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Background:Commiphora gileadensis (Hebrew: apharsemon) has been used since Biblical times to treat various ailments, and is used today in the traditional medicine of some Middle Eastern cultures. Methods: The essential oils from the stem bark, leaves, and fruits of Commiphora gileadensis—collected at the Ein Gedi Botanical Garden, Israel—were obtained by hydrodistillation and analyzed by gas chromatography–mass spectrometry. In addition, the enantiomeric distributions of the monoterpenoids in the essential oils have been determined by chiral gas chromatography. Results: The essential oils were dominated by monoterpene hydrocarbons, followed by oxygenated monoterpenoids. The major components in C. gileadensis oils were the monoterpenes α-pinene (11.1–18.4%), sabinene (15.8–35.9%), β-pinene (5.8–18.0%), p-cymene (4.8–8.4%), limonene (1.3–6.2%), γ-terpinene (0.7–8.1%), and terpinen-4-ol (5.3–18.5%). The (–)-enantiomers predominated for α-pinene, sabinene, β-pinene, limonene, and terpinen-4-ol. Conclusions: The chemical compositions of the C. gileadensis essential oils from Israel are markedly different from previously reported samples, which were rich in sesquiterpenoids. Likewise, the enantiomeric distribution of monoterpenoids is very different from Boswellia spp. essential oils. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Comparative Evaluation of Oxidative Stress Modulating and DNA Protective Activities of Aqueous and Methanolic Extracts of Acacia catechu
Medicines 2017, 4(3), 65; doi:10.3390/medicines4030065 -
Abstract
Background: Plant-derived bioactive compounds are becoming immensely important as potential drugs. Different solvents are being used for extraction of these phytochemicals. Evaluation of biological activities of aqueous plant extracts is important as water soluble compounds would be more beneficial with respect to certification,
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Background: Plant-derived bioactive compounds are becoming immensely important as potential drugs. Different solvents are being used for extraction of these phytochemicals. Evaluation of biological activities of aqueous plant extracts is important as water soluble compounds would be more beneficial with respect to certification, safety and commercial issues. Oxidative stress is involved in development of many diseases; therefore, antioxidants are now being looked upon as convincing therapeutics against such diseases. Natural antioxidants are in high demand because of their lesser side effects. This study aims to compare the antioxidant activity of aqueous and methanolic extracts of Acacia catechu—a traditional medicinal plant. Methods: The activity was examined using different in vitro systems including radical scavenging activity, lipid peroxidation and inhibition of OH radical induced DNA damage using standard protocols. Results: Both aqueous and methanolic extracts of Acacia catechu show significant activities with no differences in the efficacies of water and methanol soluble bioactive compounds. Conclusions: Present study revealed that aqueous extract of A. catechu has equal potential to be used as antioxidants as compared to methanolic extract. This can contribute to increased demand of physiologically compatible bioactive compounds of natural origin. Full article
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Open AccessReview
Literature Review of Research on Chronic Pain and Yoga in Military Populations
Medicines 2017, 4(3), 64; doi:10.3390/medicines4030064 -
Abstract
Background: Although yoga is increasingly being provided to active duty soldiers and veterans, studies with military populations are limited and effects on chronic pain are largely unknown. We reviewed the existing body of literature and provide recommendations for future research. Methods: We conducted
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Background: Although yoga is increasingly being provided to active duty soldiers and veterans, studies with military populations are limited and effects on chronic pain are largely unknown. We reviewed the existing body of literature and provide recommendations for future research. Methods: We conducted a literature review of electronic databases (PubMed, PsychINFO, Web of Science, Science Citation Index Expanded, Social Sciences Citation Index, Conference Proceedings Citation Index—Science, and Conference Proceedings Citation Index—Social Science & Humanities). The studies were reviewed for characteristics such as mean age of participants, sample size, yoga type, and study design. Only peer-reviewed studies were included in the review. Results: The search yielded only six studies that examined pain as an outcome of yoga for military populations. With one exception, studies were with veteran populations. Only one study was conducted with Operation Enduring Freedom (OEF) or Operation Iraqi Freedom (OIF) veterans. One study was a randomized controlled trial (RCT). Four of the five studies remaining used pre/post design, while the last study used a post-only design. Conclusions: Studies on the use of yoga to treat chronic pain in military populations are in their infancy. Methodological weaknesses include small sample sizes, a lack of studies with key groups (active duty, OEF/IEF veterans), and use of single group uncontrolled designs (pre/post; post only) for all but one study. Future research is needed to address these methodological limitations and build on this small body of literature. Full article
Open AccessReview
Biological Activities of Three Essential Oils of the Lamiaceae Family
Medicines 2017, 4(3), 63; doi:10.3390/medicines4030063 -
Abstract
Herbs and spices have been used since ancient times to improve the sensory characteristics of food, to act as preservatives and for their nutritional and healthy properties. Herbs and spices are generally recognized as safe (GRAS) and are excellent substitutes for chemical additives.
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Herbs and spices have been used since ancient times to improve the sensory characteristics of food, to act as preservatives and for their nutritional and healthy properties. Herbs and spices are generally recognized as safe (GRAS) and are excellent substitutes for chemical additives. Essential oils are mixtures of volatile compounds obtained, mainly by steam distillation, from medicinal and aromatic plants. They are an alternative to synthetic additives for the food industry, and they have gained attention as potential sources for natural food preservatives due to the growing interest in the development of safe, effective, natural food preservation. Lamiaceae is one of the most important families in the production of essential oils with antioxidants and antimicrobial properties. Aromatic plants are rich in essential oils and are mainly found in the Mediterranean region, where the production of such oils is a profitable source of ecological and economic development. The use of essential oils with antimicrobial and antioxidant properties to increase the shelf life of food is a promising technology, and the essential oils of the Lamiaceae family, such as rosemary, thyme, and sage, have been extensively studied with respect to their use as food preservatives. Regarding the new applications of essential oils, this review gives an overview of the current knowledge and recent trends in the use of these oils from aromatic plants as antimicrobials and antioxidants in foods, as well as their biological activities, future potential, and challenges. Full article
Open AccessArticle
Essential Oil of Cymbopogon citratus on the Control of the Curvularia Leaf Spot Disease on Maize
Medicines 2017, 4(3), 62; doi:10.3390/medicines4030062 -
Abstract
The Curvularia Leaf Spot is becoming more common due to the culture expansion and the low resistance of the cultivated genotypes in tropical regions. Thus, the objective was to evaluate the fungitoxicity of the essential oil of Cymbopogon citratus upon the phytopathogen Curvularia
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The Curvularia Leaf Spot is becoming more common due to the culture expansion and the low resistance of the cultivated genotypes in tropical regions. Thus, the objective was to evaluate the fungitoxicity of the essential oil of Cymbopogon citratus upon the phytopathogen Curvularia lunata, causative agent of the Curvularia Leaf Spot. There was realized pathogenicity tests of C. lunata in maize plants, phytotoxicity of the essential oil of C. citratus and gas chromatography attached, germination tests of the conidia, and of in vitro inhibition of C. lunata. Also, there were realized tests aiming at verifying the phytopathogen control in vivo. In the pathogenicity tests, there were verified symptoms of the disease in all of the suspensions tested on plants. It was observed that the essential oil concentrations of 7.5 µL mL−1 to 50 µL mL−1 were phytotoxic. The majoritarian chemical components of the essential oil of C. citratus were Geranial (41.46%) and Neral (32.43%). The concentrations of 5 and 7.5 µL mL−1 inhibited 100% of conidia germination. None of the concentrations evaluated effectively inhibited C. lunata mycelial growth in in vitro tests. In the preventive control, the concentration of 7.5 µL mL−1 was sufficient for the reduction of the progress of the disease, however the curative control was not efficient on the tested dosages. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Anti-Aging and Antioxidant Potential of Paullinia cupana var. sorbilis: Findings in Caenorhabditis elegans Indicate a New Utilization for Roasted Seeds of Guarana
Medicines 2017, 4(3), 61; doi:10.3390/medicines4030061 -
Abstract
Background: Roasted seeds of Amazonian guarana (Paullinia cupana var. sorbilis; Sapindaceae) are popular in South America due to their stimulant activity on the central nervous system (CNS). Rich in purine alkaloids, markedly caffeine, the seeds are extensively used in the Brazilian beverage
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Background: Roasted seeds of Amazonian guarana (Paullinia cupana var. sorbilis; Sapindaceae) are popular in South America due to their stimulant activity on the central nervous system (CNS). Rich in purine alkaloids, markedly caffeine, the seeds are extensively used in the Brazilian beverage industry for the preparation of soft drinks and as additives in energy drinks. Methods: To investigate the putative anti-aging and antioxidant activity of guarana, we used the model organism Caenorhabditis elegans. Chemical analyses were performed using high-performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) and electrospray ionization-mass spectrometry (ESI-MS/MS). Results: When tested in the model system Caenorhabditis elegans, the water extract from roasted guarana seeds enhanced resistance against oxidative stress, extended lifespan and attenuated aging markers such as muscle function decline and polyQ40 aggregation. Conclusions: In the current study, we demonstrate that guarana extracts can work as a powerful antioxidant in vivo; moreover, guarana extracts exhibit anti-aging properties. Our results suggest that the biological activities of guarana go beyond the extensively reported CNS stimulation. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
The Efficiency of Noni (Morinda citrifolia L.) Essential Oil on the Control of Leaf Spot Caused by Exserohilum turcicum in Maize Culture
Medicines 2017, 4(3), 60; doi:10.3390/medicines4030060 -
Abstract
The objective of this work was to evaluate the efficiency of noni essential oil on the control of Exserohilum turcicum, a causative agent of Exserohilum spot in maize culture. In the sanitary test 400 seeds were incubated using the blotter test method.
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The objective of this work was to evaluate the efficiency of noni essential oil on the control of Exserohilum turcicum, a causative agent of Exserohilum spot in maize culture. In the sanitary test 400 seeds were incubated using the blotter test method. For the transmissibility test, the fragments of damaged leaves of seedlings were removed and put into a potato, dextrose and agar (PDA) culture environment. To verify the pathogenicity, Koch´s postulates were performed. In the phytotoxicity test different concentrations of noni oil were applied in maize seedlings. E. turcicum conidia were submitted to different concentrations of noni oil. In the preventive and curative tests noni essential oils were applied before and after the conidia inoculation, respectively. The results revealed the presence of fungi of the genres Aspergillus, Penicillium, Rhizopus, Fusarium, and Exserohilum in the maize seeds. The pathogenicity of E. turcicum and also the transmission of this fungus from the seeds to the maize seedlings was confirmed. The inhibition of conidia germination was proportional to the concentration increase. The preventive application of noni essential oil was the most efficient on the control of Exserohilum spot. Full article
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Open AccessReview
Qigong Exercises for the Management of Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus
Medicines 2017, 4(3), 59; doi:10.3390/medicines4030059 -
Abstract
Background: The purpose of this article is to clarify and define medical qigong and to identify an appropriate study design and methodology for a large-scale study looking at the effects of qigong in patients with type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM), specifically subject enrollment
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Background: The purpose of this article is to clarify and define medical qigong and to identify an appropriate study design and methodology for a large-scale study looking at the effects of qigong in patients with type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM), specifically subject enrollment criteria, selection of the control group and study duration. Methods: A comprehensive literature review of English databases was used to locate articles from 1980–May 2017 involving qigong and T2DM. Control groups, subject criteria and the results of major diabetic markers were reviewed and compared within each study. Definitions of qigong and its differentiation from physical exercise were also considered. Results: After a thorough review, it was found that qigong shows positive effects on T2DM; however, there were inconsistencies in control groups, research subjects and diabetic markers analyzed. It was also discovered that there is a large variation in styles and definitions of qigong. Conclusions: Qigong exercise has shown promising results in clinical experience and in randomized, controlled pilot studies for affecting aspects of T2DM including blood glucose, triglycerides, total cholesterol, weight, BMI and insulin resistance. Due to the inconsistencies in study design and methods and the lack of large-scale studies, further well-designed randomized control trials (RCT) are needed to evaluate the ‘vital energy’ or qi aspect of internal medical qigong in people who have been diagnosed with T2DM. Full article
Open AccessReview
Antimicrobial Activity of Some Essential Oils—Present Status and Future Perspectives
Medicines 2017, 4(3), 58; doi:10.3390/medicines4030058 -
Abstract
Extensive documentation on the antimicrobial properties of essential oils and their constituents has been carried out by several workers. Although the mechanism of action of a few essential oil components has been elucidated in many pioneering works in the past, detailed knowledge of
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Extensive documentation on the antimicrobial properties of essential oils and their constituents has been carried out by several workers. Although the mechanism of action of a few essential oil components has been elucidated in many pioneering works in the past, detailed knowledge of most of the compounds and their mechanism of action is still lacking. This knowledge is particularly important for the determination of the effect of essential oils on different microorganisms, how they work in combination with other antimicrobial compounds, and their interaction with food matrix components. Also, recent studies have demonstrated that nanoparticles (NPs) functionalized with essential oils have significant antimicrobial potential against multidrug- resistant pathogens due to an increase in chemical stability and solubility, decreased rapid evaporation and minimized degradation of active essential oil components. The application of encapsulated essential oils also supports their controlled and sustained release, which enhances their bioavailability and efficacy against multidrug-resistant pathogens. In the recent years, due to increasingly negative consumer perceptions of synthetic preservatives, interest in essential oils and their application in food preservation has been amplified. Moreover, the development of resistance to different antimicrobial agents by bacteria, fungi, viruses, parasites, etc. is a great challenge to the medical field for treating the infections caused by them, and hence, there is a pressing need to look for new and novel antimicrobials. To overcome these problems, nano-encapsulation of essential oils and exploiting the synergies between essential oils, constituents of essential oils, and antibiotics along with essential oils have been recommended as an answer to this problem. However, less is known about the interactions that lead to additive, synergistic, or antagonistic effects. A contributing role of this knowledge could be the design of new and more potent antimicrobial blends, and understanding of the interplay between the components of crude essential oils. This review is written with the purpose of giving an overview of current knowledge about the antimicrobial properties of essential oils and their mechanisms of action, components of essential oils, nano-encapsulated essential oils, and synergistic combinations of essential oils so as to find research areas that can facilitate applications of essential oils to overcome the problem of multidrug-resistant micro-organisms. Full article
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Open AccessDiscussion
A Reassessment of the Marrubium Vulgare L. Herb’s Potential Role in Diabetes Mellitus Type 2: First Results Guide the Investigation toward New Horizons
Medicines 2017, 4(3), 57; doi:10.3390/medicines4030057 -
Abstract
Despite the wide variety of pharmacological activities described for the Marrubium vulgare L. herb, amazingly, only one clinical trial can be found in scientific literature. It was designed for the evaluation of its antidiabetic activity. Worse, the outcomes of this trial were contradictory
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Despite the wide variety of pharmacological activities described for the Marrubium vulgare L. herb, amazingly, only one clinical trial can be found in scientific literature. It was designed for the evaluation of its antidiabetic activity. Worse, the outcomes of this trial were contradictory to what previous in vivo mice assays had concluded. Therefore, should Marrubium vulgare be ruled out due to its lack of therapeutic potential in diabetes? The authors suggest a reevaluation of the clinical trial methodology to establish valid and final results. Full article
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