Friday, June 06, 2008

Propolis Component Boosts Brain Cells

(Taiwan) NatureWise Announces Updates on Cancer Drug Candidate, Neurotrophic Factors for Neurodegenerative Disorders

(Press release, NatureWise Biotech & Medicals Corp.)

Botanically-derived drug discovery and development firm NatureWise Biotech & Medicals Corp. (TPO:4732) announced this week two major updates to its drug discovery and development pipeline, with research results to be presented at the BIO 2008 conference and exhibition in San Diego 17-19 June, 2008.

The first is a drug candidate for targeted cancer therapy and spinal muscular atrophy (SMA), a genetic disorder. The second relates to the company's breakthrough neurotrophic factors derived from prenylflavanone agents (PPLs), which, unlike conventional neurotrophic factors, can pass the blood-brain barrier and reach neurons in the brain. This has exciting implications for the development of new drugs for neurodegenerative diseases, such as Alzheimer's disease…

About neurotrophic agents from PPLs for neurodegenerative disease therapy:

Several prenylflavanone compounds of small molecular weight--abbreviated as PPLs--were isolated from Taiwanese bee propolis. At low concentrations (as low as 150 ng/mL), these PPLs increased both the survival of cortical neurons and the proliferation of neural stem cells, and induced differentiation of neural stem cells into large number of neuronal cells. They were also found in rat astrocyte cells to significantly up-regulate gene expression of neurotrophic factors, such as GDNF and BDNF. These results suggest that PPLs play an important role as neurotrophic agents to enhance the survival, differentiation and function of neural stem cells. Furthermore, PPLs have been found capable of greatly enhancing the outgrowth of neurites…

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