Effects of Arctium lappa L. (Burdock) root tea on inflammatory status and oxidative stress in patients with knee osteoarthritis

Int J Rheum Dis. 2016 Mar;19(3):255-61. doi: 10.1111/1756-185X.12477. Epub 2014 Oct 28.


Aim: This study was designed to examine the effect of Burdock root tea on inflammatory markers and oxidative stress indicators in patients with knee osteoarthritis (OA).

Methods: Thirty-six patients (10 men and 26 women) aged 50-70 years old with knee osteoarthritis referred to the Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation Department of the Tabriz University of Medical Sciences Hospitals, were selected for the study and randomly divided into two groups. Anthropometric measurements, including height, weight and body mass index (BMI) were measured. For all individuals along the 42 days of study period, the same drug treatments, including two lots of 500 mg acetaminophen twice a day and one glucosamine 500 mg once a day,were considered. The intervention group received daily three cups of Burdock root tea (each cup containing 2 g/150 mL boiled water) half-hour after the meal. The control group received three cups containing 150 cc boiled water daily. We assessed inflammatory markers such as high sensitivity C-reactive protein (hs-CRP) and interleukin-6 (IL-6) and oxidative stress indicators such as total antioxidants capacity (TAC), glutathione peroxidase (GPX), superoxide dismutase (SOD) and thiobarbituric acid reactive substances before and after the intervention.

Results: The results showed that burdock root tea significantly decreased the levels of serum IL-6 (P = 0.002), hs-CRP (P = 0.003) and malondialdehyde (P < 0.001), while the levels of serum TAC (P < 0.001) and activities of SOD (P = 0.009) were significantly increased. GPX activities increased but not significantly.

Conclusions: The results suggested that Arctium lappa L. root tea improves inflammatory status and oxidative stress in patients with knee osteoarthritis.

Keywords: Arctium Lappa L.; IL-6; hs-CRP; osteoarthritis; oxidative stress.

Publication types

  • Randomized Controlled Trial
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Administration, Oral
  • Aged
  • Anti-Inflammatory Agents / administration & dosage
  • Anti-Inflammatory Agents / isolation & purification
  • Anti-Inflammatory Agents / therapeutic use*
  • Antioxidants / administration & dosage
  • Antioxidants / isolation & purification
  • Antioxidants / therapeutic use*
  • Arctium* / chemistry
  • Beverages
  • Biomarkers / blood
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Inflammation Mediators / blood*
  • Iran
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Osteoarthritis, Knee / blood
  • Osteoarthritis, Knee / diagnosis
  • Osteoarthritis, Knee / drug therapy*
  • Oxidative Stress / drug effects*
  • Phytotherapy
  • Plant Extracts / administration & dosage
  • Plant Extracts / isolation & purification
  • Plant Extracts / therapeutic use*
  • Plant Roots
  • Plants, Medicinal
  • Time Factors
  • Treatment Outcome


  • Anti-Inflammatory Agents
  • Antioxidants
  • Biomarkers
  • Inflammation Mediators
  • Plant Extracts