Coptis chinensis

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Chinese goldthread
Scientific classification edit
Kingdom: Plantae
Clade: Angiosperms
Clade: Eudicots
Order: Ranunculales
Family: Ranunculaceae
Genus: Coptis
Species: C. chinensis
Binomial name
Coptis chinensis

Coptis chinensis, the Chinese goldthread, is a species of goldthread native to China.


Chemical constituents[edit]

The rhizomes of Coptis chinensis are used in Traditional Chinese Medicine and serve as a source for the isoquinoline alkaloids berberine,[3] palmatine, and coptisine among others.

Traditional uses[edit]

Coptis chinensis is one of the 50 fundamental herbs used in traditional Chinese medicine, where it is called duǎn è huánglián (Chinese: 短萼黄连).


A variety of pharmacological effects of Coptis chinensis extracts or its chemical components have been reported, but the relevance of these in vitro and animals studies to human health are unknown. For example, a 1996 in vitro study found Coptis chinensis extracts to be effective against the gastrointestinal parasite Blastocystis hominis.[4] A study in rats suggested Coptis and berberine (the primary alkaloid in Coptis) are potential agents for preventing intestinal injury.[5] Berberine may also have anti-atherosclerosis effects.[6] Berberine and basic extracts of Coptis chinensis also have demonstrated positive effects in an animal model of neurodegeneration.[7] Animal studies suggest Coptis chinensis rhizomes may help with the pain of irritable bowel syndrome.[8]

Other uses[edit]

Because of the strong coloring quality of berberine, it has been traditionally used as a dye, especially for wool and other fibers.[9]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Coptis chinensis". Germplasm Resources Information Network (GRIN). Agricultural Research Service (ARS), United States Department of Agriculture (USDA). Retrieved 19 January 2018.
  2. ^ a b Coptis chinensis in BoDD – Botanical Dermatology Database
  3. ^ Dr. Duke's Phytochemical and Ethnobotanical Databases
  4. ^ Yang, L.Q.; Singh, Mulkit; Yap, E.H.; Ng, G.C.; Xu, H.X.; Sim, K.Y. (1996). "In vitro response of Blastocystis hominis against traditional Chinese medicine". Journal of Ethnopharmacology. 55 (1): 35–42. doi:10.1016/S0378-8741(96)01471-7. PMID 9121165.
  5. ^ Zhang, Q; Piao, XL; Piao, XS; Lu, T; Wang, D; Kim, SW (2011). "Preventive effect of Coptis chinensis and berberine on intestinal injury in rats challenged with lipopolysaccharides". Food and Chemical Toxicology. 49 (1): 61–9. doi:10.1016/j.fct.2010.09.032. PMID 20932871.
  6. ^ Wu, M; Wang, J; Liu, LT (2010). "Advance of studies on anti-atherosclerosis mechanism of berberine". Chinese Journal of Integrative Medicine. 16 (2): 188–92. doi:10.1007/s11655-010-0188-7. PMID 20473748.
  7. ^ Zhang, J; Yang, JQ; He, BC; Zhou, QX; Yu, HR; Tang, Y; Liu, BZ (2009). "Berberine and total base from rhizoma coptis chinensis attenuate brain injury in an aluminum-induced rat model of neurodegenerative disease". Saudi medical journal. 30 (6): 760–6. PMID 19526156.
  8. ^ Tjong, Y; Ip, S; Lao, L; Fong, HH; Sung, JJ; Berman, B; Che, C (2011). "Analgesic effect of Coptis chinensis rhizomes (Coptidis Rhizoma) extract on rat model of irritable bowel syndrome". Journal of Ethnopharmacology. 135 (3): 754–61. doi:10.1016/j.jep.2011.04.007. PMC 3100428. PMID 21511022.
  9. ^ Gibbs, Peter J.; Seddon, Kenneth R. (1998). Berberine and Huangbo: Ancient Colorants and Dyes. London: British Library. ISBN 978-0-7123-0649-2.[page needed]

External links[edit]