Corydalis yanhusuo

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Corydalis yanhusuo
Scientific classification Edit this classification
Kingdom: Plantae
Clade: Tracheophytes
Clade: Angiosperms
Clade: Eudicots
Order: Ranunculales
Family: Papaveraceae
Genus: Corydalis
C. yanhusuo
Binomial name
Corydalis yanhusuo

Corydalis yanhusuo is a plant species in the genus Corydalis. The Chinese name for Corydalis yanhusuo is yan hu suo (Chinese: 延胡索; pinyin: yán hú suǒ; lit. 'extended barbarian rope'). The Japanese common name is engosaku (エンゴサク) and the Korean common name is hyeonhosaek (현호색). English common names include yanhusuo, corydalis, and Asian corydalis. The tuber of this plant, frequently mislabeled as the root, is an important therapeutic agent in traditional Chinese medicine. It is native to high-altitude grasslands across China including in the provinces of Anhui, Henan, Hubei, Hunan, Jiangsu, and Zhejiang, but is more widely cultivated.


According to the Flora of China, this perennial herbaceous plant produces 5 to 15 purple-blue tubular flowers in clusters that curve out at the opening. The yellow, round tubers are up to 2.5 cm (1 in) in diameter.


Yanhusuo is first mentioned in Ben Cao Shi Yi (Omissions from the Materia Medica), written by Chen Cang-Qi in 720 CE.

Chemical compounds[edit]

The alkaloid dehydrocorybulbine (DHCB) can be extracted from the roots of the plant.[1][2] Tetrahydropalmatine is another major constituent alkaloid.[2] Corydalis yanhusuo also contains the alkaloids glaucine[3][4] and palmatine.[5] It also contains the acetylcholinesterase inhibitor corydaline.[6] N-Methyltetrahydroprotoberberines have been isolated from C. yanhusuo.[7]


  1. ^ Chinese herbal compound relieves inflammatory and neuropathic pain
  2. ^ a b A Novel Analgesic Isolated from a Traditional Chinese Medicine. Current Biology. Volume 24, Issue 2, p117–123, 20 January 2014
  3. ^ Xu, XH; Yu, GD; Wang, ZT (2004). "Resource investigation and quality evaluation on wild Corydalis yanhusuo". Zhongguo Zhong Yao Za Zhi = Zhongguo Zhongyao Zazhi = China Journal of Chinese Materia Medica. 29 (5): 399–401. PMID 15706885.
  4. ^ Morteza-Semnani, K; Amin, G; Shidfar, MR; Hadizadeh, H; Shafiee, A (2003). "Antifungal activity of the methanolic extract and alkaloids of Glaucium oxylobum". Fitoterapia. 74 (5): 493–6. doi:10.1016/s0367-326x(03)00113-8. PMID 12837370.
  5. ^ Wang YM, Zhao LB, Lin SL, Dong SS, An DK (1989). "[Determination of berberine and palmatine in cortex phellodendron and Chinese patent medicines by HPLC]". Yao Xue Xue Bao = Acta Pharmaceutica Sinica (in Chinese). 24 (4): 275–9. PMID 2816389.
  6. ^ Xiao, Hai-Tao; Peng, Jiao; Liang, Yan; Yang, Jie; Bai, Xue; Hao, Xiao-Yan; Yang, Fu-Mei; Sun, Qian-Yun (September 2011). "Acetylcholinesterase inhibitors from Corydalis yanhusuo". Natural Product Research. 25 (15). Taylor and Francis: 1418–1422. doi:10.1080/14786410802496911. ISSN 1478-6419. PMID 20234973. S2CID 23465603.
  7. ^ Yan Zhang; Chaoran Wang; Zhimou Guo; Xiuli Zhang; Zhiwei Wang; Xinmiao Liang; Olivier Civelli (2014). "Discovery of N-methyltetrahydroprotoberberines with κ-opioid receptor agonists-opioid receptor agonist activities from corydalis yanhusuo W. T. Wang by using two-dimensional liquid chromatography". Journal of Ethnopharmacology. 155 (3): 1597–1602. doi:10.1016/j.jep.2014.07.057. PMID 25107388.