Berberis vulgaris, barberry, isa deciduous and thorny bush with small yellow flowers. The fruit, root, and bark can be used in medicinal formulas. Barberry is a member of the Berberidaceae family. Barberry can be found in Europe, northern Africa, central Asia, and parts of America. It contains vitamin C, isoquinoline alkaloids, anthocyans, chlorogenic acid, malic acid, and acetic acid. Some of the more active constituents include berberine, columbamine, berbamine, jatorrhizine, palmatine, and oxyacanthine.
Barberry has been a part of homeopathic remedies as well as folk medicine. Barberry has been used for a variety of ailments.The fruit for the kidney, urinary tract, and gastroinestinal tract discomforts. It has also been used as a source of vitamin C. The root and bark have been used for similar ailments as well as the respiratory tract. Barberry is thought to have antibiotic and stimulant effects on the body.