Maral Root - NutraPedia

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Maral Root Overview

1) Studied Conditions

Maral Root, also known as Rhaponticum carthamoides, has been studied for various conditions, including:

  • Physical fatigue and performance enhancement
  • Immune system modulation
  • Sexual dysfunction
  • Cognitive function and memory improvement
  • Adaptogenic effects - helping the body resist physical and environmental stress

2) Efficacy for Treatment

Research on the efficacy of Maral Root in treating these conditions is limited and sometimes inconclusive. Some studies suggest potential benefits in enhancing physical performance and reducing fatigue, but more rigorous scientific research is necessary to confirm these effects and to establish appropriate dosing guidelines.

3) Health Benefits

Maral Root may offer several health benefits, including:

  • Boosting physical stamina and muscle recovery
  • Strengthening the immune system
  • Improving sexual function and libido
  • Potential cognitive enhancements
  • Stress reduction through adaptogenic properties

4) Potential Downsides

While Maral Root is considered safe for most people, there are potential downsides to consider:

  • Insufficient data on long-term safety and side effects
  • Possible interactions with other medications or health conditions
  • May cause mild side effects like insomnia, headache, or irritability
  • Not recommended for pregnant or breastfeeding women due to lack of safety data

5) Genetic Variations and Effects

Currently, there is limited research on the interaction between Maral Root and specific genetic variations. As such, it is not possible to conclusively determine whether it is particularly beneficial or harmful for individuals with certain genetic traits. Consultation with a healthcare provider is recommended for personalized advice.

Maral Root (Rhaponticum carthamoides) Research Summary

Genetic Classification and Relationships

The study analyzed DNA sequences to understand the genetic relationships within the Rhaponticum group. Using parsimony and Bayesian methods, researchers found Rhaponticum to be a monophyletic entity closely related to Klasea and Centaurothamnus. This supports prior morphological and karyological data, suggesting Rhaponticum originated in the Near East or Caucasus with two potential migration routes to Europe.

Therapeutic Effects on Metabolic Syndrome

Rhaponticum carthamoides (RC) extract was compared to Glycyrrhiza glabra and Punica granatum extracts for effects on metabolic syndrome in rats on a high-fat diet. RC extract notably reduced serum glucose levels, improved glucose intolerance and dyslipidemia, decreased liver triacylglycerol accumulation, and increased PPARα DNA-binding activity more effectively than the other extracts, suggesting its potential use for treating metabolic syndrome.

Medicinal Properties and Chemical Makeup

The review details the traditional uses, chemical composition, and biological effects of R. carthamoides. It is composed of steroids, phenolics, polyacetylenes, sesquiterpene lactones, triterpenoid glycosides, and terpenes. R. carthamoides exhibits effects on the brain, blood, cardiovascular and nervous systems, and is considered safe with antioxidant, immunomodulatory, anticancer, antimicrobial, antiparasitic, and insect-repelling properties.


Rhaponticum carthamoides has shown promising therapeutic potential as an adaptogenic herbal remedy, aligning with its historical use in traditional medicine. Future research is encouraged to further explore its chemical and pharmacological attributes.


  1. Phylogeny of Rhaponticum (Asteraceae, Cardueae-Centaureinae) and related genera inferred from nuclear and chloroplast DNA sequence data: taxonomic and biogeographic implications
  2. Effects of rhaponticum carthamoides versus glycyrrhiza glabra and punica granatum extracts on metabolic syndrome signs in rats
  3. Chemistry and pharmacology of Rhaponticum carthamoides: a review
  4. Chemical constituents of plants from the genus Rhaponticum
  5. Lack of interference of common phytoecdysteroids with production of nitric oxide by immune-activated mammalian macrophages
  6. Additional minor ecdysteroid components of Leuzea carthamoides
  7. Supercritical fluid extraction of cynaropicrin and 20-hydroxyecdysone from Leuzea carthamoides DC
  8. Specific hydrolysis and accumulation of antiproliferative lignans in the fruit of Leuzea carthamoides (Willd.) DC
  9. A stilbene from the roots of leuzea carthamoides
  10. Evaluation of natural antioxidants of Leuzea carthamoides as a result of a screening study of 88 plant extracts from the European Asteraceae and Cichoriaceae
  11. High-performance liquid chromatography analysis of four Leuzea carthamoides flavonoids
  12. New antioxidant flavonoid isolated from Leuzea carthamoides
  13. In vitro antiplatelet activity of flavonoids from Leuzea carthamoides
  14. High-performance liquid chromatographic analysis and separation of N-feruloylserotonin isomers
  15. Naturally appearing N-feruloylserotonin isomers suppress oxidative burst of human neutrophils at the protein kinase C level
  16. Triterpenoid α-amyrin stimulates proliferation of human keratinocytes but does not protect them against UVB damage
  17. Norsesquiterpene hydrocarbon, chemical composition and antimicrobial activity of Rhaponticum carthamoides root essential oil
  18. 20-hydroxyecdysone reduces insect food consumption resulting in fat body lipolysis during molting and pupation
  19. The metabolism of 20-hydroxyecdysone in mice: relevance to pharmacological effects and gene switch applications of ecdysteroids
  20. Nuclear receptors--a perspective from Drosophila
  21. Effects of 20-hydroxyecdysone, Leuzea carthamoides extracts, dexamethasone and their combinations on the NF-κB activation in HeLa cells
  22. The selective effect of N-feruloylserotonins isolated from Leuzea carthamoides on nociception and anxiety in rats
  23. 20-Hydroxyecdysone decreases weight and hyperglycemia in a diet-induced obesity mice model
  24. Reduction of hepatic glucose production as a therapeutic target in the treatment of diabetes
  25. Regulation of phosphoenolpyruvate carboxykinase (GTP) gene expression
  26. Effect of ecdysterone on glucose metabolism in vitro
  27. Adiponectin stimulates glucose utilization and fatty-acid oxidation by activating AMP-activated protein kinase
  28. Plasma concentrations of a novel, adipose-specific protein, adiponectin, in type 2 diabetic patients
  29. Hypoadiponectinemia in obesity and type 2 diabetes: close association with insulin resistance and hyperinsulinemia
  30. Metabolic effects of 20-OH-ecdysone in ovariectomized rats
  31. Phytoecdysteroids increase protein synthesis in skeletal muscle cells
  32. Ecdysteroids elicit a rapid Ca2+ flux leading to Akt activation and increased protein synthesis in skeletal muscle cells
  33. Continuous infusion of 20-hydroxyecdysone increased mass of triceps brachii in C57BL/6 mice
  34. 20-Hydroxyecdysone increases fiber size in a muscle-specific fashion in rat
  35. [The action of methandrostenolone and ecdysterone on the physical endurance of animals and on protein metabolism in the skeletal muscles]
  36. Suppression of oxidative burst in human neutrophils with the naturally occurring serotonin derivative isomer from Leuzea carthamoides
  37. Beta-ecdysone has bone protective but no estrogenic effects in ovariectomized rats
  38. Beneficial effects of beta-Ecdysone on the joint, epiphyseal cartilage tissue and trabecular bone in ovariectomized rats
  39. Effect of a combination of extract from several plants on cell-mediated and humoral immunity of patients with advanced ovarian cancer
  40. Effects of herbal preparation on libido and semen quality in boars
  41. [Pharmacological studies of insect metamorphotic steroids]

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