Tag Archives: Molecule

Turmeric is now being Used to Repair Stroke Damage

Scientists have created a new molecule from curcumin, the key chemical component of the spice turmeric. In laboratory experiments, the molecule was shown to affect the mechanisms that protect and regenerate brain cells after a stroke.
Picture of turmeric
The new curcumin compound, called CNB-001, actually repairs stroke damage at the molecular level.

Physorg reports:
“Those who cook Indian, Thai, Malay and Persian dishes know turmeric well for its zesty flavor, use in curries and for the rich color it imparts to food. Turmeric also has a long history of use in Ayurvedic and Chinese traditional medicine.”
Source Physorg February 10, 2011

Posted By Dr. Mercola | March 02 2011

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Red Wine and Cranberries are Good for Teeth

 

Compounds found in red wine and cranberries can prevent cavities and plaque build-up.  The wine compounds, which are called polyphenols, do this by blocking a molecule made by the bacteria streptococcus mutans.

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These molecules break down sugar to make sticky molecules called glucans, which let bacteria cling to your teeth and damage their surfaces.

Live Science reports:
“But the fermented grape stems, seeds, and skins left over from wine production contain high amounts of polyphenols. The polyphenols can block the ability of S. mutans to make glucans .  Compounds in cranberries work similarly — they block the molecules that enable the sticky surface to form on our teeth.”

Resources:
Live Science December 17, 2010
Caries Research 2010; 44(2):116-26

Posted By Dr. Mercola . January 06 2011

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Paracetamol Ups Asthma Risk in Kids

 

 

Infants who have been given the common pain reliever paracetamol may have a higher risk of developing asthma and eczema by the time they are 6 or 7, a large study covering children in 31 countries has found.

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The findings were published in the journal Lancet together with two other studies, which found that runny noses and wheezing early on in life may be strong predictors of asthma.

In one study, researchers pored through data provided by parents of more than 205,000 children and found paracetamol use in the first year of life was associated with a 46% higher risk of asthma by the time the children were 6 or 7 compared to those never exposed to the drug. It is used to relieve fever, minor aches and pain, and is used in a liquid suspension for children.

Medium use of paracetamol in the past 12 months increased asthma risk by 61%, while high dosages of once a month or more in the past year raised the risk by over three times. Medium use was defined as once per year or more, but less than once a month.

Suspicions of a possible link between paracetamol and asthma emerged when experts observed an increased use of the drug to a simultaneous rise in asthma prevalence worldwide.

Some experts think antioxidants, which stop unstable molecules known as free radicals from doing too much damage, can lower the risk of cancer, heart disease and other ailments. “Paracetamol can reduce antioxidant levels and… can give oxidative stress in the lungs and cause asthma,” one of the researchers, Richard Beasley at the Medical Research Institute of New Zealand, said.

Sources: The Times Of India

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Grandma’s Remedy for Cancer

Indian scientists have found the exact mechanism by which curcumin, the active ingredient of turmeric, helps prevent cancer.

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From a swollen thumb to a bruise to food poisoning, good old grandma has often had a single remedy: a dash of turmeric. Indian researchers have now found that this dietary supplement plays a positive role in taming cancers too.

The ubiquitous spice of the typical Indian kitchen has of late been a subject of much curiosity among medical researchers because of its well-known wound healing and anti-inflammatory properties.

Researchers stumbled upon the anti-cancer potential of curcumin, the active ingredient of turmeric, recently. Since then, a number of research groups all over the world have been engaged in animal studies to prove curcumin’s efficacy.

Reported in the latest issue of Carcinogenesis, the work by a team of Indian medical scientists led by Girish Maru of the Advanced Centre for Treatment, Research and Education in Cancer (ACTREC), Mumbai, is one of first studies on the subject.

More importantly, the Mumbai scientists were able to unravel the exact mechanism behind curcumin’s action. They found that curcumin not only inhibits the enzymes that directly help a cancer-causing agent to damage the DNA but also increases the availability of yet another set of enzymes that helps the body fight the carcinogenic compound.

For their studies the ACTREC researchers used the carcinogen benzo[a]pyrene (B[a]P), a compound commonly found in cigarette smoke and wood smoke and that is implicated in lung cancer. They fed mice with curcumin for 16 days. Then the animals were given a relatively high quantity of B[a]P enough to induce DNA damage that can lead to tumour growth.

Subsequent studies on how the carcinogen interacted with various sets of enzymes inside the animals gave interesting results. The mice fed with curcumin had much depleted levels of cancer-promoting enzymes compared with the control group. Also, they showed higher levels of friendly enzymes such as glutathione S-transferase, indicating increased detoxification of B[a]P.

But is the quantity of turmeric, which one consumes through food, enough to have a protective effect against cancers? Scientists do not think so.

Though very potent, the levels of curcumin in turmeric are as low as 0.01 per cent. Moreover, curcumin uptake by the human body is relatively low. However, scientists are trying to increase curcumin uptake by the human body. For instance, they have already found that adding one part of piperine, the compound responsible for black pepper’s pungency, to 20 parts of curcumin can increase the uptake by several hundred-fold.

You may click to see also:->

Turmeric helps fight Alzheimer’s

Killing Cancer, the Haldi(Turmeric) Way

Curcumin and its metabolite, Aß oligomer, Neuroinflammation, aging

Sources: The Telegraph (Kolkata, India)