Aniseed plant

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

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Last updated on: 29.10.2020

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aniseed (engl.); aniseed-vargartner; anise(English); Apium anisum (L.) Crantz; Carum anisum (L.) Baillon; pimpinella anisum; Selinum anisum (L.) E.H.L. Curl; Sison anisum (L.) Sprengel; tragium anisum (L.)

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Pimpinella anisum the anise plant is a plant of the genus Pimpinella in the family of the umbellifers (Apiaceae). The anise plant, which is used as a spice and medicinal plant (in Germany medicinal plant of the year 2014), was originally native to the eastern Mediterranean Sea but is now cultivated in almost all zones of the world with a moderate climate.
The anise plant grows as an annual herbaceous plant, with 1-3cm long roundish leaves and reaches a growth height of 10 to 60 cm. The white flowers bloom from June to September. The brown fruits are 3-5cm long and ripen from August to September.
Pimpinella anisi is the parent plant of Anisi fructus (positive monograph of Commission E), whose officinal components can be used for dyspeptic and catarrhal complaints of the respiratory tract.
The allergological significance of the anisi plant is considered to be low. There are few publications on type I allergies even with anaphylactic events.

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  1. García-González JJ et al (2002) Occupational rhinoconjunctivitis and food allergy because of aniseed sensitization. Ann Allergy Asthma Immunol 88:518-522.
  2. Gázquez García V et al. (2007) Aniseed-induced nocturnal tongue angioedema. J Investig Allergol Clin Immunol 17:406-408.
  3. Stricker WE et al (1986) Food skin testing in patients with idiopathic anaphylaxis. J Allergy Clin Immunol 77:516-519.