Angelica sinensis (Oliv.) Diels

Last updated: 16 May 2016

Scientific Name

Angelica sinensis (Oliv.) Diels


Angelica polymorpha var. sinensis Oliv., Angelica sinensis var. sinensis [1]

Vernacular Name

English Chinese angelica, female ginseng [2]
China Dang gui, dong dang gui, dong quai, tang kuei, tang kwei [2]
Vietnam Can qui, tan qui [2]
Japan Shirane-senkyu, suzuka-zeri [3]
Germany Chinesische Angelikawurz(el) [3].

Geographical Distributions

No documentation

Botanical Description

Angelica sinensis  is a member of the Apiaceae family. [1]


No documentation

Chemical Constituent

A. sinensis has been reported to contain α-pinen, Δ-3-carene, β-phellandrene, p-cymene, limonene, sabinene, limonene, linalool, lingustilide [4][5], and ferulic acid. [6]

Plant Part Used

No documentation

Traditional Use

A. sinensis essential oil is frequently used in China to treat hepatic fibrosis which occurs when connective tissue overgrows in the liver. [5]

Preclinical Data


Phytoestrogenic activity

A. sinensis is rich in phytoestrogens. [7][8] Phytoestrogens have weaker effect on binding sites than do their drug counterparts. During PMS when estrogen levels are elevated, phytoestrogens bind to estrogen-binding sites, leaving the endogenous estrogen to be metabolized by the liver and thus reducing overall excess estrogenic effects. When estrogen levels are low, as in the case of menopause, phytoestrogens bind to estrogen-binding sites, activating receptor site in a milder fashion than drug counterparts. There are a few contradicting reports about A. sinensis’s direct estrogenic effects. However, it has been used for generations in females who report better results ad fewer adverse effects than with prescription estrogen replacement products. A. sinensis is generally considered when evaluating options for relieving symptoms of menopause however, numerous slides evaluating use of A. sinensis for that purpose have not had promising results. One indicated that A. sinensis showed only weak estrogen receptor activity. [9]

Clinical Data

Clinical findings

Antihypertensive activity

In addition to the phytoestroenic effects of A. sinensis, it also reportedly dilates blood vessels which may exert an antihypertensive effect [14][15]. It is believed that A. sinensis also regulates immunoglobulin (IgE) antibodies and exerts an immunomodulating effect on the body by enhancing white blood cell activity [16][17]. A. sinensis also reportedly promotes circulatory activity and has blood building properties, while reducing viscosity of the blood [18][19].


No documentation

Interaction & Depletion

No documentation


No documentation

Poisonous Management

No documentation

Line drawing

No documentation


  1. The Plant List. Ver1.1. Angelica sinensis (Oliv.) Diels.[homepage on the Internet]. c2013 [updated 2012 Mar 23; cited 2016 May 16] Available from:
  2. Quattrocchi U. CRC world dictionary of medicinal and poisonous plants: Common names, scientific names, eponyms, synonyms, and etymology. Volume I A-B. Boca Raton, Florida: CRC Press, 2012; p. 301
  3. Seidemann J. World spice plants: Economic usage, botany, taxonomy. Berlin: Springer-Verlag, 2005; p. 43.
  4. Wedge DE. Bioactivity-guided fractionation and GS/MS fingerprinting of Angelica sinensis and Angelica archangelica root components for antifungal and mosquito deterrent activity. J Agric Food Chem. 2009;57(2):464-470.
  5. Dong L. Fast determination of Z-ligustilide in plasma by gas chromatography/mass spectrometry following headspace single-drop microextraction. J Sep Scim. 2007;30(9):1318-1325.
  6. Lin M. Chemical studies of Angelica sinensis. Yap Hseueh Hsueh Pao. 1979;14(9):529-534.
  7. Hirata JD. Dose Dong quai have estrogenic effects in postmenopausal women? A double blind, placebo-controlled trial. Fertile steril. 1997;68(6):981-986.
  8. Xu LN. The effect of Dong quai (Angelica sinensis) and its constituent ferulic acid on phagocytosis in Mice. Yao Hsueh Hsueh Pao. 1981;16(6):411-414.
  9. Liu J, Burdette JE, Xu H, Gu C, Van Breemen RB, Bhat KP. Evaluation of estrogenic activity of plant extracts for the potential treatment of menopausal symptoms. J Agric Food Chem. 2001;49(5):2472-2479.
  10. Willhite LA, O’Connell MB. Urogenital atrophy: Prevention and treatment. Pharmacotherapy. 2001;21(4):464-480.
  11. Hardy ML. Herbs of special interest to women. J Am Pharm Assoc (Wash). 2000;40(2):234-242.
  12. Shaw CR. The perimenopausal hot flash: Epidemiology, physiology and treatment. Nurse Pract. 1997;22(3):55-56, 61-66.
  13. Amato, Christophe S, Mellon PL. Estrogenic activity of herbs commonly used as remedies for menopausal symptoms. Menopause. 2002;9(2):145-150.
  14. Tao JY. Studies on the antiasthmatic action of Ligustilide of Dang-gui, Angelica sinensis (Oliv.) Diels. Yao Hsueh Hsueh Pao. 1984;19(8):561-565.
  15. Chen SG. Protective effects of Angelica sinensis injection on myocardial ischemia/reperfusion injury in rabbits. Chung Kuo Chung His I Chieh Ho Tsa Chih. 1995;15(8):486-488.
  16. Raman A. investigation of the effect of Angelica sinensis root extract on the proliferation of melanocytes in culture. J Ethnopharmacol. 1996;54(2-3):165-170.
  17. Choy YM. Immunopharmacological studies of low molecular weight polysaccharides from Angelica sinensis. Am J Chin Med. 1994;22(2):137-145.
  18. Chen YC. Experimental studies on the effects of Danggui buxue decoction on IL-2 production of blood-deficient mice. Chung Kuo Chung Yao Tsa Chih.1994;19(12):739-741.
  19. Chen YC. Research on the mechanism of blood-tonifying effect of Danggui buxue decoction. Chung Kuo Chung Yao Tsa Chih, 1994;19(12):739-741.
  20. Murray MT. The healing power of herbs: The enlightened person’s guide to the wonders of medicinal plants. Rocklin, California: Prima publishing, 1995; p. 43-49.
  21. Northrup C. Meno Times. San Rafael, California: The Menopause Center; 1995.
  22. Newall CA. Herbal medicines: a guide for health care professionals. The Pharmaceutical Press, 1996:28-30.