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MoonDragon's Health & Wellness
Nutrition Basics

Herbs
XI SHU

Cancer Tree, Happy Tree, Tree of Joy
(Camptotheca Acuminata)


"For Informational Use Only"
For more detailed information contact your health care provider
about options that may be available for your specific situation.





  • Xi Shu Description
  • Xi Shu Uses, Health Benefits & Scientific Evidence
  • Xi Shu Dosage Information
  • Xi Shu Safety, Cautions & Interactions
  • Xi Shu Supplements & Products




  • xi shu


    XI SHU HERBAL DESCRIPTION

    Xi Shu (Camptotheca acuminata) is also known as Cancer Tree, Happy Tree and Tree of Joy. Xi Shu Tree has several other names, such as Long Shu (Dragon Tree), Tian Zi Shu (Heaven Wood Tree) and Jia Shu (Fine Tree). It belongs to the Nyssaceae family.

    Xi Shu grows up to 80 feet tall and has a slender reddish brown bark with branches near the top. It produces shiny green, leathery leaves with small, white flowers having curve heads. The American species of Camptotheca is from the Xi Shu tree. Herbalists are developing cultivars having more yields of active compounds. Xi Shu is native to China and Tibet and is cultivated as an ornamental tree in various countries, such as the United States, India, and Japan. In China, Xi Shu has been categorized in the list of endangered plants and hence, exports of Camptotheca acuminata from China have been restricted.

    Xi Shu grows best in places having warm and damp climatic conditions. It can also grow and thrive in sunny positions and soils having rich humus content. Xi Shu does not like drying out conditions.

    Xi Shu translates as "happy tree" by natives after being cured of colds and other illnesses. For hundreds of years the Chinese have used this herb for psoriasis and as a remedy for diseases of the liver, gallbladder, spleen and stomach. It has also been called "cancer tree" for its primary constituent, camptothcin, which inhibits topoisomerase I, the enzyme linked to cell division and DNA replication.

    Apart from using Xi shu tree for therapeutic purpose, the Chinese have used Xi Shu in the form of firewood as well as an ornamental plant. It may be noted here that the American species of Xi Shu is actually offspring of two trees that have been germinated and purchased from China in the 1930s.





    xishu tree leaves and flowers


    XI SHU USES, HEALTH BENEFITS & SCIENTIFIC EVIDENCE

    In China people have named Xi Shu tree as the happy tree owing to its effectiveness in treating a number of ailments and colds. The American species of Xi Shu is known as Camptotheca. This particular tree has been used since long past in Chinese herbal medicine. For several centuries, Xi Shu has been effective in treating conditions like liver ailments, psoriasis, stomach problems, gallbladder disease as well as ailments of the spleen. Xi Shu encloses a chemical substance known as camptothecin, a medication that is used for treating various forms of cancer. Findings of numerous researches with Xi Shu have demonstrated that the extracts obtained from this tree inhibit tumors or cancerous growth. It is interesting to note that many anti-cancer medications have been developed from camptothecin. Two such drugs have been approved for sale and use by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA).

    CANCER RESEARCH

    It has been proved that using xi shu is safe and it does not cause any harm to the body. However, it is advisable that when you are using Xi Shu to treat any health condition, you should essentially consult a qualified and competent medical practitioner. Xi Shu should never be used to treat any form of cancer unless the patient is under the supervision and care of a health care practitioner. Currently, scientists have undertaken a number of studies with this tree in Texas, where it is being grown. In addition, Xi Shu is also being studied by researchers at the Louisiana State University.

    Scientific studies have shown that the camptothecin in Xi Shu inhibits topoisomerase which, in turn, stunts tumor growth. Many anti-cancer drugs have been derived from camptothecin, two of which are approved for use by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. One is Topotecan and is used to treat ovarian and small lung cancers. Irinotecan is the other and is used to treat metastatic colorectal cancer.

    HEALTH BENEFITS

    For several hundred or possibly even thousand years now, the Chinese have employed Xi Shu as a traditional medication. In effect, they have used Xi Shu to treat psoriasis as well as to cure ailments related to the stomach, liver, spleen and gallbladder. Interestingly enough, Xi Shu has also been employed to cure leukemia. In effect, 'cancer tree' is one of the common names of Camptotheca. The major active constituent of Camptotheca called camptothecin is known to be effective in treating cancer. This element actually slows down the secretion of topoisomerase I, an enzyme related to cell division as well replication of the DNA. It has been found that camptothecin actually stunts the growth of tumors by slowing down the production of this particular enzyme.

    Several other anti-cancer drugs have been developed using camptothecin and two among these have even been approved by the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for sale and use to treat different forms of cancer. While the prescription drug Topotecan, which has been modified from camptothecin, is given to patients suffering from ovarian and small lung cancers, the other medication developed from camptothecin is irinotecan, which is used to treat metastatic colorectal cancer (a form of cancer which develops in the colon or rectum and subsequently extends to other parts of the body). In effect, today metastatic colorectal cancer is the second most important cause of deaths owing to cancer in the United States. It may be noted here that other anti-cancer drugs developed from camptothecin are not used any longer owing to their acute toxicity.





    XI SHU DOSAGE INFORMATION

    Xi Shu can come in various forms or be an ingredient in other products. Parts used are the wood, bark, leaf and fruit. Camptothecin, a pentacyclic quinoline alkaloid, is the most active consituent of Xi Shu. The tree's root bark, stem bark as well as the seeds have the aptitude to yield some amounts of camptothecin. However, the maximum concentration of this alkaloid is found in the young and tender leaves of this tree.

    Genuine alkaloids obtained from Xi Shu, such as camptothecin, are administered to patients via intravenous drip. If you are using irinotecan, the dosage is 100 mg per m2 of the patient's body surface in a weekly therapy repeated six times or more. In folk medicine, lesser potent infusions are employed.

    Some people drink Xi Shu herbal tea after a heavy meal to help support liver and spleen health.

    It is best to consult with your health care provider before using this herb for the treatment of your condition. Read and follow recommended doses.





    XI SHU SAFETY, CAUTIONS & INTERACTIONS INFORMATION

    Xi Shu is generally regarded as safe, but it is not advised that you use this herb for treating cancer unless you are doing so under the supervision of a health care provider. Safety in young children, pregnant or nursing women, or those with severe liver or kidney disease is not known.




    XI SHU HERBAL & RELATED PRODUCTS

  • Xi Shu Herbal Products


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    XI SHU HERBAL PRODUCTS

    AMAZON PRODUCTS

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  • Nutrition Basics: Xi Shu Herbal Information






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