Scientific name: Galium aparine
Common name: Cleavers
- Polyphenolic acids (caffeic, gallic, chlorogenic, cinnamic, p-coumaric, salicylic & citric)
- Iridoid glycosides (asperuloside)
- Tannins (gallotannic acid)
- Flavonoids (Quercetin & luteolin)
- Volatile oils (palmitic acid, hexadecanoic)
- Vitamin C, B5 & B6
- Lymphatic tonic
- Traditionally used in folk medicine for anti-cancer, antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, antimicrobial and cardioprotective effects.
- A classic alterative used internally or topically for inflammatory skin disorders, minor injuries and conditions such as eczema and psoriasis, and is a soothing and relaxing diuretic & demulcent to the urinary tract, giving it indication in cystitis, urethritis, prostatitis, pyelonephritis, and edema of kidney origin.
- Specifically used to increase lymphatic drainage & breaks up lymphatic congestion (enlarged lymph nodes) especially in the pelvis and urinary tract, and is considered a lymphatic tonic thought to clear away damp-heat, eliminate stasis and detoxify the body. Can be used in cases of lymph swellings, fever turbid urine, hematuria, traumatic injury, acute appendicitis, otitis media, etc.
- In Traditional Chinese medicine is prescribed for treatment of cancer to suppress tumor cells and in leukemia.
Evidence Based Use:
- No clinical trials in humans have been conducted.
- Demonstrate anti-proliferative effects on leukemia cells, breast cancer, laryngeal carcinoma and head and neck cancer cell lines in vitro.
- Aqueous extracts demonstrated good antioxidant activity in oxidative stress in vitro.
Mechanism of Action & Pharmacology:
- Very little known.
- Iridoid glycosides including asperuloside are considered mildly laxative & purgative.
- Infusion: 1-2 tsp/cup, steep 10 min, 1-2 cups TID.
- Tincture: (1:5, 25%), 4-10 ml TID. 200 ml weekly max.
- Fresh juice: 3-15 ml, TID.
- Poultice, skin wash as needed.
Safety & Toxicity Concerns:
- None known.
- None reported