Dietary propolis supplementation reduced proinflammatory cytokines associated with air pollution exposure, without impacting on immune cell infiltration or lung function
New Zealand Institute for Plant and Food Research, September 10, 2021
Air pollution is estimated to cause 7 million annual deaths globally. Our aim was to determine if dietary propolis consumption could prevent the immune and functional damage in a mouse model of acute urban dust exposure. Female C57BL/6J mice were challenged three times with intranasal urban dust over seven days which significantly increased proinflammatory cytokines and immune cells in the lung 24 h post final challenge. Dietary New Zealand propolis (2%) with gamma cyclodextrin supplementation reduced urban dust-induced lung TNFα, IL-4, and IL-6 cytokine production; but did not alter immune cell infiltration into the lung, or lung function outcomes. This suggests that daily consumption of 8% propolis with gamma cyclodextrin supplemented food was sufficient to reduce urban dust pollution-induced proinflammatory cytokine production but was not sufficient to prevent immune cell recruitment into the lung or lung function decline in a murine model of lung inflammation.
In this study we found that daily consumption of a New Zealand propolis reduced proinflammatory cytokines within the lung in response to acute urban dust exposure but this inhibition was not sufficient to reduce immune cell infiltration or prevent increased airways tissue constriction. These results suggest that dietary supplementation of 8% propolis with gamma cyclodextrin (equivalent to 2% propolis resin) does not result in sufficient bioavailable concentrations of the bioactive polyphenolics to fully overcome urban dust pollution-induced acute immune cell infiltration into the lung. Other studies have shown that acute gavage consumption or intraperitoneal injection of specific propolis bioactive components can protect against a number of different immune challenges within the lung. These effects appear to be both concentration and administration route dependent, and may not be achievable using unenriched propolis as a dietary intervention.
20-Week Study of Clinical Outcomes of Over-the-Counter COVID-19 Prophylaxis and Treatment
Comprehensive Pain Management Institute (Ohio), August 6, 2021
New research published in the Journal of Evidence-Based Integrative Medicine shows that early intervention against a Wuhan coronavirus (Covid-19) infection using natural, over-the-counter remedies is a safe and effective way to avoid complications.
Researchers from Ohio looked at modalities that are readily available for the Chinese Virus, including zinc, zinc ionophores, vitamins C, D3, and E, and l-lysine. These items were categorized in the study as “preventive measures” and “early-stage treatments” that can help to avoid the need for more “advanced” anti-covid measures such as pharmaceutical drugs and vaccines.
Each of these tested remedies is natural, by the way, and the results of what they can do are impressive. Once again, nature wins out as our most abundant medicine cabinet, far exceeding anything cooked up in a lab.
The clinical study found that this “multi-component OTC (over-the-counter) ‘core formulation’ regimen” successfully protected test subjects against getting sick from the Chinese Virus, even as others got sick.
“While both groups were moderate in size, the difference between them in outcomes over the 20-week study period was large and stark: Just under 4% of the compliant test group presented flu-like symptoms, but none of the test group was COVID-positive,” the paper reveals.
“[W]hereas 20% of the non-compliant control group presented flu-like symptoms, three-quarters of whom (15% overall of the control group) were COVID-positive.”
For 20 weeks, test subjects took these natural supplements. Adjustments were made for those with pre-existing health conditions and other health factors that may have influenced the outcome.
Since all of the remedies utilized fall into the “low cost” category, anyone can access them. They are all dubbed as “anti-viral” as well, meaning they are safe and effective for use against viruses.
By taking advantage of these remedies early, the paper explains, people can help to protect themselves against the types of adverse events that are causing some people to have to be hospitalized and put on a ventilator.
“From early March through the end of July 2020, one of us (LM) monitored approximately 600 patients in Columbus and Cleveland, Ohio cities heavily affected by the COVID-19 pandemic, and did consultations with several colleagues (including JL) in the New York City metropolitan area, also heavily hit,” the paper explains.
“Over that 5-month period, we dealt with dozens of clinical and/or test-confirmed cases of COVID-19. Much of the monitoring was performed via telemedicine; approximately 20% was performed in-office. It is from in-office monitored patients and staff that the study groups emerged.”
We have been covering some of these same remedies along with others that have been scientifically shown to help protect against spike protein-induced illness.
Hydroxychloroquine (HCQ), as one example, is a zinc ionophore that helps to deliver more zinc into cells for improved immune function. Epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG), a polyphenol component of green tea, is a natural zinc ionophore that improves zinc absorption.
For this latest study, the research team used quina (cinchona) plant bark extract and quercetin as zinc ionophores, as these, too, help to deliver more healing nutrients like zinc to the cells.
“The core supplementation formulation components have been demonstrated … to have beneficial effects both outside of and within clinical settings in the prevention of viral infections and also in the treatment of early stages of such diseases,” the study reveals.
“Zinc ionophores can … be utilized to gain the anti-viral benefit of enhanced intracellular Zn+2 concentrations while limiting tolerance / side-effect / toxicity issues associated with elevated serum levels of zinc supplementation.”
You can review the full paper at this link.
Neuroprotective effect of L-carnitine against glyceraldehyde-induced metabolic impairment
University Politecnica delle Marche (Italy), September 7, 2021
According to news reporting originating from Ancona, Italy, research stated, “Alzheimer’s disease (AD) is a neurodegenerative disorder characterized by progressive cognitive regression and memory loss. Dysfunctions of both glucose metabolism and mitochondrial dynamics have been recognized as the main upstream events of the degenerative processes leading to AD.”
Our news editors obtained a quote from the research from the School of Medicine, “It has been recently found that correcting cell metabolism by providing alternative substrates can prevent neuronal injury by retaining mitochondrial function and reducing AD marker levels. Here, we induced an AD-like phenotype by using the glycolysis inhibitor glyceraldehyde (GA) and explored whether L-carnitine (4-N-trimethylamino-3-hydroxybutyric acid, LC) could mitigate neuronal damage, both in SH-SY5Y neuroblastoma cells and in rat primary cortical neurons. We have already reported that GA significantly modified AD marker levels; here we demonstrated that GA dramatically compromised cellular bioenergetic status, as revealed by glycolysis and oxygen consumption rate (OCR) evaluation. We found that LC ameliorated cell survival, improved OCR and ATP synthesis, prevented the loss of the mitochondrial membrane potential (Dps) and reduced the formation of reactive oxygen species (ROS). Of note, the beneficial effect of LC did not rely on the glycolytic pathway rescue. Finally, we noticed that LC significantly reduced the increase in pTau levels induced by GA. Overall, these findings suggest that the use of LC can promote cell survival in the setting of the metabolic impairments commonly observed in AD.”
According to the news editors, the research concluded: “Our data suggest that LC may act by maintaining mitochondrial function and by reducing the pTau level.”
Hyperbaric oxygen study shows reversal of biologic hallmarks responsible for development of Alzheimer disease
Tel Aviv University & Shamir Medical Center (Israel), September 10, 2021
A new study, published today in peer-review medical journal Aging, marks the first time non-pharmaceutical clinical exploration proves efficacy in reversing the main activators of Alzheimer's disease.
Using a specific protocol of hyperbaric oxygen therapy (HBOT), cerebral blood flow (CBF) improved/increased in elderly patients by 16-23%, alleviating vascular dysfunction and amyloid burden. The study, part of a comprehensive research program directed toward aging and accompanying ailments as a reversible disease, holds promise for a new strategic approach to the prevention of Alzheimer's by addressing not only the symptoms or targeting biomarkers, but rather the core pathology and biology responsible for the advancement of the disease.
Vascular dysfunction is a crucial element in the development of Alzheimer's and cognitive decline:
- Amyloid beta deposits in the brain blood vessel walls are the most common vascular pathology in Alzheimer's.
- Reduced blood flow to the brain and its related decrease in oxygen supply (hypoxia) can precede the clinical onset of dementia and correlates with the degree of cognitive impairment in Alzheimer's.
The comprehensive research, conducted at the Sagol School of Neuroscience at Tel Aviv University and the Sagol Center for Hyperbaric Medicine and Research at Shamir Medical Center, was led by study co-authors, Professor Shai Efrati, M.D.; Professor Uri Ashery, Ph.D.; Ronit Shapira, Ph.D.; Pablo Blinder, Ph.D.; Amir Hadanny, M.D. Using combined data from an animal model of Alzheimer's, where effects were evaluated directly on brain tissue (Sagol School of Neuroscience at Tel Aviv University); humans, assessed with the use of high-resolution MRI and computerized cognitive test (Sagol Center for Hyperbaric Medicine and Research at Shamir Medical Center); correlating results displayed beneficial effects of HBOT on patients suffering from mild cognitive impairment (MCI), the stage before dementia. Each patient received 60 HBOT sessions over a 90-day period, showcasing substantial improvement in cognitive functions – with memory, attention and information processing speed exhibiting the strongest results.
"After dedicating our HBOT research to exploring its impact on the areas of brain functionality and age-related cognitive decline, we have discovered for the first time HBOT induces degradation and clearance of pre-existing amyloid plaques – treatment, and the appearance of newly formed plaques- prevention," explains Professor Uri Ashery. "Elderly patients suffering from significant memory loss at baseline revealed an increase in brain blood flow and improvement in cognitive performance, demonstrating HBOT potency to reverse core elements responsible for the development of Alzheimer's disease."
"By treating vascular dysfunction, we're mapping out the path toward Alzheimer's prevention. More research is underway to further demonstrate how HBOT can improve cognitive function and become an influential tool in the imperative fight against the disease," affirms Professor Efrati, research group leader and medical advisor to Aviv Scientific.
Aviv has developed a unique medical treatment protocol that includes HBOT, cognitive and physical training, and nutritional coaching, to enhance brain and body performance of aging adults at Aviv Clinics, currently available in Central Florida and Dubai.
HBOT is already used in patients with other pathologies and is known to be a relatively safe treatment modality, illustrating its potential to be easily implanted in clinical practice. In recent years, there is growing scientific evidence that certain protocols of HBOT can improve brain oxygen supply, induce proliferation of neuronal stem cells and induce generation of new blood vessels and neurons in the brain.
Increased flatulence from eating plant-based diet found to indicate healthier gut microbiome
Center for Biomedical Research Network for Liver and Digestive Diseases (Spain), September 10, 2021
A team of researchers affiliated with a host of institutions across Spain has found that the increase in flatulence experienced by people switching to a plant-based diet is an indication of a healthier gut microbiome. In their paper published in the journal Nutrients, the group describes experiments they conducted with healthy, male volunteers regarding diet, fecal sample size and flatulence.
It is widely known that switching from a fat or carbohydrate-based diet to one that features more vegetables results in more flatulence—particularly if the switch is to cruciferous vegetables. But as the researchers with this new effort have noted, little research has been done to learn more about the association between diet and flatulence.
To learn more about the impact of switching to a plant-based diet on digestion and the gut biome, the researchers enlisted the assistance of 18 healthy, adult male volunteers. Each was asked to eat a western-style diet and then to switch to the plant-based Mediterranean diet for two weeks.
Over the study period, the volunteers were asked to count the number of times they defecated each day and to capture and weigh each stool sample. Each of the volunteers was also asked to count the number of times they passed gas. The volunteers were also asked to submit to randomized testing that involved measuring the amount of gas that was emitted during episodes of flatulence, using balloons.
The researchers found that the change in diet did not change the number of times the volunteers defecated each day—but it did change the amount of material discharged. The researchers found the plant-based diet doubled the stool size on average. The researchers note this was due to a huge increase in the mass of bacterial growth and excretion. The data also showed that the number of flatulence episodes increased by seven times per day on the plant-based diet—and each discharge had approximately 50% more gas. The researchers note this was due to fermenting of plant material in the gut.
The researchers suggest their experiments show that a plant-based diet promotes more healthy types of gut bacteria which leads to better overall gut health.
Physical exercise can relieve tumor-associated anemia
University of Basel (Switzerland), September 10, 2021
Many cancer patients suffer from anemia leaving them fatigued, weak, and an impaired ability to perform physical activity. Drugs only rarely alleviate this type of anemia. Researchers at the University of Basel have now been able to show what causes the anemia, and that physical exercise can improve this condition.
The two major symptoms of cancer are loss of muscle mass and a reduced hemoglobin level, leading to weight loss, fatigue, lethargy and reduced physical performance. Moreover, both symptoms—atrophy and anemia—prompt many patients to schedule a doctor's appointment, then resulting in the diagnosis of a tumor. Why cancer causes muscle atrophy and anemia is not yet understood, and treatment is currently difficult.
The fact that anemia leads to a decline of the overall state of health and can negatively affect the course of cancer therapy highlights the urgency to obtain insights into causes and potential remedies. In collaboration with the Department of Biomedicine at the University of Basel, the research group of Professor Christoph Handschin at the Biozentrum has now been able to show in a mouse model that cancer not only triggers a systemic inflammatory reaction, but also massively changes the handling of lipids and other metabolites in the body.
The body's fight is unsuccessful
These changes result in a tumor-related enhanced destruction of red blood cells. The study published in Science Advances shows that exercise normalizes these metabolic abnormalities and thereby reduces the anemia caused by cancer.
The body tries to counteract the degradation by increasing red blood cell productionin the bone marrow and the spleen—without success. However, the increased production of blood cells is insufficient to prevent tumor-associated anemia. "We have now been able to clarify how cancer causes the degradation of red blood cells," says Christoph Handschin. "Cancer massively alters the metabolism of lipids and other compounds. This alters not only the red blood cells but also the macrophages, causing a sharp increase in red blood cells destruction by the macrophages." Macrophages are a type of white blood cells and part of the immune system.
Exercise normalizes metabolism and alleviates anemia
The research group attempted to normalize the metabolism by pharmacological means. However, none of the drugs could significantly improve the anemia. In contrast, however, the metabolism was regulated to such an extent by exercise that the anemia also decreased. Even the abnormal increase in red blood cell production could be reduced to a lower level. "Training was able to restore tumor-induced metabolic remodeling and inflammation sufficiently to blunt the excessive blood cell formation and destruction," explained Handschin.
This study provides novel insights into the development of tumor-associated anemia. The findings suggest that exercise is a useful therapy for cancer patients, in order to counteract anemia and associated fatigue and lethargy and in turn to improve their general well-being and quality of life. This also leads to improved tolerance of radio- and chemotherapy, as has previously been established.
Mango could help maintain gut bacteria at risk from high-fat diets
Oklahoma State University, September 13, 2021
Mango consumption could help prevent the loss of beneficial gut bacteria caused by a high fat diet, according to research on mice.
The findings, published in the Journal of Nutrition , appears to reveal for the first time the positive impact of mango on gut microbiota.
In the study, 60 male mice were assigned to one of four dietary treatment groups for 12 weeks - control (with 10% of calories from fat), high fat (with 60% calories from fat), or high fat with 1% or 10% mango. All high-fat diets had similar macronutrient, calcium, phosphorus, and fiber content.
“We investigated the effects of freeze-dried mango pulp combined with an high-fat diet on the cecal microbial population and its relation to body composition, lipids, glucose parameters, short-chain fatty acid (SCFA) production, and gut inflammatory markers in a mouse model of diet-induced obesity,” the study reports.
The high-fat dietary treatment with 10% mango (equivalent to 1½ cups of fresh mango pieces) was found to be the most effective in preventing the loss of beneficial bacteria from a high-fat diet without decreasing body weight or fat accumulation.
Specifically, mango supplementation regulated gut bacteria in favor of Bifidobacteria and Akkermansia and enhanced short-chain fatty acid (SFCA) production. SCFAs have been shown to possess a wide range of beneficial effects, such as anti-inflammatory properties.
In previous studies, Bifidobacteria, for example, has been found to be lower in both obese individuals and those with type-2 diabetes. Similar results have been observed withAkkermansia in animal studies. High-fat diets, meanwhile, have been linked to gut dysbiosis, or bacterial imbalances within the intestinal tract.
"Fibre and other bioactive compounds in plant-based foods are suggested to prevent gut dysbiosis caused by a high-fat diet," said Edralin A. Lucas, professor of nutritional sciences at Oklahoma State University and lead researcher of the study.
"Mango is a good source of fibre and has been reported in previous studies to have anti-obesogenic, hypoglycemic and immunomodulatory properties. The results of this animal study showed that adding mango to the diet may help maintain and regulate gut health and levels of beneficial bacteria levels.”
India, China, Indonesia and Thailand are the top four Mango growing countries, accounting for well over half the total global production.
Although more research is needed on the effects of mango on human health, this study suggests that mango consumption may be important in improving gut health particularly for those consuming a high-fat diet, the researchers concluded.