Valerian
Valeriana officinalis - Niitvälja.jpg
Scientific classification edit
Kingdom: Plantae
Clade: Tracheophytes
Clade: Angiosperms
Clade: Eudicots
Clade: Asterids
Order: Dipsacales
Family: Caprifoliaceae
Genus: Valeriana
Species:
V. officinalis
Binomial name
Valeriana officinalis

Valerian (Valeriana officinalis, Caprifoliaceae) is a perennial flowering plant native to Europe and Asia.[1][2] In the summer when the mature plant may have a height of 1.5 metres (5 feet), it bears sweetly scented pink or white flowers that attract many fly species, especially hoverflies of the genus Eristalis.[3] It is consumed as food by the larvae of some Lepidoptera (butterfly and moth) species, including the grey pug.

Crude extract of valerian root may have sedative and anxiolytic effects, and is commonly sold in dietary supplement capsules to promote sleep, but there is insufficient clinical evidence that it is effective for this purpose.[1][2] Its roots and leaves cause a catnip-like response in cats.

History

Inflorescence
Inflorescence

Valerian has been used as a herb in traditional medicine since at least the time of ancient Greece and Rome.[2] Hippocrates described its properties, and Galen later prescribed it as a remedy for insomnia.[2] In medieval Sweden, it was sometimes placed in the wedding clothes of the groom to ward off the "envy" of the elves.[4] In the 16th century, Pilgram Marpeck prescribed valerian tea for a sick woman.[5]

John Gerard's Herball, or Generall Historie of Plantes, first published in 1597, states that his contemporaries found valerian "excellent for those burdened and for such as be troubled with croup and other like convulsions, and also for those that are bruised with falls." He says that the dried root was valued as a medicine by the poor in the north of England and the south of Scotland, such that "no brothes, pottages or phisicalle meates are woorth [worth] anything if Setwall [valerian] were not at one end."[6][7]

The 17th century astrological botanist Nicholas Culpeper thought the plant was "under the influence of Mercury, and therefore hath a warming faculty." He recommended both herb and root, and said that "the root boiled with liquorice, raisons and aniseed is good for those troubled with cough. Also, it is of special value against the plague, the decoction thereof being drunk and the root smelled. The green herb being bruised and applied to the head taketh away pain and pricking thereof."[7]

Etymology and common names

The name of the herb is derived from the personal name Valeria and the Latin verb valere (to be strong, healthy).[8][9] Other names used for this plant include garden valerian (to distinguish it from other Valeriana species), garden heliotrope (although not related to Heliotropium), setwall and all-heal (which is also used for plants in the genus Stachys).[1] Red valerian, often grown in gardens, is also sometimes referred to as "valerian", but is a different species (Centranthus ruber), from the same family but not very closely related. It is also called cat's love for its catnip-like effects.[1]

Valerian extract

Phytochemicals

Known compounds detected in valerian include:[1]

Potential mechanism

Because of valerian's historical use in traditional medicine for diverse purposes, such as for sedation or pain relief, laboratory research has been directed at the GABAA receptor, a class of receptors on which benzodiazepines act.[1][17][18] Valeric acid,[clarification needed] which is responsible for the typical odor of mostly older valerian roots, does not have any sedative properties. Valproic acid, a widely prescribed anticonvulsant, is a derivative of valeric acid.[clarification needed]

Valerian also contains isovaltrate, which has been shown to be an inverse agonist for adenosine A1 receptor sites.[1] Hydrophilic extractions of the herb commonly sold over the counter, however, probably do not contain significant amounts of isovaltrate.[19] Valerenic acid in valerian stimulates GABA(A) and serotonin receptors as a positive allosteric modulator and partial agonist, respectively. [20] This includes the 5-HT5A which is implicated in the sleep-wake cycle.[21]

Preparation

The chief constituent of valerian is a yellowish-green to brownish-yellow oil present in the dried root, varying in content from 0.5 to 2.0%. This variation in quantity may be determined by location; a dry, stony soil yields a root richer in oil than moist, fertile soil.[22]

Traditional medicine

Valerian (V. officinalis) essential oil
Valerian (V. officinalis) essential oil

Although valerian is a common traditional medicine used for treating insomnia, there is no good evidence it is effective for this purpose.[1][2][23] Valerian has not been shown to be helpful in treating restless leg syndrome[24] or anxiety.[25]

The European Medicines Agency (EMA) approved the health claim that valerian can be used as a traditional herb to relieve mild nervous tension and to aid sleep; EMA stated that although there is insufficient evidence from clinical studies, its effectiveness as a dried extract is considered plausible.[26]

The American Academy of Sleep Medicine's 2017 clinical practice guidelines recommended against the use of valerian in the treatment of insomnia due to poor effectiveness and low quality of evidence.[27]

Oral forms

A bottle of valerian capsules
A bottle of valerian capsules

Oral forms are available in both standardized and unstandardized forms. Standardized products may be preferable considering the wide variation of the chemicals in the dried root, as noted above. When standardized, it is done so as a percentage of valerenic acid or valeric acid. In commonly used doses, valerian is recognized as GRAS in the United States.[1]

Adverse effects

Because the compounds in valerian produce central nervous system depression, they should not be used with other depressants, such as ethanol (drinking alcohol), benzodiazepines, barbiturates, opiates, kava, or antihistamine drugs.[1][28][29][30]

As an unregulated product, the concentration, contents, and potential contaminants in valerian preparations cannot be easily determined.[1][2] Because of this uncertainty and the potential for toxicity in the fetus and hepatotoxicity in the mother, valerian use is discouraged during pregnancy.[1][28][29] Headache and diarrhea have occurred among subjects using valerian in clinical studies.[1]

Effect on cats

Valerian root is a cat attractant in a way similar to catnip.[31] Its roots and leaves are one of three alternatives for the one-third of domesticated or medium-sized cats who do not feel the effects of catnip.[31][32]

Floral asymmetry

Valerian is unusual in having flowers with "handedness", that is, having neither radial nor bilateral symmetry.[33]

Weed

Valerian is considered an invasive species in many jurisdictions outside its natural range, including the US state of Connecticut where it is officially banned,[34] and in New Brunswick, Canada, where it is listed as a plant of concern.[35]

Image gallery

See also

Notes

  1. ^ Although many sources list "catinine" as an alkaloid present in extracts from the root of Valeriana officinalis, those sources are incorrect. The correct spelling is "chatinine". It was discovered by S. Waliszewski in 1891. See: S. Waliszewski (15 March 1891) L'Union pharmaceutique, page 109. Abstracts of this article appeared in: "Chatinine, alcaloïde de la racine de valériane" Répertoire de pharmacie, series 3, vol. 3, pp. 166–167 Archived 2013-06-19 at the Wayback Machine (April 10, 1891); American Journal of Pharmacy, vol. 66, p. 285 Archived 2013-06-19 at the Wayback Machine (June 1891).
  2. ^ Isovaleramide does not appear to be a naturally occurring component of valerian plants; rather, it seems to be an artifact of the extraction process; specifically, it is produced by treating aqueous extracts of valerian with ammonia.[11]
  3. ^ Isovaleric acid does not appear to be a natural constituent of V. officinalis; rather, it is a breakdown product that is created during the extraction process or by enzymatic hydrolysis during (improper) storage.[12]

References

  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m "Valerian". Drugs.com. 9 June 2022. Retrieved 22 July 2022.
  2. ^ a b c d e f g "Valerian". Office of Dietary Supplements, US National Institutes of Health. 15 March 2013. Retrieved 2 April 2018.
  3. ^ Van Der Kooi, C. J.; Pen, I.; Staal, M.; Stavenga, D. G.; Elzenga, J. T. M. (2015). "Competition for pollinators and intra-communal spectral dissimilarity of flowers". Plant Biology. 18 (1): 56–62. doi:10.1111/plb.12328. PMID 25754608. Archived (PDF) from the original on 2015-09-29.
  4. ^ Thorpe, Benjamin (1851) Northern Mythology Archived 2013-04-16 at the Wayback Machine. Lumley. Vol. 2. pp. 64–65.
  5. ^ Torsten Bergsten (1958). "Two Letters by Pilgram Marpeck". Mennonite Quarterly Review. 32: 200.
  6. ^ John Gerard (1597). Herball, or Generall Historie of Plantes - Volume 4. John Norton. p. 919.
  7. ^ a b Grieve, Maud (1971). A Modern Herbal: The Medicinal, Culinary, Cosmetic and Economic Properties, Cultivation and Folk-lore of Herbs, Grasses, Fungi, Shrubs, & Trees with All Their Modern Scientific Uses, Volume 2.
  8. ^ Harper, Douglas. "valerian". Online Etymology Dictionary.
  9. ^ Latin definition for: valeo, valere, valui, valitus Archived 2014-03-28 at the Wayback Machine. latin-dictionary.net
  10. ^ a b c d e f Fereidoon Shahidi and Marian Naczk, Phenolics in food and nutraceuticals (Boca Raton, Florida, USA: CRC Press, 2004), pp. 313–314 Archived 2013-06-24 at the Wayback Machine ISBN 1-58716-138-9.
  11. ^ Balandrin, M. F.; Van Wagenen, B. C.; Cordell, G. A. (1995). "Valerian-derived sedative agents. II. Degradation of Valmane-derived valepotriates in ammoniated hydroalcoholic tinctures". Journal of Toxicology: Toxin Reviews. 14 (2): 88–252. doi:10.3109/15569549509097280.
  12. ^ pp. 22 and 123 Archived 2013-06-19 at the Wayback Machine of Peter J. Houghton, Valerian: the genus Valeriana (Amsterdam, the Netherlands: Harwood Academic Press, 1997) ISBN 90-5702-170-6.
  13. ^ Yuan CS, Mehendale S, Xiao Y, Aung HH, Xie JT, Ang-Lee MK (2004). "The gamma-aminobutyric acidergic effects of valerian and valerenic acid on rat brainstem neuronal activity". Anesth Analg. 98 (2): 353–8, table of contents. CiteSeerX 10.1.1.323.5518. doi:10.1213/01.ANE.0000096189.70405.A5. PMID 14742369. S2CID 14526474.
  14. ^ Wills, R.B.H. & Shohet, D. (July 2009). "Changes in valerenic acids content of valerian root (Valeriana officinalis L. s.l.) during long-term storage". Food Chemistry. 115 (1): 250–253. doi:10.1016/j.foodchem.2008.12.011.
  15. ^ a b Marder M, Viola H, Wasowski C, Fernández S, Medina JH, Paladini AC (2003). "6-methylapigenin and hesperidin: new valeriana flavonoids with activity on the CNS". Pharmacol Biochem Behav. 75 (3): 537–45. doi:10.1016/S0091-3057(03)00121-7. PMID 12895671. S2CID 37559366.
  16. ^ Fernández S, Wasowski C, Paladini AC, Marder M (2004). "Sedative and sleep-enhancing properties of linarin, a flavonoid-isolated from Valeriana officinalis". Pharmacol Biochem Behav. 77 (2): 399–404. doi:10.1016/j.pbb.2003.12.003. PMID 14751470. S2CID 34347546.
  17. ^ Holzl J, Godau P (1989). "Receptor binding studies with Valeriana officinalis on the benzodiazepine receptor". Planta Medica. 55 (7): 642. doi:10.1055/s-2006-962221.
  18. ^ Mennini T, Bernasconi P, et al. (1993). "In vitro study in the interaction of extracts and pure compounds from Valeriana officinalis roots with GABA, benzodiazepine and barbiturate receptors". Fitoterapia. 64: 291–300.
  19. ^ Lacher, Svenja K.; Mayer, Ralf; Sichardt, Kathrin; Nieber, Karen; Müller, Christa E. (2007). "Interaction of valerian extracts of different polarity with adenosine receptors: Identification of isovaltrate as an inverse agonist at A1 receptors". Biochemical Pharmacology. 73 (2): 248–58. doi:10.1016/j.bcp.2006.09.029. PMID 17097622.
  20. ^ Patočka, Jiří; Jakl, Jiří (2010). "Biomedically relevant chemical constituents of Valeriana officinalis". Journal of Applied Biomedicine. 8 (1): 11–18. doi:10.2478/v10136-009-0002-z.
  21. ^ Dietz BM, Mahady GB, Pauli GF, Farnsworth NR (2005). "Valerian extract and valerenic acid are partial agonists of the 5-HT5a receptor in vitro". Brain Res. Mol. Brain Res. 138 (2): 191–7. doi:10.1016/j.molbrainres.2005.04.009. PMC 5805132. PMID 15921820.
  22. ^ "Valerian". Botanical.com. Archived from the original on 2006-11-10. Retrieved 2007-04-15.
  23. ^ Leach MJ, Page AT (2015). "Herbal medicine for insomnia: A systematic review and meta-analysis". Sleep Med Rev (Review). 24: 1–12. doi:10.1016/j.smrv.2014.12.003. PMID 25644982.
  24. ^ Bega D, Malkani R (2016). "Alternative treatment of restless legs syndrome: an overview of the evidence for mind-body interventions, lifestyle interventions, and neutraceuticals". Sleep Med. (Review). 17: 99–105. doi:10.1016/j.sleep.2015.09.009. PMID 26847981.
  25. ^ Miyasaka LS, Atallah AN, Soares BG (2006). "Valerian for anxiety disorders". Cochrane Database Syst Rev (Systematic review) (4): CD004515. doi:10.1002/14651858.CD004515.pub2. PMID 17054208.
  26. ^ "European Medicines Agency - Find medicine - Valerianae radix". www.ema.europa.eu. Archived from the original on 2016-08-17. Retrieved 2016-08-08.
  27. ^ Sateia MJ, Buysse DJ, Krystal AD, Neubauer DN, Heald JL (February 2017). "Clinical Practice Guideline for the Pharmacologic Treatment of Chronic Insomnia in Adults: An American Academy of Sleep Medicine Clinical Practice Guideline". J Clin Sleep Med. 13 (2): 307–349. doi:10.5664/jcsm.6470. PMC 5263087. PMID 27998379.
  28. ^ a b Klepser TB, Klepser ME (1999). "Unsafe and potentially safe herbal therapies". Am J Health-Syst Pharm. 56 (12538): 125–38, quiz 139–41. doi:10.1093/ajhp/56.2.125. PMID 10030529.
  29. ^ a b Wong AH, Smith M, Boon HS (1998). "Herbal remedies in psychiatric practice". Arch Gen Psychiatry. 55 (103344): 1033–44. doi:10.1001/archpsyc.55.11.1033. PMID 9819073.
  30. ^ Miller LG (1998). "Herbal medicines. Selected clinical considerations focusing on known or potential drug-herb interactions". Arch Intern Med. 158 (220011): 2200–11. doi:10.1001/archinte.158.20.2200. PMID 9818800.
  31. ^ a b Bol, Sebastiaan (16 March 2017). "Responsiveness of cats (Felidae) to silver vine (Actinidia polygama), Tatarian honeysuckle (Lonicera tatarica), valerian (Valeriana officinalis) and catnip (Nepeta cataria)". BMC Veterinary Research. 13 (1): 70. doi:10.1186/s12917-017-0987-6. PMC 5356310. PMID 28302120.
  32. ^ "Catnip (Nepeta cataria) – Everything You Need to Know About Catnip!". Cat-World.com.au. Cat World. 2014. Retrieved 2 January 2015.
  33. ^ Weberling, Focko (1992). Morphology of Flowers and Inflorescences. Cambridge University Press. p. 19. ISBN 0-521-25134-6.
  34. ^ "USDA PLANTS Database – Connecticut State-listed Noxious Weeds". Archived from the original on 2014-06-26.
  35. ^ New Brunswick Invasive Species Council (2012). Field Guide to 12 Invasive Plants of Concern in New Brunswick (PDF). Archived from the original on 2013-10-26.((cite book)): CS1 maint: bot: original URL status unknown (link)