Pacific yew


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Related to Pacific yew: western yew, Taxol

Pacific yew

n.
A yew (Taxus brevifolia) of western North America having bark that is a natural source of the drug paclitaxel.
References in periodicals archive ?
Yew continues to have many uses today, although European yew and Pacific yew are in limited supply.
The life-saving potential of the Pacific yew was discovered during a search of over 35,000 plant species by the American National Cancer Institute in the Sixties.
Another shrubby Pacific coast original first noted by Lewis and Clark is Pacific yew (Taxus brevifolia).
At present, the only approved source for Taxol is the Pacific yew, a rare and slowly maturing tree found mostly on Federal lands.
Mansukh Wani and Monroe Wall of RTI International* in Research Triangle Park (RTP), for example, developed Taxol from the Pacific yew tree, and camptothecin from the Chinese "happy tree" - key discoveries in chemotherapy of the 1990s.
She points out the Pacific yew and the chinquapins that stand solo, fighting for their little piece of the forest.
Paclitaxel was first derived from the Pacific yew tree.
Like the anticancer drug Taxol, derived from the Pacific yew, a compound manufactured by the rare Eleutherobia coral gums up the internal scaffolding of a cell.
In 1991 our scientists filed 103 patent applications and licensed 21 inventions to private companies--including a process to grow the cancer-fighting drug Taxol in cell cultures rather than relying on the bark from the scarce Pacific yew tree.
Up until now, taxol has been available only in small amounts from the bark of Pacific yew trees, which are sparsely sprinkled through forests in the Pacific Northwest.
Rayat concludes, "Just as Aspirin(R), which now generates $29 billion in sales annually, was synthesized from the bark of willow trees, and Taxol(R) was synthesized from the Pacific yew tree, our goal is to synthesize those select blood sugar reducing cinnamon molecules in the lab and eventually develop a pharmacologically approved compound that could be ingested as a pill or added to foods or beverages, with the end result being lowered blood sugar levels through more efficient use of the body's naturally produced insulin.
Such polycyclic substances are core structural components in certain naturally occurring chemicals, including Taxol(R) (CAS Registry Number 33069- 62-4), a chemotherapeutic drug derived from the bark of the Pacific yew tree.

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