Artemisia californica, California sagebrush, has been reported to have pain relieving activity and is a traditional medicine of the Chumash Indians of California. Pain relieving activity of a traditional sagebrush preparation was examined in patients suffering from arthritis and other pain. The preparation was examined by gas chromatography-mass spectrometry (GC-MS) and high performance liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry(HPLC-MS) to identify the compounds present. A traditional tincture of sagebrush was produced and used on 42 patients with moderate to severe pain. All patients reported pain relief within 10 to 20 min. Sagebrush was examined by GC-MS and HPLC-MS and was found to contain monoterpenoids, lipids, flavonoids and sesquiterpenes. The major monoterpenoid found is eucalyptol. Of the monoterpenoids, camphor and eucalyptol have reported pain relieving activity. They interact with transient receptor potential cation channel vanilloid 3 (TRPV3), transient receptor potential ankyrin-repeat 1 (TRPA1) and transient receptor potential melastatin 8 (TRPM8) receptors to produce pain relief that lasts for several hours.
Key words: California sagebrush, Artemisia californica, Asteraceae, pain relief, anti-inflammatory, arthritis, transient receptor potential cation channels, transient receptor potential melastatin 8 (TRPM8), transient receptor potential ankyrin-repeat 1 (TRPA1), transient receptor potential cation channel vanilloid 3 (TRPV3).
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