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....

Wednesday, September 30, 2015

New Zealand Manuka Honey Company Wants Court Ruling on Trademarks

NZ Honey fights MPI over alleged health claims

Monday, 28 September 2015
The New Zealand Herald

MPI has been cracking down on the manuka honey industry amid international criticism there was more manuka honey coming out of the country than New Zealand actually produces.
By Suze Metherell

New Zealand Honey International, the closely-held honey products maker, wants a judicial declaration on whether its trademarks Manuka Doctor and Manuka Pharm amount to health claims after the Ministry of Primary Industries withdrew export approvals, blocking the firm's sales into certain markets.

MPI has been cracking down on the manuka honey industry amid international criticism there was more manuka honey coming out of the country than New Zealand actually produces.

With no industry consensus on what constitutes manuka honey, MPI introduced an interim labelling guideline in July 2014 to give the industry clarity and protect consumers from false claims, as well as to try to improve credibility of the manuka products.

The regulator cancelled NZ Honey's export assurance in May, saying the company's brand names Manuka Doctor and Manuka Pharm breached food labelling standards.

Tuesday, September 29, 2015

A Fatty Acid from Royal Jelly with Multiple Biological Activities

Mitsunobu Alkylation of Cancerostatic 5-Fluorouridine with (2E)-10-Hydroxydec-2-enoic Acid, a Fatty Acid from Royal Jelly with Multiple Biological Activities

Chem Biodivers. 2015 Sep;12(9):1307-12. doi: 10.1002/cbdv.201500048.

5-Fluorouridine (1) - a nucleoside antimetabolite with strong cancerostatic properties - was protected i) at the 2'- and 3'-OH groups with a heptan-4-ylidene residue and ii) at the 5'-OH group with a (4-methoxyphenyl)(diphenyl)methyl residue.

This fully protected compound, 3, was submitted to a Mitsunobu reaction with the N-hydroxysuccinimide (NHS) ester, 5, of (2E)-10-hydroxydec-2-enoic acid (4) which gave nucleolipid 6. The latter was detritylated with Cl2 CHCOOH to yield the co-drug 7 as NHS ester.

Monday, September 28, 2015

Nigerian Propolis Protects Liver and Pancreas from Damage Caused by Diabetes

Hepatoprotective and Pancreatoprotective Properties of the Ethanolic Extract of Nigerian Propolis

J Intercult Ethnopharmacol. 2015 Apr-Jun;4(2):102-8

Increased oxidative stress is associated with the progression of diabetic mellitus. In the present study, we investigated the effects of the ethanolic extract of Nigerian propolis (N. propolis) on markers of oxidative stress, histology of the liver and pancreas and glycaemia in alloxan-induced diabetic rats.


Alloxan-induced hyperglycemic Wistar rats were treated with either metformin (150 mg/kg/d) or N. propolis (200 mg/kg/d and 300 mg/kg/d) for 28 days. At the end of the treatment period, the rats were sacrificed; blood was collected for biochemical analysis while their pancreases and liver were excised and processed for histological studies.


Serum oxidative stress markers and blood glucose concentration were compared between the treated and control rats. In contrast to the non-treated diabetic rats, blood glucose concentration were not significantly different between treated rats and control (P < 0.05) at 28 days of treatment with N. propolis and metformin. Serum malondialdehyde levels was reduced while superoxide dismutase levels were elevated in the N. propolis group; these levels were converse in the diabetic group, these differences are statistically significant (P<0 .05="" compared="" control.="" group.="" group="" histologically="" improvement="" in="" p="" the="" there="" to="" treated="" untreated="" was="" when="" with="">

These findings suggest that the N. propolis confers protection against hyperglycemia-induced oxidative stress in both liver and pancreas of adult Wistar rats.

Sunday, September 27, 2015

Royal Jelly Helps Hydrate Skin

Epidermal Hydration Is Improved by Enhanced Ceramide Metabolism in Aged C57BL/6J Mice After Dietary Supplementation of Royal Jelly

J Med Food. 2015 Sep;18(9):999-1006

Epidermal hydration is maintained by the epidermal lipid barrier, of which ceramide (Cer) is the major constituent. We examined the dietary effect of royal jelly (RJ) on epidermal hydration in aged mice.

Altered Cer metabolism was further determined by measuring epidermal levels of individual Cer, glucosylceramide (GC), and sphingomyelin (SM) species, and of Cer-metabolizing enzymes. Aged C57BL/6J mice were fed a control diet (group AGED) or diets with 1% RJ harvested from two different areas (groups AGED+RJ1:AGED+RJ2) for 16 weeks. Aged C57BL/6J mice with no dietary intervention (the control group: group C) represented the onset of aging. In group AGED, epidermal levels of hydration, Cer1/2/5/6/7, GC-A/B/C/D, SM1/2/3, and β-glucocerebrosidase (GCase) protein, an enzyme of GC hydrolysis for Cer generation, were lower than in group C; these levels, as well as those of Cer3/4 and acidic sphingomyelinase (aSMase) protein, an enzyme of SM hydrolysis for Cer generation, were higher in group AGED+RJ1 than in group AGED. Despite increases in GC-B, SM1/2/3, and serine palmitoyltransferase2 protein, an enzyme of de novo Cer synthesis, in group AGED+RJ2 to levels higher than in group AGED, epidermal levels of hydration, Cer1-7, GC-A/C/D, GCase, and aSMase proteins were similar in these two groups. Expression of GCase and aSMase mRNAs, and of Cer synthase3 and ceramidase proteins, enzymes of de novo Cer synthesis and degradation, did not differ among groups.

Dietary RJ1 improved epidermal hydration by enhancing Cer metabolism with increased levels of all Cer, GC, and SM species, and of GCase and aSMase proteins.

Saturday, September 26, 2015

Bee Venom Protects Against Neuron Cell Death

Bee Venom Protects against Rotenone-Induced Cell Death in NSC34 Motor Neuron Cells

Toxins (Basel). 2015 Sep 21;7(9):3715-3726

Rotenone, an inhibitor of mitochondrial complex I of the mitochondrial respiratory chain, is known to elevate mitochondrial reactive oxygen species and induce apoptosis via activation of the caspase-3 pathway.

Bee venom (BV) extracted from honey bees has been widely used in oriental medicine and contains melittin, apamin, adolapin, mast cell-degranulating peptide, and phospholipase A₂. In this study, we tested the effects of BV on neuronal cell death by examining rotenone-induced mitochondrial dysfunction. NSC34 motor neuron cells were pretreated with 2.5 μg/mL BV and stimulated with 10 μM rotenone to induce cell toxicity. We assessed cell death by Western blotting using specific antibodies, such as phospho-ERK1/2, phospho-JNK, and cleaved capase-3 and performed an MTT assay for evaluation of cell death and mitochondria staining. Pretreatment with 2.5 μg/mL BV had a neuroprotective effect against 10 μM rotenone-induced cell death in NSC34 motor neuron cells. Pre-treatment with BV significantly enhanced cell viability and ameliorated mitochondrial impairment in rotenone-treated cellular model. Moreover, BV treatment inhibited the activation of JNK signaling and cleaved caspase-3 related to cell death and increased ERK phosphorylation involved in cell survival in rotenone-treated NSC34 motor neuron cells.

Taken together, we suggest that BV treatment can be useful for protection of neurons against oxidative stress or neurotoxin-induced cell death.

Friday, September 25, 2015

2-AP Together with MGO Can Be a Suitable Parameter for the Quality Control of Manuka Honey

Identification and Quantitation of 2-Acetyl-1-pyrroline in Manuka Honey (Leptospermum scoparium)

J. Agric. Food Chem., Article ASAP

Publication Date (Web): September 12, 2015

Manuka honey from New Zealand is known for its exceptional antibacterial activity, which is due to high amounts of the 1,2-dicarbonyl compound methylglyoxal (MGO). MGO in manuka honey is formed via non-enzymatic dehydration from dihydroxyacetone (DHA) during honey maturation. MGO and DHA are highly reactive substances, leading to a variety of unique chemical reactions. During Strecker reaction between proline and MGO, 2-acetyl-1-pyrroline (2-AP), an important aroma compound, is formed.

Using liquid–liquid extraction and gas chromatography–mass spectrometry analysis, 2-AP was identified unambiguously in manuka honey for the first time. Quantitation was carried out via external matrix calibration, using a synthetic 2-AP standard and artificial honey. The 2-AP concentration in 11 commercial samples of manuka honey ranged from 0.08 to 0.45 mg/kg. For manuka honey samples containing MGO in concentrations above 250 mg/kg, significantly higher amounts of 2-AP were found when compared to non-manuka honeys.

When high amounts of MGO were artificially added to non-manuka multifloral honey, an increase of the 2-AP concentration from 0.07 to 0.40 mg/kg after 12 weeks of storage at 37 °C was observed, concomitant with a significant increase in the concentration of 5-hydroxymethylfurfural (HMF). No increase of 2-AP was found during storage at ambient temperature. 2-AP together with MGO can be a suitable parameter for the quality control of manuka honey.