Saturday, October 31, 2015

Chinese, Brazilian Propolis shows Anti-Inflammatory Effect

Polyphenol-rich propolis extracts from China and Brazil exert anti-inflammatory effects by modulating ubiquitination of TRAF6 during the activation of NF-κB

Journal of Functional Foods

Volume 19, Part A, December 2015, Pages 464–478

Propolis has documented anti-inflammatory properties, although its mechanisms of action are poorly understood. In this study, the anti-inflammatory effects of polyphenol-rich propolis extracts (PPE) from China (CPPE) and Brazil (BPPE) were examined.

Oral administration of PPE to lipopolysaccharide (LPS)-challenged mice decreased serum proinflammatory cytokine concentrations and inhibited pulmonary nuclear factor (NF)-κB activation. Both PPE types modulated LPS-induced key inflammatory mediators production in RAW 264.7 macrophages. They also suppressed NF-κB activation in HEK 293T cells, correlating well with their inhibitory effects on IκB phosphorylation and p65 nuclear translocation in LPS-activated macrophages.

We found PPE suppressed NF-κB activation through delaying the ubiquitination of TRAF6 in HeLa-T6RZC stable cells and by directly disrupting the polyubiquitin synthesis in an in vitro kinase assay system.

Overall, analysis showed substantial compositional differences between CPPE and BPPE; nevertheless, they both displayed similar anti-inflammatory properties through NF-κB-responsive inflammatory gene expressions by inhibiting TRAF6 dependent canonical NF-κB pathway.

Friday, October 30, 2015

Four Propolis Compounds Possess Wound-Healing, Anti-Inflammatory and Anti-Oxidant Characteristics

Substance from Australian bees could be used to relieve arthritis and heal wounds faster

ABC, 10/29/2015

A substance produced by Australian stingless bees could change the way wounds are treated, according to new research at a Queensland university.

University of the Sunshine Coast biomedical science PhD student Karina Hamilton has been studying a cerumen (wax-like secretion from the auditory canal) produced by the bees for three years.

She has made a breakthrough in her research with the discovery of four chemical compounds which could help with arthritis, inflammation and skin wounds.

She investigated 180 different chemical compounds within the cerumen — also called propolis — and found four compounds in particular possessed the wound-healing, anti-inflammatory and anti-oxidant characteristics.

What the bees produce is a product of plant resin they collect and combine with salivary secretions and beeswax.

The bees use it to line hives.

While similar research has been undertaken in Europe, Ms Hamilton said it was the first time Australian stingless bees had been studied for medicinal purposes.

"There was one compound in particular that had very interesting effects on cells that might be implicated in wound healing," Ms Hamilton said.

"It [the compound] had a number of promising effects on the proliferation of certain cell types that are related to dermal wound healing."

What that means is the extract could accelerate the healing time of human flesh wounds.

It could also help relieve arthritis symptoms and inflammation...

Thursday, October 29, 2015

Propolis Protects Intestines from Radiation Exposure

Propolis aqueous extract preserves functional integrity of murine intestinal mucosa after exposure to ionizing radiation

Environ Toxicol Pharmacol. 2015 Oct 9;40(3):901-906

The ability of a specially prepared water propolis extract (PWE) to preserve the functional activity of the intestinal mucosa after radiation exposure was studied. PWE was given orally (650mg/kg) to rats five days prior to irradiation by 6Gy and continued for further two days. Rats were sacrificed 24h later, intestinal segments were examined histologically and homogenates were used to assess relevant biochemical parameters reflecting intestinal injury. Irradiation led to a rise in the histological damage score, a rise in tissue TNF-α and TBARS, and a decrease in sucrase, alkaline phosphatase, GSH and cholecystokinin as well as a decrease in plasma citrulline.

The findings reflect a decrease in intestinal functional activity. PWE preserved the intestinal integrity and largely protected against the changes induced in the histology damage score and all parameters measured, possibly as a result of the antioxidant and anti-inflammatory action of its caffeic acid content.

Wednesday, October 28, 2015

Propolis Reduces Plaque

Comparison of Plaque Inhibiting Efficacies of Aloe Vera and Propolis Tooth Gels: A Randomized PCR Study

J Clin Diagn Res. 2015 Sep;9(9):ZC01-ZC03


Allopathic medications used for periodontal disease are known to be associated with various side effects. Hence a search for naturotherapies are on the rise. Among the natural pharmacons available aloevera and propolis are considered to be effective and free from adverse effects. Taking this into account, the present study was done to compare the plaque inhibiting efficacies of Aloe vera and Propolis tooth gels in patients with chronic periodontitis.


Forty patients diagnosed with chronic periodontitis were randomly allocated to groups A and B containing 20 patients each. Patients in group A were advised to use Aloe vera tooth gel while those in group B were advised to use Propolis tooth gel. Clinical and microbiologic parameters using Polymerase chain reaction (PCR) were recorded at baseline and after 3 months.


Student t-test was performed for all the obtained results. In the Aloe vera group, comparison of baseline PCR and after 3 month results showed reduction only in P. gingivalis (p=0.001), where as statistically significant reduction in all the three red complex microorganisms was seen in propolis group. All the clinical parameters (Plaque Index, Gingival Index, Bleeding on Probing, Probing pocket Depth, and Clinical Attachment Level) in both the groups showed statistically significant reductions after 3 months.


Propolis showed a statistically significant reduction in plaque, microbiologic and clinical parameters. However, clinical trials of longer durations with larger sample sizes are required to evaluate the efficacy.

Tuesday, October 27, 2015

Royal Jelly May Help Treat High Blood Pressure

In-depth N-glycosylation analysis reveals species-specific modifications and functions of the royal jelly protein from western (Apis mellifera) and eastern honeybees (Apis cerana)

J Proteome Res. 2015 Oct 26

Royal jelly (RJ), secreted by honeybee workers, plays diverse roles as nutrients and defense agents for honeybee biology and human health. Despite being reported to be glycoproteins, the glycosylation characterization and functionality of RJ proteins in different honeybee species are largely unknown.

An in-depth N-glycoproteome analysis and functional assay of RJ produced by Apis mellifera lingustica (Aml) and Apis cerana cerana (Acc) were conducted. RJ produced by Aml yielded 80 nonredundant N-glycoproteins carrying 190 glycosites, of which 23 novel proteins harboring 35 glycosites were identified. For Acc, all 43 proteins glycosylated at 138 glycosites were reported for the first time. Proteins with distinct N-glycoproteomic characteristics in terms of glycoprotein species, number of N-glycosylated sites, glycosylation motif, abundance level of glycoproteins and N-glycosites were observed in this two RJ samples. The fact that the low inhibitory efficiency of N-glycosylated major royal jelly protein 2 (MRJP2) against Paenibacillus larvae (P. larvae), and the absence of antibacterial related glycosylated apidaecin, hymenoptaecin and peritrophic matrix in the Aml RJ compared to Acc reveal the mechanism why the Aml larvae are susceptible to P. larvae, the causative agent of a fatal brood disease (American foulbrood, AFB).

The observed anti-hypertension activity of N-glycosylated MRJP1 in two RJ samples and a stronger activity found in Acc than in Aml reveal that specific RJ protein and modification are potentially useful for the treatment of hypertensive disease for humans. Our data gain novel understanding that the western and eastern bees have evolved species-specific strategies of glycosylation to fine tune protein activity for optimizing molecular function as nutrients and immune agents for the good of honeybee, and influence on the health promoting activity for human as well.

This serves as a valuable resource for the targeted probing of the biological functions of RJ proteins for honeybee and medical communities.

Monday, October 26, 2015

Bee Venom Helps Deliver Drugs Across Blood-Brain Barrier

MiniAp-4: A Venom-Inspired Peptidomimetic for Brain Delivery

Angew Chem Int Ed Engl. 2015 Oct 23

Drug delivery across the blood-brain barrier (BBB) is a formidable challenge for therapies targeting the central nervous system. Although BBB shuttle peptides enhance transport into the brain non-invasively, their application is partly limited by lability to proteases.

The present study proposes the use of cyclic peptides derived from venoms as an affordable way to circumvent this drawback. Apamin, a neurotoxin from bee venom, was minimized by reducing its complexity, toxicity, and immunogenicity, while preserving brain targeting, active transport, and protease resistance. Among the analogues designed, the monocyclic lactam-bridged peptidomimetic MiniAp-4 was the most permeable. This molecule is capable of translocating proteins and nanoparticles in a human-cell-based BBB model. Furthermore, MiniAp-4 can efficiently deliver a cargo across the BBB into the brain parenchyma of mice.

Sunday, October 25, 2015

Korean Face Cream Uses Bee Venom to Prevent Skin Damage

Bee Venom

A fake bee sting from a face cream - called "Nature's Botox" by some skincare experts -- could be the best thing to help red, sun damaged, and aging skin.

Benefits: The way bee venom allegedly works is interesting: inserting a little of this to the skin essentially fools the area into thinking it's been stung by a bee. The body then sends blood to that area, which also stimulates the formation of collagen and elastin, both of which help skin stay firm and looking young. Bee venom products are great for people who are looking to combat fine lines and wrinkles, who are experiencing changes in their skin due to menopause or old age, or people with sun damaged or dull faces that are hoping to look a little more youthful.

Saturday, October 24, 2015

Bee Venom Serum Helps Get Rid of Wrinkles

The beneficial effects of honeybee-venom serum on facial wrinkles in humans

Clin Interv Aging. 2015 Oct 1;10:1587-92

Facial wrinkles are an undesirable outcome caused by extrinsic photodamage and intrinsic aging processes. Currently, no effective strategies are known to prevent facial wrinkles. We assessed the beneficial effects of bee-venom serum on the clinical signs of aging skin.

Our results show that bee-venom serum treatment clinically improved facial wrinkles by decreasing total wrinkle area, total wrinkle count, and average wrinkle depth. Therefore, bee-venom serum may be effective for the improvement of skin wrinkles.

Friday, October 23, 2015

WATCH: Caffeinated Forage Tricks Honeybees into Increasing Foraging and Recruitment Behaviors

An agent-based model also demonstrates how caffeine-enhanced foraging may reduce honey storage. Overall, caffeine causes bees to overestimate forage quality, tempting the colony into sub-optimal foraging strategies, which makes the relationship between pollinator and plant less mutualistic and more exploitative.

Thursday, October 22, 2015

Quantification of Pyrrolizidine Alkaloids in North American Honey

Quantification of pyrrolizidine alkaloids in North American plants and honey by LC-MS: single laboratory validation

Food Addit Contam Part A Chem Anal Control Expo Risk Assess. 2015 Oct 20:1-7

Pyrrolizidine alkaloids (PAs) are a class of naturally occurring compounds produced by many flowering plants around the World. Their presence as contaminants in food systems has become a significant concern in recent years.

For example, PAs are often found as contaminants in honey through pollen transfer. A validated method was developed for the quantification of four pyrrolizidine alkaloids and one pyrrolizidine alkaloid N-oxide in plants and honey grown and produced in British Columbia. The method was optimised for extraction efficiency from the plant materials and then subjected to a single-laboratory validation to assess repeatability, accuracy, selectivity, LOD, LOQ and method linearity.

The PA content in plants ranged from1.0 to 307.8 µg/g with repeatability precision between 3.8 and 20.8% RSD. HorRat values were within acceptable limits and ranged from 0.62 to 1.63 for plant material and 0.56-1.82 for honey samples. Method accuracy was determined through spike studies with recoveries ranging from 84.6 to 108.2% from the raw material negative control and from 82.1-106.0 % for the pyrrolizidine alkaloids in corn syrup.

Based on the findings in this single-laboratory validation, this method is suitable for the quantitation of lycopsamine, senecionine, senecionine N-oxide, heliosupine and echimidine in common comfrey (Symphytum officinale), tansy ragwort (Senecio jacobaea), blueweed (Echium vulgare) and hound's tongue (Cynoglossum officinale) and for PA quantitation in honey and found that PA contaminants were present at low levels in BC honey.

Wednesday, October 21, 2015

Honey Recommended for Healing in Quran

As Smooth as Honey—The Historical Use of Honey as Topical Medication 

JAMA Dermatol. 2015;151(10):1102.

A supersaturated solution of glucose and fructose—while that may not sound like the description of a wonder drug, honey has been revered as a medication with powerful healing properties across a diverse group of cultures. Take this passage from the Quran in the chapter entitled “The Bee” (Surat a-Nahl): “And your Lord taught the honey bee to build its cells in hills, on trees, and in (men's) habitations; Then to eat of all the produce (of the earth), and find with skill the spacious paths of its Lord: there issues from within their bodies a drink of varying colors, wherein is healing for men.”

The use of honey in the topical treatment of wounds and other cutaneous disorders has endured the rise and fall of civilizations. The first written record of honey as a wound-healing agent dates back to 2600-2200 bce, where it is mentioned in an ancient Egyptian trauma manual currently referred to as the Edwin Smith Papyrus.1 Hippocrates, the father of medicine and author of the eponymous oath every physician swears, recommended honey for wounds of the head, ears, and penis.2 Famed Roman poet and orator Ovid espoused the cosmetic use of honey in his poem Medicamina Faciei Femineae (Cosmetics for the Female Face). He provided a recipe that uses honey to even out skin pigmentation.

The eons have not extinguished the role of honey in dermatology. A recent systematic review1 of 26 clinical trials found there is moderate- to high-quality evidence that honey-impregnated dressings may help heal partial-thickness burns and infected postoperative wounds faster than conventional dressings. Another randomized clinical trial supported the use of honey for the treatment of painful, recurrent aphthous ulcers.3

In a rapidly changing world, it is reassuring to see that certain natural remedies have withstood the test of time. If history is any indication, the use of honey in dermatology will continue to evolve and will likely be used to treat a wide array of conditions. How sweet it is!

Tuesday, October 20, 2015

Manuka Honey Lobby Devises Test to Prove Authenticity

Oct. 15 (BusinessDesk) - The UMF Honey Association says it has found the solution to fake manuka honey products, developing a portable device which tests for the nectar of Leptospermum Scoparium, the native manuka bush.

The manuka honey industry group, working with Analytica Laboratories and Comvita, presented the primary production select committee with a portable fluorescent test which can easily indicate whether a product is genuine manuka honey, and research defining the premium honey. Analytica executive director Terry Braggins said the development of a chemical fingerprint, based on the presence of the native bush's nectar, could distinguish monofloral honey made by bees foraging on manuka flowers from other blended or imitation honey...

Monday, October 19, 2015

Brazilian Red Propolis is a Potential Anti-Cancer Agent

Brazilian red propolis: phytochemical screening, antioxidant activity and effect against cancer cells

BMC Complement Altern Med. 2015 Oct 14;15(1):357


The implementation of new public healthcare models that stimulate the use of natural products from traditional medicine, as a so-called integrated medicine, refers to an approach that use best of both conventional medicine and traditional medicine. Propolis is a widely used natural product by different ancient cultures and known to exhibit biological activities beneficial for health. The large number of studies conducted with propolis had shown that its chemical composition differs as a function of the climate, plant diversity and bee species and plays an important role on its therapeutic properties. The aim of this study was to analyse the phytochemical profile of the ethanolic extract of red propolis (EEP) and its fractionation, antioxidant action of EEP and its fractions hexane, cloroform and ethyl acetate and cytotoxic activity of EEP on human tumour cell lines SF-295 (glioblastoma), OVCAR-8 (ovary) and HCT-116 (colon).


EEP was obtained by maceration with absolute ethanol, then it was concentrated in rotaevaporator up to complete evaporation of the solvent. The crude extract was fractionated with hexane, ethyl acetate, chloroform and methanol and they were subjected to phytochemical screening and total phenolic compounds. Antioxidant activity of EEP and fractions was done by means of the 2,2-diphenyl-1-picryhydrazyl (DPPH) method. Biomarkers of red propolis were identified by LC-Orbitrap-FTMS. To assess cytotoxic activity of the extract, cells were exposed to EEP over 72 h. Cell viability was assessed by means of MTT assay. The percentage of cell growth inhibition (IC50) was analysed by means of non-linear regression, and the absorbance values of the various investigated concentrations were subjected to one-factor analysis of variance (ANOVA) followed by Tukey's or Tamhane's tests (α = 0.05).


The results obtained using phytochemical screening and LC-Orbitrap-FTMS indicated the presence of phlobaphene tannins, catechins, chalcones, aurones, flavonones, flavonols, xanthones, pentacyclic triterpenoids and guttiferones in Brazilian red propolis. EEP and its hexane, chloroform and ethyl acetate fractions obtained by liquid-liquid partitioning exhibited satisfactory antioxidant percentages. EEP (IC50 < 34.27 μg/mL) exhibited high levels of cytotoxicity on all human tumour cell lines tested when compared to negative control.


C-Orbitrap-FTMS was useful to establish the chemical profile of the red propolis. Brazilian red propolis has antioxidant properties and decreases substantially the percentage of cell survival of human tumour cells; thus, it has potential to serve as an anticancer drug.

Sunday, October 18, 2015

New Method to Authenticate Manuka Honey

Competitive immunochromatographic assay for leptosperin as a plausible authentication marker of manuka honey

Food Chem. 2016 Mar 1;194:362-5

Manuka honey is known as one of the premium honeys because of its unique property: a potent antibacterial activity. Leptosperin, methyl syringate 4-O-β-d-gentiobioside, has been specifically identified in manuka honey. Because leptosperin is relatively stable under warmer conditions, measuring leptosperin levels may be applied to authenticate manuka honey.

In this study, an immunochromatographic separation and quantification of leptosperin techniques have been developed. The concentration of leptosperin measured by immunochromatography was significantly correlated with the concentration measured by high-performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) or enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA). Because the immunochromatographic method is rapid and reliable, it could be applied to on-site quality control or inspection of honey samples by a beekeeper, a manufacturer, an inspector, a retailer, or a consumer.

Saturday, October 17, 2015

What The Heck Is Medical-Grade Honey?

Refinery 29

The skin-care world has been buzzing (sorry, had to) with honey-infused goodies lately — everything from hand creams to toners to lip balms now has the bees' stamp of approval. The golden nectar is known for its antibacterial and moisturizing properties, and is especially great for those who suffer from acne, says dermatologist Jeannette Graf, MD.

But we're not just talking about the stuff from your local grocery store — there are different tiers when it comes to honey. Manuka has long been considered the crème de la crème of honey products — and just a few weeks ago, we discovered that you can get better, more potent results with medical-grade manuka.

"Manuka honey has anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, and antibacterial properties," says dermatologist Julia Tzu, MD. "It's much harder to obtain because it's derived specifically from [bees harvesting nectar from] the manuka plant." The manuka plant is native to New Zealand and southeast Australia. Unlike regular, store-bought honey, which contains hydrogen peroxide as its main antimicrobial component, manuka honey contains methylglyoxal, which is much more stable and less likely to be broken down by outside factors, explains Dr. Tzu...

Friday, October 16, 2015

Apitherapy Promoted in Nigeria

Making money from bee byproducts

The Nation, 10/14/2015

Bee keeping is a sustainable income generation business to farmers. It offers invaluable nutrition as honey, protein and other byproducts. But there are money spinning opportunities from the herbal use of bees, DANIEL ESSIET reports.

Chief Executive,Centre for Bee Research and Development, Oyo State, Bidemi Ojeleye, is one  of the biggest  producers of quality honey and honey products in Oyo State.

He owns about 4000 hives. If his  income from the business blossomed, he might not be consider other ventures, he said.

But this expectation depends on one factor: the quality of his harvest.

Breeding queen bees for sale and bee-keeping training courses have also provided extra income for the business. Oyeleye provides training in bee-keeping and assists agro entrepreneurs  in developing organisations and management skills, basic record-keeping, and farm economics competency in honey business.

Based in Igbeti, Oyo State, his  honeybee ambition has grown into a fully-fledged farming enterprise. It is among the top honeybee firms in the country.

Ojeleye said honeybees can make a significant contribution to agriculture through the critical roles they perform in producing honey, pollinating vegetables and fruit orchards.

Apiculture is the art  of beekeeping. It has provided many entrepreneurs  business  opportunities.  He  has  taken  all components of apiculture, including scientific colony management, bee breeding, bee pathology, bee products, bee flora,  value-addition and bee equipment.

He is keen to see more farmers maximise their potential of bee-keeping to provide income for their families and contribute to rural development.

According to him,  the industry produces honey, wax and  pollen. Few  people, he claimed,  are  making money from selling honey for  medicinal products. His training  enables people to harvest and process bee products, such as royal jelly, propolis, and bee venom. These products are safe and organic...

Thursday, October 15, 2015

Royal Jelly May Help Bone Formation

Effect of Royal Jelly on new bone formation in rapid maxillary expansion in rats

Med Oral Patol Oral Cir Bucal. 2015 Oct 9:0


The aim of this study was to evaluate the effects of long and short term systemic usage of royal jelly on bone formation in the expanded maxillary suture in a rat model.


Twenty eight Wistar albino rats were randomly divided into 4 equal groups: Control (C); Only Expansion (OE), Royal Jelly (RJ) group, Royal Jelly was given to rats by oral gavage only during the expansion and retention period; Royal Jelly plus Nursery (RJN) group, Royal Jelly was given to rats by oral gavage during their nursery phase of 40 days and during the retention period. After the 5 day expansion period was completed, the rats underwent 12 days of mechanical retention. All rats were sacrificed in same time. Histological examination was performed to determine the number of osteoclasts, number of osteoblasts, number of capillaries, inflammatory cell infiltration, and new bone formation.


New bone formation, number of osteoclasts, number of osteoblasts, and the number of capillaries in the expanded maxillary sutures were higher in the RJ and RJN groups than in the other groups. Statistical analysis also demonstrated that new bone formation and the number of osteoblasts was also highest in the RJN group.


The systemic administration of Royal Jelly in conjunction with rapid maxillary expansion may increase the quality of regenerated bone.

Wednesday, October 14, 2015

Bee Venom May Help Treat Parkinson's Disease

Bee Venom Phospholipase A2, a Novel Foxp3+ Regulatory T Cell Inducer, Protects Dopaminergic Neurons by Modulating Neuroinflammatory Responses in a Mouse Model of Parkinson's Disease

J Immunol. 2015 Oct 9. pii: 1500386. [Epub ahead of print]

Foxp3-expressing CD4+ regulatory T cells (Tregs) are vital for maintaining immune tolerance in animal models of various immune diseases.

In the present study, we demonstrated that bee venom phospholipase A2 (bvPLA2) is the major BV compound capable of inducing Treg expansion and promotes the survival of dopaminergic neurons in the 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine mouse model of Parkinson's disease. We associated this neuroprotective effect of bvPLA2 with microglial deactivation and reduction of CD4+ T cell infiltration. Interestingly, bvPLA2 had no effect on mice depleted of Tregs by injecting anti-CD25 Ab.

This finding indicated that Treg-mediated modulation of peripheral immune tolerance is strongly involved in the neuroprotective effects of bvPLA2. Furthermore, our results showed that bvPLA2 directly bound to CD206 on dendritic cells and consequently promoted the secretion of PGE2, which resulted in Treg differentiation via PGE2 (EP2) receptor signaling in Foxp3-CD4+ T cells.

These observations suggest that bvPLA2-CD206-PGE2-EP2 signaling promotes immune tolerance through Treg differentiation and contributes to the prevention of various neurodegenerative diseases, including Parkinson's disease.

Tuesday, October 13, 2015

Honey, Olive Oil, Sesame Oil Ointments Helps Treat Burns

Effect of Olea ointment and Acetate Mafenide on burn wounds - A randomized clinical trial

Iran J Nurs Midwifery Res. 2015 Sep-Oct;20(5):599-603


The main goals in treating burns are to accelerate tissue renovation and prevent infection. Topical antibiotics are used in the treatment of burns, but they can cause side effects. Recently, a traditional ointment (Olea) has been used in Iran in the treatment of burns. This study examines the effect of topical honey ointment in healing of burn patients.


In this randomized controlled trial (RCT), 30 hospitalized patients selected by conventional sampling (10 in Olea group and 20 in Acetate Mafenide ointment group) were evaluated. Inclusion criteria were: having second-degree burns and body surface area equal to or < 40%. One group was treated using topical Olea ointment and the other with Acetate Mafenide ointment (8.5%). Chi-square, Fisher exact test, and Kaplan-Meier were used. Significance level was considered as P < 0.05.


None of the patients in the Olea group needed surgery for debridement, while in the second group, 13 patients (65%) needed debridement (P = 0.001). In the Olea group, 1 patient (10%) and in the second group, 19 patients (95%) had positive cultures after 7 days (P < 0.001). The mean time of granulation tissue formation in the Olea group was 12 days (10.3-13.6) and in the other group, it was 17 days (13.3-20.6) (P < 0.001).


Olea ointment is a useful treatment for burns, and it can prevent infections, accelerate tissue repair, and facilitate debridement. Therefore, using this ointment is recommended for the treatment of burns.

Monday, October 12, 2015

Pakistani Red Date (Beri) Honey Effective in Treating Diabetic Foot Ulcers

A Randomized, Controlled Clinical Trial of Honey-Impregnated Dressing for Treating Diabetic Foot Ulcer

J Coll Physicians Surg Pak. 2015 Oct;25(10):721-725.

Objective: To investigate the effect of Beri-honey-impregnated dressing on diabetic foot ulcer and compare it with normal saline dressing.


A randomized, controlled trial.


Sughra Shafi Medical Complex, Narowal, Pakistan and Bhatti International Trust (BIT) Hospital, Affiliated with Central Park Medical College, Lahore, from February 2006 to February 2010.


Patients with Wagner's grade 1 and 2 ulcers were enrolled. Those patients were divided in two groups; group A (n=179) treated with honey dressing and group B (n=169) treated with normal saline dressing. Outcome measures were calculated in terms of proportion of wounds completely healed (primary outcome), wound healing time, and deterioration of wounds. Patients were followed-up for a maximum of 120 days.


One hundred and thirty six wounds (75.97%) out of 179 were completely healed with honey dressing and 97 (57.39%) out of 169 wtih saline dressing (p=0.001). The median wound healing time was 18.00 (6 - 120) days (Median with IQR) in group A and 29.00 (7 - 120) days (Median with IQR) in group B (p < 0.001).


The present results showed that honey is an effective dressing agent instead of conventional dressings, in treating patients of diabetic foot ulcer.

Sunday, October 11, 2015

Propolis Component Inhibits Metabolic Enzymes

The effect of caffeic acid phenethyl ester (CAPE) on metabolic enzymes including acetylcholinesterase, butyrylcholinesterase, glutathione S-transferase, lactoperoxidase, and carbonic anhydrase isoenzymes I, II, IX, and XII

J Enzyme Inhib Med Chem. 2015 Oct 9:1-7

Caffeic acid phenethyl ester (CAPE) is an active component of honeybee propolis extracts. Carbonic anhydrases (CAs, EC are widespread and intensively studied metalloenzymes present in higher vertebrates including humans as many diverse isoforms. Acetylcholinesterase (AChE) is responsible for acetyl choline (ACh) hydrolysis and plays a fundamental role in nerve impulse transmission by terminating the action of the ACh neurotransmitter at cholinergic synapses and neuromuscular junctions.

Butyrylcholinesterase (BChE) is another enzyme abundantly present in the liver and released into blood in a soluble form. Lactoperoxidase (LPO) is an enzyme involved in fighting pathogenic microorganisms whereas glutathione S-transferases (GSTs) are dimeric proteins present both in prokaryotic and eukaryotic organisms and involved in cellular detoxification mechanisms.

In the present study, the inhibition effect of CAPE on human carbonic anhydrase (hCA) isoforms I, II, IX, and XII, AChE, BChE, LPO, and GST was evaluated. CAPE inhibited these enzymes with Kis in the range between micromolar to picomolar. The best inhibitory effect was observed against AChE and BChE.

Saturday, October 10, 2015

Honey Tested as Wound Dressing

A Systematic Comparison of Antimicrobial Wound Dressings using a Planktonic Cell and an Immobilised Cell Model

J Appl Microbiol. 2015 Oct 9


The aim of the study was to evaluate the ability of in-vitro planktonic and immobilised cell models for determining the antimicrobial efficacy of common antimicrobial wound dressings.


Five strains of A.baumannii, P.aeruginosa and S. aureus (MRSA) were tested against four antimicrobial wound dressings containing silver, honey or PHMB, using both a planktonic and immobilised cell model. Across all species and models used, the NSCD demonstrated the best antimicrobial activity being as good if not better than all the other dressings. The planktonic cell model was less effective at differentiating the dressings on antimicrobial performance as the immobilised cell model indicating that a diffusion barrier had a significant impact on the performance of some dressings. In the presence of the diffusion barrier antimicrobial impact of the Honey and PHMB dressings was significantly reduced particularly in the case of A. baumannii. Activity was at least an order of magnitude lower in the immobilised cell model vs. the planktonic cell model.


The use of a planktonic cell model within standard tests may overestimate the efficacy of honey and PHMB. The use of an immobilised cell model provides a more demanding test for antimicrobial dressings allowing dressing to dressing and pathogen to pathogen differences to be more clearly quantified.


The introduction of planktonic and immobilised cell models as part of testing regimens for wound dressings will provide a more thorough understanding of their antimicrobial and antibiofilm properties.

Friday, October 09, 2015

Rehydration with Honey Drink Improves Running Performance and Glucose Metabolism Compared to Plain Water

Effects of Post-Exercise Honey Drink Ingestion on Blood Glucose and Subsequent Running Performance in the Heat

Asian J Sports Med. 2015 Sep;6(3):e24044. Epub 2015 Sep 28

Glycogen depletion and hypoglycemia have been associated with fatigue and decrement of performance during prolonged exercise.


This study investigated the effectiveness of Acacia honey drink as a post-exercise recovery aid on glucose metabolism and subsequent running performance in the heat.


Ten subjects participated in this randomized cross-over study. All subjects performed 2 trials. In each trial, all subjects went through a glycogen depletion phase (Run-1), 2-hour rehydration phase and time trial running phase (Run-2). In Run-1, subjects were required to run on a treadmill at 65% VO2max in the heat (31°C, 70% relative humidity) for 60 min. During 2-hour rehydration phase, subjects drank either plain water (PW) or honey drink (HD) with amount equivalent to 150% of body weight loss in 3 boluses (60%, 50% and 40% subsequently) at 0, 30 and 60 min. In Run-2, the longest distance covered in 20 min was recorded for determining running performance. Two-way repeated measured ANOVA and paired t-test were used for analysis.


Running distance in Run-2 covered by the subjects in the honey drink HD trial (3420 ± 350 m) was significantly (P < 0.01) longer compared to plain water PW trial (3120 ± 340 m). In general, plasma glucose, serum insulin and osmolality were significantly (P < 0.05) higher in HD compared to PW during the rehydration phase and Run-2.


These findings indicate that rehydration with honey drink improves running performance and glucose metabolism compared to plain water in the heat. Thus, honey drink can be recommended for rehydration purpose for athletes who compete in the heat.

Thursday, October 08, 2015

Indonesian Stingless Bee Propolis a Potential Candidate for Cancer Chemotherapy

Propolis from the Stingless Bee Trigona incisa from East Kalimantan, Indonesia, Induces In Vitro Cytotoxicity and Apoptosis in Cancer Cell lines

Asian Pac J Cancer Prev. 2015;16(15):6581-9


Previously, stingless bee (Trigona spp.) products from East Kalimantan, Indonesia, were successfully screened for in vitro antiproliferative activity against human cancer derived cell lines. It was established that propolis from T. incisa presented the highest in vitro cytotoxicity against the SW620 colon cancer cell line (6% cell survival in 20 μg/mL).


Propolis from T. incisa was extracted with methanol and further partitioned with n-hexane, ethyl acetate and methanol. The in vitro cytotoxicity of the extracts was assessed by the MTT assay against human colon (SW620), liver (Hep-G2), gastric (KATO-III), lung (Chago) and breast (BT474) cancer derived cell lines. The active fractions were further enriched by silica gel quick column, absorption and size exclusion chromatography. The purity of each fraction was checked by thin layer chromatography. Cytotoxicity in BT-474 cells induced by cardanol compared to doxorubicin were evaluated by MTT assay, induction of cell cycle arrest and cell death by flow cytometric analysis of propidium iodide and annexin-V stained cells.


A cardol isomer was found to be the major compound in one active fraction (F45) of T. incisa propolis, with a cytotoxicity against the SW620 (IC50 of 4.51 ± 0.76 μg/mL), KATO-III (IC50 of 6.06 ± 0.39 μg/mL), Hep-G2 (IC50 of 0.71 ± 0.22 μg/mL), Chago I (IC50 of 0.81 ± 0.18 μg/mL) and BT474 (IC50 of 4.28 ± 0.14 μg/mL) cell lines. Early apoptosis (programmed cell death) of SW620 cells was induced by the cardol containing F45 fraction at the IC50 and IC80 concentrations, respectively, within 2-6 h of incubation. In addition, the F45 fraction induced cell cycle arrest at the G1 subphase.


Indonesian stingless bee (T. incisa) propolis had moderately potent in vitro anticancer activity on human cancer derived cell lines. Cardol or 5-pentadecyl resorcinol was identified as a major active compound and induced apoptosis in SW620 cells in an early period (≤ 6 h) and cell cycle arrest at the G1 subphase. Thus, cardol is a potential candidate for cancer chemotherapy.

Wednesday, October 07, 2015

Gelam Honey and Ginger May Help Treat Colorectal Cancer

Mechanism of Chemoprevention against Colon Cancer Cells Using Combined Gelam Honey and Ginger Extract via mTOR and Wnt/β-catenin Pathways

Asian Pac J Cancer Prev. 2015;16(15):6549-56

The PI3K-Akt-mTOR, Wnt/β-catenin and apoptosis signaling pathways have been shown to be involved in genesis of colorectal cancer (CRC) . The aim of this study was to elucidate whether combination of Gelam honey and ginger might have chemopreventive properties in HT29 colon cancer cells by modulating the mTOR, Wnt/β-catenin and apoptosis signaling pathways. Treatment with Gelam honey and ginger reduced the viability of the HT29 cells dose dependently with IC50 values of 88 mg/ml and 2.15 mg/ml respectively, their while the combined treatment of 2 mg/ml of ginger with 31 mg/ml of Gelam honey inhibited growth of most HT29 cells.

Gelam honey, ginger and combination induced apoptosis in a dose dependent manner with the combined treatment exhibiting the highest apoptosis rate. The combined treatment downregulated the gene expressions of Akt, mTOR, Raptor, Rictor, β-catenin, Gsk3β, Tcf4 and cyclin D1 while cytochrome C and caspase 3 genes were shown to be upregulated.

In conclusion, the combination of Gelam honey and ginger may serve as a potential therapy in the treatment of colorectal cancer through inhibiton of mTOR, Wnt/β catenin signaling pathways and induction of apoptosis pathway.

Tuesday, October 06, 2015

Propolis Recommended as Alternative Treatment for Cancer

The role of alternative therapies in cancer treatment

St. Louis Post Dispatch, 10/6/15

Dear Dr. Roach • I wonder why you never talk about holistic measures to prevent illnesses, such as cancer. I just read an article by an oncologist who said there are certain anti-cancer supplements that work, including vitamin D, magnolia extract and artichoke extract, all of which have been shown in laboratory studies to kill a variety of cancer cells, including colon, breast and liver cancers, and leukemia. Artichoke extract also contains cynarin, which decreases inflammation. Other compounds that can reduce cancer growth are black cumin seed oil and bee propolis, which is rich in caffeic acid phenethyl ester (CAPE), chrysin and cinnamic acid — compounds that affect cancer genes. Studies show that they reduce the growth of many cancers, including colon, prostate and kidney...

Monday, October 05, 2015

Mad Honey Poisoning–Related Hypothermia: A Case Series

The Journal of Emergency Medicine

Available online 4 October 2015


Mad honey–related intoxication frequently leads to bradycardia, hypotension, and syncope. Hypothermia is a potentially life-threatening condition if not identified early and treated appropriately.

Case Report

Three patients are reviewed. Patient 1 was a 66-year-old man who presented to the emergency department with nausea, vomiting, and faintness beginning 2 h after consuming honey. His temperature was 34°C, his blood pressure was 70/40 mm Hg, and his heart rate was 30 beats/min. Patient 2, a 57-year-old man, presented to the emergency department with headache, feeling cold, and faintness beginning 3 h after consuming honey. His temperature was 35°C, his blood pressure was 60/40 mm Hg, and his heart rate was 46 beats/min. Patient 3 was a 79-year-old woman who presented with nausea, vomiting, and headache 2 h after consuming honey. Her temperature was 35°C, her blood pressure was 70/40 mm Hg, and her heart rate was 40 beats/min. All 3 patients were discharged in good condition after appropriate therapy.

Why Should an Emergency Physician Be Aware of This?

Bradycardia and hypotension are frequently encountered in mad honey intoxication. However, intoxication accompanied by hypothermia has attracted little attention to date.

Sunday, October 04, 2015

Turkish Propolis a Source of Functional Food and Pharmaceutical Agents

Effects of Turkish propolis on expression of hOGG-1 and NEIL-1

Turk J Med Sci. 2015;45(4):804-11.M

Propolis is a bee product with antioxidative, antimutagenic, and other beneficial properties, and it is used as a natural drug. It is rich in polyphenolic compounds. Its composition varies depending on the particular geographical region. Oxidative stress is caused by an imbalanced free radical production and antioxidant system. The effects of flavonoids on the expression of DNA repair enzymes have been examined previously; however, no study has investigated the effects of propolis. This study investigated the effects of ethanolic extracts of Turkish propolis (EEP) on the expression of DNA repair enzymes.


The effects of EEP and tertiary-butyl-hydroperoxide (t-BHP) on cell viability were determined using MTT DNA damage was determined using comet assay. mRNA expression of target enzymes was detected using RT-PCR.


According to the cytotoxicity analysis, after a recovery time of 4 h, appropriate damage agent t-BHP and optimum EEP concentrations were 300 µM and 200 µg/mL, respectively. 8-Oxoguanine-glycosylase (hOGG-1) and endonuclease-VIII-like-1 (NEIL-1) expressions increased in the positive control group (t-BHP alone) and the study group (t-BHP+EEP). Maximum increase in NEIL-I expression was at hour 12 in the positive control group and at hour 8 in the study group.


EEP can be considered as a potential source of functional food and pharmaceutical agents.

Saturday, October 03, 2015

Nigerian Hospital Uses Honey to Treat Necrotizing Fasciitis

Clinical Parameters and Challenges of Managing Cervicofacial Necrotizing Fasciitis in a Sub-Saharan Tertiary Hospital

Niger J Surg. 2015 Jul-Dec;21(2):134-9


Necrotizing fasciitis is a severe soft tissue infection. In our environment, patients presenting with this infection are usually financially incapacitated and, therefore, their management can be challenging. This paper aimed to document the pattern and challenges encountered in the management of cervicofacial necrotizing fasciitis (CNF) in the University College Hospital, Ibadan.


Information such as biodata, site of infection, systemic conditions, widest span of defect, management provided, hospital stay, and outcome of management was prospectively collected on all patients with CNF who presented at the Department of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery between January 2007 and December 2013. The patients were managed according to a devised protocol of antibiotic therapy, serial debridement and honey dressings.


Twenty-four cases of CNF were seen. There were 9 males and 15 females while 70.9% of the patients belonged to the low socioeconomic class. The mean span of wound defect was 12.2 (±8.844) cm. The mean hospital stay was 27.8 (±23.1) days, and scar formation was the most common complication encountered.


Our study represents the largest series of CNF from a Nigerian health facility presently. The management of necrotizing fascitis in the maxillofacial region poses a significant challenge to both the surgeon and the patient. However, the mortality rate of CNF in our center appears comparatively low.

Friday, October 02, 2015

Manuka Honey Expert Peter Molan Dies

Fairfax Media, 10/1/2015

The man who uncovered the power of manuka honey has died.

Hamilton-based Dr Peter Molan's research identified honey's healing powers.

He "revolutionised the New Zealand honey industry", said the 2001 citation for his NZ Science and Technology silver medal.

Molan died at home on September 16, aged 71.

The biochemist's wife Alyson had nursed him through illness, with help from Hospice Waikato.

Alyson was married to Peter for 24 years and initially thought his obsession with manuka honey would pass.

Far from it - and she benefited early in their married life when she spilled boiling water over her hand.

"He just bunged honey all over it, wrapped it up. And the bit that he missed wrapping, it had a huge blister. The rest of my hand was absolutely clear."

Peter was famous in the family for a manuka gel used for everything from teenagers' pimples to nappy rash.

People around the world made phone calls to his home, seeking advice...

Thursday, October 01, 2015

Using Honey Treat Insomnia, Indigestion and Allergies

An Ounce Of Prevention: The Honey Bee - A Sweet Healer

The Gleaner, September 29, 2015

Honey, the main product of the honey bee, is composed primarily of sugars and water, along with small amounts of vitamins and minerals, including niacin, riboflavin, pantothenic acid, calcium, copper, iron, magnesium, manganese, phosphorus, potassium, and zinc.

On average, honey is 17.1 per cent water; 82.4 per cent total carbohydrate; and 0.5 per cent proteins, amino acids, vitamins and minerals. The main sugars are fructose, glucose, maltose, and sucrose.

Honey also contains a variety of antioxidants that neutralise free radicals and, generally, darker honeys have higher antioxidant content than lighter honeys. Because honey contains so many nutrients that are lacking in refined table sugar, it is a much healthier sweetener.

Honey As An Antibiotic

Another important property of honey is its antibiotic action. It has even been shown to be superior to some conventional antibiotics in treating certain infections. Experiments with honey show that its bacteria-destroying properties doubled when diluted with water. Interestingly, newly born bees are nourished with diluted honey by the nurse bees responsible for their care as if they know this feature of the honey.

Honey is valuable in treating burns, infected wounds, and ulcers. A study in West Africa showed that many surgeries like skin grafting, surgical debridement, and even amputation were avoided by local application of honey to wounds.

Honey For Coughs And Colds

Honey has been used as a home remedy for centuries to help alleviate some of the symptoms associated with a common cold. Researchers from Penn State College of Medicine have published a study comparing honey to over-the-counter medicines for relief of cold symptoms such as a cough. In several instances, honey outperformed the modern drugs.

Honey And Digestion

Honey has traditionally also been used for heartburn and stomach ulcers. In fact, Western research now indicates that honey may halt the growth of H. pylori, the bacteria responsible for many cases of gastritis and stomach ulcers.

Bifidobacteria are a group of 'good' bacteria considered important to the health of the digestive tract. Honey acts as a probiotic to promote the growth of the bifidobacteria and heal the stomach. It can even help counteract constipation. Drink 12 oz. of lukewarm water with one tablespoon of honey in the morning on an empty stomach.

Healthy Teeth
Although honey is sweet, it helps to maintain and protect teeth. It shows antimicrobial effects against several species of dental plaque bacteria. Honey has been proven to sharply reduce acid production, while killing the bacteria responsible for dental caries and blocking the growth of oral bacteria. Honey holds promise for the treatment of periodontal disease, mouth ulcers, and other diseases of the mouth.

Honey For Insomnia

Honey helps in nervous disorders like insomnia and acts as a tonic in recovery of any damage to the human nervous system. In cases of sleeplessness, one should drink a teaspoon full of honey mixed in lukewarm water at bedtime to help in improving sleep....