Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Australian Stingless Bee Propolis Shows Antibacterial Activity

Phloroglucinols from Anti-Microbial Deposit-Resins of Australian Stingless Bees (Tetragonula carbonaria)
Phytother Res. 2014 Sep 18. doi: 10.1002/ptr.5225
Stingless bees accumulate deposits of plant resins that are mixed with beeswax to produce propolis. Previous studies have reported anti-microbial constituents of stingless bee (Tetragonula carbonaria) propolis from East Australia, but several components remained to be characterized. In the search of natural products yet unreported for Australian propolis, four bee deposit-resins of T. carbonaria bees were analysed by gas and liquid chromatography mass spectrometry with accurate mass measurements. Ethanolic extracts of the deposit-resins were tested in vitro against Staphylococcus aureus ATCC 25983 and Pseudomonas aeruginosa ATCC 27853 by the agar diffusion method.
Phloroglucinols, flavonoids and isoprenoids were identified in samples. The crude extracts showed strong anti-staphylococcal effects but were less active against the Gram-negative bacterium. The diagnostic data enabled the identification of markers that can be used for profiling other Australian propolis sources and to target the isolation of bioactive phloroglucinols in future studies against antibiotic resistant S. aureus strains.

Monday, September 29, 2014

Propolis Electrospun Fibers Show Effective Antibacterial Activity in Mouth

Antibacterial Activity and Inhibition of Adherence of Streptococcus mutans by Propolis Electrospun Fibers
AAPS PharmSciTech. 2014 Sep 23. [Epub ahead of print]
Mouth-dissolving fibers with antibacterial activity for the oral cavity were prepared by an electrospinning technique. Propolis extract was used as an active ingredient and polyvinylpyrrolidone (PVP) K90 as the polymer matrix. The morphology and diameter of the fibers were characterized by scanning electron microscopy. Antibacterial activity against Streptococcus mutans and the inhibition of S. mutans adhesion on a smooth glass surface during the biofilm formation were tested. Propolis, 5% (w/v), was combined with a PVP K90 solution, 8% (w/v), with or without Tween 80 including flavor additives and electrospun with an applied voltage of 15 kV. Uniform and smooth fibers of propolis-PVP K90 were obtained.
The results showed that electrospun fibers with propolis extract can dissolve and release the propolis in water. Propolis-PVP electrospun fibers showed better antibacterial activity by reduction of bacteria adhesion on a smooth glass surface when compared to some commercial mouthwash products. These results indicated the potential of electrospun fibers to be used as mouth-dissolving fibers for effective antibacterial activity in the oral cavity.

Sunday, September 28, 2014

Bee Products Boost Effect of Anti-Cancer Drug

The Interaction of Bee Products With Temozolomide in Human Diffuse Astrocytoma, Glioblastoma Multiforme and Astroglia Cell Lines
Nutr Cancer, 2014 Sep 25:1-10

In the present study, we investigated the influence of extracts from Salix spp. honey (ESH), beebread (EBB), and royal jelly (ERJ) with and without temozolomide (TMZ) on cell lines derived from a patient with diffuse astrocytoma (DASC), human glioblastoma multiforme (U87MG), and normal human astroglia (SVGp12). DASC was identified by immunocytochemistry. TMZ (20 μM) in combination with ESH (30 μg/mL), EBB (50 μg/mL), and ERJ (30 μg/mL) has stronger cytotoxic activity on U87MG cells after 72 h (20.0, 26.5, and 29.3% of control, respectively) than TMZ alone (about 6% of control). An increase of the cytotoxic effect and inhibition of DNA synthesis in SVGp12 were detected after administering TMZ with the studied extracts. NF-κB p50 subunit was reduced in U87MG cells after treatment with ESH (70.9%) and ESH + TMZ (74.7%). A significant decline of MMP-9 and MMP-2 secretion in cultured U87MG was detected after incubation with EBB (42.9% and 73.0%, respectively) and EBB + TMZ (38.4% and 68.5%, respectively).
In conclusion, the use of bee products may increase the cytotoxic effect of TMZ in U87MG but also in SVGp12 cell line. It is important to note that the U87MG cells were sensitive to natural bee products, although there was no influence of natural bee products on the DASC cells.

Saturday, September 27, 2014

Honey Protects the Kidneys

The protective role of bee honey against the toxic effect of melamine in the male rat kidney
Toxicol Ind Health. 2014 Sep 25. pii: 0748233714551765

This study aimed to test the protective role of natural bee honey against melamine toxicity in the kidney of male albino rats. The dietary supplementation of melamine at a dose of 20,000 ppm for 28 days induced renal dysfunction, as reflected by a significant increase in kidney function parameters (urea, creatinine, and uric acid) and an increase in potassium levels. In addition, a decrease in catalase and glutathione-S-transferase and an increase in lipid peroxide in the kidney tissue homogenate were also observed. Histological changes in the melamine-treated group revealed hyperplasia and damage in kidney cells and the accumulation of melamine crystals in kidney tissues. Honey treatment for 28 days in rats concurrently administered melamine at a dose of 2.5 g/kg body weight for 28 days improved the kidney function, increased antioxidant enzymes, and decreased lipid peroxide levels. The morphology of the kidney cells of the melamine-fed rats was also improved as a result of honey treatment. In conclusion, this study revealed that natural bee honey protects the kidney against the adverse effects induced by melamine toxicity in male albino rats.

Friday, September 26, 2014

Up-to-Date Use of Honey For Burns Treatment

Ann Burns Fire Disasters, 2014 Mar 31;27(1):22-30
Made by bees from the nectar of flowers, used since ancient times to treat wounds and burns, honey has lately acquired a growing interest from the international scientific community and has been the subject of many specialized studies and communications. This article highlights the up-to-date knowledge on qualities, properties and mode of appliance of honey in the treatment of wounds of various etiologies, particularly burns, through an extensive retrospective analysis of data from the literature. This article aims to review and provide a synthesis of current issues regarding the complex action of honey on burn wounds, evidenced by in vitro studies, laboratory experiments and clinical trials published in the specialized literature. The present work analyzes extensively the anti-infectious and anti-inflammatory properties of honey, as well as its favorable effect on wound regeneration. Effectiveness of topical administration of honey is evidenced both by a series of experiments on laboratory animals and by clinical trials. This article also draws the attention of both medical staff and patients to the possibility of using this product, and to its acceptability in practice…
In vitro and in vivo studies have highlighted a broad range of activities provided by honey in burn treatment. These include anti-infectious, anti-inflammatory, antiexudative, antioxidant, wound healing, wound debriding and nutritional properties. In evidence-based medicine, research and clinical studies have shown the efficiency of honey in superficial and partial thickness burns therapy, when compared to other dressing products, making it a viable option as a valuable topical agent in clinical practice. However, as honey also appears to delay healing of partial and full thickness burns when compared to surgical treatment (early excision and grafting), its use requires further exploration. More detailed controlled trials are required to establish the best indications, methods and modalities of honey administration for each type and stage of burn. It is also necessary to have criteria for honey selection over other forms of treatment in burn management, which, of course, will also depend on the preferences and experience of those involved.

Thursday, September 25, 2014

Levels of Pesticide Residues in Honey Do Not Pose a Serious Health Risk to Consumers

Residues of organochlorine and synthetic pyrethroid pesticides in honey, an indicator of ambient environment, a pilot study
Chemosphere. 2014 Sep 19;120C:457-461
Samples of honey were screened to monitor residues of organochlorine and pyrethroid pesticides. The study meant to examine the quality of honey, and to use honey as a bioindicator of environmental contamination. Residue levels were determined by gas chromatography (GC-μECD). Samples had a wide spectrum of organochlorine and synthetic pyrethroids pesticides, with hexachlorobenzene (HCB) as the most frequently detected organochlorine, followed by permethrin, heptachlor epoxide. Only one sample had a concentration of γ-HCH higher than maximum residue limit of honey (0.01mgkg-1). Residues of organochlorines detected, indicate the presence of some fresh supplies, despite the ban imposed on their use. The study confirmed that honey bee and beehive matrices could be used as gauge for monitoring environment contamination. From public health point of view, the observed levels of pesticide residues in honey do not pose a serious health risk to the consumers, but raises questions of the source of organochlorines.

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Royal Jelly May Help Treat Dry Eye

Oral Administration of Royal Jelly Restores Tear Secretion Capacity in Rat Blink-Suppressed Dry Eye Model by Modulating Lacrimal Gland Function
PLOS One, 9/22/2014
Tears are secreted from the lacrimal gland (LG), a dysfunction in which induces dry eye, resulting in ocular discomfort and visual impairment. Honey bee products are used as a nutritional source in daily life and medicine; however, little is known about their effects on dry eye. The aim of the present study was to investigate the effects of honey bee products on tear secretion capacity in dry eye. We selected raw honey, propolis, royal jelly (RJ), pollen, or larva from commercially available honey bee products. Tear secretion capacity was evaluated following the oral administration of each honey bee product in a rat blink-suppressed dry eye model. Changes in tear secretion, LG ATP content, and LG mitochondrial levels were measured. RJ restored the tear secretion capacity and decrease in LG ATP content and mitochondrial levels to the largest extent. Royal jelly can be used as a preventative intervention for dry eye by managing tear secretion capacity in the LG.

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Quran Recommends Healing Properties of Honey

Keeping Bees on the roof of the East London Mosque
East London Lines, September 19, 2014
On the roof of the East London Mosque, Khalil and Salma Attan look after about 100,000 honeybees as their fellow Muslims worship in the halls below. Positioned at opposite ends of the hives, the married couple work together seamlessly as they inspect each frame, pausing occasionally to hand each other equipment and ask if the other had spotted the queen.
Before setting each frame back in place, Khalil and Salma gingerly brush a few bees out of the way, ensuring the insects don’t get crushed in the process. Shuddering as he recounted the occasional crunch, Khalil says of his gentle approach: “If you’re going to take care of them, you might as well do the best you can.”…
Bees, as well as honey, have a special significance in Islam. The Qur’an states: “And the Lord taught the bee to build its cells in hills, on trees and in (men’s) habitations; then to eat all the produce (of the earth), and find with skills the spacious paths of its Lord: there issues from within their bodies a drink of varying colours, wherein is healing for men…”
Khalil said: “It’s a good thing for people to see, that as Muslims, we’re the same as everyone else. We’re not detached from nature, and we have our interests external from what you might read in the papers sometimes.”

Monday, September 22, 2014

Beekeeper Cured of Life Threatening Allergy After Three Years of 'Sting' Treatment

The Telegraph, 8/7/2014
An amateur beekeeper who developed a life threatening allergy to bees has been cured after more than three years of treatment.
Simon Russ, a biology teacher, had been a beekeeper for seven years when a single sting sent him into anaphylactic shock and left him in hospital fighting for his life.
Determined to continue his hobby Mr Russ, 49, went through a painstaking course of immunotherapy.
At first he could only cope with one 10 millionth of a sting.
But over the course of three years he was injected with a dose of venom every few weeks, which gradually increased in strength, until he could cope with two stings…

Sunday, September 21, 2014

Romanian Apitherapy Congress, Expo and Workshops

October 17-21, Aro-Palace Hotel , Brasov , Romania
Scientific Program, October 17-19, 2014
Speakers and authors that will present their work during the Congress:
Dr. Andres Castillo Montenegro (Ecuador), President of the International Federation of Apitherapy.
Eng. Jose Cabrera Cabrera (Ecuador), Secretary of the International Federation of Apitherapy.
Drd. Stefan Stangaciu , President of the Romanian and German Apitherapy Societies. Secretary General of the International Federation of Apitherapy
Prof. Dr. Farm. Viorica Istudor (UMF Bucharest), Vice-President of the Romanian Apitherapy Society.
Dr. Cristina Aosan , Vice-President of the Romanian Apitherapy Society and Member in the Apitherapy Commission of Apimondia - Natural treatment including Apitherapy for a group of Pregnant Women with Multiple Sclerosis…

Saturday, September 20, 2014

Honey Beats Sugar in Anti-Cancer Properties

Pathology: October 2014 - Volume 46
Aim: High concentration of sugar is carcinogenic. Honey which is rich in sugars has been shown to have anti-cancer effect. There is no study reported on the effect of sugars mimicking the concentration of sugars of honey (honey-mimic) in inhibiting breast carcinoma in rats. The aim of the study is to investigate if honey-mimic has similar effect as natural honey on experimental breasts tumor induced by N-methyl-N-nitrosourea (MNU) in rats.
Methods: Honey-mimic was made by mixing proportions of fructose, glucose, sucrose and maltose mimicking the sugar composition of honey based on published method. Forty Sprague-Dawley rats were randomly divided into 4 groups with 10 animals per each group. Group 1 rats did not receive MNU injection (negative control). Group 2, 3, 4 rats received a single intraperitoneal dose (80 mg/kg body weight) of MNU injection. The size and development of the tumors were monitored. When the tumor size reached 10-12 mm2 in diameter, rats of Group 3 were given oral honey-sugar mimic 1.0 g/kg while Group 4 was given honey 1.0 g/kg body weight daily. Group 2 was not given honey-sugar mimic nor natural honey (positive control). All rats were allowed to feed on rat chowder ad lib. After 120 days, all rats were sacrificed and tumors were harvested for gross and histopathological examinations.
Results: The mean number of tumors developed per rat in groups 2, 3, 4 was 4.9 +/- 0.60, 3.6 +/- 0.40 and 3.4 +/- 0.30, respectively. The mean tumor weight and volume in the negative and positive control group were significantly larger at 11.85 +/- 1.01 g and 8.50 +/- 0.40 cm3, respectively; while in the test groups (Groups 3 and 4) were 6.45 +/- 0.60 g and 4.50 +/- 0.20 cm3; 4.34 +/- 0.35 g and 2.50 +/- 0.20 cm3 (p < 0.05), respectively. Histopathological grading revealed that the majority of rats which received honey-sugar mimic and honey were of grade 1 and 2 compared to control, which were of grade 3.
Conclusion: Sugar concentration mimicking composition of sugars in natural honey has some anti-carcinogenesis modulation properties but not as effective as honey.

Friday, September 19, 2014

Malaysian Tualang Honey May Help Treat Breast Cancer

Pathology: October 2014 - Volume 46
Introduction: Recent studies have shown that honey has anticancer properties in tissue culture and in-vivo animal experiment against different types of cancers. Only a few studies suggested that honey might be useful in modulating experimental breast carcinoma in vivo.Aim: To study the inhibitory effects of Malaysian Jungle Tualang honey (TH) on N-methyl-N-nitrosourea (MNU)-induced rat mammary carcinogenesis.
Methods: Fifty female Sprague-Dawley rats were randomly divided into 5 groups with 10 animals each (n = 10); Group 1 did not receive MNU and did not receive honey (negative control); Group 2 received MNU but not honey (positive control). Groups 3, 4 and 5 were fed orally with 0.2, 1.0 or 2.0 g/kg body weight of Tualang Honey daily respectively from day 0 of the experimentation. Cancer induction using MNU was done on the 7th day and development of mammary cancer masses was charted. All rats in all groups were given rat chowder ad lib. The rats in Groups 3, 4 and 5 continued to receive honey until the 120th day when they were sacrificed and subjected to autopsy. The tumors were harvested for gross and histopathological examinations.
Results: The total number of tumors developed in all groups was 105. The mean number of tumors developed per rat in Groups 2, 3, 4, 5 was 4.6 +/- 0.60, 1.9 +/- 0.40, 2.3 +/- 0.30, and 1.7 +/- 0.50, respectively. Honey was found to reduce the number of tumor masses, tumor incidence and tumor size; the mean size was <=2.5 cm3, smaller than control, <=8.5 cm3. The number of tumors developed in treatment groups was also significantly fewer (p < 0.05). Histopathological grading revealed that the majority of honey-treated group tumors were of grade 1 = (32/62) (51.61%) and 2 = (18/62)(29.03%).
Conclusion: Tualang honey has an inhibitory effect on breast carcinogenesis in rats when given one week prior to tumor induction.(C) 2014 Royal College of Pathologists of Australasia

Thursday, September 18, 2014

Determination of Pyrrolizidine Alkaloids in Honey

Determination of pyrrolizidine alkaloids in tea, herbal drugs and honey
Honey was previously considered to be one of the main food sources of human pyrrolizidine alkaloid (PA) exposure in Europe. However, comprehensive analyses of honey and tea sampled in the Berlin retail market revealed unexpected high PA amounts in teas. Our study comprised the analysis of 87 honey as well as 274 tea samples including black, green, rooibos, melissa, peppermint, chamomile, fennel, nettle and mixed herbal tea or fruit tea...

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Propolis Extract May Help Treat Diabetes

Significance of propolis administration for homeostasis of CD4+CD25+ immunoregulatory T cells controlling hyperglycemia
7th Space, 9/15/2014
In the present study, we examined the effect of ethanolic soluble derivative of propolis (EEP) extract on immunological function in diabetic mouse models with the aim of highlighting the role of regulatory T cell, the change of cell surface molecule, and in vivo productions of IFN-gamma. Murine models of diabetes mellitus (DM) were created by injecting normal mice with S961 peptide.
Normal BALB/c mice were injected intraperitoneally with peptide S961 300 mg/kg body weight (BW) twice a day for eight days. On day 15, the spleen was isolated; then, cell surface molecules and regulatory T cells were analyzed using flow cytometry…

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Manuka Honey Does Not Decrease Pain of Radiation-Induced Esophagitis for Lung Cancer Patients

SAN FRANCISCO, CA--(Marketwired - September 14, 2014) - Patient-reported data indicates that when Manuka honey is prescribed for esophagitis pain during radiation therapy (RT), it is not more effective than standard medical care, according to research presented today at the American Society for Radiation Oncology's (ASTRO's) 56th Annual Meeting.
Esophagitis, inflammation that damages tissues of the esophagus and causes discomfort, is a common and temporary side effect experienced by the majority of lung cancer patients undergoing RT. Small studies have previously been conducted to evaluate if honey can prevent the loss of the normal surface of the mouth or throat caused by RT. It is important to reduce esophagitis pain so that patients' do not forgo eating; maintaining patients' positive nutritional status is vital during cancer treatment.
This study assessed the use of Manuka honey, a honey from New Zealand that is a standardized, medical grade honey. The randomized, phase II trial enrolled 163 lung cancer patients at 13 cancer centers who were undergoing concurrent chemotherapy and RT. Of the study group, ≥ 30 percent of the patients had received 60 Gy of RT to the espophagus (V60). There were no statistically significant differences in pretreatment characteristics within the study group.
Patients were assigned to three groups based upon treatment for esophagitis -- 56 patients in Arm 1 received standard supportive care; 53 patients in Arm 2 received 10 ml of Manuka honey orally, four times per day; and 54 patients in Arm 3 received one lozenge, consisting of 10 ml of dehydrated Manuka honey, four times per day. The honey was administered on the first day of treatment and continued throughout RT.
After four weeks of RT treatment with and without Manuka honey, patients were asked to assess their pain during swallowing using the Numerical Pain Rating Scale (NPRS) scale, with a zero indicating "no pain," a five indicating "moderate pain," and a 10 indicating "worst possible pain." The study was designed to detect a 15 percent relative reduction of change in NPRS score, corresponding to a mean change score of 3.1 in Arms 2 and 3, as compared with Arm 1. The study concluded that there was no significant difference in levels of pain reported by patients within the three groups (mean change scores of 2.7, 2.1 and 2.1, respectively; p = 0.73 for Arm 1 vs. Arm 2, p = 0.68 Arm 1 vs. Arm 3)…

Monday, September 15, 2014

Lactic Acid Bacterial Symbionts in Honeybees Show Strong Antimicrobial Activity

Lactic Acid Bacterial Symbionts in Honeybees - An Unknown Key to Honey's Antimicrobial and Therapeutic Activities
Int Wound J. 2014 Sep 8. doi: 10.1111/iwj.12345
Could honeybees' most valuable contribution to mankind besides pollination services be alternative tools against infections? Today, due to the emerging antibiotic-resistant pathogens, we are facing a new era of searching for alternative tools against infections. Natural products such as honey have been applied against human's infections for millennia without sufficient scientific evidence. A unique lactic acid bacterial (LAB) microbiota was discovered by us, which is in symbiosis with honeybees and present in large amounts in fresh honey across the world. This work investigates if the LAB symbionts are the source to the unknown factors contributing to honey's properties. Hence, we tested the LAB against severe wound pathogens such as methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA), Pseudomonas aeruginosa and vancomycin-resistant Enterococcus (VRE) among others.
We demonstrate a strong antimicrobial activity from each symbiont and a synergistic effect, which counteracted all the tested pathogens. The mechanisms of action are partly shown by elucidating the production of active compounds such as proteins, fatty acids, anaesthetics, organic acids, volatiles and hydrogen peroxide. We show that the symbionts produce a myriad of active compounds that remain in variable amounts in mature honey. Further studies are now required to investigate if these symbionts have a potential in clinical applications as alternative tools against topical human and animal infections.

Sunday, September 14, 2014

Lactic Acid Bacteria (LAB) Symbionts from Honey Bees May Offer Alternative to Antibiotics

A pilot study investigating lactic acid bacterial symbionts from the honeybee in inhibiting human chronic wound pathogens
Int Wound J. 2014 Sep 8. doi: 10.1111/iwj.12360
Treatment and management of chronic wounds is a large burden on the health sector and causes substantial suffering for the patients. We believe that 13 lactic acid bacteria (LAB) symbionts isolated from the honey crop of the honeybee are important players in the antimicrobial action of honey, by producing antimicrobial substances and can be used in combination with heather honey as an effective treatment in wound management.
A total of 22 patients with chronic ulcers were included; culture-dependent and molecular-based (MALDI-MS and 16S rRNA gene sequencing) techniques were used to identify bacteria from chronic wounds. These clinical isolates were used for in vitro antimicrobial testing with standardised viable LAB and sterilised heather honey mixture. Twenty of the patients' wounds were polymicrobial and 42 different species were isolated. Patient isolates that were tested in vitro were inhibited by the LAB and honey combination with inhibitory zones comparable with different antibiotics.
LAB and heather honey in combination presents a new topical option in chronic wound management because of the healing properties of honey, antimicrobial metabolite production from the LAB and their bactericidal effect on common chronic wound pathogens. This new treatment may be a stepping stone towards an alternative solution to antibiotics.

Saturday, September 13, 2014

Milk and Honey Mixture as Effective as OTC Medication For Treating Acute Cough in Children

Effect of multiple honey doses on non-specific acute cough in children. An open randomised study and literature review
Allergol Immunopathol (Madr). 2014 Sep 5. pii: S0301-0546(14)00129-3
Honey is recommended for non-specific acute paediatric cough by the Australian guidelines. Current available randomised clinical trials evaluated the effects of a single evening dose of honey, but multiple doses outcomes have never been studied.
To evaluate the effects of wildflower honey, given for three subsequent evenings, on non-specific acute paediatric cough, compared to dextromethorphan (DM) and levodropropizine (LDP), which are the most prescribed over-the-counter (OTC) antitussives in Italy.
134 children suffering from non-specific acute cough were randomised to receive for three subsequent evenings a mixture of milk (90ml) and wildflower honey (10ml) or a dose of DM or LDP adjusted for the specific age. The effectiveness was evaluated by a cough questionnaire answered by parents. Primary end-point efficacy was therapeutic success. The latter was defined as a decrease in cough questionnaire score greater than 50% after treatment compared with baseline values.
Three children were excluded from the study, as their parents did not complete the questionnaire. Therapeutic success was achieved by 80% in the honey and milk group and 87% in OTC medication group (p=0.25).
Milk and honey mixture seems to be at least as effective as DM or LDP in non-specific acute cough in children. These results are in line with previous studies, which reported the health effects of honey on paediatric cough, even if placebo effect cannot be totally excluded.

Friday, September 12, 2014

Miele di Manuka: proprieta', usi e dove trovarlo

Scritto Da Marta Albè
GreenMe,  Creato 10 Settembre 2014
Il miele di Manuka proviene dalla Nuova Zelanda, unico luogo del mondo dove è possibile produrlo, poiché solo qui le api hanno a disposizione le piante di Manuka (Leptospermum scoparium), che crescono spontaneamente sul territorio.
Il miele di Manuka è probabilmente l'unico alimento di cui sia stata senza ombra di dubbio dal punto di vista scientifico l'efficacia antibatterica.
Proprietà del miele di Manuka
Il miele di Manuka è conosciuto soprattutto per le sue proprietà antibatteriche. La componente antibatterica del miele di Manuka è conosciuta come methylglyoxal, una sostanza presente anche negli altri tipi di miele, ma in quantità ridotte. E' considerato benefico per le vie respiratorie, soprattutto in caso di congestione nasale. E' un vero e proprio antibiotico naturale e ha potere disinfettante. Una ricerca condotta di recente dagli esperti dell'Università degli Emirati Arabi ha messo in luce che il miele di Manuka potrebbe essere in grado di inibire la crescita delle cellule tumorali…

Thursday, September 11, 2014

Bacteria Extracted from the Stomachs of Honeybees Target MRSA

Bee Bacteria Make for Antibiotic Alternatives
Digital Journal, 9/9/2014
Lund - A new study has shown that certain types of bacteria extracted from the stomachs of honeybees could be promising targets as antibiotics against pathogenic bacteria like MRSA.
The new research has looked at thirteen lactic acid bacteria found in the stomach of bees. The bacteria seem to be able to slowdown the growth of antibiotic-resistant MRSA. In studies, the bacteria, when mixed into honey, were able to heal horses with persistent wounds. Furthermore, the bacteria were assessed against severe human wound pathogens such as methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA), Pseudomonas aeruginosa and vancomycin-resistant Enterococcus (VRE).
The study infers that the thirteen different lactic acid bacteria produce the right kind of antimicrobial compounds needed to keep a range of pathogens at bay…

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Nanoparticle-Encapsulated Honeybee Venom May Enhance Immunity, Prevent Bacterial Infections

Poly d,l-lactide-co-glycolide (PLGA) nanoparticle-encapsulated honeybee (Apis melifera) venom promotes clearance of Salmonella enterica serovar Typhimurium infection in experimentally challenged pigs through the up-regulation of T helper type 1 specific immune responses
Vet Immunol Immunopathol. 2014 Aug 22. pii: S0165-2427(14)00183-4
Honeybee (Apis melifera) venom (HBV), which includes melittin and lipid-soluble ingredients (chrysin and pinocembrin), elicited increases in the CD4+/CD8+ T lymphocyte ratio, relative mRNA expression levels of the T helper type 1 (Th 1) cytokines (interferon-γ and IL-12) and reinforced viral clearance of an experimental porcine reproductive and respiratory syndrome (PRRS) virus infection in our previous study. On the basis of that previous study, we have now developed poly-d,l-lactide-co-glycolide (PLGA)-encapsulated HBV nanoparticles (P-HBV) for longer sustained release of HBV.
We administered P-HBV to pigs via the rectal route, and then evaluated the potential immune-enhancing and bacterial clearance effects of P-HBV against Salmonella enterica serovar Typhimurium. The CD4+/CD8+ lymphocyte ratio, proliferative capacity of peripheral blood lymphocytes and relative mRNA expression levels of IFN-γ and IL-12 (produced mainly by Th1 lymphocytes) were significantly increased in the P-HBV group up to 2 weeks post-administration of P-HBV. After S. Typhimurium infection, the P-HBV group showed a marked reduction in microbial burden in feces and all tissue samples (including the ileum, cecum, colon, and mesenteric lymph node (MLN)), a significant increase in Th 1 cytokines (IFN-γ, IL-2, and IL-12) and a marked decrease in a Th 2 cytokine (IL-4) in all tissue samples and peripheral blood lymphocytes.
Thus, P-HBV may be a promising strategy for immune enhancement and prevention of S. Typhimurium or other bacterial infections.

Tuesday, September 09, 2014

Honey and Ampicillin Induced Similar Structural Changes to Bacteria Cell Wall

Antibacterial Compounds of Canadian Honeys Target Bacterial Cell Wall Inducing Phenotype Changes, Growth Inhibition and Cell Lysis That Resemble Action of β-Lactam Antibiotics
PLoS One. 2014 Sep 5;9(9):e106967
Honeys show a desirable broad spectrum activity against Gram-positive and negative bacteria making antibacterial activity an intrinsic property of honey and a desirable source for new drug development. The cellular targets and underlying mechanism of action of honey antibacterial compounds remain largely unknown. To facilitate the target discovery, we employed a method of phenotypic profiling by directly comparing morphological changes in Escherichia coli induced by honeys to that of ampicillin, the cell wall-active β-lactam of known mechanism of action. Firstly, we demonstrated the purity of tested honeys from potential β-lactam contaminations using quantitative LC-ESI-MS. Exposure of log-phase E. coli to honey or ampicillin resulted in time- and concentration-dependent changes in bacterial cell shape with the appearance of filamentous phenotypes at sub-inhibitory concentrations and spheroplasts at the MBC.
Cell wall destruction by both agents, clearly visible on microscopic micrographs, was accompanied by increased permeability of the lipopolysaccharide outer membrane as indicated by fluorescence-activated cell sorting (FACS). More than 90% E. coli exposed to honey or ampicillin became permeable to propidium iodide. Consistently with the FACS results, both honey-treated and ampicillin-treated E. coli cells released lipopolysaccharide endotoxins at comparable levels, which were significantly higher than controls (p < 0.0001). E. coli cells transformed with the ampicillin-resistance gene (β-lactamase) remained sensitive to honey, displayed the same level of cytotoxicity, cell shape changes and endotoxin release as ampicillin-sensitive cells. As expected, β-lactamase protected the host cell from antibacterial action of ampicillin. Thus, both honey and ampicillin induced similar structural changes to the cell wall and LPS and that this ability underlies antibacterial activities of both agents. Since the cell wall is critical for cell growth and survival, honey active compounds would be highly applicable for therapeutic purposes while differences in the mode of action between honey and ampicillin may provide clinical advantage in eradicating β-lactam-resistant pathogens.

Monday, September 08, 2014

Honey Helps Treat Tonsillectomy Pain

Efficacy of honey in reduction of post tonsillectomy pain, randomized clinical trial
Int J Pediatr Otorhinolaryngol. 2014 Aug 21. pii: S0165-5876(14)00462-5
Tonsillectomy is one of the most common operations performed in pediatric population. One of the most prevalent tonsillectomy complications is early or delayed post-operative hemorrhage. Other important morbidity is post-operative pain. Historically, honey has been used for wound control, reducing the inflammation, and healing acceleration. The aim of this study is to investigate the effect of honey on reducing pain after tonsillectomy in children 5-15 years old.
After tonsillectomy, 80 patients were randomly divided in two equal groups. Patients in the first group were treated with antibiotic and acetaminophen, while those in the second group were treated with antibiotic, acetaminophen and honey. Data was gathered via a questionnaire and observation of tonsillar bed healing. Data was analyzed by SPSS17 software and related tests.
Pain comparison between two groups showed that the average time required for pain relief in patients who received honey was less than the control. The pain intensity was higher during the first 9 days post-operatively in control group. Results also showed that acetaminophen consumption in patients who received honey is lower. In the case group, the average time to resume regular diet and the frequency of awakening at night is significantly less than the control group.
Honey administration after tonsillectomy has valuable effect in pain relief and it can be used as an adjunctive regimen after surgery for better pain control.

Sunday, September 07, 2014

Honeydew Honey Has Potential to Be One Medical-Grade Honey

Treatment of non-healing leg ulcers with honeydew honey
J Tissue Viability. 2014 Aug 19. pii: S0965-206X(14)00060-6
Honey is used as a traditional medicine for centuries by different cultures for the treatment of various disorders. However, not all honeys exhibit equal antimicrobial potency and only a few meet the criteria for clinical usage.
The aim of the study was to determine clinical efficacy of sterilised honeydew honey in the treatment of the lower leg ulcers in 25 patients. Furthermore, we evaluated honey acceptability of patients in terms of pain and overall satisfaction.
A total of 25 patients with chronic venous leg ulcers were recruited into this study. The 100% γ-irradiated sterile honeydew honey was applied onto the cleaned wounds and each wound was assessed at the least two times in for a period of 6 weeks.
During the course of treatment, the average wound area of all patients decreased significantly from 51 (3-150) to 22 (0-91) cm2. Eighteen patients (72%) experienced a decrease in reported pain levels while five patients (20%) experienced the same level of pain throughout the study. The overall satisfaction with honey treatment was positive in 80% of patients. Only two patients experienced poor tolerance due to problems at ulcer site related to pain.
Based on these findings, honeydew honey has the potential to be one of the medical-grade honeys.

Saturday, September 06, 2014

Indonesian Stingless Bee Propolis Kills Cancer Cells

In vitro cytotoxicity of Indonesian stingless bee products against human cancer cell lines
Asian Pac J Trop Biomed. 2014 Jul;4(7):549-56
To screen crude extracts of propolis, bee pollen and honey from four stingless bee species [Trigona incisa (T. incisa)], Timia apicalis, Trigona fusco-balteata and Trigona fuscibasis) native to East Kalimantan, Indonesia for cytotoxic activity against five human cancer cell lines (HepG2, SW620, ChaGo-I, KATO-III and BT474).
All samples were extracted with methanol, and then subpartitioned with n-hexane and ethyl acetate. Each crude extract was screened at 20 µg/mL for in vitro cytotoxicity against the cell lines using the 3-(4,5-dimethylthiazol-2-yl)-2,5-diphenyltetrazolium bromide assay. In addition, four previously shown bioactive components from propolis (apigenin, caffeic acid phenyl ester, kaempferol and naringenin) and two chemotherapeutic drugs (doxorubicin and 5-fluorouracil) were used to evaluate the sensitivity of the cell lines.
Overall, crude extracts from propolis and honey had higher cytotoxic activities than bee pollen, but the activity was dependent upon the extraction solvent, bee species and cell line. Propolis extracts from T. incisa and Timia apicalis showed the highest and lowest cytotoxic activity, respectively. Only the HepG2 cell line was broadly sensitive to the honey extracts. For pure compounds, doxorubicin was the most cytotoxic, the four propolis compounds the least, but the ChaGo-I cell line was sensitive to kaempferol at 10 µg/mL and KATO-III was sensitive to kaempferol and apigenin at 10 µg/mL. All pure compounds were effective against the BT474 cell line.
Propolis from T. incisa and Trigona fusco-balteata contain an in vitro cytotoxic activity against human cancer cell lines. Further study is required, including the isolation and characterization of the active antiproliferative agent(s).

Friday, September 05, 2014

Manuka Honey has Antibacterial Properties Capable of Inhibiting Biofilm

Biofilm formation of Clostridium difficile and susceptibility to Manuka Honey
BMC Complement Altern Med. 2014 Sep 3;14(1):329
Biofilm bacteria are relatively more resistant to antibiotics. The escalating trend of antibiotic resistance higlights the need for evaluating alternative potential therapeutic agents with antibacterial properties. The use of honey for treating microbial infections dates back to ancient times, though antimicrobial properties of Manuka honey was discovered recently. The aim of this study was to demonstrate biofilm formation of specific Clostridium difficile strains and evaluate susceptibility of the biofilm to Manuka honey.
Three C. difficile strains were used in the study including the ATCC 9689 strain, a ribotype 027 strain and a ribotype 106 strain. Each test strain was grown in sterile microtitre plates and incubated at 37[degree sign]C for 24 and 48 hours in an anaerobic cabinet to allow formation of adherent growth (biofilm) on the walls of the wells. The effect of Manuka honey on the biofilms formed was investigated at varying concentrations of 1-50% (v/v) of Manuka honey.
The three C. difficile strains tested formed biofilms after 24 hours with the ribotype 027 strain producing the most extensive growth. There was no significant difference (p > 0.05) found between the amount of biofilms formed after 24 and 48 hours of incubation for each of the three C. difficile strains. A dose-response relationship between concentration of Manuka honey and biofilm formation was observed for all the test strains, and the optimum Manuka honey activity occurred at 40-50% (v/v).
Manuka honey has antibacterial properties capable of inhibiting in vitro biofilm formed by C. difficile.

Thursday, September 04, 2014

Apitherapy Diet Reduces Toxicity in Liver, Spleen and Pancreas

Effect of Apitherapy Formulations against Carbon Tetrachloride-Induced Toxicity in Wistar Rats after Three Weeks of Treatment
Molecules 2014, 19(9), 13374-13391
The human body is exposed nowadays to increasing attacks by toxic compounds in polluted air, industrially processed foods, alcohol and drug consumption that increase liver toxicity, leading to more and more severe cases of hepatic disorders. The present paper aims to evaluate the influence of the apitherapy diet in Wistar rats with carbon tetrachloride-induced hepatotoxicity, by analyzing the biochemical determinations (enzymatic, lipid and protein profiles, coagulation parameters, minerals, blood count parameters, bilirubin levels) and histopathological changes at the level of liver, spleen and pancreas.
The experiment was carried out on six groups of male Wistar rats. Hepatic lesions were induced by intraperitoneal injection of carbon tetrachloride (dissolved in paraffin oil, 10% solution). Two mL per 100 g were administered, every 2 days, for 2 weeks. Hepatoprotection was achieved with two apitherapy diet formulations containing honey, pollen, propolis, Apilarnil, with/without royal jelly.
Biochemical results reveal that the two apitherapy diet formulations have a positive effect on improving the enzymatic, lipid, and protein profiles, coagulation, mineral and blood count parameters and bilirubin levels. The histopathological results demonstrate the benefits of the two apitherapy diet formulations on reducing toxicity at the level of liver, spleen and pancreas in laboratory animals.

Wednesday, September 03, 2014

Bee Venom Therapy Used in India to Treat Arthritis, MS

No Pain No Gain in Kerala’s Bee Venom Therapy
Indian Express, 8/30/2014
A bee sting is definitely not something pleasant, but one will be surprised to see people queuing up to get stung at the ‘Bee Venom Therapy Centre’ in Kalpetta, the district headquarters of Wayanad, in northern Kerala, between 10 am and 12 noon every Tuesday.
K M Sankarankutty, the head of the Bee Research and Training Institute, under the Kerala Khadi Grama Vyavasaya Board, supervises the proceedings. When you meet him, he will hand you a copy of a pamphlet titled, ‘The Miracle and Wonders of Treatment from Bee Venom’. “Certain compounds in bee venom, namely melittin and adolapin, help reduce inflammation and pain, especially in arthritis patients. Apis cerana indica is the bee species used,” says Sankarankutty.
He takes a bee out of a wooden box and places it on the knee of a patient suffering from rheumatoid arthritis. Thereafter, he gives the insect a small pinch, so that it gets agitated and injects venom into the patient through the needle-like portion of the sting apparatus.
The venom is used to cure rheumatoid arthritis, nerve pain, multiple sclerosis, swollen tendons, as well as fibromyositis and enthesitis. The treatment is being offered as per the guidelines provided by the American Apitherapy Society. However, those who cannot avail of bee therapy are pregnant women and patients with hypertension, kidney and heart ailments, as well as mental disorders…

Tuesday, September 02, 2014

Consumption of Royal Jelly Effective in Reducing PMS

Effect of Royal Jelly on premenstrual syndrome among Iranian medical sciences students: A randomized, triple-blind, placebo-controlled study
Complement Ther Med. 2014 Aug;22(4):601-6
Premenstrual syndrome (PMS) may have negative effects on women's health and sometimes need therapeutic non-pharmacological management.
To determine the effect of oral consumption of 1000mg Royal Jelly capsule on premenstrual syndrome.
This is a randomized, triple-blind, placebo-controlled clinical trial, which was conducted in Tehran University of Medical Sciences female dormitories between December 2011 and October 2012. The study population comprised 110 medical sciences student with PMS, whom were randomly assigned to an intervention or a control group. Each participant in the intervention group took one Royal jelly capsule orally per day, starting on the first day of menstruation and continued the same treatment daily throughout two consecutive menstrual cycles, while participants in the intervention group took placebo capsules as same method. The outcome measure in this study was PMS score as obtained through the Premenstrual Profile 2005.
The mean of personal characteristics and baseline level of the premenstrual score before intervention did not differ between groups. After two consecutive months consumption of Royal Jelly, PMS score had decreased from 23.17±17.43 to 11.42±14.58 (mean change: 11.75; 95% confidence interval [CI]: 8.31-15.19) and in Placebo, PMS score changed from 21.48±16.39 to 20.27±15.76 (mean change: 1.20; 95% CI: -1.69 to 4.10). Also difference between mean changes was significant (mean difference: 10.54; 95% CI: 6.10-14.98).
The results of the study have demonstrated that 2 months consumption of Royal Jelly was effective in reducing PMS

Monday, September 01, 2014

Honey Effective in Healing Cesarean Section Incisions

Oman Med J, 2014 Jul;29(4):255-9
The effect of honey gel on abdominal wound healing in cesarean section: a triple blind randomized clinical trial.
To assess whether honey can accelerate the wound healing in women undergoing cesarean section.
This was a triple blinded randomized prospective clinical trial. Women with cesarean section were randomly designated as drug (37 cases) and placebo (38 cases) groups. The drug group received local honey gel 25% while the placebo group received similar free-honey gel on abdominal cesarean incision twice a day for 14 days. REEDA scale (Redness, Edema, Ecchymosis, Discharge and Approximation of wound edges) was used to assess wound healing.
The mean REEDA was 2.27 ± 2.46 and 3.91 ± 2.74 (p=0.008) on the 7(th) day and 0.47 ± 0.84 and 1.59± 1.95 (p=0.002) on the 14(th) day for the drug and placebo groups, respectively. Redness, edema and hematoma in the drug group were significantly lower on the 7(th) and 14(th) days.
Honey was effective in healing the cesarean section incision. Using topical honey is suggested as a natural product with rare side effects in order to reduce the complications of cesarean wounds.