Wednesday, January 23, 2019

Honey Component May Help Prevent, Treat Heart Diseases

The cardiovascular protective effects of chrysin: A narrative review on experimental researches

Cardiovasc Hematol Agents Med Chem. 2019 Jan 14

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Chrysin is one of the flavonoids fruits, vegetables, and plant especially found in honey, it has been indicated that its cardiovascular protective effect is due to its antioxidative effects and anti-inflammatory activities.

Chrysin exerts an antioxidant effect by enhancing the antioxidant system, suppressing pro-oxidant enzymes, scavenging free radicals and chelating redox active transition-metal ions. Chrysin decreases lipid synthesis and also increases its metabolism, thereby ameliorating blood lipid profile. Chrysin modulates vascular function by increasing the bioavailability of endothelial nitric oxide.

Chrysin inhibits the development of atherosclerosis by decreasing vascular inflammation. The anti-inflammatory effects of chrysin may relate to its inhibitory effect on the nuclear transcriptional factor-kB signaling pathway. It also prevents vascular smooth muscle cells proliferation and thrombogenesis.

Altogether, chrysin may be effective as a natural agent for the prevention and treatment of cardiovascular diseases; however, several clinical trial studies should be done to confirm its protective effects on humans.

Tuesday, January 22, 2019

Propolis Component May Help Protect Kidneys of People with Diabetes

Dietary Chrysin Suppresses Formation of Actin Cytoskeleton and Focal Adhesion in AGE-Exposed Mesangial Cells and Diabetic Kidney: Role of Autophagy

Nutrients. 2019 Jan 9;11(1). pii: E127

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Advanced glycation end products (AGE) play a causative role in the development of aberrant phenotypes of intraglomerular mesangial cells, contributing to acute/chronic glomerulonephritis.

The aim of this study was to explore mechanistic effects of the flavonoid chrysin present in bee propolis and herbs on actin dynamics, focal adhesion, and the migration of AGE-exposed mesangial cells. The in vitro study cultured human mesangial cells exposed to 33 mM glucose and 100 μg/mL AGE-bovine serum albumin (AGE-BSA) for up to 5 days in the absence and presence of 1⁻20 μM chrysin.

The in vivo study employed db/db mice orally administrated for 10 weeks with 10 mg/kg chrysin. The presence of ≥10 μM chrysin attenuated mesangial F-actin induction and bundle formation enhanced by AGE. Chrysin reduced the mesangial induction of α-smooth muscle actin (α-SMA) by glucose, and diminished the tissue α-SMA level in diabetic kidneys, indicating its blockade of mesangial proliferation.

The treatment of chrysin inhibited the activation of vinculin and paxillin and the induction of cortactin, ARP2/3, fascin-1, and Ena/VASP-like protein in AGE-exposed mesangial cells. Oral administration of chrysin diminished tissue levels of cortactin and fascin-1 elevated in diabetic mouse kidneys. Mesangial cell motility was enhanced by AGE, which was markedly attenuated by adding chrysin to cells.

On the other hand, chrysin dampened the induction of autophagy-related genes of beclin-1, LC3 I/II, Atg3, and Atg7 in mesangial cells exposed to AGE and in diabetic kidneys. Furthermore, chrysin reduced the mTOR activation in AGE-exposed mesangial cells and diabetic kidneys.

The induction of mesangial F-actin, cortactin, and fascin-1 by AGE was deterred by the inhibition of autophagy and mTOR.

Thus, chrysin may encumber diabetes-associated formation of actin bundling and focal adhesion and mesangial cell motility through disturbing autophagy and mTOR pathway.

Monday, January 21, 2019

Health Benefits of Honey, Bee Pollen

Healthy living with bees: Investigating the antioxidant properties of honey and pollen


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Bees rather handily produce a wide range of health-promoting substances, including honey, beeswax, propolis and royal jelly. Even the pollen that bees collect along with the nectar has health benefits. Many of these benefits derive from the fact that these substances are rich in antioxidants such as flavonoids and other polyphenols, which soak up harmful reactive oxygen species (ROS).

Now, chemists from Portugal and Algeria, led by Ana Oliveira-Brett from the University of Coimbra, have come up with a quick and easy analytical process, comprising several comparatively simple analytical techniques, for investigating in detail the antioxidant properties of bee products...

Honey and pollen

They first tested this analytical process on 10 samples of honey from Greece, Portugal, Algeria and Romania, and two samples of pollen from Portugal and Romania. This involved first extracting the polyphenols from the honey and pollen samples by immersing them in a mixture of water, ethanol and methanol, and then exposing them to ultrasound.

DP voltammetry and the DPPH spectrophotometric assay revealed that the extracted polyphenols possessed high levels of antioxidant activity, with the results from both techniques tending to agree with each other.  HPLC-ED revealed that all the honey and pollen samples contained a similar range of polyphenols, including several anthocyanidins and flavanols, although they differed in their concentrations.

These results also indicated that the relationship between polyphenol concentration and antioxidant activity isn’t entirely straightforward. Among the honeys, a honey from Portugal had the highest polyphenol concentrations, even though a Greek honey had the highest antioxidant activity.

Finally, the chemists conducted the gel electrophoresis step with four of the honey samples and one of the pollen samples. This showed that, irrespective of their antioxidant activities or polyphenol concentrations, all the samples helped to protect the DNA from damage by soaking up the ROS.

These findings not only confirm the health benefits of honey and pollen, but also raise the possibility of using this analytical process to explore the health benefits of the various other bee products as well.

Sunday, January 20, 2019

Royal Jelly May Help Treat Alzheimer's Disease

Royal jelly peptides: potential inhibitors of β-secretase in N2a/APP695swe cells

Sci Rep. 2019 Jan 17;9(1):168

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Royal jelly (RJ) is a type of natural health product with a long history of use. Royal jelly peptides (RJPs) obtained from RJ have numerous bioactivities.

To study the neuroprotective effect of RJPs, major royal jelly proteins were digested into crude RJPs and subsequently purified by RP-HPLC. Purified RJP fractions were evaluated in N2a/APP695swe cells. Our results indicated that purified royal jelly peptides (RJPs) (1-9 μg/mL) could inhibit external beta-amyloid 40 (Aβ1-40) and beta-amyloid 42 (Aβ1-42) production through the down-regulation of β-secretase (BACE1) in N2a/APP695 cells. The modulation of BACE1 may be related to histone acetylation modification.

Our results demonstrated a neuroprotective function of RJPs, which indicates that RJPs may serve as potential β-secretase inhibitors in ameliorating Aβ-related pathology in Alzheimer's Disease.

Saturday, January 19, 2019

Propolis Spray Boosts Immunity, Treats Children's Sore Throats

This Natural Throat Spray Keeps Kids Healthy And Sniffle-Free

By Patch Deals, Patch National Staff | Jan 18, 2019

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We've reached that time of year again where it seems like no amount of hand-washing or cough-covering is going to keep the kids from getting sick. Germs are everywhere, but we've finally found a natural, effective product to boost our little ones' immune systems and help fight off sore throats and sniffles: It's a propolis spray from Beekeeper's Naturals, and we'll never face another winter without it.

Propolis is a mix of bee saliva and beeswax and other natural goodness, and it basically works as a glue to seal their hives and hold everything together. It's nature's ultimate protector, and it's been used for centuries by humans for immune support. This Beekeeper's Naturals throat spray contains bee propolis (95 percent extract) and just a little bit of buckwheat honey for a natural sweet flavor. Kids love the taste, and parents love that it's a great source of antioxidants...

Friday, January 18, 2019

Citrus Blossom Honey Boosts Activity of Gold Nanoparticles Against Super Bugs (MRSA, VRSA)

MIC and MBC of Honey and Gold Nanoparticles against methicillin-resistant (MRSA) and vancomycin-resistant (VRSA) coagulase-positive S. aureus isolated from contagious bovine clinical mastitis

J Genet Eng Biotechnol. 2017 Jun;15(1):219-230

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Staphylococcus aureus is one of the major causative agents of the bovine clinical mastitis. This study aimed to isolate and identify S. aureus from cases of bovine clinical mastitis followed by phenotypic detection of MRSA and VRSA.

The genotypic detection of MRSA was done through PCR detection of the resistance mecA gene. Furthermore, this study aimed to investigate the in vitro MIC and MBC of the Dodonaea angustifolia plant extract, Honey, and AuNPs against the clinically isolated MRSA and VRSA. Of 93 mastitis milk samples examined, 54 (58.1%) S. aureus were isolated and identified {CP S. aureus = 46 (85.2%) and CN S. aureus = 8 (14.8%)}. The whole MRSA, VRSA, MSSA, and VSSA detected were 19 (35.2%), 7 (13%), 35 (65%), and 47 (87%) respectively. The mean counts of S. aureus were between 8.6 × 104 ± 3.5 × 105 CFU/ml.

The oxacillin and vancomycin MICs against MRSA and VRSA respectively, were >256 µg/ml. AuNPs sized 30 nm produce observable in vitro anti-MRSA and anti-VRSA activities. Imtenan® citrus blossom honey has also antibacterial activities against MRSA and VRSA with general MBC and MIC range values were observed at a concentration of 0.625, 1.25, 2.5, and 5 (%v/v).

In the present study, the most significant result obtained when AuNPs was mixed with Imtenan® citrus blossom honey (1:1 = v:v) with the best MBC was observed at the concentration of 0.56 × 109:0.3 (NP/ml: honey %v/v).

Thursday, January 17, 2019

Royal Jelly May Help Treat Diabetes

Complementary Therapies in Medicine
Volume 43, April 2019, Pages 20-27

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• Royal jelly may help improve glycemic status and oxidative stress in diabetes mellitus.
• Royal jelly effects on lipid profile are contradictory.
• Studies on the Royal jelly effects on inflammatory markers in diabetes mellitus were not enough.
• More studies are required to determine the exact mechanisms of Royal jelly in diabetes mellitus.

Diabetes mellitus is one of the most common endocrine disorders in the world. This systematic review was conducted with focus on the current knowledge on the effect of royal jelly on metabolic variables in diabetes mellitus. PubMed, Scopus, Embase, ProQuest and Google Scholar databases were searched from inception until June 2018. All clinical trials and animal studies that evaluated the effects of royal jelly on diabetes mellitus, and were published in English-language journals were eligible. Studies that provided insufficient outcomes were excluded. Out of 522 articles found in the search, only twelve articles were eligible for analysis. Seven studies showed a significant reduction in FBS, and one reported HbA1c decrease following royal jelly supplementation. Although royal jelly supplementation resulted in significant reductions in HOM A-I R in three studies, the findings on insulin levels were controversial. In addition, royal jelly substantially improved serum levels of triglycerides, cholesterol, HDL, LDL, VLDL and Apo-A1 in diabetes mellitus. In addition, royal jelly resulted in a decrease oxidative stress indicators and increase antioxidant enzymes levels. In conclusion, royal jelly could improve glycemic status, lipid profiles and oxidative stress in diabetes mellitus. However, exploring the underlying mechanisms warrants further studies.

Wednesday, January 16, 2019

Stingless Bee Honey May Help Treat Obesity

Supplementation of Stingless Bee Honey from Heterotrigona itama Improves Antiobesity Parameters in High-Fat Diet Induced Obese Rat Model

Evid Based Complement Alternat Med. 2018 Nov 21;2018:6371582

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Heterotrigona itama is a common stingless bee species found in Southeast Asia. Studies on the health benefits of its honey are limited in comparison with other stingless bee species.

This study examines the antiobesity benefits found in stingless bee honey (SBH) from H. itama. The parameters used to measure the benefits were weight change, morphological structures, and biochemical characteristics. The research was conducted by using rats that were given a high-fat diet (HFD). In total 48 male Sprague Dawley (SD) rats were given a formulated HFD to increase the levels of obesity, the HFD was administered with a value of 0.68 g/cm2.

The duration of the treatment was six weeks, and the results show that the induction obesity using the HFD was successful. Following this, the rats were then treated with SBH (at dosages of 1000 mg/kg, 750 mg/kg or 500 mg/kg), with orlistat or with a placebo. Compared with typical obesity treatment methods, the one that used the three dosages of SBH showed a higher reduction in body mass index (BMI), percentage of body weight gain, adiposity index, and relative organ weight (ROW). The levels of liver enzymes (ALT, AST, and ALP) were also significantly lower in SBH-treated groups. The levels of triglycerides and LDL-cholesterol were significantly lower, while the level of HDL-cholesterol was significantly higher in comparison with the control obese group.

In terms of morphological structures, the number of adipocyte cells was reduced, and the hepatocytes found in the liver were less prone to rupturing when treated with SBH.

In conclusion, the administration of SBH led to an improvement in indicators associated with obesity reduction. SBH also possesses a hepatoprotective potential which can reduce the health risks related to obesity.

Tuesday, January 15, 2019

Propolis Cream Beats Antibiotics in Treating Acne

Natural extracts outweigh synthetic antibiotics for acne treatment

Dermatology Times

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Combined plant-based therapy is more effective for treating mild-to-moderate acne than a synthetic antibiotic. (©ArtfullyPhotographer,

A cream containing natural extracts of propolis, tea tree oil, and Aloe vera has been found to be more effective in reducing mild to moderate acne than a cream containing the synthetic antibiotic erythromycin, research published in Clinical Pharmacology: Advances and Applications shows.

Antibiotics that suppress Propionibacterium acnes are the standard treatment for acne but are becoming less effective due to the emergence of antibiotic-resistant bacterial strains. Clinicians are also encouraged to prescribe fewer antibiotics overall due to the rising threat rise of antimicrobial resistance.

Many plants are known to have innate antimicrobial action, so researchers are increasingly looking to see whether plant-based treatments might be an effective alternative to antibiotics.

This study aimed to evaluate the efficacy of a new cream based on three natural extracts (propolis, “tea tree oil” and “Aloe vera”) in treating mild to moderate acne, comparing it to a cream based on 3% erythromycin and to its vehicle alone (placebo).

The study was conducted at the Skinlab, Department of Biomedical Sciences, University of Sassari, Italy where 60 patients with mild to moderate acne vulgaris were randomly divided into three groups of 20.

All patients were aged between 14 and 34 years; had no more than 20 comedones and 50 papules and pustules; no nodules, cysts, and no more than slight erythematous scarring presence; had not received topical or systemic acne treatments during the previous three months and had previously been responsive to topical erythromycin so were not resistant to it.

Patients were excluded from the study if they were pregnant, lactating, in menopause, had polycystic ovarian syndrome, were taking oral contraceptives, had allergic contact dermatitis or sensitive skin.

Patients in the first group were treated with the new cream containing the three natural extracts - 20% propolis, 3% “tea tree oil” and 10% “Aloe vera” (PTAC). Patients in the second group received the 3% erythromycin cream (ERC) and those in the third group received placebo. Participants were asked to use their allocated cream twice a day, in the morning and in the evening for a total of 30 days and to not use any other acne treatments.

Severity of acne was assessed at baseline, and then after 15 and 30 days, by counting acne lesions through noninvasive measurements and macro-photography.

There were no significant differences between the demographic characteristics of the patients in the three groups at the start of the study. By the end of the study acne severity had improved in patients in both groups receiving active treatments compared to placebo, but patients receiving the PTAC formulation experienced a greater reduction in erythema scars, acne severity index, and total lesion count.

Erythema in papular and scar lesions was more greatly reduced after 15 and 30 days of PTAC and ERC application than with placebo; the PTAC formulation was better than ERC in reducing erythema scars, but there was no difference between the two in reducing papular erythema.

After 30 days treatment, acne severity index (ASI) in the PTAC group had fallen 66.7% compared with 49.7% in the ERC group. Over the same time period, total lesion count (TLC) fell by 63.7% in the PTAC group and 46.5% in the ERC group...

Monday, January 14, 2019

Propolis Boosts Immunity, Antioxidant Activity

Effects of raw propolis or water and ethanol extracts of propolis on performance, immune system, and some blood parameters of broiler breeders

R. Bras. Zootec. vol.47  Viçosa  2018  Epub Nov 08, 2018

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The objective of this study was to determine the effects of raw bee propolis and water or ethanol extract of propolis on growth performance, some blood parameters, and immunoglobulins in 15-20-week-old Ross-308 broiler breeders.

The birds in the control were fed a diet without propolis, whereas the birds in the treatment groups were fed diets with raw propolis (RP), water (WEP), and ethanol (EEP) extract of propolis at the level of 1200, 400, and 400 ppm, respectively. Raw propolis and propolis extracts did not affect body weight gain, feed intake, feed conversion ratio, and some blood parameters, such as aspartate aminotransferase, alanine aminotransferase, total antioxidant status, triglyceride, and phosphorus. Birds fed EEP and those in control group had a lower IgA value compared with birds fed RP. Birds fed RP had higher IgM level than those of the other groups, and birds fed EEP had lower IgM level than those of control and RP-fed group.

The IgY value of breeders fed EEP was higher than those of the other treatment birds, whereas that of WEP-fed birds was higher than those of control and RP treatment. The antibody levels of Anti-Newcastle disease virus and anti-infectious bursal disease virus were higher in EEP and RP-fed groups than those in the control and WEP-fed groups. The WEP decreased total oxidant status value compared with the control and RP treatments, whereas EEP and WEP increased plasma total protein and calcium contents compared with the control. The EEP increased plasma albumin content compared with RP.

The addition of propolis extracts, especially WEP and EEP, to diet improves immunity and antioxidant activity, as well as enhances Ca absorption of broiler breeders.

Sunday, January 13, 2019

Royal Jelly Effective for Nutrition, Menopause, Premenstrual Syndrome, Wound Healing, Diabetes

What are the benefits of royal jelly?

Royal jelly is a creamy white substance with a high nutrient content that young bees make to feed queen bee larvae. There are claims that it offers a range of health benefits, such as easing the symptoms of premenstrual syndrome and supporting wound healing.

Royal jelly is highly nutritious and may have antibacterial, antioxidant, and anti-inflammatory properties. These properties may be responsible for many of the health claims about royal jelly. People usually consume it orally or apply it directly to the skin.

Research suggests that certain nutrients in royal jelly are beneficial for health. However, there is little evidence that these benefits come specifically from royal jelly itself.

In this article, we examine the potential benefits of royal jelly and the science that supports these claims.


Royal jelly contains a high percentage of proteins and carbohydrates.
The nutritional content of royal jelly is a potential benefit in itself as the substance provides a range of essential nutrients that are necessary for good health. Royal jelly comprises:

water (50 to 60 percent)
proteins (18 percent)
carbohydrates (15 percent)
lipids (3 to 6 percent)
mineral salts (1.5 percent)

There are small amounts of vitamins and minerals in royal jelly, including several types of vitamin B. It also contains some polyphenols, which are a type of plant-based chemical that is rich in antioxidants.

Menopause symptoms

Royal jelly may provide relief from the symptoms of menopause.

A 2011 study looked at the effect of a combination of four natural ingredients, including royal jelly, on menstrual symptoms. The researchers gave 120 women either a capsule containing the four ingredients or a placebo twice a day over 4 weeks.

The women in both groups noted a reduction in symptoms, but those who took the capsule had significantly better results than those in the placebo group.

A more recent study found that taking 150 milligrams of royal jelly daily over 3 months could help improve cholesterol levels in healthy postmenopausal women.

Premenstrual syndrome

Royal jelly may also be beneficial for people with premenstrual syndrome.

In a 2014 study, the investigators gave 110 participants either a royal jelly capsule or a placebo once every day over two menstrual cycles. The participants who took the royal jelly capsules had less severe premenstrual syndrome symptoms over the 2 months.

Wound healing

According to some research, royal jelly could speed up the process of wound healing.

The results of a laboratory study in the journal Nutrition Research and Practice showed that royal jelly might significantly increase the movement of fibroblasts to a wound. Fibroblasts are a type of cell that coordinates the process of wound healing.

Type 2 diabetes

There is some evidence that royal jelly may have benefits for people with type 2 diabetes.

In one study, 50 female participants with type 2 diabetes received either a 1-gram dose of royal jelly gel or a placebo once a day for 8 weeks.

The results indicated that taking royal jelly may lead to a reduction in the level of blood glucose. Lower glucose levels in the blood are beneficial for people with type 2 diabetes.

However, the researchers note that more studies with a larger number of participants are necessary.

Friday, January 11, 2019

Quantitation and Seasonal Variation of Key Odorants in Propolis

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J Agric Food Chem. 2019 Jan 10

Application of a comparative aroma extract dilution analysis (cAEDA) to the volatiles isolated from propolis of three consecutive seasons by solvent extraction and solvent-assisted flavor evaporation (SAFE) afforded 48 odorants with flavor dilution (FD) factors ≥ 4, including 21 compounds that have not been previously reported in propolis.

Despite differences in FD factors of some compounds, the overall temporal variation in the odorants was low. Compounds identified with FD ≥ 64 were quantitated by stable isotope dilution assays (SIDAs) and odor activity values (OAVs) were calculated.

Twenty-two compounds showed OAVs ≥ 1, including (E)-isoeugenol (clove; OAV 3700), linalool (floral; OAV 380), butanoic acid (sweaty, rancid; OAV 370), 3-phenylpropanoic acid (floral; OAV 270), 3-methylbutanoic acid (sweaty, rancid; OAV 210), eugenol (clove; OAV 190), and β-ionone (floral; OAV 170).

An odor reconstitution model prepared from deodorized beeswax and the 22 odorants in their natural concentrations closely matched the olfactory profile of authentic propolis.

Thursday, January 10, 2019

Beeswax By-Products Show Antioxidant Effects

Beeswax by-Products Efficiently Counteract the Oxidative Damage Induced by an Oxidant Agent in Human Dermal Fibroblasts

Int J Mol Sci. 2018 Sep 19;19(9)

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The antioxidant capacity and the phytochemical composition of two by-products from beeswax recycling processes were recently investigated.

The aim of the present work was to evaluate the efficacy of one of these by-products, MUD1, against the oxidative stress induced by 2,2'-azobis(2-amidinopropane) dihydrochloride (AAPH) in human dermal fibroblast (HDF) cells.

After a preliminary viability assay, the protective effect of MUD1 was investigated through the measurement of apoptosis level, the reactive oxygen species (ROS) and nitrite (NO₂-) production, the level of protein and lipid biomarkers (carbonyl groups, total glutathione and thiobarbituric acid-reactive substance) of oxidative damage, and the measurement of antioxidant enzymes activities (glutatione peroxidase, glutathione reductase, glutathione transferase, superoxide dismutase and catalase).

The obtained results showed that MUD1 exerted protective effects on HDF, increasing cell viability and counteracted the oxidative stress promoted by AAPH-treatment, and improved mitochondria functionality and wound healing capacities.

This work shows the antioxidant effects exerted by beeswax by-products, demonstrating for the first time their potential against oxidative stress in human dermal fibroblast cells; however, further research will be necessary to evaluate their potentiality for human health by more deeply in vitro and in vivo studies.

Wednesday, January 09, 2019

Honey Effective Against Infections, Dental Plaque and Cavities, Gingivitis and Halitosis (Bad Breath)

Honey in oral health and care: a mini review

Journal of Oral Biosciences
Available online 3 January 2019

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Honey is a natural product made from the nectar of flowers by honey bees and has over 200 compounds in it, including sugars, water, organic acids, minerals and polyphenols - the exact structure and composition of honey often determined by which plant source(s) the honey bee took the nectar from. Honey has been used in diets and medicines for thousands of years; however, this review, for the first time, aims to look at its place in modern medicine concerning oral health.


The present review for the first time attempted to address the protective effect of honey in the oral care.


For the first time this review addresses the usefulness of honey against Streptococcus mutans infections, dental plaque and caries, gingivitis and halitosis. Honey was also useful in preventing side effects associated with treatment of cancers of the head and neck, namely, radiation induced mucositis, xerostomia and poor wound healing. This is well supported by evidence in literature and was examined in this review.

Tuesday, January 08, 2019

Propolis Exerts Protective Effect Against Ovarian Reperfusion Injury

The protective effect of propolis on rat ovary against ischemia-reperfusion injury: Immunohistochemical, biochemical and histopathological evaluations

Biomedicine & Pharmacotherapy
Volume 111, March 2019

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• Ischemia/reperfusion caused increases in cytokines and oxidative-DNA damage in ovary.
• Propolis reversed the biochemical and immunohistochemical parameters in ovarian.
• Propolis restored histopathological changes and reduction of antioxidant enzymes.
• Propolis decreased germ cell apoptosis, DNA and tissue injury, infalammation.

In conclusion, the above findings demonstrate that propolis exerted a protective effect against ovarian I/RI in rats, through the inhibition of oxidative stress, the suppression of inflammatory processes, downregulation of 8-OHdG formations and the inhibition of ovarian cell apoptosis.