Chinese Herbs for treating Cold Sores (Herpes Simplex)
23 April 2008
(1) Scientists may have successfully extracted a powerful drug for cold sores from a traditional Chinese herb, it was announced today. The herb, Prunella vulgaris (Xia Ku Cao/Self-heal spike), is found around the world in China, Europe, Britain and North America. Traditional herbalists have long used it to treat sores and lumps in the mouth and throat - as well as for treating blood pressure and painful eyes. Now tests have shown it can treat the cold sore virus, herpes simplex. Speaking to a conference of the American Society for Microbiology in Washington DC, USA, researchers said that animals treated with a cream made with a compound extracted from the plant showed a "significant" reduction in the number of herpes sores. Acyclovir is currently the main anti-herpes drug but many strains are now becoming resistant to it. The extract from the herb works differently to acyclovir and so could become a powerful new anti-herpes drug. (American Society for Microbiology Press Release 19 May 2003)
(2) Chinese Herbs combined with Acyclovir
The combination of various Chinese herbs with proven antiherpes simplex virus type 1 (HSV-1) action combined with acyclovir has been found to have a stronger anti-HSV-1 action than either the herbs or acyclovir alone. They reduced virus yields in the brain and skin more strongly than acyclovir alone, and exhibited stronger anti-HSV-1 activity in the brain than in the skin, in contrast to acyclovir treatment by itself. (Antiviral Research.1995;27(1-2):19-37).