Ginkgo 24 - 6 biloba is the oldest living tree species and is often referred to as the "living fossil" - the species can be traced back more than 200 million years to the fossils of the Permian period. Ginkgo was almost destroyed throughout the world during the Ice Age but managed to survive in parts of China. Long cultivated as a sacred tree, Ginkgo's medicinal use is documented in Chinese materia medica dating back to 2800 B.C. Traditional Chinese medicine prescribes ginkgo leaves for "the benefit of the brain," relief of asthma and cough symptoms. Ginkgo biloba extracts are currently recommended for - Cerebral and peripheral vascular insufficiency/fragility, dementia, depression, inner ear dysfunction, neuralgia and neuropathy, and retinopathy. Ginkgo is among the leading prescription medicines in Germany and France.