It is important to clarify about a safety controversy surrounding Stephania tetrandra. This herb was given the Chinese pin yin name of “fang ji”. Pin yin is a widely-used system of attributing Romanized translations to Mandarin Chinese terms as a tool to simplify pronunciation. This can cause confusion because herbal ingredients are commonly traded using their Chinese pin yin names, and the same pin yin name is shared by another herb called Aristolochia fangchi. Aristolchia fangchi contains a dangerous substance called aristolchic acid that has adverse effects on humans. In 1992, a group of Belgian patients participated in a slimming regimen that involved taking a powdered mixture of Chinese herbs. Stephania tetrandra was known to be useful in weight reduction programs and the mixture was labeled as containing it.* Unfortunately, many of the dieters developed renal failure. The formula was later analyzed and it was proven that Aristolchia fangchi had been used instead of Stephania tetrandra. There are no known adverse effects associated with Stephania tetrandra, and BioPure’s product contains no aristolchic acid.
Tetrandrine is a major bioactive alkaloid obtained from the tuberous root of the Stephaniaplant. Tetrandrine has potent inflammation modulating properties and can be useful for relaxing sore, tight muscles.* Mechanisms for this are complex and appear to involve interference with several inflammatory pathways, as well as inhibition of immune effector T-cells. Close inspection of the chemical activity of tetrandrine shows that it also acts as a calcium channel blocker, and in this way relaxes the muscular walls of blood vessels.* Tetrandrine has been useful for people with respiratory system concerns due to its action on inhibiting the contraction of pulmonary vessels and airways.
Some research suggests that using whole root extract, containing the complete spectrum of bioactives present in the root, instead of isolated tetrandrine, can provide a superior synergistic effect. Unlike tetrandrine alone, whole root extract of S. tetrandra doesn’t slow down heart rate while still offering benefits and support for optimal heart health.*
Another well-known bioactive in Stephania is fangchinoline. Fangchinoline has shown neuroprotective activity along with other effects on different structures of the body.*
*These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.
Choi HS1, Kim HS, Min KR, Kim Y, Lim HK, Chang YK, Chung MW.. Anti-inflammatory effects of fangchinoline and tetrandrine. J Ethnopharmacol. 2000 Feb;69(2):173-9.
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK326609/ Some Traditional Herbal Medicines, Some Mycotoxins, Naphthalene and Styrene. Lyon (FR): International Agency for Research on Cancer; 2002. (IARC Monographs on the Evaluation of Carcinogenic Risks to Humans, No. 82.) B, Aristolochia species and aristolochic acids.
Joshi VC, Avula B & Khan IA. Authentication of Stephania tetrandra S. Moore (Fang Ji) and differentiation of its common adulterants using microscopy and HPLC analysis. J Nat Med (2008) 62: 117.
Kang HS, Kim YH, Lee CS, Lee JJ, Choi I, Pyun KH. Anti-inflammatory effects of Stephania tetrandra S. Moore on interleukin-6 production and experimental inflammatory disease models. Mediators of Inflammation 5, 280-291 (1996).
Lai JH. Immunomodulatory effects and mechanisms of plant alkaloid tetrandrine in autoimmune diseases. Acta Pharmacol Sin. 2002 Dec; 23 (12): 1093-1101.
Lin YC, Chang CW, Wu CR. Anti-nociceptive, anti-inflammatory and toxicological evaluation of Fang-Ji-Huang-Qi-Tang in rodents. BMC Complementary and Alternative Medicine (2015) 15:10.
Liu T, Liu X, Li W. Tetrandrine, a Chinese plant-derived alkaloid, is a potential candidate for cancer chemotherapy. Oncotarget. 2016 Jun 28;7(26):40800-40815.
Lv Q, Zhu XY, Xia YF, Dai Y, Wei ZF. Tetrandrine inhibits migration and invasion of rheumatoid arthritis fibroblast-like synoviocytes through down-regulating the expressions of Rac1, Cdc42, and RhoA GTPases and activation of the PI3K/Akt and JNK signaling pathways. Chin J Nat Med. 2015 Nov;13(11):831-41.
Semwal DK, Badoni R, Semwal R, Kothiyal SK, Singh GJP, Rawat U. The genus Stephania (Menispermaceae): Chemical and pharmacological perspectives. Journal of Ethnopharmacology 132 (2010) 369-383.
Shen YC, Chou CJ, Chiou WF and Chen CF. Anti-Inflammatory Effects of the Partially Purified Extract of Radix Stephaniae tetrandrae: Comparative Studies of Its Active Principles Tetrandrine and Fangchinoline on Human Polymorphonuclear Leukocyte Functions. Molecular Pharmacology. November 1, 2001 vol. 60 no. 5 1083-1090.
Tian F, Ding D, Li D. Fangchinoline targets PI3K and suppresses PI3K/AKT signaling pathway in SGC7901 cells. Int J Oncol. 2015 Jun; 46(6): 2355–2363.
Wan Z, Lu Y, Liao Q, Wu Y, Chen X (2012) Fangchinoline Inhibits Human Immunodeficiency Virus Type 1 Replication by Interfering with gp160 Proteolytic Processing. PLOS ONE. Vol 7(Issue 6): e39225.
Wang CD, Yuan CF, Bu YQ, Wu XM, Wan JY, Zhang L, Hu N, Liu XJ, Zu Y, Liu GL, Song FZ. Fangchinoline inhibits cell proliferation via Akt/GSK-3beta/ cyclin D1 signaling and induces apoptosis in MDA-MB-231 breast cancer cells. Asian Pac J Cancer Prev. 2014;15(2):769-73.
Wong TM, Wu S, Yu XC, Li HY. Cardiovascular actions of Radix Stephaniae Tetrandrae: a comparison with its main component, tetrandrine. Acta Pharmacologica Sinica [2000, 21(12): 1083-1088].
Xie QM, Tang HF, Chen JQ, Bian RL. Pharmacological actions of tetrandrine in inflammatory pulmonary diseases. Acta Pharmacol Sin. 2002 Dec;23(12):1107-13.
- Intended for internal or external use.†
Servings per Container
- 60 (serving size is about 20 drops)
A proprietary blend of Stephania (root), organic ethanol (33%) and purified water.
We obtain raw ingredients and materials from ethical and reliable suppliers worldwide. We use organic, gluten-free alcohol made from corn that has not been genetically engineered, and we use state-of-the art USP purified water systems for all dilutions involving water.