Isatis is a type of flowering plant native to the Mediterranean region. Isatis root has not been adequately studied in clinical trials, so it is not known if it works in humans. Laboratory studies suggest that indirubin, an active compound in isatis, stops cell division and therefore may be useful in cancer treatment. A small study in head and neck cancer patients suggest that a specific isatis root extract solution could reduce severity of mucositis, anorexia, and difficulty swallowing in treated patients compared with group that did not receive this supplement. Mucositis is when your mouth or gut is sore and inflamed. It’s a common side effect of chemotherapy and radiotherapy for cancer. In China, isatis is used in combination with other botanicals to treat chronic myelogenous leukemia.
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