|Appearance Crystalline powder|
Helenin is a phytochemical mixture found in many plant species, including the Inula helenium (elecampane) of the Asteraceae family. It is a mixture of two isomeric sesquiterpene lactones, alantolactone and isoalantolactone.
In 1895 a German scientists Julius Bredt and Wilhelm Posh extracted helenin from Inula helenium and determined its physical and chemical properties.
The roots of Inula helenium can be extracted using alcohol or other non-polar solvents to produce helenin with a composition of about 40% alantolactone and 60% isoalantolactone.
Alantolactone has a variety of in vitro biochemical properties, including:
Certain individuals have experienced contact dermatitis when exposed to alantolactone.