Novel drug from Amazon rainforest tree sap evaluated for treatment of chronic idiopathic diarrhea in non-HIV patients

A drug purified and developed from the sap of a tree in the Amazon rainforest is now being studied for the treatment of chronic idiopathic diarrhea in non-HIV patients at The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston (UTHealth) as part of a two-year pilot study.

The novel drug, crofelemer, comes from the Croton lechleri tree, which is commonly referred to as “sangre de drago,” or dragon’s blood, because of its red latex sap. It is native to the Northwest Amazon region in South America and the tree sap has been used in traditional “shaman” medicine for centuries.

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