Center for the Biology of Chronic Disease (CBCD)

Licorice Is Antiviral Against Hepatitis C; CBCD Reviews the Medical Evidence

A study published on January 7, 2014 in the medical journal Microbiology and Immunology found that compounds derived from licorice would be good candidates … to develop antivirals against HCV. (1) The CBCD recommends Novirin, which contains licorice, against the hepatitis C virus.


Rochester, NY -- (ReleaseWire) -- 09/29/2014 --“Infected with the hepatitis C virus (HCV)? The CBCD recommends taking Novirin or Gene-Eden-VIR.” – Greg Bennett, CBCD

A study found that many compounds found in licorice target the hepatitis C virus. Licorice root comes from the licorice plant (1). Its active, antiviral ingredient is called “glycyrrhizin.” The natural, antiviral supplements, Novirin and Gene-Eden-VIR, contain licorice. The formula of Novirin and Gene-Eden-VIR was proven to reduce HCV symptoms in a post-marketing clinical study that followed FDA guidelines.

The results of the study revealed that “a methanol extract of G. uralensis roots (Chinese licorice) and its chloroform fraction possessed anti-HCV activities …Through bioactivity-guided purification and structural analysis, we isolated and identified glycycoumarin, glycyrin, glycyrol and liquiritigenin as anti-HCV compounds (1).”

Additionally, “We also found that licochalcone A and glabridin, known as the exclusive constituents of G. inflata and G. glabra, (other licorice ingredients) respectively, possessed anti-HCV activities… another chalcone, isoliquiritigenin (more licorice ingredients), also showed anti-HCV activity (1).”

Click to learn more about the anti-HCV effects of Novirin.

Another study noted that licorice has been known to act against HCV for thousands of years. “Historical sources for the use of Glycyrrhiza species (the active ingredient in licorice) include ancient manuscripts from China, India and Greece. They all mention its use for symptoms of viral respiratory tract infections and hepatitis.” (See the journal Phytotherapy Research, from September 20, 2007) (2).

“Hepatitis C is a liver disease that results from infection with the hepatitis C virus. It can range in severity from a mild illness lasting a few weeks to a serious, lifelong illness. Hepatitis C is usually spread when blood from a person infected with the hepatitis C virus enters the body of someone who is not infected… Hepatitis C can be either ‘acute’ or ‘chronic.’ Acute hepatitis C virus infection is a short-term illness that occurs within the first 6 months after someone is exposed to the hepatitis C virus. For most people, acute infection leads to chronic infection. Chronic hepatitis C is a serious disease than can result in long-term health problems, or even death.” (See the CDC’s webpage on hepatitis C, last updated May 6, 2013)(3)

Click to learn more about hepatitis C symptoms

“Licorice is an ingredient of Novirin and Gene-Eden-VIR. We therefore recommend that those infected with the hepatitis C virus take Novirin or Gene-Eden-VIR. The formula of these natural products was proven to help reduce HCV symptoms.” – Greg Bennett, CBCD

Click to learn more about Novirin and HCV, and Gene-Eden-VIR and HCV.


(1) Anti-hepatitis C virus compounds obtained from Glycyrrhiza uralensis and other Glycyrrhiza species. Published on January 7, 2014.

(2) Antiviral effects of Glycyrrhiza species. Published in February 2008.

(3) CDC - Hepatitis C Information for the Public. Last updated on May 6, 2013.

(4) Gene-Eden-VIR Is Antiviral: Results of a Post Marketing Clinical Study. Published on August 12, 2013.