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Name: Hugh VanderVeer
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Question:
My name is Hugh VanderVeer and I am a seventh grader at Dorseyville Middle School. I recently finished a paper on herbs that are used in medicines. I concentrated mainly on how they work with the bodies natural defenses. I still need to know what is in these herbs that make them work in the body. Is it a chemical or a certain cell that plant produces that has healing ability in humans?



Replies:
Plant cells produce many chemicals as do animal cells. Some of these chemicals may produce pharmacolgic effects in people and if so, are called drugs. These drugs generally interfere with the natural defenses of humans and that is why we seek them out. For example pain and swelling are part of the natural defense so, we look to morphine (originally from poppies) and aspirin (originally from European willow bark and some other plants) to quench these effects of injury. I can't think of a drug that augments the natural defenses. Anybody out there that has an example?

Michael B Lomonaco



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