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Her breakthrough was using cold water, instead of hot, to prepare an extract of qinghao, or sweet wormwood. After successful animal tests, Tu volunteered to be the first human subject.
Presently, Artemisinin is extracted from the sweet wormwood plant, which takes around eight-months to mature and yields about 15 grams of artemisinin for every kilogram of plant.
Artemisinin (also known as qinghao su) and its derivatives are a new class of antimalarials derived from the sweet wormwood plant Artemisia annua.
Elixir For Health formula is based on 3 active components - Cloves (rich in Omega 3, Vitamin K, fibers and Vitamin C), Sweet wormwood (rich in bitter glycosides, flavonoids, vitamins (ascorbic acid and provitamin A, C, B6 and K), organic acids) and Eastern black walnut (Rich in iodine and iron).
In 1967, Tu and colleagues began combing through over 2,000 traditional Chinese herbal recipes and eventually found a compound in the sweet wormwood plant (Artemisia annua) that showed promise against malaria caused by Plasmodium parasites.
After many attempts, she and her team managed to extract a compound called Artemisinin from a plant Artemisia annua (commonly known as sweet wormwood).
SP was then followed by artemisinin, a drug derived by Chinese scientists from a herb called sweet wormwood.
Pamela Weathers, professor of biology and biotechnology at WPI, is leading the team that will test the use of these dried leaves from the sweet wormwood plant.