Sweet wormwood once again shows effectiveness against COVID-19

Several traditional antimalarial drugs have been shown to effectively tackle COVID-19. In addition to the drugs hydroxychloroquine and ivermectin, there is also sweet wormwood (Artemisia annua, not to be confused with Artemisia vulgaris, a related but moderately poisonous plant).

Sweet wormwood is a traditional herbal medicine with antiparasitic, antiviral and anticancer properties. In April 2020, China added three Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) formulas to its standard of care for COVID-19, including one containing sweet wormwood called Jinhua Qinggan. All three formulas had been previously used against seasonal flu, SARS and pandemic swine flu (H1N1) in 2009. As reported by NutraIngredients-Asia, April 24, 2020:1

“The Chinese government has officially recognized three TCM formulas as part of its standard therapy for COVID-19. The three formulas – Lianhua Qingwen Capsule, Jinhua Qinggan Granule and Xuebijing Injection – are proprietary products that are already commercially available and have been tested for COVID-19 patients in clinical settings.”

Sweet wormwood against COVID-19

Jinhua Qinggan granules, containing 2 Artemisia annua, honeysuckle, gypsum, ephedra, bitter almond, baicalin, forsythia, fritillaria, burdock seed, mint and licorice, have been used traditionally in the treatment of plague and febrile diseases, but modern research has also confirmed its antiviral effects.

In one COVID-specific study, Jinhua Qinggan Granules significantly relieved fever, cough, fatigue, sputum, anxiety, and hospitalization.3

In May 2020, C&EN reported that researchers in a number of different countries were investigating wormwood as a potential COVID treatment,4 and in 2021, researchers at the Southwest College of Naturopathic Medicine in Tempe, Arizona, identified Artemisia annua as one of the best in the world. the 30 herbal medicines tested against COVID, based on the ability to inhibit the replication of the SARS-CoV-2 virus.5

Pakistani trial reports successful results

Some of this worldwide research on sweet wormwood came to fruition earlier this year. On January 17, 2022, Reuters reported that a Pakistani trial of Jinhua Qinggan grains had been completed, with successful results:6

“Pakistani health authorities announced Monday the completion of a successful clinical trial of Chinese traditional herbal medicines to treat COVID-19 as the South Asian nation enters a fifth wave of the pandemic fueled by the Omicron variant.

The Chinese drug, Jinhua Qinggan Granules (JHQG), manufactured by Juxiechang (Beijing) Pharmaceutical Co Ltd, is already being used in the treatment of COVID-19 patients in China.

“Since it has been tried on patients with different variants of COVID-19, we expect it to be effective on Omicron and on other variants,” said Professor Iqbal Chaudhry, director of the International Center for Chemical and Biological Science (ICCBS) where trials were conducted. carried out, told reporters.”

The Pakistani trial involved 300 COVID-positive patients treated at home for mild to moderate infection. The efficacy of the TCM drug was 82.6%.

How artemisinin inhibits SARS-CoV-2

In February 2022, Saudi Arabian researchers also published a paper describing how one of its key components, artemisinin, and its derivatives inhibit SARS-CoV-2 infection. As explained by the authors:7

“SARS-CoV-2… relies on the non-structural protein Nsp1 for multiplication in the host cells and disarms the host immune defenses through several mechanisms… The SARS-CoV-2 genome encodes two large overlapping open reading frames (ORF1a and ORF1b) in gene 1 as well as several structural and non-structural accessory proteins.

SARS-CoV-2 hijacks the translation machinery of the infected cell to produce ORF1a and ORF1b polyproteins, which are then proteolytically cleaved into sixteen mature nonstructural proteins, namely Nsp1 through Nsp16. The N-terminal nonstructural protein 1 (Nsp1) is one of these proteins…

Nsp1 suppresses all cellular antiviral defense mechanisms dependent on host factor expression, including the interferon response. This suppression of critical components of the innate immune system can aid in the multiplication of viruses and evasion of the immune system. SARS-CoV Nsp1 is a promising therapeutic target due to its important function in suppressing the antiviral immune response…

Although studies have demonstrated the importance of Nsp1 as an important virulence factor in the pathogenesis of SARS-CoV-2 infection and as a therapeutic target for drugs, no specific inhibitors of this enzyme have been reported to date.

Thus, using a molecular docking and molecular dynamics method, the current study examines the potential of artemisinin and its derivatives to inhibit the activity of SARS-CoV-2 Nsp1.”

In total, artemisinin and nine artemisinin derivatives were evaluated. Remdesivir was used as a reference medicine because it also binds to Nsp1. Several of the sweet wormwood compounds were found to perform well. As reported in this study:

SARS-CoV-2 combats the host’s immune defense mechanisms by synthesizing Nsp1 protein, an important virulence factor. The SARS-CoV-2 Nsp1, commonly known as the host silencing factor, inhibits host gene expression and innate immune responses …a promising therapeutic drug target as it suppresses the host’s antiviral immune responses…

Artemisinin and its derivatives have recently been investigated for their ability to fight SARS-CoV-2 infection due to their anti-inflammatory, immunoregulatory and broad spectrum antiviral properties…

Artemisinin and its derivatives bind to the target enzyme with favorable binding energies and the interactions are mediated by hydrogen bonding and hydrophobic interactions. The top three leads identified in the studies were Artesunate, Artemiside, and Artemison, which showed higher binding affinities for Nsp1 than the reference drug.

The compounds exhibit favorable drug-like properties. The molecular dynamics simulations … reveal that Artesunate caused significant conformational changes in the target protein and stably bound to it via hydrogen bonding interactions.”

Antiviral activity demonstrated

In late 2020, a collaboration between researchers from Columbia University, University of Washington and Worcester Polytechnic Institute showed that a hot water extract of Artemisia annua had antiviral activity against SARS-CoV-2.9,10. The extracts were tested for the virus that was spread in human cells.

The researchers used extracts from four different continents, all of which showed antiviral activity against SARS-CoV-2, including two of the then-newer variants. While it didn’t appear to block viral entry into the cell, the extract reduced the inflammatory response and inhibited infection “by targeting a post-entry step.”

The researchers hypothesized that the active component in the extract may be slightly different from artemisinin, or that it may act synergistically with another component to block post-entry infection.

Interestingly, the data showed that the concentrations could vary nearly 100-fold and still be effective. In an interview with Spectrum News 1, one of the researchers noted that11 “this looks like it could be a therapy” [against COVID] and very easy to implement globally…”

Other studies suggest that artemisinin may help treat COVID by inhibiting the activity of certain enzymes, boosting your adaptive immunity, down-regulating pro-inflammatory cytokines,12 decreasing the inflammatory response, and attenuating fibrosis.13

Artemisia annua is also bioactive against other viruses, including cytomegalovirus, hepatitis B and C, and members of the herpes family, including herpes virus type 1 and Epstein-Barr.14

Treat COVID symptoms promptly and aggressively

The fact that there are readily available over-the-counter (OTC) agents for COVID-19 is good news. No one will do you any good, however, unless you have them when you need them. Remember, at the first sign of symptoms, you want to begin aggressive treatment immediately. Do not wait.

Considering how contagious the Omicron variety is, there’s a good chance you’ll get it, so buy what you need now so you’ll have it on hand if/when symptoms appear. And remember, this includes those who got the shot, because you’re just as likely to get infected — and maybe even more so.

While it’s possible that you have a cold or the common flu, it’s hard to tell these infections apart, so it’s best to assume it’s COVID and treat it accordingly.

Herbal remedies such as sweet wormwood can be a valuable addition to your medicine cabinet, but I wouldn’t recommend relying on them as the sole remedy. At this point, we have several early treatment protocols that have been shown to be effective, so I would highly recommend you follow one of these (see below) and supplement with any herbal formulas.

The Front Line COVID-19 Critical Care Alliance (FLCCC) Prevention and Early Home Management Protocol. They also have hospital protocol and long-term counseling for long-distance COVID-19 syndrome. You can find a list of doctors who can prescribe ivermectin and other necessary medications on the FLCCC website. The AAPS protocol Tess Laurie’s World Council for Health protocol America’s Frontline Doctors

Based on my assessment of these protocols, I have developed the following summary of the treatment specifications that I believe are the easiest and most effective.

dr mercola covid treatment protocol

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This post Sweet wormwood once again shows effectiveness against COVID-19

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