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Herbal Sciences

In this guide you will find resource suggestions and starting points for the following types of information:



and Journals

& Associations



Search Tips

Do some fact-finding before you begin a search for information on herbs and other botanicals. In most databases, the best searches include the plant's common name, scientific name (genus and/or species), and unique chemical constituents (if any have been identified):

Individual plant names: PubMed generally assigns the scientific name, usually the genus, as the MeSH subject heading, rather than common names, which can vary according to geographical location. BUT this is not always the case! Use both in your searches, just in case.

Plant constituents (chemical components): Including some of the plant’s chemical components in your search may also be good, especially for pharmacokinetic and pharmacodynamic aspects. Look for constituents that are specific to that species or its genus and that have been identified as producing a bioactive or therapeutic effect.

   For example:

  • (milk thistle OR silymarin) AND liver diseases    

               common name & constituent

  • (licorice OR glycyrrhiza OR glycyrrhetinic acid) AND inflammation

               common name, genus & constituent


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