Artemisia belongs to angiosperms dicotyledons, in the family Asteraceae (Compositae).
There are many subspecies and the most famous is the Artemisia annua L. is a plant of Asia and the Artemisia arborescens L. is a plant of Crete.
He’s like a fern perennial shrub with bright yellow flowers, and smell of camphor.
In Crete Artemisia Pisidia called wormwood, Artemisia arborescens L. is perennial shrub aromatic, bitter, covered with asimolefko cloth. Stems are 50-100 cm. Leaves lobed pterolova close, strogyllemenous aside. Roundish heads 6-7 mm. Forming large tuberose foves.
Artemisia living at low altitude, at the edges of roads and in fallow fields.
Therapeutic uses of Artemisia
In traditional Chinese medicine, the Artemisia annua is an herb traditionally used as disease treatment. It was produced as a semisynthetic antimalarial drug. The proposed mechanism of action of artemisinin comprising the cleavage of the bridges endoperoxide iron, producing free radicals which cause oxidative stress in the parasite cells. Malaria caused by Plasmodium falciparum (main), residing largely in red blood cells containing iron heme.
Artemisia in cancer treatment
The artemisinin reacts with iron to form free radicals that kill cells. Since cancer cells take up more iron than normal cells, they are more sensitive to the toxic effect of artemisinin. They are covalently attached to the artemisinin iron carrying the glycoprotein of the plasma transferrin. The study found that holotransferrin – tagged artemisinin, are very potent and selective in the killing of cancer cells. It has been shown to reduce angiogenesis and expression of vascular endothelial growth factor in some tissue cultures. Thus, an effective treatment of cancer.
The study of scientists published in the journal Life Sciences, and is highly encouraging for the battle against cancer. Initially scientists granted artemisinin from the wormwood and found that there was a reduction of tumor cells by 30%. Then treatment was combined with iron and the results were dramatic. 98% of tumor cells had disappeared within 16 hours and most importantly, healthy cells were not affected at all.
The healing properties of wormwood is recently known. In ancient Greece used it widely, and has also been used against malaria in depression and menstruation (to normalize). It is also used to combat diabetes.
By distillation of the leaves and flowers collected an anthelmintic oil tonic, diaphoretic, antiseptic, antipyretic and anti-cancer.