The Chinese anti-inflammatory and immunosuppressive herbal remedy Tripterygium wilfordii Hook F

Rheum Dis Clin North Am. 2000 Feb;26(1):29-50, viii. doi: 10.1016/s0889-857x(05)70118-6.


Various preparations of Tripterygium wilfordii Hook F (TwHF) have been used in the treatment of a number of autoimmune and inflammatory diseases since the 1960s. Accumulated data from the clinical trials suggest efficacy of this treatment in a number of rheumatic diseases, including rheumatoid arthritis and systemic lupus erythematosus. Studies on the relationship of the chemical components of TwHF and its immunosuppressive and anti-inflammatory effects suggest that diterpenoid compounds with epoxide groups account for the therapeutic effects of this herbal remedy. This herbal remedy is therefore a unique and powerful alternative therapy for autoimmune and inflammatory diseases.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Anti-Inflammatory Agents / chemistry
  • Anti-Inflammatory Agents / therapeutic use*
  • Drugs, Chinese Herbal / chemistry
  • Drugs, Chinese Herbal / therapeutic use*
  • Humans
  • Rheumatic Diseases / drug therapy*
  • Rheumatic Diseases / immunology
  • Steroids


  • Anti-Inflammatory Agents
  • Drugs, Chinese Herbal
  • Steroids