Daniel Berkner and Leo Sioris

Summary

Echinacea remains a popular supplement used as an immunostimulant in the prevention and treatment of infection. Despite inconsistent results from clinical trials attempting to assess effectiveness, its relatively wide margin of safety makes the herb an attractive alternative for prevention and treatment of common infections such as upper respiratory infections. Given the herb's inherent ability to inhibit various CYP450 enzymes, further studies to identify the clinical implications for herb-drug interactions are needed.

Key Words: Echinacea purpurea; Echinacea augustifolia; immune stimulation; arabino-galactans; P450 enzyme induction.

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