Chinese sage may provide alcoholism cure

July 27, 2007

The active ingredient in Chinese medicinal sage could help alcoholics beat their addiction, Italian researchers said.

The National Research Council's institute in Cagliari says the herb, Salvia Miltiorrhiza, has been used for centuries in China to treat blood diseases, heart disorders and insomnia, ANSA said Thursday.

Researcher Giancarlo Colombo said Chinese sage reduced alcohol consumption in mice and eliminated a "customary spike in drinking seen when mice go back on the bottle after being on the wagon for a while," ANSA said.

Scientists said the herb may help turn alcoholics into moderate drinkers.

"It's been working brilliantly in mice and we're about to start on our human guinea pigs, once we're sure it's entirely safe," Colombo said.

Copyright 2007 by United Press International

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