Active Ingredient History

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Silibinin (INN), also known as silybin (both from Silybum, the generic name of the plant from which it is extracted), is the major active constituent of silymarin, a standardized extract of the milk thistle seeds, containing a mixture of flavonolignans consisting of silibinin, isosilibinin, silychristin, silidianin, and others. Silibinin itself is a mixture of two diastereomers, silybin A and silybin B, in approximately equimolar ratio. The mixture exhibits a number of pharmacological effects, particularly in the fatty liver, non-alcoholic fatty liver, non-alcoholic steatohepatitis, and there is great clinical evidence for the use of silibinin as a supportive element in alcoholic and Child–Pugh grade 'A' liver cirrhosis. However, despite its several beneficial effects on the liver, silibinin and all the other compounds found in silymarin, especially silychristin seem to act as potent disruptors of the thyroid system by blocking the MCT8 transporter. The long term intake of silymarin can lead to some form of thyroid disease and if taken during pregnancy, silymarin can cause the development of the Allan–Herndon–Dudley syndrome. Although this information is not being taken into consideration by all regulatory bodies, several studies now consider silymarin and especially silychristin to be important inhibitors of the MCT8 transporter and a potential disruptor of the thyroid hormone functions.   Wikipedia

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