Friday, September 30, 2016

Honey Reduces Exercise-Induced DNA Damage in White Blood Cells

A randomized controlled trial examining the effects of 16 weeks of moderate-to-intensive cycling and honey supplementation on lymphocyte oxidative DNA damage and cytokine changes in male road cyclists

Cytokine. 2016 Sep 24;88:222-231

The aim of this study was to investigate whether honey supplementation (70 g, ninety minutes before each training session) attenuates changes in lymphocyte counts, DNA damage, cytokines, antioxidative and peroxidative biomarkers following moderate-to-intensive exercise training in male road cyclists.

Healthy nonprofessional cyclists (n = 24, aged 17-26 years) were randomly assigned to exercise+supplement (EX+S, n = 12) and exercise (EX, n = 12) groups for an experimental period of 16 weeks. Moderate-to-intensive exercise training increased lymphocytes DNA damage, cytokines and peroxidative biomarkers as well as decreased antioxidative biomarkers in the EX group.

These changes were significantly attenuated in the EX+S group. Furthermore, for both groups the observed changes in peroxidative and antioxidative biomarkers could be correlated positively and negatively, respectively, with lymphocyte DNA damage and cytokines.

Findings suggest that honey attenuates oxidative stress and lymphocyte DNA damage after exercise, activities that are most likely attributable to its high antioxidant capacity.

Thursday, September 29, 2016

Manuka Honey Could Help Prevent Hospital-Acquired Infections

Manuka honey could fight off deadly infections in hospital equipment

The Telegraph, 27 SEPTEMBER 2016

Manuka honey could be a powerful new weapon in the battle against hospital-acquired infections, scientists have revealed.

Researchers at Southampton University found that cleansing medical equipment with solutions derived from the Australia and New Zealand-based honey reduced the ability of potentially deadly bacteria to accumulate on surfaces by more than 75 per cent.

The discovery could transform safety for groups at particular risk of bacterial infections, such as the one-in-four hospital inpatients who use a catheter, thousands of whom suffer urinary-tract and other infections each year...

Wednesday, September 28, 2016

Bee Venom May Help Treat Asthma

Protective Effects of Intratracheally-Administered Bee Venom Phospholipase A2 on Ovalbumin-Induced Allergic Asthma in Mice

Asthma is a common chronic disease characterized by bronchial inflammation, reversible airway obstruction, and airway hyperresponsiveness (AHR). Current therapeutic options for the management of asthma include inhaled corticosteroids and β2 agonists, which elicit harmful side effects.

In the present study, we examined the capacity of phospholipase A2 (PLA2), one of the major components of bee venom (BV), to reduce airway inflammation and improve lung function in an experimental model of asthma. Allergic asthma was induced in female BALB/c mice by intraperitoneal administration of ovalbumin (OVA) on days 0 and 14, followed by intratracheal challenge with 1% OVA six times between days 22 and 30. The infiltration of immune cells, such as Th2 cytokines in the lungs, and the lung histology, were assessed in the OVA-challenged mice in the presence and absence of an intratracheal administration of bvPLA2. We showed that the intratracheal administration of bvPLA2 markedly suppressed the OVA-induced allergic airway inflammation by reducing AHR, overall area of inflammation, and goblet cell hyperplasia. Furthermore, the suppression was associated with a significant decrease in the production of Th2 cytokines, such as IL-4, IL-5, and IL-13, and a reduction in the number of total cells, including eosinophils, macrophages, and neutrophils in the airway.

Tuesday, September 27, 2016

Research on Apitherapy in Africa

Food Tank, 9/25/2016

Hugo Fearnley of Whitby, England is studying the potential of bee-produced medicines for the treatment of human diseases. Fearnley, CEO of BeeVital and Director of the Apiceutical Research Centre (ARC), recently earned a Churchill Travelling Fellowship to fund his research and coalition-building in four African countries.

One potentially promising compound for Fearnley is propolis, sometimes called bee glue: a mixture of plant resins and wax used for structural purposes in hives. Researchers are studying the roles of propolis in insect disease resistance and the evolutionary benefits of propolis for bees. But Fearnley aims his studies on propolis for treatment of malaria, leishmania, and sleeping sickness, diseases among the most prevalent in Africa.

According to researchers at the University of Minnesota, several studies have evidenced that “propolis has strong hepatoprotective, antitumor, antioxidative, antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory properties.” Scientists are working to find out if propolis can discourage infections in humans or act as an antibiotic. Fearnley’s BeeVital specifically focuses on propolis for periodontal issues, skin problems, wound healing, ulcers, immune deficiency diseases, and herpes simplex virus.

The pharmacological benefits of propolis for human health are most widely recognized in Eastern Europe, Asia, and South America.

The interest in propolis runs in the Fearnley family. Fearnley’s father has researched the medicinal nature of propolis for decades. Fearnley’s company BeeVital won a government research award to study future licensable bee-based medicines. Fearnley spoke recently at The First International Conference on Apiceutical Research, which focused on the potential of propolis.

Other bee products the pair cite as harboring medicinal properties include honey, royal jelly, pollen, and bee venom. Fearnley calls the beehive a “flying pharmacy.”...

Monday, September 26, 2016

Royal Jelly: An Ancient Remedy with Remarkable Antibacterial Properties

Microbiol Res. 2016 Nov;192:130-41

Royal Jelly (RJ), a honeybee hypopharyngeal gland secretion of young nurse and an exclusive nourishment for bee queen, has been used since ancient times for care and human health and it is still very important in traditional and folkloristic medicine, especially in Asia within the apitherapy.

Recently, RJ and its protein and lipid components have been subjected to several investigations on their antimicrobial activity due to extensive traditional uses and for a future application in medicine. Antimicrobial activities of crude Royal Jelly, Royalisin, 10-hydroxy-2-decenoic acid, Jelleines,

Major Royal Jelly Proteins against different bacteria have been reported. All these beehive products showed antimicrobial activities that lead their potential employment in several fields as natural additives. RJ and its derived compounds show a highest activity especially against Gram positive bacteria. The purpose of this Review is to summarize the results of antimicrobial studies of Royal Jelly following the timescale of the researches.

From the first scientific applications to the isolation of the single components in order to better understand its application in the past years and propose an employment in future studies as a natural antimicrobial agent.

Sunday, September 25, 2016

Apitherapy Seminar in New Hampshire

Seminar Discusses Treating Disease With Bee Venom

Beekeeper Reyah Carlson, (apitheraphy-utilizing bee venom to treat disease) will present “The Medicine Chest Known As The Beehive” at the Connecticut River Valley Beekeepers meeting on Thursday, Oct. 13, at the Grafton County Extension Office, 3855 Dartmouth College Hwy, North Haverhill, N.H.

Saturday, September 24, 2016

Propolis May Help Fight Antibiotic Resistance, MRSA

Impact of Biohybrid Magnetite Nanoparticles and Moroccan Propolis on Adherence of Methicillin Resistant Strains of Staphylococcus aureus

Molecules. 2016 Sep 9;21(9). pii: E1208

Biofilm bacteria are more resistant to antibiotics than planktonic cells. Propolis possesses antimicrobial activity. Generally, nanoparticles containing heavy metals possess antimicrobial and antibiofilm properties.

In this study, the ability of adherence of Methicillin Resistant Strains of Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) to catheters treated with magnetite nanoparticles (MNPs), produced by three methods and functionalized with oleic acid and a hydro-alcoholic extract of propolis from Morocco, was evaluated. The chemical composition of propolis was established by gas chromatography mass spectrometry (GC-MS), and the fabricated nanostructures characterized by X-ray diffraction (XRD), transmission electron microscopy (TEM), Mossbauer spectroscopy and Fourrier transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR). The capacity for impairing biofilm formation was dependent on the strain, as well as on the mode of production of MNPs. The co-precipitation method of MNPs fabrication using Fe(3+) and Na₂SO₃ solution and functionalized with oleic acid and propolis was the most effective in the impairment of adherence of all MRSA strains to catheters (p < 0.001). The adherence of the strain MRSA16 was also significantly lower (p < 0.001) when the catheters were treated with the hybrid MNPs with oleic acid produced by a hydrothermal method.

The anti-MRSA observed can be attributed to the presence of benzyl caffeate, pinocembrin, galangin, and isocupressic acid in propolis extract, along with MNPs. However, for MRSA16, the impairment of its adherence on catheters may only be attributed to the hybrid MNPs with oleic acid, since very small amount, if any at all of propolis compounds were added to the MNPs.

Friday, September 23, 2016

Polish Propolis May Help Prevent Spread of Cancer

Anti-proliferative and anti-migration effects of Polish propolis combined with Hypericum perforatum L. on glioblastoma multiforme cell line U87MG

BMC Complementary and Alternative MedicineBMC

Published: 20 September 2016


Propolis and Hypericum perforatum L. are natural products which contain many active compounds and have numerous beneficial effects, including an antitumor effect. Gliobmastoma multiforme (GBM) is a common primary brain tumor with poor prognosis and limited treatment options. In this study, the effect of propolis (EEP) combined with H. perforatum L. (HPE) on glioblastoma cell line U87MG was investigated for the first time.


Anti-proliferative activity of EEP, HPE and their combination (EEP + HPE) was determined by a cytotoxicity test, DNA binding by [3H]-thymidine incorporation and cell migration assay. Anti-metastatic properties in U87MG treated with EEP, HPE and EEP + HPE were estimated on cells migration test (scratch assay) and metalloproteinases (MMP2 and MMP9) secretion (gelatin zymography).


Combination of HPE and EEP extracts was found to have a time- and dose-dependent inhibitory effect on the viability of U87MG cells. This effect was significantly higher (p < 0.05) when compared to these two extracts applied separately, which was confirmed by the significant reduction of DNA synthesis and significantly higher mitochondrial membrane permeabilization. A significant decreasing in migration cells and in pro-MMP9 and pro-MMP2 secretion in U87MG cells were demonstrated after exposure to combination of EEP (30 μg/ml) with HPE (6.25 μg/ml).


In this study, the combination of ethanolic extract from propolis and ethanolic extract of fresh-cut H. perforatum L. was proved the ability to reduce invasiveness of glioma cells through the inhibition of MMP2 and MMP9 secretion and suppression of cell migration. It has a more potent anti-proliferative effect on U87MG glioma cell line compared to using propolis and H. perforatum L. separately.

Further studies are required to verify whether the examined extracts can activate apoptotic pathways.

Thursday, September 22, 2016

Propolis Extract, Vitamin E Supplements Boost Milk Quality for Dairy Cows

By Aerin Einstein-Curtis, 20-Sep-2016

Supplementing dairy cattle diets with vitamin E or propolis extract may improve milk quality, cow health, say researchers...

Wednesday, September 21, 2016

Apitherapy Has Long History in Lithuania

Ethnomedicinal Uses of Honeybee Products in Lithuania: The First Analysis of Archival Sources

Evid Based Complement Alternat Med. 2016;2016:9272635

Lithuania has old ethnomedicine traditions, consisting of many recipes with herbal, animal, and mineral original ingredients. All these findings were mostly collected in Lithuanian language, often in local community's dialects, and stored only in archives.

We analyzed archival sources about honeybee and its products used for medicinal purposes dated from 1886 till 1992 in different parts of Lithuania. We systematized and presented the most important information about bees and their products: indication for usage, ingredients used in the recipe, their preparation techniques, and application for therapeutic purposes. Researchers in Lithuania are now looking for new evidence based indications and preparation and standardization methods of bee products. Archival sources are a foundation for studies in Lithuania. The results can be integrated into scientifically approved folk medicine practices into today's healthcare.

Tuesday, September 20, 2016

Honey and Sesame Seeds Help Treat Complications of Acute Myeloid Leukemia (AML)

Effects of Dietary Honey and Ardeh Combination on Chemotherapy- Induced Gastrointestinal and Infectious Complications in Patients with Acute Myeloid Leukemia: A Double-Blind Randomized Clinical Trial

Iran J Pharm Res. 2016 Spring;15(2):661-8

We aimed to investigate the effects of dietary combination of honey and Ardeh on chemotherapy-induced complications in patients with acute myeloid leukemia (AML).

A total of 107 AML patients who underwent chemotherapy for at least 30 consecutive days were recruited to this double-blind randomized placebo-controlled clinical-trial which was conducted in the Imam Reza and Ghaem teaching hospitals (Mashhad, Iran). They were divided into two age and sex-matched groups: 58 treated and 49 untreated patients. A combination of 50 grams of honey and 150 grams of Ardeh was added to the treated group's diet for 30 consecutive days, three times each day; while the untreated group received their regular diet.

Both groups received their standard medication for AML as well. After one month, they were all examined and lab tests were done on them by an internist and laboratory technicians who were blinded to the subject allocations.

Mean value of WBC count in treated group was significantly lower than that of untreated group. Duration of fever and admission in the hospital due to fever were both significantly lower in the treated group (P = 0.014, P = 0.032 respectively).

Total gastrointestinal complications were significantly less in the treated group one month after therapy with the special honey and Ardeh compound.

No unusual or unexpected side effects were observed. Honey and Ardehare easily accessible materials that can be helpfully administered in AML patients receiving chemotherapy, since their useful effects in ameliorating gastrointestinal complications and reducing fever and neutropenia in AML patients have been shown.

Monday, September 19, 2016

Natural Pakistani Honey Exhibits Potent Amoebistatic and Amoebicidal Effects

Antiacanthamoebic properties of natural and marketed honey in Pakistan

Asian Pacific Journal of Tropical Biomedicine

Available online 17 September 2016


To determine antiacanthamoebic activity of natural and marketed honey samples.


Natural honey samples were collected directly from the bee hive and marketed honey samples were purchased from the local market in Karachi, Pakistan. Both honey samples were tested for their flavonoid content (quercetin equivalent per gram of the extract) and phenolic content (gallic acid equivalent per gram). Furthermore, their antioxidant activity was determined by measuring 2,2-diphenyl-1-picrylhydrazyl. Using amoebistatic and amoebicidal assays, the effects of honey samples were tested against growth and viability of Acanthamoeba parasites.


Natural honey exhibited potent amoebistatic and amoebicidal effects, in a concentration-dependent manner. Honey-treated Acanthamoeba castellanii showed loss of acanthopodia, following which amoebae detached, rounded up, reduced in size, decreased in cytoplasmic mass and they were observed floating in the culture medium. Importantly, honey-treated amoebae did not revive when inoculated in fresh growth medium, however, glycerol-treated amoebae exhibited viable trophozoite and active growth. In contrast, marketed honey samples varied in their efficacy against Acanthamoeba castellanii. The proportion of flavonoid, as determined by quercetin measurements and the proportion of phenolic, as determined by gallic acid measurements was higher in natural honey compared with marketed honey. Similarly, the antioxidant activity, as determined by 2,2-diphenyl-1-picrylhydrazyl scavenging activity was higher in natural honey vs. marketed honey.


This study shows that natural honey has antiacanthamoebic properties and possesses higher flavonoid, phenolic and antioxidant properties compared with the marketed honey. These findings are of concern to the public, health officials, and to the manufacturers regarding production of honey for medical applications.

Sunday, September 18, 2016

'Beekeepers rarely get malaria, cancer or arthiritis'

Bee for Bengaluru

By Express Features Published: 17th September 2016

There are also the products of honey and bee venom. "Beekeepers rarely get malaria, cancer or arthiritis because of the occasional sting," he says.

Saturday, September 17, 2016

Review of Antimicrobial Activity, Medicinal Applications of Beeswax

Beeswax: A minireview of its antimicrobial activity and its application in medicine

Asian Pac J Trop Med. 2016 Sep;9(9):839-43

Beeswax is the substance that forms the structure of a honeycomb; the bees secrete wax to build the honeycombs where to store honey. Thanks to its rich hydrophobic protective properties, the beeswax is in fact present within cosmetics and body products. Also, beeswax is used in the food industry: as a film to wrap cheese for maturing or as a food additive (E901) to give shine to the products.

Exactly as the honey which it contains, beeswax is also characterized by several therapeutic properties of great interest to us; it is thought to be particularly effective in healing bruises, inflammation and burns. Recently, the interest of researchers has moved even on antimicrobial properties of beeswax although there are still few studies in the literature focused only on the action of beeswax.

The few studies showed an antimicrobic effectiveness of beeswax against overall Staphylococcus aureus, Salmonella enterica, Candida albicans and Aspergillus niger; these inhibitory effects are enhanced synergistically with other natural products such as honey or olive oil.

This minireview aims to be a collection of major scientific works that have considered the antimicrobial activity of beeswax alone or in combination with other natural products in recent years.

Friday, September 16, 2016

Red Propolis: Anticancer Mechanism Probed

Published: Sep 15, 2016

The mechanism by which red propolis acts as an anticancer agent can be clarified by the identification of proteins that are differentially expressed in a cancer cell line, say Brazilian researchers.

Propolis has a range of renowned medicinal properties and has been used to treat bacteria, viruses, fungal infections and gastrointestinal problems. One more string to the bow of this resin, produced by bees as a glue to block up unwanted gaps in the hive and protect the entrance, is its anticancer activity which has been demonstrated on a number of different cancers including leukaemia and bladder, breast and pancreatic cancer.

In South America, one type of propolis is produced exclusively when bees collect resin from the coinvine (Dalbergia ecastophyllum). Known as red propolis, it is found in the northeastern region of Brazil and it, too, has been credited with the ability to kill cancer cells. The mechanism by which red propolis acts is unclear, but it is rich in flavonoids and phenolic acids, as a team of researchers in Brazil established by high resolution mass spectrometry.

Many of these compounds have been attributed with health-promoting properties but they still cannot explain how the anticancer mechanism operates. So, the same team has undertaken a proteomics investigation to see which proteins are affected by red propolis and whether they can throw any light on its mode of action...

Thursday, September 15, 2016

Bee Venom Component May Help Treat Kidney Disease

The Protective Effect of Melittin on Renal Fibrosis in an Animal Model of Unilateral Ureteral Obstruction

Molecules. 2016 Aug 27;21(9)

Renal fibrosis is the principal pathological process underlying the progression of chronic kidney disease that leads to end-stage renal disease. Melittin is a major component of bee venom, and it has anti-bacterial, anti-viral, and anti-inflammatory properties in various cell types.

Thus, this study examined the therapeutic effects of melittin on the progression of renal fibrosis using the unilateral ureteral obstruction (UUO) model. In addition, the effects of melittin on inflammation and fibrosis in renal fibroblast cells were explored using transforming growth factor-β1 (TGF-β1).

Histological observation revealed that UUO induced a considerable increase in the number of infiltrated inflammatory cells. However, melittin treatment markedly reduced these reactions compared with untreated UUO mice. The expression levels of inflammatory cytokines and pro-fibrotic genes were significantly reduced in melittin-treated mice compared with UUO mice. Melittin also effectively inhibited fibrosis-related gene expression in renal fibroblasts NRK-49F cells.

These findings suggest that melittin attenuates renal fibrosis and reduces inflammatory responses by the suppression of multiple growth factor-mediated pro-fibrotic genes. In conclusion, melittin may be a useful therapeutic agent for the prevention of fibrosis that characterizes the progression of chronic kidney disease.

Wednesday, September 14, 2016

Honey, Papaya Extract Dressing May Help Treat Burn Injuries

Fabrication and hemocompatibility assessment of novel polyurethane-based bio-nanofibrous dressing loaded with honey and Carica papaya extract for the management of burn injuries

Int J Nanomedicine. 2016 Sep 2;11:4339-55

Management of burn injury is an onerous clinical task since it requires continuous monitoring and extensive usage of specialized facilities. Despite rapid improvizations and investments in burn management, >30% of victims hospitalized each year face severe morbidity and mortality. Excessive loss of body fluids, accumulation of exudate, and the development of septic shock are reported to be the main reasons for morbidity in burn victims.

To assist burn wound management, a novel polyurethane (PU)-based bio-nanofibrous dressing loaded with honey (HN) and Carica papaya (PA) fruit extract was fabricated using a one-step electrospinning technique. The developed dressing material had a mean fiber diameter of 190±19.93 nm with pore sizes of 4-50 µm to support effective infiltration of nutrients and gas exchange. The successful blending of HN- and PA-based active biomolecules in PU was inferred through changes in surface chemistry. The blend subsequently increased the wettability (14%) and surface energy (24%) of the novel dressing.

Ultimately, the presence of hydrophilic biomolecules and high porosity enhanced the water absorption ability of the PU-HN-PA nanofiber samples to 761.67% from 285.13% in PU. Furthermore, the ability of the bio-nanofibrous dressing to support specific protein adsorption (45%), delay thrombus formation, and reduce hemolysis demonstrated its nontoxic and compatible nature with the host tissues.

In summary, the excellent physicochemical and hemocompatible properties of the developed PU-HN-PA dressing exhibit its potential in reducing the clinical complications associated with the treatment of burn injuries.

Tuesday, September 13, 2016

Review of Use of Honey for Wound Care in the 21st Century

Journal of Wound Care

Published Online: September 09, 2016

This review is written in memory of Professor Peter Molan, who published a paper in the Journal of Wound Care in 1999 describing the therapeutic properties of honey in relation to wound care. It provides an update to show how our understanding of the mode of action of honey has changed within the past 17 years.

Monday, September 12, 2016

Propolis, Honey Component Has Antidepressant-Like Effect

Neurochemical factors associated with the antidepressant-like effect of flavonoid chrysin in chronically stressed mice

Eur J Pharmacol. 2016 Sep 5. pii: S0014-2999(16)30564-7

Chrysin is a flavonoid which is found in bee propolis, honey and various plants. Antidepressant-like effect of chrysin in chronically stressed mice was previously demonstrated by our group. Conversely, neurochemical factors associated with this effect require further investigations. Thus, we investigated the possible involvement of pro-inflammatory cytokines, kynurenine pathway (KP), 5-hydroxytryptamine (5-HT) metabolism and caspases activities in the effect of chrysin in mice exposed to unpredictable chronic stress (UCS). UCS applied for 28 days induced a depressive-like behavior, characterized by decrease in the time of grooming in the splash test and by increase in the immobility time in the tail suspension test.

Oral treatment with chrysin (5 or 20mg/kg, 28 days), similarly to fluoxetine (10mg/kg, positive control), culminated in the prevention of these alterations. UCS elevated plasma levels of corticotropin-releasing hormone and adrenocorticotropic hormone, as well the tumor necrosis factor-α, interleukin-1β, interleukin-6 and kynurenine levels in the prefrontal cortex (PFC) and hippocampus (HP). UCS induced the decrease in the 5-HT levels in the HP and the increase in the indoleamine-2,3-dioxygenase, caspase 3 and 9 activities in the PFC and HP. Treatment with chrysin, similarly to fluoxetine, promoted the attenuation of these alterations occasioned by UCS.

These results corroborated with the antidepressant potential of chrysin in the treatment of psychiatric diseases. Furthermore, this work indicated the association of pro-inflammatory cytokines synthesis, KP, 5-HT metabolism and caspases activities with the action exercised by chrysin in mice exposed to UCS.

Sunday, September 11, 2016

Leptospermum Honey Boosts Healing of Wound in Premature Infant

Leptospermum Honey for Wound Care in an Extremely Premature Infant

Adv Neonatal Care. 2016 Sep 8


Neonatal wound care is challenging due to the fragility and vulnerable skin structure. Neonates are often left susceptible to the forces of their environment, leaving them open to infection when skin injury occurs. Leptospermum honey has been used successfully in adult patients, with evidence lacking in the neonatal population. This case demonstrates the management of a difficult-to-heal wound in a 23-week gestation infant.


Selecting the proper treatment and products for wound healing is challenging, with little evidence-based research available for the treatment of neonatal wounds. Leptospermum honey and other adult-driven dressings have been used for neonatal wound care as well as other adult-driven dressings. This case demonstrates the benefits of Leptospermum honey as an option for neonatal wounds.


This case presents the treatment and healing of an extensive wound of a 23-week gestation neonate using a hydrogel product initially and then transitioning to a Leptospermum honey dressing due to suboptimal healing. Results of this treatment included quick healing time, little to no scarring, and no loss of movement or function to the affected extremities.


The incorporation of Leptospermum honey for wound care has the potential to promote faster wound healing, with less scarring in the neonatal population.


Adult wound care principles have been applied in the face of a weak evidence base relating to neonatal-specific cases. There is a need for continued research related to moist wound healing in the neonatal population, with resulting product and practice recommendations.

Saturday, September 10, 2016

Honey Helps Treat Radio/Chemotherapy-Induced Mucositis

Effects of honey use on the management of radio/chemotherapy-induced mucositis: a meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials

Int J Oral Maxillofac Surg. 2016 Sep 3

This meta-analysis aimed to assess the prophylactic effects of honey use on the management of radio/chemotherapy-induced mucositis. PubMed, Cochrane Library, Science Direct, China National Knowledge Infrastructure (CNKI), VIP (Chinese scientific journal database), and China Biology Medicine (CBM) were searched for relevant articles without language restriction. Two reviewers searched and evaluated the related studies independently.

Statistical analyses were performed using Stata 11.0, calculating the pooled risk ratio (RR) with the corresponding 95% confidence interval (CI). Begg's funnel plot was used together with Egger's test to detect publication bias. A total of seven randomized controlled trials were finally included. Quality assessment showed one article to have a low risk of bias, two to have a moderate risk, and four to have a high risk. Meta-analysis showed that, compared with blank control, honey treatment could reduce the incidence of oral mucositis after radio/chemotherapy (RR 0.35, 95% CI 0.18-0.70, P=0.003). No meta-analysis was applied for honey vs. lidocaine or honey vs. golden syrup. The sensitivity analysis showed no significant change when any one study was excluded. No obvious publication bias (honey vs. blank control) was detected.

In conclusion, honey can effectively reduce the incidence of radio/chemotherapy-induced oral mucositis; however, further multi-centre randomized controlled trials are needed to support the current evidence.

Friday, September 09, 2016

Propolis Component May Help Treat Obesity

Artepillin C, a Typical Brazilian Propolis-Derived Component, Induces Brown-Like Adipocyte Formation in C3H10T1/2 Cells, Primary Inguinal White Adipose Tissue-Derived Adipocytes, and Mice

PLOS One, Published: September 6, 2016

Induction of brown-like adipocytes (beige/brite cells) in white adipose tissue (WAT) suggests a new approach for preventing and treating obesity via induction of thermogenesis associated with uncoupling protein 1 (UCP1). However, whether diet-derived factors can directly induce browning of white adipocytes has not been well established. In addition, the underlying mechanism of induction of brown-like adipocytes by diet-derived factors has been unclear. Here, we demonstrate that artepillin C (ArtC), which is a typical Brazilian propolis-derived component, significantly induces brown-like adipocytes in murine C3H10T1/2 cells and primary inguinal WAT (iWAT)-derived adipocytes. This significant induction is due to activation of peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor γ and stabilization of PRD1-BF-1-RIZ1 homologous domain-containing protein-16 (PRDM16). Furthermore, the oral administration of ArtC (10 mg/kg) for 4 weeks significantly induced brown-like adipocytes accompanied by significant expression of UCP1 and PRDM16 proteins in iWAT of mice, and was independent of the β3-adrenergic signaling pathway via the sympathetic nervous system. These findings may provide insight into browning of white adipocytes including the molecular mechanism mediated by dietary factors and demonstrate that ArtC has a novel biological function with regard to increasing energy expenditure by browning of white adipocytes.

Thursday, September 08, 2016

High Pressure Processing of Manuka Honey Improves Antioxidant Activity, Total Phenolic Content in Storage

High Pressure Processed Manuka Honey: Change in Nutritional and Rheological Properties Over 1-Year Storage

First published: 5 September 2016

To elucidate the permanent effect of high pressure processing (HPP) on the quality of Manuka honey, the quality properties such as physicochemical (moisture content, pH, total soluble solids and total solids), nutritional (total phenolic content, antioxidant activity and brown pigment formation), flow behavior and viscosity of HPP-treated Manuka honey were tested. The process condition of HPP (600 MPa/ambient temperature/10 min) was selected and treated samples were stored at 25C in a dark, dry place for 1 year. The moisture content, pH and total solid of HPP-treated honey were changed but statistically insignificant (P > 0.05) after 1 year. An increase in antioxidant activity, total phenolic content and brown pigment during storage were found in HPP-treated samples with maximum value of 90.24 ± 2.4%, 111.19 ± 4.25 mg GAE/kg and 0.26 ± 0.02 AU, respectively. HPP was able to maintain flow behavior with insignificant increase (P > 0.05) in viscosity.

Practical Applications

The study on HPP-treated Manuka honey highlights an important proof that this nonthermal technology has a permanent effect on nutritional and rheological properties over 1-year storage. The significant improvement in antioxidant activity, total phenolic content and brown pigment formation of HPP-treated honey is found permanent, following 1-year storage at room temperature. This study has practical implications in establishing efficient process design for commercial manufacturing of high sugar food products and on the potential use of HPP for such products. This will have a strong potential to its continued growth.

Wednesday, September 07, 2016

Bee Pollen as a Bioindicator of Pesticide Contamination

Bee pollen as a bioindicator of environmental pesticide contamination

Chemosphere. 2016 Aug 24;163:525-534

Honeybees and bee products are potential bioindicators of the presence of contaminants in the environment, enabling monitoring of large areas due to the long distances travelled by bees.

This work evaluates the use of bee pollen as a bioindicator of environmental contamination by pesticides. A GC-MS/MS analytical method for multiresidue determination of 26 different pesticides in pollen was developed and validated in accordance with the recommendations of the European Union SANCO guide. Environmental monitoring was conducted using the analysis of 145 pollen samples collected from ten beehives in the experimental apiary of Embrapa in Jaguariúna (São Paulo State, Brazil).

Bioallethrin and pendimethalin were identified in four and eighteen samples, respectively, at concentrations below the LOQ of the method (25 ng g-1). Passive sampling with polyurethane foam discs was used as a control, and no pesticides were found. The detection of pesticide residues in seven samples (33%) from commercial apiaries in Ribeirão Preto (São Paulo State) confirmed the efficiency of the analytical method and the need for environmental monitoring for the presence of pesticide residues. The results demonstrated the potential of bee pollen as a bioindicator of environmental contamination by pesticides.

Tuesday, September 06, 2016

Treatment of Mice with Honey Reduces Parasite Multiplication in the Brain

Effect of honey on mRNA expression of TNF-α, IL-1β and IL-6 following acute toxoplasmosis in mice

Cytokine. 2016 Aug 31;88:85-90

This study analyzed the mRNA expression of tumor necrosis factor (TNF-α), interleukin 1 beta (IL-1β) and interleukin 6 (IL-6) in mice experimentally infected with T. gondii undergoing honey treatment.

Thirty male mice were divided in groups: pre-treatment/infected (1), infected/non-treated (2), infected/treated (3), non-infected/treated (4) and control (5). Honey was applied for groups 1, 3, 4 by gavage and the mice in group 1-3 were infected by T. gondii tissue cysts. The parasite load and the level of mRNA expression of the aforementioned cytokines in the brains of mice were assessed by qPCR. The mean number of T. gondii tachyzoite in 1mg brain tissue was 32, 73 and 59 in groups one, two and three, respectively. The mRNA expression of TNF-α increased in group 1, 2 and 3, about 49.1%, 307.3% and 63.2%, respectively but it was down-regulated by 53% in group 4. The mRNA expression of IL-1β and IL-6 was also up-regulated in all groups except group 2. The mRNA level of TNF-α was reduced by 2.7-fold and 1.18-fold in pre-treated/infected (group 1) and infected/treated (group 3) compared with infected/non-treated (group 2). The mRNA level of IL-1β and IL-6 were increased in these groups.

The current study demonstrated that honey can stimulate or suppress the mRNA expression of some pro-inflammatory cytokines in mice brains. Furthermore, honey suppresses the TNF-α mRNA expression in the presence of T. gondii infection but it stimulates the IL-1β and IL-6 mRNA expression. Treatment of the mice with honey reduces parasite multiplication in the brain.

Monday, September 05, 2016

Manuka Honey Helps Fight, Prevent Antibiotic-Resistant Superbugs From Developing

Science World Report

Sep 05, 2016

Honey is known to fight infection with its high concentration of antibacterial agents and one kind of honey, which is the most potent honey in the world is the Manuka Honey. It is obtained from the medicinal Manuka bush in New Zealand.

Many clinical trials indicate that Manuka honey can rescind over 250 strains of bacteria including the most resistant. These include the MRSA (methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus), the VRE (vancomycin-resistant enterococci) and the MSSA (methicillin sensitive Staphylococcus aureus).

A study, published in PLOS One, suggests that Manuka honey helps prevent antibiotic-resistant superbugs from developing when used together with antibiotics, according to UHR. It was led by researchers from the University of Technology Sydney, who used Medihoney, which is a highly absorbent seaweed soaked in medical grade, sterilized Manuka honey, to determine if this together with the antibiotic rifampicin could strengthen the antibacterial activity against MRSA and could lessen the risk of resistance. The findings showed no resistant strains of bacteria emerged. "Our findings support the idea that a combination of honey and antibiotics may be an effective new antimicrobial therapy for chronic wound infections," said the researchers.

Sunday, September 04, 2016

Camel's Milk and Honey Protect Liver from Cirrhosis

Camel milk and bee honey regulate profibrotic cytokine gene transcripts in liver cirrhosis induced by carbon tetrachloride

Canadian Journal of Physiology and Pharmacology, 10.1139/cjpp-2015-0596

Published on the web 30 May 2016

The lack of studies regarding the mechanism of the protective effects of camel milk and bee honey against hepatotoxic compounds led us to perform this study. Thirty-six male rats were divided into two main groups. The first group (n = 9) comprised control non-cirrhotic rats. The rats of the second group (n = 27) were administered carbon tetrachloride (CCl4) by intraperitoneal injection to induce liver cirrhosis. The cirrhotic rats were then divided into three equal subgroups, each comprising nine animals, as follows: (i) cirrhotic rats, (ii) cirrhotic rats treated with camel milk, and (iii) cirrhotic rats treated with camel milk and bee honey.

The present findings revealed that CCl4 elevated the activities of liver enzymes, blood glucose levels, non-esterified fatty acids (NEFA) in the serum and glycogen content in the liver. On the other hand, CCl4 significantly decreased phosphorylase activity in the liver tissue and significantly increased carbohydrate intolerance and insulin resistance index (HOMA-IR). Moreover, CCl4 induced a significant increase in oxidative stress, along with increased expression of the profibrotic cytokine genes TNF-α and TGF-β.

However, camel milk either alone or in combination with bee honey ameliorated these toxic actions. The antioxidant properties of these protective agents and their effects of downregulating certain procirrhotic cytokine gene transcripts underlie this protection.

Saturday, September 03, 2016

Pollen Types Influences Bioactivity Level in Lavender Honey

Characterization of Lavandula spp. Honey Using Multivariate Techniques

PLoS One. 2016 Sep 2;11(9):e0162206

Traditionally, melissopalynological and physicochemical analyses have been the most used to determine the botanical origin of honey. However, when performed individually, these analyses may provide less unambiguous results, making it difficult to discriminate between mono and multifloral honeys.

In this context, with the aim of better characterizing this beehive product, a selection of 112 Lavandula spp. monofloral honey samples from several regions were evaluated by association of multivariate statistical techniques with physicochemical, melissopalynological and phenolic compounds analysis. All honey samples fulfilled the quality standards recommended by international legislation, except regarding sucrose content and diastase activity. The content of sucrose and the percentage of Lavandula spp. pollen have a strong positive association.

In fact, it was found that higher amounts of sucrose in honey are related with highest percentage of pollen of Lavandula spp.. The samples were very similar for most of the physicochemical parameters, except for proline, flavonoids and phenols (bioactive factors). Concerning the pollen spectrum, the variation of Lavandula spp. pollen percentage in honey had little contribution to the formation of samples groups.

The formation of two groups regarding the physicochemical parameters suggests that the presence of other pollen types in small percentages influences the factor termed as "bioactive", which has been linked to diverse beneficial health effects.

Friday, September 02, 2016

Manuka Honey Makes Bacteria Less Resistant to Antibiotics

September 1, 2016

Manuka honey has been a firm favourite on health food shop shelves for several years now, but has long been used as a natural remedy by the indigenous Maori people of New Zealand. The dark, sticky nectar is known as the “healing honey” for a reason: it has antiviral and antibacterial properties that have been used to battle bugs for centuries.

More recently, the honey, which is made by bees from the nectar of the Manuka tree, has been employed in hospitals around the world to treat wounds. Research has found that the honey’s high sugar content, acidity and the presence of various other components like methylglyoxal, create an environment in which bacteria are unable to survive.

One of the biggest threats to human health is antibiotic resistant bacteria and as researchers around the world work to find a way to battle these bugs, we’re looking at how this sweet “superfood” could help.

Thursday, September 01, 2016

Honey Promotes Better Wound Healing for Burns Than Silver

The effects of honey compared to silver sulfadiazine for the treatment of burns: A systematic review of randomized controlled trials

Burns, Available online 28 August 2016

Evidence from animal studies and trials suggests that honey may accelerate wound healing. The objective of this review was to assess the effects of honey compared with silver dressings on the healing of burn wounds. Relevant databases for randomized controlled trials (RCTs) of honey compared with silver sulfadiazine (SSD) were searched. The quality of the selected trials was assessed using the Cochrane Risk of Bias Assessment Tool. The primary endpoints considered were wound healing time and the number of infected wounds rendered sterile. Nine RCTs met the inclusion criteria. Based on moderate quality evidence there was a statistically significant difference between the two groups, favoring honey in healing time (MD −5.76 days, 95% CI −8.14 to −3.39) and the proportions of infected wounds rendered sterile (RR 2.59; 95% CI 1.58–2.88). The available evidence suggests that honey dressings promote better wound healing than silver sulfadiazine for burns.