Allii cepae bulbi

Authors: Prof. Dr. med. Peter Altmeyer, Prof. Dr. med. Martina Bacharach-Buhles

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Last updated on: 27.09.2023

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Allii cepae bulb

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Allium cepa l var. cepa (the kitchen onion) is the parent plant of Allii cepae bulbi the official drug monographed by the Commission E or WHO.

No pharmacopoeia quality description.

HMPC: no monograph, neither as a medicinal product with recognized medicinal effect (well-established use) nor as a traditional medicinal product (traditional use); however, listed by the EMA in Poland and Hungary with traditional use.
ESCOP: not processed yet.
Commission E monograph: for loss of appetite and prevention of age-related vascular changes.

No classification as traditional medicinal product in the sense of § 39a AMG.

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Biologically, the genus Allium is divided into two varieties, Var. cepa, the edible onion, and Var. ascalonicum Baker, the shallot. Other important vegetable species of the genus Allium are garlic, leek, chives and wild garlic as an intermediate and wild form. In naturopathy, the kitchen onion is traded as a universal remedy. Its essential oils have a strong antibacterial and disinfecting effect, antiphlogistic and pain-relieving.

Spectrum of action
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Antibacterial, antiasthmatic, anti-allergic, inhibition of platelet aggregation, anti-inflammatory, wound healing.

Field of application/use
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Crushed onions, pressed juice of fresh onions or ready-to-take medicines.

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cough, bronchitis, bronchial asthma, for flatulence

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All onions contain allicin, a sulphurous essential oil which is responsible for the natural antibiotic effect of the kitchen onions. The following ingredients have also been proven to be present: glutamyl peptides, alliin and derivatives such as cycloalliin, methylalliin, dihydroalliin; vitamin C (raw only), potassium, calcium and phosphorus, sodium and iron.

Alliin and its derivatives provide thiosulphinic acid esters and cepaen on enzymatic hydrolysis (in case of tissue damage), furthermore thiopropionaldehyde-S-oxide (CH3-CH2-CH=SO), the substance that causes tears.

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  1. Ammon H et al (2014). Hunnius Pharmaceutical Dictionary. Walter de Gruyter GmbH Berlin/Boston S 247

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Kitchen onion;