Friday, November 30, 2007

Substance May Contribute to Pain-Relieving, Wound-Healing Effect of Honey

Kynurenic Acid in Honey from Arboreal Plants: MS and NMR Evidence
Planta Medica, 2007 Nov 12

KYNA, a Trp metabolite, shows neuroprotective activity against excitotoxic amino acids by antagonizing the NMDA receptor (glycine, glutamate). Here we report the identification of KYNA by a combination of ESI-MS/MS and 1D- and 2D-NMR analyses in honey varieties of arboreal origin.

KYNA are absent in single-flower honeys from herbal flowers. These different distribution patterns might possibly involve an indirect plant defence mechanism against fungal pathogens and herbivorous parasites, ever-present on wild trees.

The presence of KYNA in honey may explain its pain-relieving effects reported in the literature. The substance, acting in concert with honey flavonoids (COX-2 inhibitors), by antagonizing the NMDA receptor may contribute to the antinociceptive effect of honey.

Moreover, kynureninates, owing to their antimicrobial properties, can favour the successful outcome of wounds and burns.

Honey Maintained Blood Glucose Levels Following Exercise Better than Sucrose

Effects of Ingesting Protein with Various Forms of Carbohydrate Following Resistance-Exercise on Substrate Availability and Markers of Anabolism, Catabolism, and Immunity
Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition, 12 November 2007

Background: Ingestion of carbohydrate (CHO) and protein (PRO) following intense exercise has been reported to increase insulin levels, optimize glycogen resynthesis, enhance PRO synthesis, and lessen the immuno-suppressive effects of intense exercise. Since different forms of CHO have varying glycemic effects, the purpose of this study was to determine whether the type of CHO ingested with PRO following resistance-exercise affects blood glucose availability and insulin levels, markers of anabolism and catabolism, and/or general immune markers…

Methods: 40 resistance-trained subjects performed a standardized resistance training workout and then ingested in a double blind and randomized manner 40 g of whey PRO with 120 g of sucrose (S), honey powder (H), or maltodextrin (M). A non-supplemented control group (C) was also evaluated…

Conclusion: CHO and PRO ingestion following exercise significantly influences glucose and insulin concentrations. Although some trends were observed suggesting that H maintained blood glucose levels to a better degree, no significant differences were observed among types of CHO ingested on insulin levels. These findings suggest that each of these forms of CHO can serve as effective sources of CHO to ingest with PRO in and attempt to promote post-exercise anabolic responses.

Thursday, November 29, 2007

Study: Some Royal Jelly Products Contain Little 10-HDA

Comparison of UPLC and HPLC for Determination of Trans -10-Hydroxy-2-Decenoic Acid Content in Royal Jelly by Ultrasound-Assisted Extraction with Internal Standard
Journal Chromatographia, Volume 66, Numbers 3-4, 2007

Abstract: The ultra performance liquid chromatography (UPLC) and high performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) method was developed and compared to detect the trans-10-hydroxy-2-decenoic acid (10-HDA) content in royal jelly cream and lyophilized powder…

The concentration of 10-HDA ranges from 1.26 to 2.25% for pure royal jelly cream samples and 3.01–6.26% for royal jelly lyophilized powder samples. For 30 royal jelly products, the 10-HDA content varied from no detectable to 1.005%.

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Malaysian Spa Uses Beeswax ‘Ear Candles’ to Treat Migraines

Johor Buzz: Pamper Your Face
By Kamachy Habimanan, New Straits Times (Malaysia), 11/28/07

Pusat Kecantikan Mutiara Manja, located on the first floor of Pekan Rabu, is one place where you can be sure of a good facial without digging deep into your pocket…

The centre is also popular for its ear-candling treatment.

"Ear-candling, or coning, is a method of cleaning the ears. A hollow candle is stuck into the ear and lit, sucking out earwax. It traps dust and dirt, helps fight infections and reduce migraines...

(Editor's note: Ear candles are normally cones made of cloth and beeswax.)

Austrian ‘Bee Air’ Spa Treats Respiratory Problems

An Austrian spa offers treatment with “bee air” as a cure for respiratory problems. Spa owners say the treatment usually takes 10 to 14 days and is only offered from May to August.
Translate from German to English.

Several studies have demonstrated the benefits of hive products in treating asthma and respiratory tract infections.

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Case Report: Bee Venom Therapy Helps Relieve Pain

Bee Stings—A Remedy for Postherpetic Neuralgia?
Regional Anesthesia and Pain Medicine, Volume 32, Issue 6, Pages 533-535 (November 2007)

Objective: This case report describes the effects of bee stings on painful postherpetic neuralgia in a 51-year-old man.

Case Report: The patient was stung by 3 bees in the distribution in which he had been experiencing postherpetic neuralgia. One day after the bee stings, the patient’s painful postherpetic neuralgia was completely relieved, and the relief lasted for 1 and a half months. Subsequently, the patient’s pain returned, but at significantly less intensity and frequency than what he had experienced prior to the bee stings.

Conclusions: Bee venom and bee sting therapy have been shown to have both antinociceptive and anti-inflammatory properties, which may explain why the bee stings relieved the patient’s postherpetic neuralgia. Bee sting or bee venom therapy should be further investigated as a potential treatment modality for postherpetic neuralgia.

Video Demonstration of Bee Venom Therapy

View the Video

Monday, November 26, 2007

Bee Bread Used to Treat Child with Rare Genetic Disorder

The Benefits of Beebread for T.J.
An apitherapy case history of a child born with a rare chromosomal abnormality
By Priscilla Coe, Journal of the American Apitherapy Society, Vol. 14, No. 3, September 2007

Donald Downs, a long-time apitherapist in Wellington, Ohio, and member of the AAS board, has, at several AAS conferences, presented a brief case history on his work with T.J.

Born with a virtually unknown genetic abnormality, T.J. was given a brief life expectancy. Beebread was introduced into formula via his feeding tube at age two by his maternal grandmother, Angie Gebhart Bittner. A distinct turning point for the better was noted almost immediately in his overall health.

Since then, his only sustenance has been formula with the addition of beebread or honey, and his vitality and capabilities have steadily improved. Today, as T.J. approaches his sixth birthday, his grandmother notes the unimaginable strides her grandson has made, especially considering that no hope was given at birth, and she credits the hive products 100 percent. The following is a transcript of an interview with Angie in July 2007. Supplementing the interview are an excerpt from the child’s medical diagnosis, an afterword, and a description of beebread…

Propolis May Help Reduce Chromosome Damage

Effects of Propolis Crude Hydroalcoholic Extract on Chromosomal Aberrations Induced by Doxorubicin in Rats
Planta Medica, 2007 Nov 12

Propolis has been reported to display a broad spectrum of biological activities such as anticancer, antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, antibiotic and antifungal properties, among others.

There is great interest not only in the determination of the chemical composition of propolis but also in the understanding of the mechanisms related to its therapeutic actions.

In this respect, the aim of the present investigation was to study the influence of both simultaneous (6, 12 and 24 mg/kg b. w.) and subacute (12 mg/kg b. w.) treatment with a crude hydroalcoholic extract of propolis on the frequency of chromosome aberrations induced by the chemotherapeutic agent doxorubicin (DXR) in Wistar rat bone marrow cells…

The results showed that the dose of 12 mg propolis/kg b. w., administered either as a single dose or as subacute treatment, caused a statistically significant decrease in the frequency of chromosome damage induced by DXR compared to the group treated only with DXR. This reduction might be, in part, due to the presence of phenolic compounds in the studied propolis, which are able to capture free radicals produced by chemotherapeutic agents such as DXR.

Sunday, November 25, 2007

USA: 1st International Symposium on Honey and Human Health

The 1st International Symposium on Honey and Human Health features scientists, researchers and physicians from around the world presenting studies that underscore the role of honey as a functional food providing healthful benefits when consumed regularly.

Topics of scheduled presentations include:

* Immune system responses in patients given honey while undergoing chemotherapy
* Honey’s effectiveness in promoting restorative sleep
* Honey’s role in reducing insulin resistance, obesity and diabetes
* Honey’s effect on blood sugar and glycohemoglobin (HA1C) levels in type II diabetes
* Honey and its effect on cognitive performance and memory

Featured speakers include Dr. David Baer of the USDA Beltsville Human Nutrition Research Center in Maryland. The symposium was initiated by the non-profit Committee for the Promotion of Honey and Health, Inc.

When: January 8, 2008, 8:15 a.m. – 5 p.m.
Where: Doubletree Hotel, Sacramento, California

Contact: Ron Fessenden, 713-436-7802,

Study: Weight Gain Significantly Lower in Honey-Fed Rats Than Those Fed Sucrose

The Effect of Honey Compared to Sucrose, Mixed Sugars, and a Sugar-Free Diet on Weight Gain in Young Rats
Journal of Food Science, 72 (3), S224–S229

ABSTRACT: To determine whether honey, sucrose, and mixed sugars as in honey have different effects on weight gain, 40 6-wk-old Sprague-Dawley rats were fed a powdered diet that was either sugar free or contained 8% sucrose, 8% mixed sugars as in honey, or 10% honey freely for 6 wk…

Overall percentage weight gain was significantly lower in honey-fed rats than those fed sucrose or mixed sugars, despite a similar food intake. Weight gains were comparable for rats fed honey and a sugar free diet although food intake was significantly higher in honey-fed rats.

Saturday, November 24, 2007

Honey as the New 'Silver' Dressing in Wound Care

By Sylvie Hampton, The Journal of Community Nursing (UK), November 2007, Volume 21, Issue 11

Silver is known to reduce bacteria in wounds and this aids healing in intractable wounds. However, the silver element within the dressing increases the cost of treatment and many Trusts are taking silver dressings off of their formularies. This has an implication for patients with wounds as the potential for infection could rise if prevention is not a consideration.

Honey has had a valued place in traditional medicine for centuries and has been used for reducing potential for clinical infection and for accelerating wound healing. Although honey has been used since ancient times some practitioners still hesitate to apply honey for treatment of wounds and some clinicians are under the impression that there is little or no evidence to support the use of honey as a wound dressing although positive findings on honey in wound care are widely reported.

Honey has been shown to give good results on a very wide range of types of wounds and it is therefore mystifying that there appears to be a lack of universal acceptance of honey as a wound dressing…

The antibacterial effects of honey

The antibacterial property of honey was first recognised in 1892 by van Ketel. Honey is a supersaturated sugar solution with a low water activity and high osmolarity which means that there is little water available to support the growth of bacteria and yeast. The high osmolarity is also considered to be a valuable tool in the treatment of established infections, because it prevents the growth of bacteria and encourages healing…

The action of some honey is linked to the production of hydrogen peroxide on dilution of the honey with wound exudate. Hydrogen peroxide is a well-known antimicrobial agent, initially hailed for its antibacterial and cleansing properties when it was first introduced into clinical practice. In more recent times it has lost favour because of inflammation and damage to tissue. However, the hydrogen peroxide concentration produced in honey activated by dilution is typically around 1 mmol/l, about 1000 times less than in the 3 per cent solution commonly used as an antiseptic. The harmful effects of hydrogen peroxide are further reduced because honey sequesters and inactivates the free iron which catalyses the formation of oxygen free radicals produced by hydrogen peroxide and its antioxidant components help to mop up oxygen free radicals…

Clinical observations suggest that honey holds significant promise particularly in the management of non-healing wounds and when applied topically on wounds will accelerate the healing processes. It is also known for enhancing wound contraction in fresh wounds which is one of the key features of wound healing. Research has also indicated that honey may possess antiinflammatory activity which stimulates immune responses within a wound and the ability to modulate production and quenching of free radicals may contribute to the ability of some honeys to help in resolving the state of inflammation typifying chronic wounds…


Honey certainly has an effect on healing and has the potential to reduce clinical infection in wounds. It is useful in debridement of wounds and in reducing the malodour that can occur when bacteria is present. Therefore, there is an argument for replacing silver dressings with the more cost effective treatment with honey.

Friday, November 23, 2007

Royal Jelly May be Useful in Treating Neurological Disorders

Royal Jelly and Its Unique Fatty Acid, 10-Hydroxy-Trans-2-Decenoic Acid, Promote Neurogenesis by Neural Stem/Progenitor Cells In Vitro
Biomedical Research, 2007; 28 (5):261-266

Abstract: Neural stem/progenitor cells (NSCs) proliferate vigorously as neurospheres in medium containing basic fibroblast growth factor (FGF-2), but start differentiating into neurons, astrocytes or oligodendrocytes in FGF-2-free medium.

An extract of royal jelly (RJ) significantly increased the percentage in the total cell population of not only neurons immunoreactive for class III beta-tubulin (Tuj1) but also astrocytes immunoreactive for glial fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP), and oligodendrocytes immunoreactive for 2',3'-cyclic nucleotide 3'-phosphodiesterase (CNPase) generated from NSCs, but decreased that of nestin-positive NSCs.

These results highlight a novel and outstanding property of the RJ, i.e., that it facilitates the differentiation of all types of brain cells (neurons, astrocytes, and oligodendrocytes). On the other hand, 10-hydroxy-trans-2-decenoic acid (HDEA), an unsaturated fatty acid characteristic of RJ, increased the generation of neurons and decreased that of astrocytes from NSCs.

These observations suggest that RJ contains plural components that differently influence neuronal and/or glial lineages and that HDEA is one of such components of RJ that facilitates neurogenesis by NSCs.

Thursday, November 22, 2007

Propolis Used in New ‘Immune Boosting’ Lozenge

Jarrow Formulas’, Inc. Introduces Immune Soothers(TM) With Pink Rock Rose, Bee Propolis and Elderberry
NPI Center, 11/20/2007

Los Angeles, CA, November 19, 2007 — Los Angeles-based Jarrow Formulas’ has introduced Immune Soothers™, immune boosting lozenges with Pink Rock Rose, Bee Propolis and Elderberry.

Jarrow Formulas Immune Soothers™ combines vitamin C with other immune boosting botanicals, in a sugar-free lozenge. Immune Soothers™ harnesses the power of Pink Rock Rose extract, an ancient Mediterranean preparation rich in health-promoting antioxidants that has been used for centuries to strengthen immune function.

According to Mark Becker, Director, Advertising/Communications for Jarrow Formulas, immunity is a very important factor in staying healthy. “The immune system is perhaps the most important body system for living well and maintaining good health,” says Becker. “Immune Soothers™ not only offers Pink Rock Rose extract, but also Bee Propolis and Elderberry, all of which help to support a challenged immune system.”…

Honey Recommended as Alternative Wound Treatment

Health Matters: If Turkey’s on the Menu, Follow These Steps
By Jan Chait, The Tribune-Star (USA), 11/21/2007

…While we’re on the subject of alternate treatments, one for wounds can be found in your cupboard: Honey, says Medscape. Apply the sweet nectar to a wound and it acts in a number of ways, say researchers.

Honey acts as a sealant; provides nutrition believed to promote healing and tissue growth; kills bacteria and, when an enzyme called glucose oxidase added to the nectar by worker bees comes into contact with oxygen in the air, it turns into hydrogen peroxide. Honey has also shown to have a debriding action, which means that it removes non-living tissue from wounds.

In June and July 2007, Health Canada and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration cleared Manuka (Medihoney), described as “a medicinal honey with enhanced antibacterial properties” as the first medicinal honey product for use in wounds and burns. Manuka comes from floral sources in Australia and New Zealand. In fact, researchers say, manuka may even be active against MRSA.

However, you don’t even have to use manuka honey on wounds: A microbiologist at the University of Sidney, Australia, “has tested various strains of honeys against bacterial strains obtained from hospitals and found that even the strains most resistant to antibiotics failed to grow in the presence of honey.”…

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

International Apitherapy Conference in Argentina

The Apitherapy Association of Argentina invites you to the 3rd International Apitherapy Conference November 27, 2007, in Cordoba.

Honey and Royal Jelly May Help Block Infections

Pharma Investments, Ventures & Law Weekly, 11/25/2007

"Pseudomonas aeruginosa antibiotic resistance has led to the search of natural compounds, which would competitively block its fucose > fructose/mannose-binding lectin ( PA-IIL) that mediates its biofilm formation and adhesion to animal cells," researchers in Ramat Gan, Israel report.

"Such compounds were found in human milk ( HM) and avian egg whites (see also Life Sciences). The present research has revealed that honey and royal jelly ( RJ), which are assigned to protect beehive progeny and are applied for human infection therapy, match HM in PA-IIL blocking," wrote B. Lerrer and colleagues, Bar-Ilan University.

The researchers concluded: "The function of their fructose (higher in honey) and mannosylated glycoproteins (higher in RJ) as powerful decoys in PA-IIL neutralization is of ecological/biological importance and implementability for the antibacterial adhesion therapeutic strategy."…

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Brazilian Propolis Producer Seeks Arab Importers

Producer of Propolis Seeks Clients Abroad
Geovana Pagel, ANBA Brazil-Arab News Agency, 11/20/2007

Bioessens intends to expand its client list next year. Among the markets to be prospected are the Arab countries. All varieties of propolis made by the brand are picked in wild areas to avoid contamination. Apart from that, the company has its own laboratory equipped to do microbiological and physical and chemical analysis for the development of the products.

São Paulo – The target of propolis producer Bioessens for 2008 is to increase its client list by entering markets it does not yet supply, like the Arab nations. "We are greatly interested in introducing our products in the Arab markets, both in the Middle East and North Africa," stated Daniel Ken Shimizu, administrative director at the company based in Cotia, in southeastern Brazil…

Propolis to Make Jump from Health to Food Preservative?

By Stephen Daniells, FoodNavigator-USA

Propolis, the waxy resin collected by honeybees and currently marketed for its health benefits, could also find use as a natural food preservative, suggests new research…

"It may be concluded that, the ethanolic extract of propolis tested, in the performed experimental conditions may successfully inhibit the E. coli development in vitro, at safe levels for human consumption and, consequently, they could be useful as ground fresh beef natural preserver or as unspecific antibacterial food preserver," wrote lead author Enzo Tosi in the journal Food Chemistry.

Tosi and his co-workers from Argentina's National University if Technology looked at the effect of Argentinian propolis extracts against Ecoli, and thereby as a preservative for foods.

"Most propolis components are natural constituents of food and recognized as safe substances," added Tosi…

Imported Bees Not Source of Virus Associated with Colony Collapse Disorder

By Kim Kaplan, U.S. Fed News, 11/19/2007

BELTSVILLE, Md., Nov. 19—Scientists from the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Agricultural Research Service (ARS) have found that the Israeli acute paralysis virus (IAPV), a virus recently shown to be associated with Colony Collapse Disorder (CCD) of honey bees, has been in the United States since at least 2002, according to a note published in the American Bee Journal.

Research entomologists Yanping (Judy) Chen and Jay D. Evans, both with the ARS Bee Research Laboratory here, conducted a detailed genetic screening of several hundred honey bees that had been collected between 2002 and 2007 from colonies in Maryland, Pennsylvania, California and Israel.

"Our study shows that, without question, IAPV has been in this country since at least 2002," said Chen. "This work challenges the idea that IAPV is a recent introduction from Australia."…

More information about CCD can be found at

Monday, November 19, 2007

Study: Honey Has ‘Valuable Therapeutic Role' in Wound Care

Antibacterial Honey(Medihoney™): in-vitro Activity Against Clinical Isolates of MRSA, VRE, and Other Multiresistant Gram-negative Organisms Including Pseudomonas aeruginosa
Narelle May George; Keith F. Cutting , Wounds, Volume 19 - Issue 9 - September 2007

The clinical use of honey has received increasing interest in recent years, particularly its use as a topical antibacterial dressing.Results thus far are extremely encouraging, and demonstrate that honey is effective against a broad range of microorganisms, including multiresistant strains. This in-vitro study complements the work of others and focuses on the impact that a standardized honey can have on multiresistant bacteria that are regularly found in wounds and are responsible for increased morbidity…

The findings of the present study add to the body of evidence and clearly demonstrate that honey has a valuable therapeutic role to play in wound care, often where modern approaches have failed…

Book Review - ‘Honey: A Modern Wound Management Product’

Honey: A Modern Wound Management Product
Edited by RJ White, RA Cooper, P Molan
Wounds, Volume 19 - Issue 9 - September 2007

Honey:A Modern Wound Management Product is a timely addition to the knowledge base that concentrates on the use of honey in modern wound management. Richard White, Rose Cooper, and Peter Molan—all experts in their respective fields, have made invaluable contributions to this text. Published by Advancis Medical in 2005, this is the only book available that is dedicated to this particular wound treatment modality.The book comprises 10 insightful chapters with contributions from 9 additional authors.This well-organized text is enjoyable to read and features photographs, flow charts, and algorithms.The book is also unique in that the contributors are a multidisciplinary group and hail from across the globe...

Honey: A Modern Wound Management Product is suited to both specialist and generalist practitioners or for anyone interested in gaining a greater understanding of the role of honey in wound management.The rapid evolution in wound healing research, and the continued publication of in-vitro and in-vivo studies that involve honey substantiate the fact that although such materials were published in 2005, the literature will require an update within 5 years.

How to Hake an Herbal Beeswax Salve

How To Make an Herbal Salve
Amelia Tucker, BellaOnline, 11/18/2007

There are as many ways to make a good herbal salve as there are herbalists. The first thing you should consider is what a salve is. A salve is a way to apply a concentrated amount of herbal essence to heal and protect the skin. You can create different end results by varying the types of herbs, oils and thickening agents(namely wax).

I like to think of herbal salves as soothing or drawing or protecting so I know in my mind's eye what qualities I am aiming for. For a baby's bum, I want a salve with a higher ratio of wax. This is referred to as a balm. The wax helps seal out moisture so combined with the healing of the herbs, the baby's bottom benefits from a protective layer of water resistance between changes…

Here is a good recipe for salve. I use this for everything from lips to baby's bottom with great results. Again, the amount of wax is dependent on how much oil you end up with.

Olive oil
Vit. E
Essential oils of lavender, geranium and sweet orange

I create the infused oil and melt the beeswax into it. Add up to 12 drops of EOs to a quart of olive oil…

Sunday, November 18, 2007

Hive Location Alters Concentration of Flavonoids, Phenolic Compounds in Propolis

Antifungal and Antibacterial Activity of Propolis
Current Nutrition & Food Science, Volume 3, Number 4, November 2007 , pp. 304-308(5)

Abstract: Propolis is a natural substance collected by bees from local flora. Propolis is increasingly used in health-food manufacturing practices since in addition to the antibacterial, antifungal, and antiviral characteristics, it also strengthens the immunity and has a strong antioxidative effect.

We investigated the chemical composition and antimicrobial activity of 10 samples of propolis, which were collected in different regions of Lithuania. The highest concentrations of phenolic compounds, the main active substances of propolis, were found in the samples which were collected from the hives located in the proximity of forests of a mixed type. The highest amounts of flavonoids were detected in propolis samples that were obtained from the bee hives located in the meadows.

All samples of propolis ethanolic extract were active against gram-positive, gram-negative bacteria and fungi. The antimicrobial activity was higher against gram-positive than against gram-negative bacteria.

One propolis sample showed relatively strong activity against Candida albicans - minimum inhibitory concentration (MIC) - 0.009 g/100ml of phenolic compounds. The antimicrobial activity of propolis may be due to the synergistic effect of phenolic compounds, terpenoids, aromatic and aliphatic acids.

Saturday, November 17, 2007

Royal Jelly May Help Maintain Healthy Brain Function

AMP N1-oxide, a unique compound of royal jelly, induces neurite outgrowth from PC12 cells via signaling by protein kinase A independent of that by mitogen-activated protein kinase
Evidence-based Complementary and Alternative Medicine (eCAM), 10/29/2007

AMP N1-oxide is a unique compound not found in natural resources so far other than RJ. Therefore, it may be the molecule responsible for RJ-specific physiological actions on the CNS. Our study provides molecular-based evidence that RJ regulates neuronal functions through A2A receptor signaling enhanced by AMP N1-oxide...

Elucidation of the physiological roles of AMP N1-oxide in brain function is important to develop RJ as an evidence-based complementary and alternative medicine. Taking RJ as a source of AMP N1-oxide may be promising to maintain healthy brain functions.

FDA Gives Clearance to Second MEDIHONEY Wound Dressing

Derma Sciences Receives Second FDA 510K Clearance and Adds to Their MEDIHONEY Wound & Burn Dressings with Active Leptospermum Honey Line
Medical News Today, 11/16/2007

Derma Sciences (OTCBB: DSCI), a manufacturer and marketer of advanced wound care products, announced that the FDA has given 510K clearance to the company's second dressing in the MEDIHONEY line. This dressing is indicated for use on wounds with light to moderate exudate, and - based on its hydrocolloidal properties - forms a gel when it comes into contact with wound fluid to assist in promoting a moist environment conducive to healing. Hydrocolloids are the most commonly used advanced wound care dressings, as most chronic wounds fall into the category of light to moderate exudate. In 2007 it is estimated that over $150 million in hydrocolloids will be sold in the US alone. The first MEDIHONEY dressing from Derma Sciences, cleared for use by the FDA in July 2007, is in an alginate base and is indicated for wounds with moderate to heavy levels of exudate.

The new dressings, both in adhesive and non-adhesive versions, have been shown to lower the pH level of wounds. This is significant in that much recent attention has been focused on the effect of pH modulation in wounds, and the research suggests that lowering the pH of a wound helps to create a more optimal environment for wound healing. When wound pH is lowered, it has been shown that protease modulation and increased oxygen diffusion take place, both beneficial to hard-to-heal wounds.

Additionally, the dressings - due to their high levels of glucose and other sugars - have been shown to promote a strong osmotic effect. This osmotic effect, drawing fluid from surrounding tissues, helps to constantly bathe wounds in lymph fluid, which assists in the removal of necrotic tissue, slough, and debris from the wound bed…

Friday, November 16, 2007

Study: Royal Jelly Component Inhibits Angiogenesis

10-Hydroxy-2-decenoic Acid, a Major Fatty Acid from Royal Jelly, Inhibits VEGF-induced Angiogenesis in Human Umbilical Vein Endothelial Cells
Evidence-based Complementary and Alternative Medicine (eCAM), 10/22/2007

Abstract: Vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) is reported to be a potent pro-angiogenic factor that plays a pivotal role in both physiological and pathological angiogenesis.

Royal jelly (RJ) is a honeybee product containing various proteins, sugars, lipids, vitamins and free amino acids. 10-Hydroxy-2-decenoic acid (10HDA), a major fatty acid component of RJ, is known to have various pharmacological effects; its antitumor activity being especially noteworthy. However, the mechanism underlying this effect is unclear.

We examined the effect of 10HDA on VEGF-induced proliferation, migration and tube formation in human umbilical vein endothelial cells (HUVECs). Our findings showed that, 10HDA at 20 µM or more significantly inhibited such proliferation, migration and tube formation. Similarly, 10 µM GM6001, a matrix metalloprotease inhibitor, prevented VEGF-induced migration and tube formation.

These findings indicate that 10HDA exerts an inhibitory effect on VEGF-induced angiogenesis, partly by inhibiting both cell proliferation and migration. Further experiments will be needed to clarify the detailed mechanism…

In conclusion, this is the first report that 10HDA inhibits in vitro angiogenesis in HUVECs, in part due to its inhibition of both cell proliferation and migration.

Thursday, November 15, 2007

MRSA Targeted by New Honey-Based Antiseptic Lotion

Honeymark Introduces a Viable Solution to the MRSA Epidemic

NewswireToday - Long Island, NY, United States, 11/14/2007 - Manufacturer of health care products utilizes a special ingredient that has been proven to destroy antibiotic-resistant strains of bacteria…

There is no doubt that this mutating bacterium must be taken seriously, especially since it has become resistant to antibiotics. What most people don't know is that there is a special type of honey called 'Manuka Honey' that has been proven to be effective in destroying the super-bugs associated with MRSA. Honeymark International, a manufacturer of health care products containing Active Manuka Honey as a healing agent has developed a wound care product effective in fighting this battle against this deadly infection. Honeymark's "First Aid Antiseptic Lotion" helps protect against bacterial contamination and skin infection in wounds and burns. Most of this product's antibacterial properties comes from Manuka Honey…

For more information, please visit:

Propolis Shows Anti-Tumor Activity

In vitro Cytotoxic Effect of Brazilian Green Propolis on Human Laryngeal Epidermoid Carcinoma (HEp-2) Cells
Evidence-based Complementary and Alternative Medicine (eCAM), 10/22/2007

Abstract: …The goal of this work was to evaluate propolis's cytotoxic action in vitro on human laryngeal epidermoid carcinoma (Hep-2) cells. These cells were incubated with different concentrations of this bee product for different time periods, and morphology and the number of viable HEp-2 cells analyzed.

Data showed that propolis exhibited a cytotoxic effect in vitro against HEp-2 cells, in a dose- and time-dependent way. Propolis solvent had no effects on morphology and number of viable cells, proving that the cytotoxic effects were exclusively due to propolis components. Since humans have been using propolis for a long time, further assays will provide a better comprehension of propolis's antitumor action.

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Anti-Inflammatory, Antimicrobial Activities of Propolis Useful in Dental Care

Pharmacological Evaluation of Propolis Solutions for Endodontic Use
Pharmaceutical Biology, Volume 45, Issue 9 November 2007 , pages 721 - 727

Abstract: This study evaluated the anti-inflammatory and exudative activities of propolis solutions and their antimicrobial activity. The solutions were prepared and diluted in alcohol solution (PPE1, PPE2, PPE3, PPF18, and PPF19). Ear edema was previously induced in mice by the application of croton oil, and the irritative effect of the solutions was determined through the exudation test of Evans blue in rats.

Antimicrobial activity by using a macrodilution method was determined. Eight aerobic bacteria, seven anaerobic bacteria, and two yeasts were tested.

The PPE1, PPE2, and PPF18 solutions presented excellent anti-inflammatory activities. PPE1 solution showed the best antimicrobial effect. PPF18 showed an inhibitory effect for the majority of the aerobic bacteria in the dilution 1:8, inhibiting the growth of Klebsiella pneumoniae and the yeasts in the dilution 1/16 and of Pseudomones aeruginosa in the dilution 1/32. PPF19 was effective for inhibiting the growth of the aerobic bacteria and yeasts in the dilution 1/2.

Our results suggest the possible application of PPE1, PPF18, and PPF19 solutions in endodontics.

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

New Codes Allow U.S. Medicare Reimbursement for MEDIHONEY Wound Care Products

Derma Sciences Receives Reimbursement Codes for their New MEDIHONEY Wound & Burn Dressings
Adequate Reimbursement Through Medicare Part-B Plays a Crucial Role in the Adoption of New Technologies

PRINCETON, N.J.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Derma Sciences, a manufacturer and marketer of advanced wound care products, today announced that the Statistical Analysis Durable Medical Equipment Regional Carrier (SADMERC) – a contracted intermediary and carrier for the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) – has notified the company of its decision regarding Healthcare Common Procedure Coding System (HCPCS) codes for billing purposes for MEDIHONEY Calcium Alginate dressings with Active Leptospermum Honey. The awarded codes are as follows:

* A6196 Alginate or other fiber gelling dressing, wound cover, pad size 16 square inches or less, each dressing (Item # 31022)
* A6197 Alginate or other fiber gelling dressing, wound cover, pad size more than 16 square inches but less than or equal to 48 square inches, each dressing (Item # 31045)
* A6199 Alginate or other fiber gelling dressing, wound filler, per 6 inches (Item # 310212)

This will allow applicable customers to bill for MEDIHONEY Dressings using these codes, including the Medicare’s Part B program, private insurance plans and the various Medicaid programs. Medicare Part B provides coverage for ‘Surgical Dressings’ for patients at home between clinic or physician visits and when not receiving home health nursing services. It also provides wound dressings for residents in Nursing Homes not under a Medicare Part A ‘skilled care’ benefit stay who have Part B coverage. The Medicaid programs (one for each state) provide ‘Surgical Dressings’ for at home use by the beneficiary. Insurance plans often provide payment for wound dressings in addition to the coverage of care in a Nursing Home and for dressings used at home by the patient and in some cases when home health services are provided. This greatly enhances Derma Sciences’ ability to penetrate the long term care and home health markets…

Monday, November 12, 2007

Aussie Bees Cleared of US Colony Collapse?

Anna Salleh, ABC Science Online, 11/12/2007

Claims that Australia exported a virus that may have caused US bee colonies to collapse have been questioned with the release of new scientific findings.

Dr Jay Evans and Dr Yanping Chen of the US Department of Agriculture (USDA) question the role of the bee virus in the so-called Colony Collapse Disorder (CCD).

Their study has found the suspect virus was already in the country before Australian imports started…

Honey Helps Reduce Burn Scarring

Besides Medicinal Form of the Sweet Substance, a Liquid Variety of Vitamin E and Some Herbal Remedies Might Also Speed Healing
Dr. Andrew Weil, Vancouver Sun (Canada), 11/12/2007

Q: My son has first- and second-degree burns to his face, neck, upper torso and arm from hot olive oil exploding from a pan. I am concerned about scarring. Is there a natural remedy that can help with healing and minimize scarring?

A: Most second-degree and all third-degree burns cause scarring.

The most important concern is to prevent scars that cause contractures -- the thickening and tightening of tissue can restrict movement in the affected area. For some areas of the body, the solution is pressure garments, essentially tight-fitting clothes that are worn 23 hours per day (taken off only for bathing).

You also might look into medicinal honey. For centuries honey has been used as a dressing for wounds and burns.

A review published in the March 1, 2006 issue of the International Journal of Lower Extremity Wounds looked at the results of 22 clinical trials involving more than 2,000 patients, and concluded that honey quickly clears up existing wound infections and protects against further infection, reduces swelling and minimizes scarring, removes infected and dead tissue, and speeds healing by stimulating new tissue growth.

A study from India showed that burns treated with honey healed sooner than those treated with conventional methods and that scarring was reduced -- only 6.2 per cent of the 450 patients treated ended up with scars compared to 19.7 per cent of the same number of patients who got conventional treatment. The study was published in the March 1996 Annals of Burns and Fire Disasters.

Although honey has been used for wound healing since ancient times, much of the current research into its healing properties is being done at the Waikato Honey Research Unit at the University of Waikato in New Zealand…

Pollen Analysis Essential for Discrimination Between Unifloral, Polyfloral Honeys

Authentication of the Botanical Origin of Honey Using Profiles of Classical Measurands and Discriminant Analysis
Apidologie 38 (2007) 438-452

Abstract - The potential of physical and chemical measurands for the determination of the botanical origin of honey by using both the classical profiling approach and chemometrics was evaluated for the authentication of ten unifloral (acacia, rhododendron, chestnut, dandelion, heather, lime, rape, fir honeydew, metcalfa honeydew) and polyfloral honey types (in total n = 693 samples).

The classical approach using a profile for the determination of the botanical origin of honey revealed that the physical and chemical measurands alone do not allow a reliable determination.

Pollen analysis is therefore essential for discrimination between unifloral and polyfloral honeys. However, chemometric evaluation of the physical and chemical data by linear discriminant analysis allowed reliable authentication with neither specialized expertise nor pollen or sensory analysis. The error rates calculated by Bayes' theorem ranged from 1.1% (rape and lime honeys) up to 9.9 % (acacia honey).

Sunday, November 11, 2007

Study: Honey Could Play ‘Important Role’ in Preventing Cell Damage

Influence of Honey on the Suppression of Human Low Density Lipoprotein (LDL) Peroxidation (In vitro)
Evidence-based Compl. and Alt. Medicine, 10/18/2007

The antioxidant activity of four honey samples from different floral sources (Acacia, Coriander, Sider and Palm) were evaluated with three different assays; DPPH free radical scavenging assay, superoxide anion generated in xanthine–xanthine oxidase (XOD) system and low density lipoprotein (LDL) peroxidation assay.

The dark Palm and Sider honeys had the highest antioxidant activity in the DPPH assay. But all the honey samples exhibited more or less the same highly significant antioxidant activity within the concentration of 1mg honey/1 ml in XOD system and LDL peroxidation assays.

The chemical composition of these samples was investigated by GC/MS and HPLC analysis, 11 compounds being new to honey. The GC/MS revealed the presence of 90 compounds, mainly aliphatic acids (37 compounds), which represent 54.73, 8.72, 22.87 and 64.10% and phenolic acids (15 compound) 2.3, 1.02, 2.07 and 11.68% for Acacia, Coriander, Sider and Palm honeys. In HPLC analysis, 19 flavonoids were identified. Coriander and Sider honeys were characterized by the presence of large amounts of flavonoids…

Our study provides (for the first time) primary evidence suggesting that these honeys in further in vivo studies could play an important role in inhibiting lipid peroxidation in biological systems through their antioxidant, metal chelating and free radical scavenging activities.

Also some bee products as propolis contain a higher level of phenolic compounds and showed strong capability to scavenge free radicals and exhibit a cytotoxic effect on human melanoma cells. It also induced inhibition of oxidative stress which may be partly responsible for its neuroprotective function against in vitro cell death and in vivo focal cerebral ischemia. So the use of bee products have mainly centered on prevention and the maintenance of human health.

Colony Collapse Disorder May Affect Complementary and Alternative Medicine

Evidence-based Compl. and Alt. Medicine, Volume 4, Number 3 Pp. 275-277

…To give you an idea of what the world would lose with the disappearance of the bee, I refer to the website of in which the hive is called ‘the oldest laboratory of the world.’ In that site, the myriad aspects of honey, bee bread, propolis, royal jelly, bee venom, bee wax and bee larvae are linked to treatments of all the major pathologies from nutritional problems to arthritis, rheumatism and 23 other areas.

Of course, all these treatments do not have an evidence base but imagine how fertile the hive and its products are for evidence-based research! In this time of crisis, I hope that scientists all over the world turn their brilliant minds to the mystery of CCD and that researchers continue to seek an evidence base for the miraculous honey bee…

Saturday, November 10, 2007

Study Examines Human Absorption of Propolis Polyphenols

Evaluation of Propolis Polyphenols Absorption in Humans by Liquid Chromatography/Tandem Mass Spectrometry
Rapid Commun Mass Spectrom, 2007 Nov 2;21(23):3849-3854

Propolis has various biological activities such as antibacterial, antiviral, antioxidant, immunostimulating and antiinflammatory, which are generally ascribed to the polyphenolic fraction.

The aim of this study was to evaluate the absorption of the main polyphenols [caffeic acid (CA), pinobanksin-5methyl ether (P-5ME), pinobanksin (Pb), chrysin (C), pinocembrin (P), galangin (G), pinobanksin-3-acetate, pinobanksin esters and caffeic acid phenylethyl ester (CAPE)] from a dewaxed and standardized extract of propolis (EPID(R)).

Fifteen healthy volunteers consumed 5 mL EPID(R) in water, corresponding to 125 mg of flavonoids. Blood samples were collected before, each hour for 8 h and 24 h after EPID(R) intake.

After deconjugation by beta-glucuronidase/sulfatase the plasma samples were analyzed by a selective liquid chromatography/tandem mass spectrometry (LC/MS/MS) method using morin as internal standard (I.S.). A kinetic profile characterized by two t(max), respectively at 1 h and about 5 h post-ingestion, was observed in all the subjects.

The two peaks may be due to enterohepatic cycling. Among the various polyphenols ingested, only P-5ME, Pb, C, P and G were detected in plasma and C(max)t(1h) were 65.7 +/- 13.3, 46.5 +/- 12.7, 79.5 +/- 18.6, 168.1 +/- 16.3 and 113.7 +/- 16.8 ng/mL, respectively.

These levels decreased significantly after 8 h and were no longer detectable 24 h after EPID(R) intake. The recovery of the extraction for CA, Pb, C, P, G and I.S. from spiked plasma was 95.2 +/- 3.1, 93.1 +/- 3.6, 91 +/- 2.5, 96.4 +/- 4.2, 93.4 +/- 2.4 and 85.5 +/- 2.4%, respectively.

The results of this study evidence that flavonoids from EPID(R) are absorbed, metabolized and Pb-5ME and G seem to have apparent absorption, measured as (AUC/dose), higher than C, P and Pb.

Friday, November 09, 2007

New Compounds Isolated from Nepalese Propolis

Chemical Constituents of Nepalese Propolis (II)
Chemical & Pharmaceutical Bulletin, Vol. 55 (2007) , No. 6 926

A novel flavanonol, three new isoflavones and a new flavan-3-ol were isolated along with ten other known flavonoids from the methanolic extract of propolis collected from Chitwan, Nepal. Their structures were determined on the basis of spectral analysis.

…The chemical consistency of propolis is highly dependent on the flora of the region from where it is collected.

As a part of our ongoing study on propolis of different geographical locations of Nepal, previously we have reported three new and nine known flavonoids from propolis of Chitwan. In this paper, we will report on further isolation of new compounds from the remaining fractions and sub fractions of the same propolis…

Beeswax Base Used in Alaskan Herbal Product Line

Yup'ik Way Comes in Jar Form
Dustin Solberg, The Tundra Drums, 11/8/2007

Gloria Simeon of Bethel didn't look far when she chose the name for her cottage industry 10 years ago. Yup'ik Way comes from the street where she makes her home in Bethel.

Simeon's business sells an array of herbal products packaged in small glass jars. She collects ingredients such as fireweed, yarrow and spruce needles from locations she believes to be free of human traffic.

Her goods are sold in four Bethel outlets, arts and crafts shows such as that hosted by the Alaska Federation of Natives convention two weeks ago in Fairbanks, and by mail order.

Her understanding of the medicinal qualities of native plants began with her grandmother. The next step, developing products for the public, required research.

With only word-of-mouth promotion to spread the word, she has now sold her several recipes for a decade. Her son, Quentin Simeon, designed the Yup'ik Way logo that appears on each jar she sells.

Her products include a Fireweed and Yarrow Skin Tonic and a Balm of Gilead containing spruce needles. Extra virgin olive oil and beeswax form the base of the products, which bear the silver hand of authentic native handicrafts from Alaska…

Thursday, November 08, 2007

Royal Jelly May Help Prevent Insulin Resistance

Effect of Long-Term Treatment with Royal Jelly on Insulin Resistance in Otsuka Long-Evans Tokushima Fatty (OLETF) Rats
Yakugaku Zasshi, 2007 Nov;127(11):1877-82

Royal jelly (RJ) is known to have abundant nutritional properties and a variety of biological activities.

To investigate the effects of RJ on insulin resistance, 10-week-old Otsuka Long-Evans Tokushima Fatty (OLETF) rats, a type 2 diabetic model, were treated for 4 weeks with RJ (10, 30, and 300 mg/kg, p.o.).

RJ treatment tended to decrease systolic blood pressure and significantly decreased serum levels of insulin and the Homeostasis Model Assessment ratio, an index of insulin resistance.

In isolated and perfused mesenteric vascular beds of OLETF rats, RJ treatment resulted in significant reduction of the sympathetic nerve-mediated vasoconstrictor response to periarterial nerve stimulation (PNS) and potentiation of the calcitonin gene-related peptide (CGRP) nerve-mediated vasodilator response to PNS, compared with that in untreated OLETF rats.

However, RJ treatment did not significantly affect norepinephrine-induced vasoconstriction and CGRP-induced vasodilation.

These results suggest that RJ could be an effective and functional food to prevent the development of insulin resistance.

U.S. Beekeeper Recommends Antibiotic Qualities of Honey, Propolis

Beekeeper Brings Buzz to Mount Madonna
Jane Liaw, Santa Cruz Sentinel (USA), 11/8/2007

…The honey that bees make have antibiotic qualities, according to Pitts, as does the propolis that bees make to seal their hives.

"Up until penicillin was invented in the 1930s, people used honey and propolis as an antibiotic," said Pitts. "If you take 200-proof vodka and mix this stuff with it, you come up with a tincture of propolis which you can put on a cut and prevent an infection."…

Line of European Beeswax Lip Care Products Launched in North America

America is Abuzz With Pure Swedish Beeswax

STAMFORD, Conn., Nov. 7 /PRNewswire/ -- Lornamead, Inc., a global leader in personal care products, announces the North American launch of the LypSyl(TM) family of premium lip care products.

LypSyl, Europe's premier lip balm for over 100 years, is now available throughout the United States in improved formulations and dynamic new packaging. The secret behind LypSyl is pure Swedish beeswax -- ultra light to spread evenly and penetrate deeply -- providing unsurpassed moisturizing and protection. And, LypSyl's unique applicator design features make for improved product application…

Wednesday, November 07, 2007

Alginate, Agar Films Used to Deliver Propolis into Oral Cavity

Studies from University of Sassari Describe New Findings in Drug Delivery
Pharma Investments, Ventures & Law Weekly, 11/11/2007

"… The aim of this study was to prepare some polymeric film formulations for local delivery of propolis into the oral cavity," scientists in Sassari, Italy report.

"For this purpose, a commercial propolis fluid extract and three extracts (dry, ethanolic, glyceric) obtained from raw propolis were previously characterized with regard to their polyphenolic fraction composition and their antimicrobial properties against Candida albicans, Escherichia coli and Staphylococcus aureus strains. Commercial fluid extract, judged the most suitable in terms of polyphenol content and antimicrobial activity, was then incorporated into alginate, alginate-chitosan and agar films, prepared using a casting-solvent evaporation technique, which were finally evaluated in terms of thickness, total polyphenol content, in vitro polyphenol release profiles, swelling behaviour and antimicrobial properties," wrote C. Juliano and colleagues, University of Sassari.

The researchers concluded: "Our results demonstrate that polymeric films can be proposed as new propolis vehicles in the treatment of dental and buccal diseases."

Juliano and colleagues published their study in the Journal of Drug Delivery Science and Technology (Preparation and characterisation of polymeric films containing propolis. Journal of Drug Delivery Science and Technology, 2007;17(3):177-181)…

Beeswax ‘Ear Candles’ Recommended for Ear, Nose and Throat Complaints

Doctors Wax Lyrical About Ear Candling
Mordialloc Chelsea Leader (Australia), 11/7/2006

For people unfamiliar with ear candling, the concept may sound a little strange if not dangerous. But lying down with a lit candle in the ear has many surprising benefits.

"There are significant benefits for people suffering a wide range of conditions associated with sinus and congestion problems,'' says Dr Dorian Ribush, medical director of Biosun in Australia, responsible for several innovations in ear candle design.

"It is an energetic therapy that works by activating circulation and drainage in the area. It can be used effectively for specific ear conditions such as glue ear, which is common in children, as well as for people with intractable conditions like tinnitus, sinus and migraine.''

Ear candles have now been used by German doctors and in several European hospitals for the treatment of ear, nose and throat complaints.

Ear candles have also been used extensively for relaxation purposes. "People who suffer from stress, anxiety and sleep difficulties find ear candles incredibly relaxing and often use them in the evening,'' says Dr Ribush.

Ear candles are no ordinary candles. They are made specifically for the purpose out of cotton flax stiffened with honey and pure beeswax. Their hollow design creates the drawing "chimney'' effect. A filter at the base of the candle prevents any wax or ash falling into the ear. "It's safe to use at home provided people observe the manufacturer's instructions strictly,'' Dr Ribush said…

For more information, go to

Tuesday, November 06, 2007

Health Watch: Honey as an Aid to Healing

Dr. Pradnya Kulkarni, UPI Asia, 11/6/2007

…Honey has been advocated as a medicine since antiquity. It is said to have antibacterial properties, and in the past half century many researchers have experimented with honey dressings to treat wounds when conventional therapy has failed.

Spencer E. Efem of the University Teaching Hospital in Calabar, Nigeria, published a series of papers on the antibacterial and wound-healing properties of honey. He applied unprocessed honey to chronic non-healing wounds several times daily, after cleaning them with normal saline. He noted that wounds healed rapidly and became free of bacteria. This was demonstrated with the help of a laboratory test, called bacterial culture, which helps to determine what type of infective bacteria are present. Wounds that were positive for a variety of bacteria before became sterile after a week of honey dressings and went on to heal rapidly and completely…

Free ‘Bee-Friendly’ Seeds Offered in CCD Public Service Announcement

Burt's Bees Sets Out to Rescue Its Own
Burt's Bees Partners with NAPPC to Raise Awareness of Colony Collapse Disorder

DURHAM, N.C., Nov. 5 /PRNewswire/ -- The mysterious disappearance of bees, called Colony Collapse Disorder (CCD), is a growing threat to honey bees, the mainstay of pollination services in agriculture. Bee-friendly, natural personal care company Burt's Bees is addressing this environmental issue by developing a campaign with co-founder Burt Shavitz that will raise consumer awareness through PSA distribution, online marketing and consumer sampling efforts. Burt's Bees will also partner with the North American Pollinator Protection Campaign (NAPPC) both with research funding as well as a heightened awareness push later this year.

On November 2nd, Burt's Bees will hit the big screen with a new cinema campaign to raise awareness of CCD. Burt's Bees public service announcement run in nationwide cinemas will coincide with the theatrical debut of "BEE MOVIE," the highly anticipated DreamWorks Animation SKG movie co-written by and starring Jerry Seinfeld opposite Academy Award(R) winner Renee Zellweger.

The new PSA highlights the fact that every third bite of food we eat depends on bees for pollination, and features Burt's Bees co-founder Burt Shavitz talking about the important role bees play in agriculture. "We believe the bees' survival depends on how we manage and protect our world," he says. "Burt's Bees is funding research to help find a solution, and you can help too. Support your local organic farmer. Plant a seed. Make a healthy place for the bees to live." The spot also urges audiences to visit to sign up to receive a free packet of seeds to grow bee- friendly flowers and learn more about Colony Collapse Disorder…

Monday, November 05, 2007

South Africa: Prize for Propolis-Based ‘Biobalsam’

‘Innovation Should Influence Society‘
Mike Loewe, The Herald (South Africa), 11/5/2007

Students in the humanities have been urged by Rhodes vice-chancellor Dr Saleem Badat to enter the department of science and technology‘s lucrative National Innovation Competition and take on the business and science students.

The top three Rhodes competitors were announced at a dinner at Kingswood College‘s Wyvern Club. They now go forward for national consideration for prizes of R300 000, R250 000 and R150 000….

A panel made up of Rhodes academics and Grahamstown business people chose ichthyologists Ernst Frederick Thompson and Paul Collett‘s project “Biobalsam: The natural answer for fungal control in aquaculture” which is based on propolis gum produced by bees, for the R50 000 first prize…

Propolis Component ‘Shows Promise’ as Treatment for Pancreatitis

Effects of Caffeic Acid Phenethyl Ester on Pancreatitis in Rats
Journal of Surgical Research, Articles in Press

Background: This study investigated the effect of caffeic acid phenethyl ester (CAPE) on acute necrotizing pancreatitis (ANP) induced by glycodeoxycholic acid in rats. CAPE, an active component of honeybee propolis, has previously been determined to have antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, antiviral, and anticancer activities…

Conclusions: These results indicate that CAPE had beneficial effects on the course of ANP in rats and suggest that CAPE shows promise as a treatment for ANP.

Sunday, November 04, 2007

Propolis Component as Effective as Steroid in Reducing Eye Inflammation

Effect of Caffeic Acid Phenethyl Ester on Treatment of Experimentally Induced Methicillin-Resstant Staphylococcus Epidermidis Endophthalmitis in a Rabbit Model
Cell Biochemistry and Function, Volume 25, Issue 6 , Pages 693 - 700

Abstract: This study investigated the anti-inflammatory effects of caffeic acid phenethyl ester (CAPE), a natural bee-produced compound, and compared it with corticosteroids in the treatment of experimentally induced methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus epidermidis (MRSE) endophthalmitis in addition to intravitreal antibiotics…

There were no statististically significant differences between clinical scores of all groups in examinations at 24 and 48 h post-infection (p = 0.915 and p = 0.067 respectively), but in examinations at 72 h post-infection and after 7 days post-infection, although the clinical scores of treatment groups were not significantly different from each other, they were significantly lower than the control group (p < 0.05).

The culture results of all groups were sterile. As a result, CAPE was found to be as effective as dexamethasone in reducing inflammation in the treatment of experimental MRSE endophthalmitis when used with antibiotics. More studies are needed to determine the optimal administration route and effective dosage of this compound.

Saturday, November 03, 2007

Propolis May Help Treat Oral Infections

Antimicrobial Effect of Propolis and Other Substances Against Selected Endodontic Pathogens
Oral Surgery, Oral Medicine, Oral Pathology, Oral Radiology, and Endodontology, Volume 104, Issue 5, November 2007, Pages 709-716

Objective: The aim of this study was to determine the antimicrobial effect of ethanol extract of propolis (EEP) and intracanal medicaments calcium hydroxide, camphorated paramonochlorophenol, and formocresol by means of the macrodilution method using the reinforced clostridial medium (RCM) and brucella and brain heart infusion media.

Study design: The antimicrobial agents were sequentially diluted and tested against anaerobic bacteria Prevotella nigrescens, Fusobacterium nucleatum, Actinomyces israelii, and Clostridium perfringens and against Enterococcus faecalis, with the 5 × 105 CFU/mL standardized inocula. The tubes were anaerobically incubated and the minimum inhibitory concentration was detected. Blood agar RCM subcultures were performed to provide minimum bactericidal concentration. The results were analyzed by analysis of variance test.

Results: All drugs were effective against all tested strains, without statistical differences. E. faecalis was the less susceptible strain, and RCM broth promoted faster bacterial growth, but there were no significant differences in these results. Ethanol did not influence the antimicrobial effect of EEP.

Friday, November 02, 2007

Anti-Inflammatory Effect of Bee Venom Explained

Research Findings from Chonnam National University, College of Veterinary Medicine
Drug Week, 11/2/2007

Scientists discuss in 'Peripheral bee venom's anti-inflammatory effect involves activation of the coeruleospinal pathway and sympathetic preganglionic neurons' new findings in neuroscience. "'There are several reports indicating that the locus coeruleus (LC) is capable of altering immune responses. Moreover, it is well established that the LC is the major source of descending noradrenergic system," researchers in South Korea report.

"Recently we have demonstrated that subcutaneous bee venom (BV) injection dramatically suppressed peripheral inflammation through activation of sympathetic preganglionic neurons (SPNs) leading to release of adreno-medullary catecholamines. Importantly, this 'BV-induced anti-inflammatory effect' (BVAI) is also associated with an increase of the activity of LC. Based on these data, present study examined whether BV-induced LC activation increased the activity of SPNs and this pathway played a role in BVAI using a zymosan-induced inflammatory air pouch model in mice. Unilateral BV injection into left hind limb produced anti-inflammation and specifically increased Fos expression in SPNs of the T7-T11 (which mainly project to adrenal medulla), but not those of the T1-T6 or T12-L2 spinal cord. 6-Hydroxydopamine-induced unilateral lesion of the contralateral, but not ipsilateral (to the BV injection site) LC significantly blocked BVAI and BV-induced Fos expression in SPNs. Additionally, intrathecal administration of idazoxan (alpha2-adrenoceptor antagonist), blocked BVAI," wrote S.Y. Yoon and colleagues, Chonnam National University, College of Veterinary Medicine.

The researchers concluded: "These results indicate that BV-induced activation of the contralateral LC-descending noradrenergic pathway increased the activity of SPNs that project to the adrenal medulla and this pathway is necessary for BVAI."…

Thursday, November 01, 2007

Health Benefits of Propolis Outlined

Bee Propolis is a ‘Bee-u-tiful’ Supplement
By Jody Godfrey, Joplin Globe (USA), 11/1/2007

Propolis, often called “bee glue” isn’t the same as beeswax, although I thought it was.

Beeswax is secreted by bees, whereas propolis is collected by bees from trees. It’s a mixture of various resins made from plants, flowers, leaf buds and tree barks. Bees carry the propolis on their backs to strengthen and seal cracks in their hives.

Bee glue is a godsend. What bees have to do is collect the same substance that trees use to protect themselves from infection. Certain trees (poplar, willow, birch and horse chestnut) create a special antibiotic sap to guard against invaders. Bees gather these saps, take them back to their hives and coat the hives with it in much the same manner as we use to paint and caulk our home…

One of the many cool things about propolis is that it has been found to stimulate our immune system, as discovered by Professor S. Scheller of the Institute for Microbiology at the Medical Academy of Poland.
Scheller and his four-member research team learned that propolis releases substances that guard against cellular deterioration, and it stimulates antibody production, thereby resisting many diseases…

F. M. Ali, an Egyptian doctor at Ain Shams University, showed that propolis appears to be effective in treating infertility caused by endometriosis. In this small, randomized trial, the doctor found the bee propolis a viable treatment…

Caffeic acids in propolis might be effective against colon cancer as stated in Cancer Research.

The article described how the acids were able to prevent the formation of pre-cancerous tissues in rats after injections of acute cancer-causing agents. Another study done in 1990 showed propolis chemicals to act against ovarian cancer in hamsters and sarcoma-type tumors in mice.

Dr. Ralph Golan reported in 2001 how ulcerative colitis, as well as Crohn’s Disease, responded to propolis therapy in Townsend Letters for Doctors.

Other propolis pluses would include the realm of dental care. Propolis mouthwash used after dental surgery appears to shorten healing time. A study in the ’90s showed that rats given propolis in their drinking water greatly reduced cavities while yet an earlier study showed propolis to be a valuable ancillary treatment for gum disease and plaque reduction. It is also used in dental surgery as a safe and natural disinfectant.

E. L. Ghisalberti, an Australian scientist with the Department of Organic Chemistry, University of Western Australia, showed that propolis increases the effectiveness of antibiotics (sulfa drugs) from 10- to 100-fold, which means the dosages can be trimmed, lowering the dependency on antibiotics and decreasing problems that occur from overexposure.

Additional studies over the years have yielded results such as lowering blood pressure, having a sedative-like effect and protecting liver and stomachs of certain animals…

(Photo: Beehive Botanicals)

Clorox to Buy Burt's Bees

Associated Press, 11/1/2007

MORRISVILLE, N.C. (AP) - Clorox Co., looking to expand into the natural beauty products business, said Wednesday it would purchase lip balm maker Burt's Bees for $925 million.

Burt's Bees, which got its start in Maine and is now based in Morrisville, N.C., makes beauty products that contain at least 95 percent natural ingredients…