|Title||In vitro effects of rhaponticin from the cree medicinal plant, larix laricina, on the metabolism of the antidiabetic drug gliclazide|
|Year of Publication||2012|
|Authors||Smiley S, Alkhani D, Liu R, Guerrero-Analco JA, Saleem A, Arnason JT, Haddad PS, Foster BC|
Diabetes is a major health concern for Canadian aboriginal populations, such as the Cree of Eeyou Istchee (CEI) who inhabit the James Bay area in northern Quebec. Western antidiabetes drugs are used to treat this disease. However, the Cree also possess knowledge of traditional healing methods and often use medicinal plants together with the conventional pharmaceuticals. The Canadian Institutes for Health Research Team in Aboriginal Antidiabetic Medicines (CIHR-TAAM), has demonstrated that many of these Cree plants have effectiveness in diabetes assays2. One prominent Cree medicinal plant is the tamarack larch tree (Larix laricina), known in Cree as Watnagan. It has been reported as a traditional medicine across Canada to treat many conditions, including jaundice, asthma, tuberculosis, and is ranked as one of the most important medicines for the treatment of diabetic symptoms. One component of the tree’s bark of particular interest is the compound rhaponticin, a glycoside stilbene compound. It is the parent compound of its aglycone, rhapontigenin, which is believed to be the active form of the molecule.