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Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine
Volume 2016, Article ID 2926819, 12 pages
Research Article

Evaluation of Medicinal Categorization of Atractylodes japonica Koidz. by Using Internal Transcribed Spacer Sequencing Analysis and HPLC Fingerprinting Combined with Statistical Tools

1Division of Pharmacology, School of Korean Medicine, Pusan National University, Yangsan 626-870, Republic of Korea
2Department of Herbology, College of Korean Medicine, Wonkwang University, Iksan 570-749, Republic of Korea
3Center for Metabolic Function Regulation, Wonkwang University, Iksan 570-749, Republic of Korea

Received 9 December 2015; Accepted 14 March 2016

Academic Editor: Salih Mollahaliloglu

Copyright © 2016 Jung-Hoon Kim et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Atractylodes rhizomes have been used as the herbal medicine “Changchul” or “Baekchul,” according to their clinical purpose, in Korea, China, and Japan. Among the Atractylodes species, the medicinal use of Atractylodes japonica has been controversial, as it is categorized as both Changchul and Baekchul in those countries, and, moreover, parts of the rhizome have been differently used, depending on age of the plant, in Korea. Chromatographic fingerprinting by using HPLC combined with chemometric analyses and internal transcribed spacer (ITS) sequencing analysis were conducted to classify and identify 34 crude drugs derived from Atractylodes rhizomes. The identification of the samples, authenticated by their morphological features as A. japonica Koidz. (Changchul and Baekchul), A. chinensis Koidz., and A. macrocephala Koidz., was confirmed as A. japonica, A. chinensis, and A. macrocephala by ITS sequencing. The results from chemometric analyses showed that the chemical components of the crude drugs from A. japonica were significantly different from those from A. macrocephala but were similar to those from A. chinensis. The analyses also suggested that the categorization by age of A. japonica as Changchul or Baekchul is not recommended. The results indicate that A. japonica should be categorized as “Changchul” and should not be further categorized by age.