OU Researcher Testing Herbal Medicine For AIDS Use

Friday, October 19th 2007, 8:42 am
By: News On 6

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) -- A researcher from the University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center is in South Africa testing an herbal medicine to determine if it will help offset symptoms associated with AIDS.

The center says this the first time Western scientists have been allowed to test traditional herbal medicines in South Africa.

Researcher Kevin Rudeen is with an international team of researchers looking into the effectiveness of the plant (Sutherlandia frutescens) which is a flowering shrub of the pea family and native to South Africa. Local healers use a powder form of the plant to treat AIDS symptoms such as nausea and lack of appetite.

Rudeen says the team hopes to determine whether the plant alleviates weight loss, stimulates appetites and improves the quality of life of AIDS patients.