[MPWG] Fwd: Abstract accepted by Natural Products of Gordon Research Conference

Patricia_DeAngelis at fws.gov Patricia_DeAngelis at fws.gov
Tue May 31 15:18:45 CDT 2005

One of our members will be presenting at an upcoming conference...read on!

Patricia S. De Angelis, Ph.D.
Botanist - Division of Scientific Authority
Chair - Plant Conservation Alliance - Medicinal Plant Working Group
US Fish & Wildlife Service
4401 N. Fairfax Dr., Suite 750
Arlington, VA  22203
703-358-1708 x1753
FAX: 703-358-2276
Working for the conservation and sustainable use of our green natural

----- Forwarded by Patricia De Angelis/ARL/R9/FWS/DOI on 05/31/2005 04:12
PM -----

I am pleased to inform you that the abstract below has been accepted by the
2005 Natural Products of Gordon Research Conference.  The presentation will
take place in July 2005 at Tilton School, Tilton, NH.  I thought members of
MPWG might be interested.

Marjorie Nieh
<mintresearch at yahoo.com>

Abstract to 2005 Natural Products, Gordon Research Conference:

A Personal Anecdote with Spearmint (Mentha spicata) as Migraine Prophylaxis
Marjorie Nieh, Independent Scholar, Rensselaer, NY

The author’s serendipitous discovery revealed that the brewed tea of a
spearmint species (Mentha spicata, Lamiaceae) has successfully treated her
migraine headache attacks. This is a very easily prepared and inexpensive
remedy with no adverse side effect.  This remedy exceeds the efficacy of
large doses of riboflavin (vitaminB2), that has been reported as
prophylaxis for migraines, and that the author used it for over two years
before spearmint.

The major component in the spearmint is l-carvone or R-(-)-carvone (~70%)
in addition to nearly sixty minor components, many of which are terpenoids.

The known natural antimigraine remedies, e.g. feverfew (Tanacetum
partheniuim) and butterbur rhizomes (Petasites hybridus, Asteraceae)
contain sesquiterpene lactones and sesquiterpene esters, respectively.
Studies showed that they inhibit: blood platelet aggregation, release of
serotonin in addition altering the arachidonic acid pathway which decreases
the synthesis of the inflammatory chemical mediators, prostaglandins and

A most recent research study revealed that terpenoids of the
non-psychoactive cannabis, cannabidiol (CBD) and terpineol, modify the
serotonin-binding activity at the 5HT1a and 5HT2a receptor sites.  The
potential of CBD suggests an acutely active anti-migraine drug while that
of terpineol, putatively prophylactic.

The author proposes a possible correlation between the pharmacological
activities of sesquiterpenoids as found in feverfew, butterbur,
monoterpenoids as found in cannabis and of monoterpenoids as found in
spearmint.  She speculates that those terpenoids that are potential
migraine remedies might be stereospecific (levorotatory), which could be
lead targets for the development of anitmigraine drugs.  She further
promotes studies of spearmint tea as a safe and very low-cost natural
antimigraine remedy.

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