Calculus bovis

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search

Calculus bovis,[1] niu-huang (牛黃) or ox bezoars are dried gallstones of cattle used in Chinese herbology. In Asian countries calculus bovis are sometimes harvested when steer (Bos taurus domesticus Gmelin) are slaughtered. Their gall bladders are taken out, the bile is filtered, and the stones are cleaned and dried. The bezoars may also be surgically removed by veterinarians when working cattle become ill. In western countries they are usually discarded. Its equivalent in Vedic culture is Gorochana.

Calculus bovis have a color varying from golden yellow to brownish yellow. The shape of a stone is variable and depends on how it was formed, becoming spherical, oval, triangular, tubular or irregular.

Since natural calculus bovis are scarce they can be very expensive. There are artificial calculus bovis or bovis calculus artifactus used as substitutes. In China these are manufactured from cholic acid derived from bovine bile[2] combined with dry bovine bile powder, porcine ursodeoxycholic acid, taurine, bilirubin, cholesterol, etc.[3] Chinese regulations forbid the use of artificial calculus bovis in 42 drugs.[4]

Calculus bovis can cultivated in vivo by implanting a foreign object and microbials into bovine biles.[5]:478 It can also be cultivated in vitro from bovine bile by adding ursodeoxycholic acid, cholic acid, and calcium bilirubinate, producing calculus bovis sativus.[6][7] Unlike artificial calculus bovis, either type of cultivated calculus bovis can fully replace calculus bovis under Chinese regulations.[4]


  1. ^ Ingredients, AN KUNG NIU HUANG WAN (Bezoar Chest Functioning Pills), Beijing Tong Ren Tang, Peking, China. 1980. PPRC 2015 entry
  2. ^ "Cholic Acid". Archived from the original on 2012-03-15. Retrieved 2016-11-09.
  3. ^ "人工牛黄". PPRC 2015 ( Retrieved 10 December 2018.
  4. ^ a b "关于牛黄及其代用品使用问题的通知". 国食药监局. 2004-01-21. Archived from the original on 2011-06-11. Retrieved 2017-05-07.
  5. ^ 石元春 (2002). 20世纪中国学术大典:农业科学 (in Chinese) (第一版 ed.). 福州: 福建教育出版社. ISBN 9787533431631.
  6. ^ 张晓松. "背景:何谓人工牛黄、培植牛黄和体外培育牛黄". 新华网. Retrieved 2017-05-07.
  7. ^ "体外培育牛黄说明书". 北京同仁堂. Retrieved 2017-05-07.[permanent dead link]

External links[edit]