Chamomile roman

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

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Last updated on: 24.06.2021

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anthemis nobilis (INCI); Anthemis nobilis L.; Chamaemelum nobilis L.; Double chamomile; Matricariae aetherolicum; Roman chamomilla

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Plant of the Asteraceae family (Compositae), native to southern and western Europe, but also cultivated in central Europe.

Phytotherapeutically, the flowers (chamomile flowers - Matricariae flos) are used. The essential oil is also used medicinally (camomile oil - Matricariae aetheroleum).

The drug on the market is imported from Hungary, Argentina and Egypt.

Chamaemelum nobile is the parent plant of Chamomillae romanae flos. of chamomile flowers (Ph.Eur.8; negative Commission E monograph).

Chamomillae romanae aetheroleum, the essential chamomile oil (INCI name: Anthemis nobilis oil), is obtained by steam distillation from the flower heads.

HMPC monograph: traditional use: Symptomatic treatment of mild, cramp-like gastrointestinal complaints, flatulence.

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Roman chamomile contains, besides various other sesquiterpene lactones, the important nobilin, flavonoids, the allergen alpha-pinene as well as limonene and bisabolol.

Undesirable effects
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Nobilin, the main sesquiterpenlactone, as well as epoxynobilin, isohydroxynobilin and 3-dehydronobilin are potential contact allergens. A verification of their allergenic effect is still pending. Sensitizing potency: Medium. Frequency of sensitization: Rare. Composite allergy sufferers (florists, gardeners) occasionally show a positive reaction to Roman chamomile.

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A 1% short ether extract in vaseline is used for epicutaneous testing. Furthermore, a 0.1% nobilin epicutaneously can be tested. Cross-reactions with other composites are frequent.

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  1. Hausen BM, Vieluf K (1997) Allergy plants, plant allergens. Ecomed Verlag Landsberg/Munich p. 90-91
  2. Paulsen E (2002) Contact sensitization from Compositae-containing herbal remedies and cosmetics. Contact Dermatitis 47: 189-198