Herbal Drug Interferes with Rxs

Published Online: Wednesday, December 1, 2004

Gugulipid, an OTC cholesterol-lowering drug, has negative effects on prescription medications. Researchers have found that this drug breaks down 60% of prescription drugs, such as drugs used to fight AIDS and cancer. The research showed that guggulsterone, the active ingredient in gugulipid, turns on the cell receptor PXR, which activates a liver enzyme that breaks down many prescription drugs. Reporting in the Journal of Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics (October 2004), the researchers explained that liver enzymes also may create carcinogens out of chemicals in the body that usually do not cause cancer.

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