Growing the Chinese Happy Tree (Xi Shu) in Australia

  • 27 pages

  • Published: 31 Aug 2011

  • Author(s): Davis, Craig, Fanning, Kent , Trueman, Steven , Williams, David

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This RIRDC study investigated the potential for growing, harvesting and extracting from the Xi Shu or Chinese Happy Tree. Xi Shu provides a source of camptothecin which is a biochemical precursor for several anti-cancer drugs that cannot be easily synthesised. The ability to select superior clones and undertake large scale propagation of the tree with subsequent harvest of young leaves as trimmings for the extraction of the drug has been demonstrated.
RIRDC considers recent developments in synthetic production of camptothecin must be fully understood prior to the development of an industry based on naturally derived camptothecin from the Xi Shu tree.