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Licorice Roots Extract

Introduction

Function

Anti-inflammatory functions

Licorice as a treatment for canker sores

Anti-viral effects

Advantage

Applications

Food & Human Nutrition

Cosmetic & Personal Care

Pharmaceutical

Animal Nutrition

Specification

Anti-inflammatory functions

While it has been known for over 2000 years that licorice root (Glycyrrhiza) extract (GX) promotes the healing of ulcers of the stomach and mouth the first scientific explanations for this began with studies in the 1950’s. It was these studies that showed that glycyrrhetinic acid in GX has an anti-inflammatory effect acting like a glucocortricoid and a mineralcorticoid.

These research efforts were exploring potential treatments for stomach ulcers and lead to the development of the glycyrrhetinic acid analog carbenoxolone (Biogastrone,). Carbenoxolone was shown to impact prostaglandin levels by inhibiting two enzymes, 15-hydroxyprostaglandin dehydrogenase and ∆ 13 -prostaglandin, that are important in metabolism of prostaglandin.

Prostaglandins promote healing of ulcers by stimulating mucous secretion and cell proliferation. Its use as one of the primary treatment approaches to stomach ulcers declined after the introduction of cimetidine (Tagamet) even though a number of studies showed it to be as effective.

More recent research has found that the molecule that gives GX its sweet flavor, glycyrrhizic acid, a glycosylated triterpene, and its aglycone, glycyrrhetinic acid, function to inhibit the enzyme 11βOHSD that converts hydrocortisone to cortisone and thereby increases the local glucocorticoid concentration.

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