Wednesday, July 31, 2013

International Conference on the Medicinal Use of Honey, Nov. 20-22, 2013, in Indonesia

Welcome to 3rd International Conference on the Medicinal Use of Honey
Dear Colleagues,
On behalf of the program committee, we cordially invite you to join the “3rd International Conference on Medicinal Use Of Honey Bee Products“ that will take place from 20-22 November 2013 in Makassar, South Sulawesi, Indonesia.  After the success of the first meetings in Malaysia and the second meeting in Pakistan, we are happy to mark the 3rd meeting in Indonesia.
We are looking forward to your participation and active contribution at a time when honey bee products is further expanding. Studies that analyzed active substance of honey and variety of potential of its use has been implemented in various countries. Similarly, the efficacy of honey against several diseases, although it still in trial on experimental animal. Various advanced research at the clinic trial level and the use of some variants of honey and other bee products in the field of medicine continues to be developed. The scientist and experts agreed that honey is the perfect supplements and it contains variety of active substances that can cure various diseases. Verification of this statement through various studies and trials are needed and the results should be disseminated worldwide. To that end, the international conference on the use of honey in health care becomes a necessity. Hasanuddin University have the opportunity to host the 3rd International Conference on the Medicinal Use of Honey.
We are looking forward to seeing you in Makassar and to a most productive advance in the field on medicinal use of honey bee products. 
Prof. Dr. Veni Hadju, MSc.
Conference Chair

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Royal Jelly Did Not Present Stimulatory Effect on Reproductive Organs

Morphometry of the genital tract and superovulatory response in rabbits supplemented with royal jelly
Arq. Bras. Med. Vet. Zootec, vol.65 no.3 Belo Horizonte June 2013
RESUMO
Avaliou-se o efeito da suplementação com geleia real sobre a morfometria do aparelho genital, resposta superovulatória e qualidade embrionária de coelhas. Trinta e seis fêmeas foram distribuídas em quatro grupos (G), sendo: G1 (n=9) formado por animais não suplementados com geleia real, e G2, G3 e G4 (n=9 em cada grupo) por animais suplementados com 10, 20 e 40mg/dia de geleia real. A superovulação consistiu na aplicação de 40UI de gonadotrofina coriônica equina, seguida por 40UI de gonadotrofina coriônica humana, via intramuscular, 48 horas após, e submetidas à cobrição natural. Os animais foram sacrificados, e os embriões coletados 72 horas após a cópula. Não houve diferença estatística entre tratamentos para as variáveis analisadas. O peso médio do aparelho genital foi de 10,88±0,38g; dos ovários – direito e esquerdo –, 0,28±0,02g; e o índice gonadossomático, 0,02±0,0g. O número médio de estruturas totais recuperadas foi de 9,2±1,4; de embriões viáveis, 8,7±1,4; e de degenerados, 0,5±0,2. Dos embriões viáveis, 5,6±0,8 foram classificados como grau I; 2,3±0,5, como grau II; e 0,8±0,2, como grau III. A suplementação com geleia real na dose de até 40mg/dia não apresentou efeito estimulador sobre o aparelho genital e a qualidade embrionária de coelhas.
ABSTRACT
The purpose of this paper was to assess the effect of supplementation of royal jelly on the morphometry of the genital tract, superovulatory response and embryonic quality in adult rabbits. 36 rabbits were distributed in four groups (G), as follows: G1 (n=9): no supplementation with royal jelly, G2, 3 and 4 (n=9): supplementation with 10, 20 and 40mg/day of royal jelly. The superovulatory protocol consisted in the application of a dose of 40UI of Equine Chorionic Gonadotrophin, followed by a dose of UI of Human Chorionic Gonadotrophin, intramuscularly, 48 hours later, and submitted to natural cover. The animals were euthanasiated and the embryos collected 72 hours after copulation. There was no statistical difference for the analyzed variables (P>0.05). The average weight for the female genital tract was 10.89±0.38g; the average weight of right and left ovaries was 0.28±0.02g and the average gonadosomatic index rate was 0.02±0.0g. The number of total recovered structures was 9.2±1.4. The average number of viable embryos was 8.7±1.4 and of degenerated embryos was 0.5±0.2. Viable embryos were morphologically classified as degree I: 5.6±0.8; degree II: 2.3±0.5; degree III: 0.8±0.2. Royal jelly did not present stimulatory effect on organs related to the reproduction of rabbits, nor was it effective to improve their embryonic quality at dosages of up to 40mg of in natura royal jelly.

Monday, July 29, 2013

Honey Boosts Reproductive Functions

The effects of honey and vitamin E administration on apoptosis in testes of rat exposed to noise stress
J Hum Reprod Sci, 2013 Jan;6(1):54-8
AIMS:
A variety of stress factors are known to inhibit male reproductive functions. So this study was conducted in order to investigate the effects of honey and vitamin E on the germinative and somatic cells of testes of rats exposed to noise stress.
MATERIALS AND METHODS:
Mature male wistar rats (n = 24) were randomly grouped as follows: Group 1 (honey + noise stress), 2 (vitamin E + noise stress), 3 (noise stress,) and 4 as the control group. In groups 1, 2, and 3, rats were exposed to noise stress. In groups 1 and 2, rats also were given honey and vitamin E, respectively, orally for 50 days. After that, the germinative and somatic cells of testes parenchyma were isolated by digesting the whole testes by a standard method. Next, viability, apoptosis, and necrosis of the cells were evaluated by TUNEL kit and flow cytometry.
RESULTS:
The rates of apoptosis and necrosis of the testicular cells were increased (P = 0.003 and P = 0.001, respectively), but viability of these cells decreased in testes of rats exposed to noise stress (P = 0.003). However, administration of honey and vitamin E were significantly helpful in keeping the cells of testis parenchyma alive, which suffers from noise pollution (P < 0.05 and P < 0.05, respectively).
CONCLUSIONS:
Noise stress has negative influences on the cells of testicular tissue by increasing apoptotic and necrotic cells. However, the associated enhancement in healthy cells suggests that honey and vitamin E have positive influences on the testis parenchyma.

Sunday, July 28, 2013

Derma Sciences CEO Highlights Rapid Growth of MEDIHONEY Products in Presentation at Comvita Annual Meeting

Published: July 25, 2013
PRINCETON, N.J. — Derma Sciences, Inc. (Nasdaq: DSCI), a medical device and pharmaceutical company focused on advanced wound care, announces that its chief executive officer, Edward J. Quilty, highlighted the rapid growth of MEDIHONY® Dressings with medical grade Manuka (Leptospermum) Honey, and the rewarding relationship between Derma Sciences and Comvita Limited in a presentation at Comvita’s annual shareholders’ meeting in New Zealand yesterday. MEDIHONEY is the leading brand of medical grade honey products and is one of the fastest-growing moist wound healing wound dressings in the field of advanced wound care, with a sales growth rate exceeding 30% annually…

Saturday, July 27, 2013

Jujube Honey Has Antifungal Properties

Effect of Jujube Honey on Candida albicans Growth and Biofilm Formation
Arch Med Res, 2013 Jul 15
BACKGROUND AND AIMS:
Candida species, especially Candida albicans, are major fungal pathogens of humans that are capable of causing superficial mucosal infections and systemic infections in humans. The aim of this study was to evaluate the jujube (Zizyphus spina-christi) honey for its in vitro inhibitory activity against pre-formed biofilm and its interference with the biofilm formation of C. albicans.
METHODS:
The XTT reduction assay, scanning electron microscopy (SEM) and atomic force microscopy (AFM) were employed to determine the inhibitory effect of Jujube honey on C. albicans biofilm. Changes in the infrared spectrum after treatment with honey were also determined by Fourier transform infrared (FTIR) spectroscopy.
RESULTS:
Jujube honey affects biofilms by decreasing the size of mature biofilms and by disruption of their structure. At a concentration of 40% w/v, it interferes with formation of C. albicans biofilms and disrupts established biofilms. The SEM and AFM results indicated that this type of honey affected the cellular morphology of C. albicans and decreased biofilm thickness.
CONCLUSIONS:
The present findings show that jujube honey has antifungal properties against C. albicans and has the ability to inhibit the formation of C. albicans biofilms and disrupt established biofilms.

Friday, July 26, 2013

Kate Middleton: Bee Venom is One of New Mom’s Beauty Secrets

Hollywood Life, 7/23/2013
Sure, we can’t all marry Prince William and become a Duchess and then give birth to an absolutely adorable royal baby — but hey, we can at least try to get skin like Kate’s!
As it turns out, Kate is a huge fan of using bee venom on her face. Yes, you read that correctly — bee venom. Now, we don’t recommend traipsing into your backyard and poking at the nearest beehive you find, mostly because it’s super easy to find skin care products that utilize the anti-bacterial properties found in bee venom…

Thursday, July 25, 2013

Origin and Function of the Major Royal Jelly Proteins of the Honeybee (Apis mellifera) as Members of the Yellow Gene Family

Biol Rev Camb Philos Soc, 2013 Jul 16
In the honeybee, Apis mellifera, the queen larvae are fed with a diet exclusively composed of royal jelly (RJ), a secretion of the hypopharyngeal gland of young worker bees that nurse the brood. Up to 15% of RJ is composed of proteins, the nine most abundant of which have been termed major royal jelly proteins (MRJPs).
Although it is widely accepted that RJ somehow determines the fate of a female larva and in spite of considerable research efforts, there are surprisingly few studies that address the biochemical characterisation and functions of these MRJPs. Here we review the research on MRJPs not only in honeybees but in hymenopteran insects in general and provide metadata analyses on genome organisation of MRJP genes, corroborating previous reports that MRJPs have important functions for insect development and not just a nutritional value for developing honeybee larvae.

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Fermentation by Fungi Converts Stored Pollen Into Bee Bread

Fungicide Contamination Reduces Beneficial Fungi in Bee Bread Based on an Area-Wide Field Study in Honey Bee, Apis mellifera, Colonies
J Toxicol Environ Health A, 2013 May;76(10):587-600
Fermentation by fungi converts stored pollen into bee bread that is fed to honey bee larvae, Apis mellifera, so the diversity of fungi in bee bread may be related to its food value. To explore the relationship between fungicide exposure and bee bread fungi, samples of bee bread collected from bee colonies pollinating orchards from 7 locations over 2 years were analyzed for fungicide residues and fungus composition.
There were detectable levels of fungicides from regions that were sprayed before bloom. An organic orchard had the highest quantity and variety of fungicides, likely due to the presence of treated orchards within bees' flight range. Aspergillus, Penicillium, Rhizopus, and Cladosporium (beneficial fungi) were the primary fungal isolates found, regardless of habitat differences. There was some variation in fungal components amongst colonies, even within the same apiary. The variable components were Absidia, Alternaria, Aureobasidium, Bipolaris, Fusarium, Geotrichum, Mucor, Nigrospora, Paecilomyces, Scopulariopsis, and Trichoderma. The number of fungal isolates was reduced as an effect of fungicide contamination. Aspergillus abundance was particularly affected by increased fungicide levels, as indicated by Simpson's diversity index.
Bee bread showing fungicide contamination originated from colonies, many of which showed chalkbrood symptoms.

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Propolis May Help Treat Colorectal Cancer

Portuguese propolis disturbs glycolytic metabolism of human colorectal cancer in vitro
Background
Propolis is a resin collected by bees from plant buds and exudates, which is further processed through the activity of bee enzymes. Propolis has been shown to possess many biological and pharmacological properties, such as antimicrobial, antioxidant, immunostimulant and antitumor activities. Due to this bioactivity profile, this resin can become an alternative, economic and safe source of natural bioactive compounds.
Antitumor action has been reported in vitro and in vivo for propolis extracts or its isolated compounds; however, Portuguese propolis has been little explored. The aim of this work was to evaluate the in vitro antitumor activity of Portuguese propolis on the human colon carcinoma cell line HCT-15, assessing the effect of different fractions (hexane, chloroform and ethanol residual) of a propolis ethanol extract on cell viability, proliferation, metabolism and death.
Methods
Propolis from Angra do Heroismo (Azores) was extracted with ethanol and sequentially fractionated in solvents with increasing polarity, n-hexane and chloroform. To assess cell viability, cell proliferation and cell death, Sulforhodamine B, BrDU incorporation assay and Anexin V/Propidium iodide were used, respectively. Glycolytic metabolism was estimated using specific kits.
Results
All propolis samples exhibited a cytotoxic effect against tumor cells, in a dose- and time-dependent way. Chloroform fraction, the most enriched in phenolic compounds, appears to be the most active, both in terms of inhibition of viability and cell death. Data also show that this cytotoxicity involves disturbance in tumor cell glycolytic metabolism, seen by a decrease in glucose consumption and lactate production.
Conclusion
Our results show that Portuguese propolis from Angra do Heroismo (Azores) can be a potential therapeutic agent against human colorectal cancer.

Monday, July 22, 2013

Medicinal Manuka Honey Can Be Faked

Threats to Manuka Honey Industry
New Zealand Radio, 7/19/2013
A team of scientists has discovered threats to the manuka honey industry.
Genuine New Zealand manuka honey can fetch up to $250 a kilogram overseas because it contains special naturally occurring bioactive compounds.
Research that is yet to be published by a consortium of universities and Crown Research Institutes has discovered those properties can be faked by adding chemicals to normal honey, such as regular clover or low grade manuka honey.
Researchers have also discovered that storing genuine manuka honey in warm climates can make it fail tests intended to detect illegal additives…

Sunday, July 21, 2013

Professional Bee Box for Use in Bee Venom Therapy

This box is the result of many prototypes and experience during the last 10 years.
The collecting of bees from the hive is easy because its use does not disturb the colony. The bees enter inside the box directly. It is not necessary for the person collecting the bees to use any kind of protection. Easy to use in winter.
The best time to collect the bees is when the sun is going down. Put the bee box on the hive (with the both doors open) and a flashlight over the box. Bees will enter the box by following the light.
Because of a special opening, it is easy to remove bees one at a time.
For more information or to purchase, contact Antonio Couto at: antoniocouto@beefine.com 

Saturday, July 20, 2013

Bee Venom May Help Treat Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS)

Bee Venom Effects on Ubiquitin Proteasome System in hSOD1G85R-Expressing NSC34 Motor Neuron Cells
Background
Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) is a neurodegenerative disease that results from a progressive loss of motor neurons. Familial ALS (fALS) is caused by missense mutations in Cu, Zn-superoxide dismutase 1 (SOD1) that frequently result in the accumulation of mutant-protein aggregates that are associated with impairments in the ubiquitin-proteasome system (UPS). UPS impairment has been implicated in many neurological disorders. Bee venom (BV) extracted from honey bees has been used as a traditional medicine for treating inflammatory diseases and has been shown to attenuate the neuroinflammatory events that occur in a symptomatic ALS animal model.
Methods
NSC34 cells were transiently transfected with a WT or G85R hSOD1-GFP construct for 24 hrs and then stimulated with 2.5 mug/ml BV for 24 hrs. To determine whether a SOD1 mutation affects UPS function in NSC34 cells, we examined proteasome activity and performed western blotting and immunofluorescence using specific antibodies, such as anti-misfolded SOD1, anti-ubiquitin, anti-GRP78, anti-LC3, and anti-ISG15 antibodies.
Results
We found that GFP-hSOD1G85R overexpression induced SOD1 inclusions and reduced proteasome activity compared with the overexpression of GFP alone in NSC34 motor neuronal cells. In addition, we also observed that BV treatment restored proteasome activity and reduced the accumulation of ubiquitinated and misfolded SOD1 in GFP-hSOD1G85R-overexpressing NSC34 motor neuronal cells. However, BV treatment did not activate the autophagic pathway in these cells.
Conclusion
Our findings suggest that BV may rescue the impairment of the UPS in ALS models.

Friday, July 19, 2013

'Rogue Ingredients' in Expensive Manuka Honey

ONE News, 7/17/2013
Expensive manuka honey sold as "pure" in Hong Kong has been tested and found to have rogue ingredients including sugar or sugar syrup, the Hong Kong Consumer Council says.
But the New Zealand Bee Products Standards Council says while the result was shocking, testing of manuka honey had produced high levels of false positives to sugar content.
Chairman Dr Jim Edwards said they were aware of the Hong Kong report but did not know how the honey was tested or whether it was checked using a newly created and more reliable test.
"We have been aware of the need to resolve the testing problems," he said.
''We are watching with interests - our reputation is important."…

Thursday, July 18, 2013

Bee Sting Therapy: Using Bee Venom for Healing Purposes (Video)

Saludify, 7/16/2013

Bee sting therapy, known as a part of apitherapy (the use of beehive products), is the use of bee venom to treat certain health conditions. Bee venom is full of enzymes, peptides and biogenic amines, and the substance has at least 18 chemical compounds with pharmaceutical properties.
While bee sting therapy was traditionally applied through the use of live bees, modern technology has found ways to extract the venom and incorporate it into creams, ointments and injections. Bee sting therapy is still considered most effective, however, when venom is administered directly from the bee itself...

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Honey-Based Pill Helps Treat Asthma

Improved Treatment of Asthma by Using Natural Sources of Antioxidants
School of Biotechnology, International University, Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam ; Faculty of Applied sciences, University of the West of England, Bristol, UK.
A combined composition of the extracted powders from Hippocampus kuda and Rhizoma Homalomenae together with honey in a form of medical pill (named as BRONAS) for the treatment of asthma has thoroughly been investigated under this study. BRONAS has shown its high anti-inflammatory effects and strong inhibition upon the pathogenesis of asthma. In comparison with other treatments without using BRONAS, the restoration of patients' health was improved by a factor of 2-3.

CLINICAL TRIALS WITH ACTR NUMBER: ACTRN12612000766819.

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Dr. Andrew Weil: Is "Ear Candling" Hazardous to Your Hearing?

Dr. Andrew Weil, 7/15/2013
If you have wax buildup in your ear, there is a variety of effective methods to help remove it, but ear candling is not one of them. Also called ear coning, this practice involves inserting a hollow cone made of a cotton sheet that's been coated with beeswax into your ear. Someone else lights the other, wider end of the cone, in the hopes that as the flame burns, a vacuum will be created that draws the wax from the ear. When the flame goes out, there may be a dark residue on the remaining paper, but it is not removed earwax - it's a mixture of combustion products from the burned paper…

Monday, July 15, 2013

Propolis Component Shows Anti-Inflammatory, Neuroprotective; Hepatoprotective and Cardioprotective Activities

Caffeic Acid Phenethyl Ester, a Promising Component of Propolis with a Plethora of Biological Activities: A Review On Its Anti-Inflammatory, Neuroprotective, Hepatoprotective, and Cardioprotective Effects
IUBMB Life, 2013 Jul 11
Caffeic acid phenethyl ester (CAPE) is an important active component of honey bee propolis that possesses a plethora of biological activities. Propolis is used safely in traditional medicine as a dietary supplement for its therapeutic benefits.
This review highlights the recently published data about CAPE bioavailability, anti-inflammatory, neuroprotective; hepatoprotective and cardioprotective activities.
CAPE showed promising efficacy both in vitro and in vivo studies in animal models with minimum adverse effects. Its effectiveness was demonstrated in multiple target organs. Despite this fact, it has not been yet investigated as a protective agent or a potential therapy in humans.
Investigation of CAPE efficacy in clinical trials is strongly encouraged to elucidate its therapeutic benefit for different human diseases after performing full preclinical toxicological studies and gaining more insights into its pharmacokinetics.

Sunday, July 14, 2013

Review of Propolis Use on Poor Healing and Chronic Non-Healing Wounds

Stan Scheller: The Forerunner of Clinical Studies on Using Propolis for Poor and Chronic Nonhealing Wounds
Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine, Volume 2013 (2013), Article ID 456859, 5 pages
For hundreds of years poor and chronic nonhealing wounds have constituted a serious problem to medicine. What is more, treating such wounds is an expensive let alone a long-lasting process. The following paper describes Professor Scheller's achievements in using propolis for poor and chronic non-healing wounds. The authors' intention was to present the results connected with the use of the ethanolic extract propolis, in the treatment of patients suffering from burns, venous crural ulceration, local sacral bone pressure ulcers, suppurative osteitis and arthritis, suppurative postoperative local wound complications, and infected traumatic wounds…
As previously mentioned and clinically confirmed, propolis is said to have several therapeutic properties, such as antibacterial, anti-inflammatory, healing, anesthetic, anticarcinogenic, antifungal, antiprotozoan, and antiviral activities. Added to that, propolis contains copper 26.5 mg/kg, manganese 40 mg/kg, and the ash residue contains iron, calcium, aluminum, vanadium, strontium, and silicon, vitamins such as B1, B2, B6, C, and E, and a number of fatty acids [18]. In addition, it also includes some enzymes such as succinic dehydrogenase, glucose-6-phosphatase, adenosine triphosphatase and acid phosphatase…

Saturday, July 13, 2013

Honey Bee Products are Rich Sources of Probiotics

Honeybees and Beehives are Rich Sources for Fructophilic Lactic Acid Bacteria
Systematic and Applied Microbiology, Available online 8 July 2013
Fructophilic lactic acid bacteria (FLAB) are a specific group of lactic acid bacteria (LAB) characterized and described only recently. They prefer fructose as growth substrate and inhabit only fructose-rich niches. Honeybees are high-fructose-consuming insects and important pollinators in nature, but reported to be decreasing in the wild.
In the present study, we analyzed FLAB microbiota in honeybees, larvae, fresh honey and bee pollen. A total of 66 strains of LAB were isolated from samples using a selective isolation technique for FLAB. Surprisingly, all strains showed fructophilic characteristics. The 66 strains and ten FLAB strains isolated from flowers in a separate study were genotypically separated into six groups, four of which being identified as Lactobacillus kunkeei and two as Fructobacillus fructosus. One of the L. kunkeei isolates showed antibacterial activity against Melissococcus plutonius, a causative pathogen of European foulbrood, this protection being attributable to production of an antibacterial peptide or protein. Culture-independent analysis suggested that bee products and larvae contained simple Lactobacillus-group microbiota, dominated by L. kunkeei, although adult bees carried a more complex microbiota.
The findings clearly demonstrate that honeybees and their products are rich sources of FLAB, and FLAB are potential candidates for future bee probiotics.

Friday, July 12, 2013

Propolis Oil and Tincture

Hive & Honey, 7/8/2013

Propolis is an amazing product made by honeybees. It is a stiff, sticky substance that bees make from tree resin. It consists of various organic acids, essential oils, many flavonoids, vitamins, minerals and 16 amino acids. It has been used for centuries by people all over the world, for medicinal and health benefits…

Thursday, July 11, 2013

Spanish Propolis Shows Naturally High Concentration of Aluminum

Element Content of Propolis Collected from Different Areas of South Spain
Environ Monit Assess, 2013 Jul;185(7):6035-47
The aim of this work is to determine the content of essential and toxic elements in 25 raw propolis samples, when considering pollution agents and geographical and botanical factors. The microwave-assisted digestion was the most reliable and accurate method for determination of inorganic elements in propolis samples.
The results were obtained using certified reference materials in a good agreement with certified values. Inductively coupled plasma atomic emission spectroscopy was used for the determination of 23 macro- and microelements (Ag, Al, As, B, Ca, Cd, Co, Cr, Cu, Fe, K, Mg, Mn, Na, Ni, P, Pb, S, Sb, Se, Si, Sn, and Zn). A Mercury analyzer was also utilized for the detection of the total Hg. Among the analyzed metals, Ca, K, Mg, Zn, Si, S, Fe, Al, P, and Na were found to be the most predominant. Heavy metals (As, Cd, Hg, and Pb) were determined in minimal concentration, and Pb was the highest mean contained toxic ( < 3.80 mg/kg), without influence on provisional tolerable weekly intake values. The method can be applied for routine analysis and quality and environmental pollution controls of toxic elements in propolis samples. The results obtained indicate no pollution of the collection areas and naturally high concentration of Al (460 ± 62.2 mg/kg).

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Supplement Containing Royal Jelly Inhibits Cancer Cells

GE132+Natural: Novel Promising Dietetic Supplement with Antiproliferative Influence on Prostate, Colon, and Breast Cancer Cells
J BUON, 2013 Apr-Jun;18(2):504-10
Purpose: Natural products have been investigated for promising new leads in pharmaceutical development. The purpose of this study was to analyze the biological effect of GE132+Natural, a novel supplement consisting of 5 compounds: Resveratrol, Ganoderma lucidum, Sulforaphane, Lycopene and Royal jelly.
Methods: The antiproliferative activity of GE132+Natural was tested on 3 different human cancer cell lines: MCF7 (breast cancer cells), PC3 (prostate cancer cells), and SW480 (colon cancer cells), as well as on EA.hy 926 (normal human endothelial cell line). In addition, the cytotoxicity of GE132+- Natural on the proliferation of primary human mesenchymal stem cells isolated from dental pulp (DP=MSC), along with its in vitro impact on different peripheral blood parameters, was determined.
Results: The results revealed high antiproliferative activity of GE132+Natural on all tested cancer cell lines (PC3, MCF7 and SW480), as well as on the EA.hy 926 endothelial cell line in a dose-dependent manner. However, applied in a wide range of concentrations GE132+Natural did not affect both the proliferation of primary mesenchymal stem cells and the peripheral blood cells counts.
Conclusion: The data obtained demonstrated that GE132+Natural is effective in inhibiting cancer cell proliferation, indicating its potential beneficial health effects. In addition, the results pointed that adult mesenchymal stem cells might be valuable as a test system for evaluating the toxicity and efficacy of new medicines or chemicals.

Tuesday, July 09, 2013

Propolis Helps Reduce Glucose and Cholesterol Levels Associated with Aging

Positive Influence of a Natural Product as Propolis on antioxidant status and Lipid Peroxidation in Senescent Rats
J Physiol Biochem, 2013 Jun 28
Given the importance of oxidative stress associated to aging, it would be interesting to assess the effect of oral supplementation with antioxidant substances capable of diminishing oxidative aggression and free radicals generation associated to this condition.
This study investigated the effects of AIN-93 M diet supplemented either with 2 % of propolis, or with 4 % of a natural product obtained from lyophilizate vegetables, selected by its antioxidant properties, in senescent healthy Wistar rats fed ad libitum over 3 months.
Propolis supplementation leads to a lower level of glucose and cholesterol concentrations together with a reduction in protein oxidation. Plasma thiobarbituric acid-reactive substance levels were lower in the rats consuming the natural vegetable product and propolis possibly due to its antioxidant components, neutralizing the free radical produced, and thus preventing cellular damage.
The results of the present study suggest a synergic effect of overall propolis compounds reducing the oxidative stress and glucose and cholesterol plasma levels associated with aging.

Monday, July 08, 2013

Important Developments in Romanian Propolis Research

Evid Based Complement Alternat Med, 2013;2013:159392

The most important developments in propolis analysis and pharmacological properties are discussed. In order to help in the Romanian propolis standardization, different methodologies for chemical composition analysis (UV-VIS, HP-TLC, and HPLC-DAD) are reviewed using new approaches and software (fuzzy divisive hierarchical clustering approach and ChromQuest software) and compared with international studies made until now in propolis research.

Practical applications of Romanian propolis in medicinal therapy and cosmetics are reviewed, and quality criteria for further standardization are proposed.

Sunday, July 07, 2013

Royal Jelly May Help Boost Chicks’ Growth

Effect of Royal Jelly in ovo Injection on Embryonic Growth, Hatchability, and Gonadotropin Levels of Pullet Breeder Chicks
Theriogenology, Volume 80, Issue 3, August 2013, Pages 193–198
The objectives of this study were to compare the following: (1) hatchability, (2) chicks' body and internal organs weights, and (3) plasma gonadotropin levels of hatchlings after in ovo administration of royal jelly (RJ) on Day 7 of incubation.
Fertile eggs (n = 270) were injected into the air sac or yolk sac with 0.5 mL normal saline solution consisting of four formulations (normal saline solution with antibiotics, ultrafiltrate RJ, pure RJ, and RJ with antibiotics). The eggs were randomly divided into nine groups of 30 eggs each: (i) C: the control eggs received no injection, (ii) ASA: air sac–injected eggs received normal saline solution with antibiotics, (iii) ARJ: air sac–injected eggs received pure RJ, (iv) ARJA: air sac–injected eggs received RJ with antibiotics, (v) ARJF: air sac–injected eggs received RJ ultrafiltrate solution, (vi) YSA: yolk sac–injected eggs received normal saline solution with antibiotics, and (vii) YRJ: yolk sac–injected eggs received pure RJ, (viii) YRJA: yolk sac–injected eggs received RJ with antibiotics, and (ix) YRJF: yolk sac–injected eggs received ultrafiltrate RJ solution.
Hatchability rate was lower in ARJ (46.7%), ARJA (43.3%), ARJF (43.3%), and YRJF (46.7%) groups than in the control (80.0%; P < 0.05). Hatchability rate in ASA (70.0%), YSA (66.7%), YRJ (66.7%), and YRJA (63.3%) groups were comparable to the control (P > 0.05). In ovo injection of RJ and or RJ with antibiotics in both sacs increased chicks’ body weight (CWT), heart weight (HWT), and liver weight (LWT) and FSH and LH levels compared with control (P < 0.05). CWT in YRJ (37.02 g), YRJA (37.03 g), ARJ (36.82 g), and ARJA (36.89 g) groups were higher than control (34.9 g; P < 0.05).
Similarly, HWT significantly increased in YRJ (0.22 g), YRJA (0.21 g), ARJ (0.20 g), and ARJA (0.20 g) in comparison to control (0.18 g; P < 0.05). In addition, LWT were higher in YRJ (0.83 g), YRJA (0.82g), ARJ (0.81g), and ARJA (0.81g) than control (0.72 g; P < 0.05). Six hours post-hatch, the mean plasma FSH and LH levels in ARJ (1.13 and 2.80 mIu/mL), YRJ (1.32 and 3.36 mIu/mL), ARJA (1.23 and 2.95 mIu/mL), and YRJA (1.31 and 3.28 mIu/mL) groups were higher than in the control (0.56 and 1.48 mIu/mL, P < 0.05).
We concluded that in ovo administration of RJ or RJ with antibiotics might be an effective method to increase CWT, chicks' internal organs weights, and LH and FSH secretion rate without deleterious effect on hatchability. However, further research should be conducted to determine the putative endocrine disruptive effects of RJ and its byproducts.

Saturday, July 06, 2013

Bee Venom Component a Good ‘Chauffeur’ for Cell-Based Vaccines

Bee Venom Phospholipase A2, a Good "Chauffeur" for Delivering Tumor Antigen to the MHC I and MHC II Peptide-Loading Compartments of the Dendritic Cells: The Case of NY-ESO-1
PLoS One, 2013 Jun 18;8(6):e67645
Bee venom phospholipase A2 (bvPLA2) is a small, 15kDa enzyme which hydrolyses many phospholipids through interfacial binding. The mutated bvPLA2H34Q (bvPLA2m), in which histidine-34 is replaced by glutamine, is not catalytically active.
This protein has been shown to be a suitable membrane anchor and has been suggested as a suitable tumor-antigen vector for the development of novel dendritic cell-based vaccines. To confirm this feature, in this study the fusion protein PNY, composed of NY-ESO-1(NY(s)) fused to the C-terminus of bvPLA2m, was engineered.
bvPLA2m enhanced the binding of NY(s) to the membrane of human monocyte-derived dendritic cells (DCs) and, once taken up by the cells, the antigen fused to the vector was directed to both MHC I and MHC II peptide-loading compartments. bvPLA2m was shown to increase the cross-presentation of the NY(s)-derived, restricted HLA-A*02 peptide, NY-ESO-1157-165(NY157-165), at the T1 cell surface. DCs loaded with the fusion protein induced cross-priming of NY(s)-specific CD8 + T-cells with greater efficiency than DCs loaded with NY(s). Sixty-five percent of these NY(s)-specific CD8+ T-cell lines could also be activated with the DCs pulsed with the peptide, NY157-165. Of these CD8+ T-cell lines, two were able to recognize the human melanoma cell line, SK-MEL-37, in a context of HLA-A*02. Only a small number of bvPLA2m CD8+ T-cell lines were induced, indicating the low immunogenicity of the protein.
It was concluded that bvPLA2m can be used as a membrane-binding vector to promote MHC class II peptide presentation and MHC class I peptide cross-presentation. Such a system can, therefore, be tested for the preparation of cell-based vaccines.

Friday, July 05, 2013

Honey Protects Liver from Damage by Toxins

Bees' Honey Attenuation of Metanil-Yellow-Induced Hepatotoxicity in Rats
The present study aims to investigate the protective effect of bees' honey against metanil-yellow-induced hepatotoxicity in rats.
Rats were divided into 7 groups: control group; three groups treated with 50, 100, and 200 mg/kg metanil yellow, and three groups treated with metanil yellow plus 2.5 mg · kg(-1) · day(-1) bees' honey for 8 weeks. The obtained data showed that the antioxidant/anti-inflammatory activity of bees' honey reduced the oxidative stress in the liver tissue and downregulated the inflammatory markers. In addition, the elevated levels of AGE and the activated NF- κ B in the metanil-yellow-treated animals were significantly attenuated. Moreover, the levels of TNF- α and IL-1 β were significantly attenuated as a result of bees' honey administration. Furthermore, the histopathological examination of the liver showed that bees' honey reduced fatty degeneration, cytoplasmic vacuolization, and necrosis in metanil-yellow-treated rats.
In conclusion, the obtained data suggest that bees' honey has hepatoprotective effect on acute liver injuries induced by metanil-yellow in vivo, and the results suggested that the effect of bees' honey against metanil yellow-induced liver damage is related to its antioxidant/anti-inflammatory properties which attenuate the activation of NF- κ B and its controlled genes like TNF- α and IL-1 β .

Thursday, July 04, 2013

Video: Texan With MS Uses Bee Venom Therapy

video
Vicente Arenas, KHOU 11 News, 7/2/2013
MONTGOMERY COUNTY, Texas -- According to Allan Swor, who suffers from multiple sclerosis, none of his medications were helping to ease the pain. He could barely move so he decided to try an unusual treatment.
He started bee venom therapy which requires him to be stung nearly 100 times each week.
“I thought it was crazy,” Swor said.
He still ordered the bees through the mail to begin the treatment. His sister Brenda Vooza provides the treatment.
“I was scared to death,” Vooza said.
She stings her brother 30 times a day, three days a week.
“I just feel better all the time,” Swor said. “I hope I can work again one day.”
The stings are said to produce cortisol which can relieve inflammation.
Doctors said there are no studies to prove it works.

Wednesday, July 03, 2013

Stingless Bee Honey Shows Antimicrobial Activity

Antimicrobial Activity and Rutin Identification of Honey Produced by the Stingless Bee Melipona compressipes manaosensis and Commercial Honey
Background
Honey has been identified as a potential alternative to the widespread use of antibiotics, which are of significant concern considering the emergence of resistant bacteria. In this context, this study aimed to evaluate the antimicrobial activity of honey samples produced by a stingless bee species and by Apis sp. against pathogenic bacteria, as well as to identify the presence of phenolic compounds.
Methods
Honey samples from the stingless bee M. compressipes manaosensis were collected twice, during the dry and rainy seasons. Three commercial honey samples from Apis sp. were also included in this study. Two different assays were performed to evaluate the antibacterial potential of the honey samples: agar-well diffusion and broth macrodilution. Liquid-liquid extraction was used to assess phenolic compounds from honey. HPLC analysis was performed in order to identify rutin and apigenin on honey samples. Chromatograms were recorded at 340 and 290 nm.
Results
Two honey samples were identified as having the highest antimicrobial activity using the agar diffusion method. Honey produced by Melipona compressipes manaosensis inhibited the growth of Staphylococcus aureus, Escherichia coli (0157: H7), Proteus vulgaris, Shigella sonnei and Klebsiella sp. A sample of honey produced by Apis sp. also inhibited the growth of Salmonella paratyphi. The macrodilution technique presented greater sensitivity for the antibacterial testing, since all honey samples showed activity. Flavonoid rutin was identified in the honey sample produced by the stingless bee.
Conclusions
Honey samples tested in this work showed antibacterial activity against Gram-positive and Gram-negative bacteria. The results reported herein highlight the potential of using honey to control bacterial growth.

Tuesday, July 02, 2013

Major Component of Beeswax: Myricyl Palmitate

Today's molecule is a major component of something you are all familiar with. Identify the molecule (common name only) and where it's most likely to be found. (Hint: not in humans.)…
UPDATE: The molecule is a type of wax called myricyl palmitate. It's the major component of beeswax.

Monday, July 01, 2013

Royal Jelly Component Boosts Glucose Uptake

10-Hydroxy-2-Decenoic Acid, a Unique Medium-Chain Fatty Acid, Activates 5'-AMP-Activated Protein Kinase in L6 Myotubes and Mice
Mol Nutr Food Res, 2013 Jun 10
SCOPE:
10-Hydroxy-2-decenoic acid (10H2DA) is one of the unique medium-chain fatty acids (MCFAs) specifically found in royal jelly. We hypothesize that 10H2DA has multiple biological functions and may aid in 5'-AMP-activated protein kinase (AMPK) activation and affect the glucose transport system in skeletal muscle.
METHODS AND RESULTS:
We examined whether various MCFAs present in royal jelly activated AMPKα. Treatment of L6 myotubes with various MCFAs showed that 10H2DA administration resulted in a significant increase in phosphorylated AMPKα. 10H2DA activates AMPK independently of insulin and significantly increased glucose uptake into L6 myotubes following translocation of glucose transporter 4 (Glut4) to the plasma membrane (PM). The activation was induced by the upstream kinase Ca2+ /calmodulin-dependent kinase kinase β, but was independent of changes in AMP:ATP ratio and the liver kinase B1 pathway. Oral administration of 10H2DA significantly stimulated phosphorylation of AMPK and Glut4 translocation to the PM in mouse skeletal muscle.
CONCLUSION:
These findings indicate that (i) 10H2DA activates AMPK, and insulin independently enhances glucose uptake following translocation of Glut4 to PM, (ii) activation of AMPKα by 10H2DA is mediated via extracellular Ca2+ -dependent Ca2+ /calmodulin-dependent kinase kinase β, without alteration in the AMP:ATP ratio, and liver kinase B1 was not involved in the activation.