Friday, February 25, 2011

Tumeric and Strokes

This is an interesting effort.  Curcumin is modified to pass the blood brain barrier and it’s effect is pronounced enough to warrant serious work.  The empirical work was always suggestive but here we have moved to a strong agent that promotes the desired effect.

Hopefully it does not bite us as often happens on improving a natural protocols.

While we are at it, does this also apply to ordinary wounds?  Perhaps we need to include curcumin in wound dressings.  If not, why not?

It all deserves to be followed up.

Spice drug fights stroke damage
Turmeric is a widely used spice

10 February 2011 Last updated at 04:50 ET

A drug derived from the curry spice turmeric may be able to help the body repair some of the damage caused in the immediate aftermath of a stroke.

Researchers at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles are preparing to embark on human trials after promising results in rabbits.

Their drug reached brain cells and reduced muscle and movement problems.

The Stroke Association said it was the "first significant research" suggesting that the compound could aid stroke patients.

Turmeric has been used for centuries as part of traditional Indian Ayurvedic medicine, and many laboratory studies suggest one of its components, curcumin, might have various beneficial properties.

However, curcumin cannot pass the "blood brain barrier" which protects the brain from potentially toxic molecules.

The US researchers, who reported their results to a stroke conference, modified curcumin to come up with a new version, CNB-001, which could pass the blood brain barrier.

The laboratory tests on rabbits suggested it might be effective up to three hours after a stroke in humans - about the same time window available for current "clot-busting" drugs.

Chain reaction

Dr Paul Lapchak, who led the study, said that the drug appeared to have an effect on "several critical mechanisms" which might keep brain cells alive after a stroke.

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This is the first significant research to show that turmeric could be beneficial to stroke patients by encouraging new cells to grow and preventing cell death after a stroke”

Dr Sharlin Ahmed,The Stroke Association

Although strokes kill brain cells by depriving them of oxygenated blood, this triggers a chain reaction which can widen the damaged area - and increase the level of disability suffered by the patient.

Dr Lapchak said that CNB-001 appeared to repair four "signalling pathways" which are known to help fuel the runaway destruction of brain cells.

However, even though human trials are being planned, any new treatment could still be some time away.

Dr Sharlin Ahmed, from The Stroke Association, said that turmeric was known to have health benefits.

She said: "There is a great need for new treatments which can protect brain cells after a stroke and improve recovery."

"This is the first significant research to show that turmeric could be beneficial to stroke patients by encouraging new cells to grow and preventing cell death after a stroke.

"The results look promising, however it is still very early days and human trials need to be undertaken."

1 comment:

KittyAntonikWakfer said...

Cardio and cerebral vascular disease - which includes strokes - are for the most part preventable through proper diet, regular (including aerobic) physical activity, restful sleep and various nutritional supplementation (including usage of curcumin from turmeric).

The fact that drug development is seen as the solution to strokes demonstrates the still predominant mindset of scientists and physicians that health problems are inevitable... Of course the FDA promotes this thinking by not permitting chemical/drug approval/usage except as treatment for some specific disease/ailment. At the same time most scientists, physicians and the FDA continue to revile - and for the latter, place obstructions on the sale and even personal use of many - plant/animal based supplements with long (generations, sometimes centuries) of anecdotal evidence for benefit.