Thursday, January 18, 2018

Eastern Honey Bee Honey Helps Protect Liver

Hepatoprotective Effects of the Honey of Apis cerana Fabricius on Bromobenzene-Induced Liver Damage in Mice

J Food Sci. 2018 Jan 16

Apis cerana honey (honey of Apis cerana Fabricius), widely distributed in the mountain areas of East Asia, has not been studied fully. The hepatoprotective activity of A. cerana honey was evaluated against bromobenzene-induced liver damage in mice.

In high dose, A. cerana honey can significantly alleviate liver injury, as is indicated by the depressed levels of serum alanine aminotransferase (ALT) (59.13%) and aspartate aminotransferase (AST) (79.71%), the inhibited malondialdehyde (MDA) content (63.30%), the elevated activities of superoxide dismutase (SOD) (73.12%) and glutathione-Px (57.24%), and the decreased expression of Transforming growth factor β1 (51.83%) induced by bromobenzene (P < 0.05). The quantitative analysis of twelve major constituents (1 to 12) of A. cerana honey was executed by high performance liquid chromatography-diode array detector.

The results indicate that treatment with A. cerana honey can prevent bromobenzene-induced hepatic damage in mice. Polyphenols might be the bioactive substances attributed to its antioxidant properties and intervention of oxidative stress.

Wednesday, January 17, 2018

Bangladesh Sundarbans are Source of Polyphenols and Antioxidants

Physicochemical and Antioxidant Properties of Honeys from the Sundarbans Mangrove Forest of Bangladesh

Prev Nutr Food Sci. 2017 Dec;22(4):335-344

This study evaluated the physicochemical, nutritional, antioxidant, and phenolic properties of ten honey samples from the Sundarbans mangrove forest, Bangladesh.

The average pH, electrical conductivity, total dissolved solid, ash, moisture, hydroxymethyl furfural, titrable acidity, and absorbance were 4.3, 0.38 mS/cm, 187.5 ppm, 0.14%, 17.88%, 4.4 mg/kg, 37.7 meq/kg, and 483 mAU, respectively. In the honeys, the average contents of Ca, Cu, Fe, K, Mg, Mn, and Na were 95.5, 0.19, 6.4, 302, 39.9, 3.4, and 597 ppm, respectively, whereas Cd, Cr, Pb, and Ni were not found.

The average contents of total sugar, protein, lipid, vitamin C, polyphenols, flavonoids, and anthocyanins in the honeys were 69.3%, 0.8%, 0.29%, 107.3 mg/kg, 757.2 mg gallic acid equivalent/kg, 43.1 mg chatechin equivalent/kg, and 5.4 mg/kg, respectively. The honeys had strong 1,1-diphenyl-2-picrylhydrazyl free radical scavenging activity, reducing power and total antioxidant capacity.

High-performance liquid chromatography analysis of the honey fractions revealed the quantification of six polyphenols namely, (+)-catechin, (-)-epicatechin, p-caumeric acid, syringic acid, trans-cinnamic acid, and vanillic acid at 194.98, 330.34, 74.64, 218.97, 49.55, and 118.84 mg/kg, respectively.

Therefore, the honeys in the A.

Tuesday, January 16, 2018

Medical-grade Manuka Honey Helps Treat Oral Mucositis

A Sweet Solution: The Use of Medical-grade Honey on Oral Mucositis in the Pediatric Oncology Patient.

Wounds. 2017 Dec;29(12):E115-E117.

INTRODUCTION:

Pediatric patients develop mucositis when receiving treatments such as chemotherapy and radiation; the most common and sensitive is oral mucositis. Mouth rinses containing antimicrobial, antihistamine, and analgesic medications are the mainstay for pediatric patients; however, patients often refuse these rinses due to the taste or texture. Also, patients under 1 year of age are unable to use these products.

OBJECTIVE:

Herein, the improvement of oral mucositis with standard oral care and additional use of active Leptospermum honey in pediatric oncology patients after chemotherapy is demonstrated.

MATERIALS AND METHODS:

Patients received oral care every 4 hours followed by application of the honey paste 3 times daily. The honey paste was applied with a sponge swab to coat the mouth. Patients either swished and spit or had excess honey suctioned out. At completion of this evaluation, the honey treatment was used in 10 pediatric oncology patients between the ages of 9 months and 17 years.

RESULTS:

The Leptospermum honey paste was easy to apply and was well received by all patients. Healing was observed within 3 days, and patients in all cases reported decreases in pain. Decreased wounds and bleeding were evident in all cases within 5 days.

CONCLUSIONS:

Leptospermum honey paste proved to be effective in all participating patients.

Monday, January 15, 2018

Algerian Propolis May Help Treat Pancreatic Cancer

Algerian Propolis Potentiates Doxorubicin Mediated Anticancer Effect against Human Pancreatic PANC-1 Cancer Cell Line through Cell Cycle Arrest, Apoptosis Induction and P-Glycoprotein Inhibition

Anticancer Agents Med Chem. 2018 Jan 10

BACKGROUND:

Pancreatic cancer is one of the most aggressive and lethal cancer, with poor prognosis and high resistant to current chemotherapeutic agents. Therefore, new therapeutic strategies and targets are underscored. Propolis has been reported to exhibit a broad spectrum of biological activities including anticancer activity.

OBJECTIVE:

This study was carried out to assess the possible efficacy of Algerian propolis on the antitumor effect of doxorubicin on human pancreatic cancer cell line (PANC-1).

METHODS:

Modifications in cell viability, apoptosis and cell cycle progression, Pgp activity and intracellular accumulation of DOX were monitored to study the synergistic effect of Algerian propolis on the antitumor effects of DOX in PANC-1 cell line.

RESULTS:

Both propolis and its combination with doxorubicin inhibited cell growth in a dose-dependent manner by inducing cell cycle arrest and apoptosis. In the presence of 100 µg/ml of propolis, the IC50 of DOX against PANC-1 cells decreased by 10.9-fold. Propolis combined with DOX increased after 48h, the number of cells in the G0G1 phase with dramatical increase in sub-G1 phase to reach 47% of total cells, corresponding to an increase of senescence or apoptotic state of the cells. Dead cell assay with annexinV/PI staining demonstrated that propolis and propolis-DOX treatment resulted in a remarkable induction of apoptosis as detected by flow cytometry. It was interesting to note that propolis at its 5IC50 was found as the most potent inducer of apoptosis. Our finding revealed that induced apoptosis in our conditions was caspase-3 and caspase-9 dependent. Flow cytometry showed that propolis increased the accumulation of doxorubicin within PANC-1 cells. Moreover, fluorescent intensity detection revealed that propolis remarkably increased the retention of rhodamine-123, 7-fold compared to 3-fold of verapamil, the most effective P-gp inhibitor.

CONCLUSION:

In conclusion, propolis sensitize pancreatic cancer cells to DOX via enhancing the intracellular retention of DOX due to blocking the efflux activity of P-gp pump, inducing cell cycle arrest and increasing apoptosis, finding that improuve the synergism of antitumor effect of Algerian propolis and DOX in pancreatic cancer cell line. Therefore, Algerian propolis may be an effective agent in a combined treatment with doxorubicin for increased therapeutic efficacy against pancreatic cancer.

Sunday, January 14, 2018

Review of Propolis Use to Treat Dogs


In light of the scarcity of novel therapeutic agents that are effective, the pharmaceutical industry has found a newer source of therapeutic compounds in natural products and herbal medicine to address the current health problems in humans and animals. What is particularly promising about these agents is that they produce fewer side effects and are more cost effective than synthetic compounds. This means greater availability of these treatments particularly for less developed countries who can’t afford expensive treatments. The reduced side effects also mean greater patient tolerance and increased compliance thereby yielding maximal therapeutic effect without negatively impacting on quality of life.

Among the natural products more frequently employed nowadays is propolis, a resin that is routinely collected by bees (Apis mellifera). Propolis contains flavonoids, caffeic acid esters and diterpenic acids, which provide the bactericidal, antiviral and antifungal properties to this product. The use of propolis to address a variety of conditions in small animal species is beginning to play an important role in the currently available treatments. Its use appears to be an effective treatment with no side effects at low cost. This paper reviews the different applications of this compound to treat diseases in dogs.

The novel biomaterials Copazan Herbal Gel with Bee propolis have been designed to be used in veterinary medicine for the wound healing application. In vitro investigations highlight the suitability of this material for a variety of applications in the veterinary medicine in the future.

Saturday, January 13, 2018

Propolis Component Protects Against Brain Injury

Caffeic acid phenethyl ester protects against photothrombotic cortical ischemic injury in mice

Korean J Physiol Pharmacol. 2018 Jan;22(1):101-110

In this study, we aimed to investigate the neuroprotective effects of caffeic acid phenethyl ester (CAPE), an active component of propolis purified from honeybee hives, on photothrombotic cortical ischemic injury in mice. Permanent focal ischemia was achieved in the medial frontal and somatosensory cortices of anesthetized male C57BL/6 mice by irradiation of the skull with cold light laser in combination with systemic administration of rose bengal.

The animals were treated with CAPE (0.5-5 mg/kg, i.p.) twice 1 and 6 h after ischemic insult. CAPE significantly reduced the infarct size as well as the expression of tumor necrosis factor-α, hypoxiainducible factor-1α, monocyte chemoattractant protein-1, interleukin-1α, and indoleamine 2,3-dioxygenase in the cerebral cortex ipsilateral to the photothrombosis. Moreover, it induced an increase in heme oxygenase-1 immunoreactivity and interleukin-10 expression.

cThese results suggest that CAPE exerts a remarkable neuroprotective effect on ischemic brain injury via its anti-inflammatory properties, thereby providing a benefit to the therapy of cerebral infarction.

Friday, January 12, 2018

Honey Bee Lactic Acid Bacteria Show Probiotic Potential

Probiotic potency of Lactobacillus plantarum KX519413 and KX519414 isolated from Honey bee gut

FEMS Microbiol Lett. 2018 Jan 8

The Indian honey bee-Apis cerana indica, which harbors an abundant and diverse range of lactic acid bacteria (LAB) in their gut with beneficial effects was used as the source for the isolation of LAB. In the present study, two LAB isolates from honey bee gut were selected primarily based on their phenotypic and selective biochemical characterization, further PCR and identified using 16S rRNA sequencing as Lactobacillus plantarum and were registered in National Centre for Biotechnology Information (NCBI) under accession number KX519413 and KX519414.

The probiotic potency of test strains indicated their survivability at acidic pH, bile salts and viability in simulated gastric juice enabling them to withstand gastrointestinal tract conditions. Evaluation of cell surface properties suggested that they possess an important defense mechanism against the pathogen since they are hydrophobic, auto-aggregative and have co-aggregative ability. Further, efficient exopolysaccharide production by them indicate not only their ability to enrich biofilm formation and auto-aggregation, but also enhance bacterial adhesion and colonization on the host intestinal tract.

The present study concluded that L. plantarum from the gut of Apis cerana indica possess probiotic potency, and potential candidates for use as food besides application in nutraceutical and pharmaceutical industries.

Thursday, January 11, 2018

Bee Venom Studied for Treatment of High Blood Pressure, Cancer, Arrhythmias

Lobachevsky University researchers study the effects of bee venom on living organisms

Eureka Alert

Despite a centuries-old history of studies of bee venom as a therapeutic agent, this field of research remains quite relevant today, when the use of synthetic drugs is not always effective and has a great number of side effects. In addition to analgesic properties of bee venom that are well known, a number of other useful properties have been established experimentally such as the ability to reduce blood pressure, antiarrhythmic action, radioprotective and antihypoxic effects, as well as antitumor activity.

Bee venom's high polyfunctionality is based on a unique combination of its components, including some proteins with enzymatic properties, highly active peptides (melittin, apamin, the mast-cell-degranulating (MCD) peptide, adolapin, tertiapin, secapin, minimin, cardiopep), and biogenic amines.

Bee venom peptides have an anti-inflammatory effect, both through direct action and indirectly through the modulation of all other regulatory systems. Thus, the pharmacological activity of small doses of melittin is mediated by the activation of a cascade associated with the synthesis of prostaglandins, which are powerful biological regulators. In addition, melittin has some protective properties, which underlies the radioprotective effects of bee venom. Melittin is also credited with antitumor activity. Its anti-inflammatory activity is associated with the action of the MCD-peptide, while adolapin, a component of bee venom, has an analgesic effect.

As they enter the body, bee venom components cause changes in the neurohumoral regulation of body functions not only through the activation of endogenous neuropeptides, but, possibly, as their direct sources.

Researchers of the UNN Institute of Biology and Biomedicine (IBBM) have established as a result of laboratory tests that bee venom and bee products inhibit the growth of malignant tumors, enhance biological activity of the body, and can also be used to treat diabetes mellitus.

Anna Deryugina, Head of the Department of Physiology and Anatomy of the UNN IBBM explains: "Currently, we are continuing the tests of a chemical compound including chitosan, gold nanoparticles and bee venom, in particular, in relation to the treatment of oncological diseases. We have found out that the compound synthesized by our colleagues at the UNN Faculty of Chemistry inhibits the growth of malignant tumors. Our institute has been testing this compound on rats for several years. This process takes quite a while, as always in medical tests. We look forward to the day in the future when cancer patients will be treated with beekeeping products, but athletes can already use these substances to enhance their performance and set records."...

Wednesday, January 10, 2018

Brazilian Red Propolis: Legitimate Name of the Plant Resin Source

Abstract - MOJ Food Processing & Technology

Red propolis ranks as the second most produced Brazilian propolis type. Its main
chemical constituents are phenolic substances typical of the subfamily Faboideae of
the Fabaceae (Leguminosae) family, such as neoflavanoids, chalcones, flavanones and
isoflavonoids, among them isoflavones (e.g. biochanin a, daidzein) and pterocarpans
(e.g. medicarpin).

The plant source of Brazilian red propolis has been referred to as
Dalbergia ecastophyllum throughout the propolis literature. Such scientific binomial,
however, is a synonym of the legitimate name Dalbergia ecastaphyllum.

Tuesday, January 09, 2018

Propolis Component Protects Against Brain Injury

Caffeic acid phenethyl ester protects against photothrombotic cortical ischemic injury in mice

Korean J Physiol Pharmacol. 2018 Jan;22(1):101-110

In this study, we aimed to investigate the neuroprotective effects of caffeic acid phenethyl ester (CAPE), an active component of propolis purified from honeybee hives, on photothrombotic cortical ischemic injury in mice. Permanent focal ischemia was achieved in the medial frontal and somatosensory cortices of anesthetized male C57BL/6 mice by irradiation of the skull with cold light laser in combination with systemic administration of rose bengal.

The animals were treated with CAPE (0.5-5 mg/kg, i.p.) twice 1 and 6 h after ischemic insult. CAPE significantly reduced the infarct size as well as the expression of tumor necrosis factor-α, hypoxiainducible factor-1α, monocyte chemoattractant protein-1, interleukin-1α, and indoleamine 2,3-dioxygenase in the cerebral cortex ipsilateral to the photothrombosis. Moreover, it induced an increase in heme oxygenase-1 immunoreactivity and interleukin-10 expression.

These results suggest that CAPE exerts a remarkable neuroprotective effect on ischemic brain injury via its anti-inflammatory properties, thereby providing a benefit to the therapy of cerebral infarction.

Monday, January 08, 2018

Australian Agastache (Korean Mint) Honey has Significant Antioxidant Capacity

Characterization of Physico-Chemical Properties and Antioxidant Capacities of Bioactive Honey Produced from Australian Grown Agastache rugosa and its Correlation with Colour and Poly-Phenol Content

Molecules. 2018 Jan 5;23(1)

The antioxidant and antimicrobial components of honey vary based on sourced of nectar. Medicinal plants with the therapeutic value have potential to produce honey with greater bioactivity. The aim of the present study was to characterize the physico-chemical and antioxidant capacities of Agastache honey produced from Agastache rugosa and compare them with other popular commercial honeys sold in Australia. The total phenolics, total flavonoids, moisture content, colour, pH, protein content and antioxidant capacity were evaluated for Agastache, Manuka, Jelly bush, Tea tree, Super manuka and Jarrah honeys.

The results reveal that the moisture content ranged from 17-21%, pH ranged from 3.8-4.3 and estimated protein content ranged from 900-2200 µg/g. The DPPH•, ABTS•+, ORAC and FRAP methods were used to measure the antioxidant capacity of the honey samples. The DPPH• % inhibition, ABTS•+, ORAC and FRAP values for Agastache honey were 9.85 (±1.98 µmol TE/g), 26.88 (±0.32 µmol TE/g), 19.78 (±1.1 µmol TE/g) and 3.61 (±0.02 µmol TE/g) whereas the highest antioxidant capacity values obtained were 18.69 (±0.9 µmol TE/g), 30.72 (±0.27 µmol TE/g), 26.95 (±0.9 µmol TE/g) and 3.68 (±0.04 µmol TE/g), respectively.

There was a positive correlation between colour, total phenolic content and DPPH• scavenging activity for most of the honeys except Tea tree honey. However, there was no clear correlation with ABTS•+, ORAC and FRAP values. The measured antioxidant capacity of samples varied with the assays used.

The DPPH• assay clearly indicated that the phenolic compounds contribute to the scavenging activity of the honeys. Nevertheless, all assays confirm that Agastache honey has significant antioxidant capacity. Therefore, Agastache honey can be important to human nutrition and health.

Sunday, January 07, 2018

Royal Jelly Reduces Total Cholesterol Blood Levels


Royal jelly is an effective and relatively safe alternative approach to blood lipid modulation: A meta-analysis

Journal of Functional Foods
Volume 41, February 2018, Pages 202–209

Royal jelly is a functional food with several health promoting properties. The aim of present meta-analysis was to examine the role of royal jelly in blood lipid profiles. We systemically searched PUBMED, the Cochrane Library, Scopus, Web of Science and Google Scholar to identify eligible studies up to July 2017. Clinical trials which investigated the efficacy of royal jelly on adult blood lipid parameters were included. A random effects model was used for quantitative data synthesis.

The pooled analysis of six trials suggested that royal jelly reduces total cholesterol blood levels. No significant change was observed in triglycerides, low-density lipoprotein cholesterol and high-density lipoprotein cholesterol blood concentrations. Subgroup analysis revealed a greater impact of RJ on the decrease of Total cholesterol and the increase of high-density lipoprotein cholesterol levels in studies with a long-term follow-up ( ≥ 90). This meta-analysis suggested that Royal jelly consumption might effective on improvement of lipid parameters.

Saturday, January 06, 2018

Slathering honey on my face was not what I expected.


I was a little nervous about slathering honey all over my face, but my skin can get pretty red, irritated, and bumpy during certain times of the month, so I was willing to give it a try. Wedderspoon sent me a jar of their Raw Manuka Honey ($43.99) with a KFactor of 22. The KFactor is the authentication system used to identify and measure the complex properties that Manuka honey contains; Dr. Fishman recommended that I purchase honey with a KFactor of no less than 20 and leave the mask on for 10 minutes when my skin is flaring up. The first time I applied it, I was surprised by its texture—it's not as sticky as I thought it would be; in fact, it's more like honey icing and easily stayed on my face without any dripping...

Friday, January 05, 2018

Lactic Acid Bacteria Inhibit Bee Bread Contamination

Beneficial Protective Role of Endogenous Lactic Acid Bacteria Against Mycotic Contamination of Honeybee Beebread

Probiotics Antimicrob Proteins. 2018 Jan 3

The purpose of this article is to reveal the role of the lactic acid bacteria (LAB) in the beebread transformation/preservation, biochemical properties of 25 honeybee endogenous LAB strains, particularly: antifungal, proteolytic, and amylolytic activities putatively expressed in the beebread environment have been studied.

Seventeen fungal strains isolated from beebread samples were identified and checked for their ability to grow on simulated beebread substrate (SBS) and then used to study mycotic propagation in the presence of LAB. Fungal strains identified as Aspergillus niger (Po1), Candida sp. (BB01), and Z. rouxii (BB02) were able to grow on SBS. Their growth was partly inhibited when co-cultured with the endogenous honeybee LAB strains studied. No proteolytic or amylolytic activities of the studied LAB were detected using pollen, casein starch based media as substrates. 

These findings suggest that some honeybee LAB symbionts are involved in maintaining a safe microbiological state in the host honeybee colonies by inhibiting beebread mycotic contaminations, starch, and protein predigestion in beebread by LAB is less probable. 

Honeybee endogenous LAB use pollen as a growth substrate and in the same time restricts fungal propagation, thus showing host beneficial action preserving larval food. This study also can have an impact on development of novel methods of pollen preservation and its processing as a food ingredient.

Thursday, January 04, 2018

Propolis Synergistically Enhances Efficacy of Antibiotics Against Drug-Resistant Microorganisms


Antimicrobial Activities of European Propolis Collected from Various Geographic Origins Alone and in Combination with Antibiotics

Medicines 2018, 5(1), 2

Background: Propolis consists of a complex mixture of resinous substances collected by honeybees from different plant sources. The objective of this study was to investigate the chemical composition, biological activities, and synergistic properties with antibiotics of propolis samples collected from various geographic origins (Germany, Ireland, and Czech Republic).

Methods: The chemical composition of the propolis was analyzed by Gas Liquid Chromatography-Mass Spectrometry (GLC-MS) and High-performance liquid chromatography (HPLC). The minimal inhibitory concentration (MIC) and minimal bactericidal concentration (MBC) were evaluated by the standard broth microdilution method, while synergistic interactions were assessed by checkerboard dilution and time-kill curve assays.

Results: HPLC and GLC-MS analyses revealed that ethanol extract of propolis (EEP) and water extracts of propolis (WEP) contained more than 100 different phytochemicals. The most abundant compounds were aromatic alcohols, aromatic acids, cinnamic acid and its esters, fatty acids, and flavanone (chrysin). Czech propolis showed the highest phenolic content (129.83 ± 5.9 mg CAE/g) followed by Irish propolis and German propolis. Furthermore, Irish propolis exhibited the highest value of total flavonoid content (2.86 ± 0.2 mg QE/g) and antioxidant activity (IC50 = 26.45 µg/mL). All propolis samples showed moderate antibacterial effect against Gram-positive microorganisms with MIC ranging from 0.08 mg/mL to 2.5 mg/mL. Moreover, EEP exhibited moderate activity against Gram-negative bacteria with MIC between 0.6 mg/mL to 5 mg/mL. In addition, EEP displayed moderate antifungal activity (MIC values between 0.6–2.5 mg/mL). The results obtained from time kill-kinetic assay and checkerboard dilution test of two-drug combinations between EEP and antibiotics such as vancomycin, oxacillin, and levofloxacin indicate mainly synergistic interactions against drug-resistant microbial pathogens including MRSA and VRE.

Conclusions: The propolis extract synergistically enhanced the efficacy of antibiotics, especially those acting on cell wall synthesis (vancomycin and oxacillin) against drug-resistant microorganisms.