Helichrysum italicum (Roth) G.Don

Last updated: 8 June 2016

Scientific Name

Helichrysum italicum (Roth) G.Don

Synonyms

Gnaphalium glutinosum Ten., Gnaphalium glutinosum var. glutinosum, Gnaphalium italicum Roth, Helichrysum angustifolium var. numidicum (Pomel) Maire, Helichrysum italicum var. italicum, Helichrysum italicum subsp. italicum, Helichrysum italicum var. serotinum (Boiss.) O.Bolòs & Vigo, Helichrysum numidicum Pomel, Helichrysum rupestre subsp. glutinosum (Ten.) Nyman, Helichrysum serotinum (DC.) Boiss., Helichrysum stoechas subsp. numidicum (Pomel) Batt. [1]

Vernacular Name

English Everlasting, immortelle [2], curry plant [3].

Geographical Distributions

The origin of Helichrysum italicum is thought to be at the South of France. It is presently found all over Southern Europe, North Africa and West Asia. [4]

Botanical Description

H. italicum is a member of the family Compositae. The plant is a small evergreen shrub that thrives in sunny, well-drained soil. [4]

The flower is hermaphrodite and aromatic which bloom from July to August. Its use in aromatherapy is fairly recent, probably beginning in France in the mid 1980’s. [4]

The yellow-flowered everlasting daisy is recognised for its three subspecies of Helichrysum italicum subsp. italicum, H. italicum subsp. siculum and H. italicum subsp. microphyllum. [5]

Cultivation.

No documentation

Chemical Constituent

H. italicum has been reported to contain α-pinene, α-cedrene, aromadendrene, β-caryophyllene, limonene, neryl acetate, 2-methylcyclohexyl pentanoate, 2-methylcyclohexyl octanoate, and geranyl acetate. [6]

Plant Part Used

Flower, whole plant (essential oil). [7]

Traditional Use

Early herbalists suggested H. italicum for many respiratory conditions, such as asthma, bronchitis, and whooping cough; as a relief for headaches; and as a cure for liver ailments and skin disorders. European physicians use H. italicum oil as a treatment for any skin disorder or irritation because of its ability to reduce inflammation, fight bacterial infection, balance energy, and regulate blood flow. [7]

Preclinical Data

Pharmacology

Antimicrobial activity

The essential oil of H. italicum was found to demonstrate strong antimicrobial properties and to reduce the multi-drug resistance of Enterobacter aerogenes, Escherichia coli, Pseudomonas aeruginosa and Acinetobacter baumannii.[8] Another study indicated that the antimicrobial activity of the oil and of its terpenoid fraction were well demonstrated against Staphylococcus aureus and Candida albicans [9].

Toxicity

No documentation

Clinical Data

No documentation

Dosage

No documentation

Poisonous Management

No documentation

Line drawing

No documentation

References

  1. The Plant List. Ver 1.1 Helichrysum italicum (Roth) G. Don [homepage on the Internet]. c2013 [updated 2012 Feb 11; cited 2016 May 4]. Available from: http://www.theplantlist.org/tpl1.1/record/gcc-34309
  2. Schnaubelt K. The healing intelligence of essential oils. Rochester, Vermont: Healing Arts Press; 2011.
  3. Tisserand R, Young R. Essential oil safety: A guide for health care professionals. 2nd ed. Edinburgh: Churchill Livingston Elsevier, 2013; p. 309.
  4. Martin I. Aromatherapy for massage practioners. Philadelphia: Lippincott Williams & Wilkins; 2006.
  5. Galbany‐Casals M, Blanco‐Moreno JM, Garcia‐Jacas N, Breitwieser I, Smissen RD. Genetic variation in Mediterranean Helichrysum italicum (Asteraceae; Gnaphalieae):D disjunct populations of subsp. microphyllum have a common origin? Plant Biol. 2011;13(4):678-687.
  6. Mastelic J, Politeo O, Jerkovic I, Radosevic N. Composition and antimicrobial activity of Helichrysum italicum essential oil and its terpene and terpenoid fractions. J Chem Nat Comp. 2005 Jan;41(1).
  7. Wilson R. Aromatherapy: Essential oils for vibrant health and beauty. New York: Penguin, 2002; p. 79.
  8. Lorenzi V, Muselli A, Bernardini AF, Berti L, Pagès JM, Amaral L, Bolla JM. Geraniol restores antibiotic activities on multi-drug resistant isolates from gram-negative species. Antimicrob Agents Chemother. 2009 May; 53(5): 2209-2211.
  9. Mastelic J, Politeo O, Jerkovic I, Radosevic N. Composition and antimicrobial activity of Helichrysum italicum essential oil and its terpene and terpenoid fractions. J Chem Nat Comp. 2005 Jan;41(1).