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An udder treatment for influenza
(from 6 Minutes Newsletter)
Antibody-rich bovine colostrum could be a simple and cheap solution for preventing and treating influenza pandemics, Australian researchers say.
Early trialsof intranasal bovine colostrum derived from cows that have been vaccinated to produce high levels of IgGs show that the colostrum has a significant effect
in reducing influenza morbidity and mortality when used just once a week.
The NHMRC-sponsored research carried out at Melbourne University suggests that hyperimmune bovine colostrum could be a useful adjunct to influenza vaccination for boosting immunity levels, as well as a more practical alternative to antiviral drugs, say researchers in PLOS Medicine this week.
In preliminary studies they showed that a single intranasal dose of the hyperimmune colostrum reduced the severity and duration of established influenza infection in mice. It was also effective as prophylaxis, allowing pre-treated mice to survive an otherwise lethal dose of influenza virus.
The authors say production of hyperimmune colostrum could easily be scaled up using current dairy production methods and animal husbandry techniques.
One cow vaccinated with the latest influenza strains could produce enough colostrum within a weeks to treat 500 people. “Due to the relative low cost and high volume capability of
production, this new approach represents a significant tool for individual and large scale public health management of influenza in humans,” they conclude.
Mad as a hatter
After the introduction of mercury into the process of hat making in the 17th century, mercurial poisoning became extremely common among the hatters in Victorian Britain.
It is widely supposed that Lewis Carroll had the condition in mind when he invented the character of the Mad Hatter in "Alice's Adventures in Wonderland".
Today, the sources may have changed, but mercury poisoning is still a concern
Naturopathic treatments often include heavy metal oral chelation (removal of heavy metals from the body) as part of a program when heavy metal toxicity is a component of the patient's health issues.
In chelation therapy, specific minerals and nutrients are used that have the ability to combine chemically with heavy metals thus enabling the body to get rid of them, creating spectacular improvements in your health.
Your health is your greatest asset. What can you do today to optimise this?
Did You Know?
Is the third most common disease category after cancer and cardiovascular disease.
There are more than 80 types of autoimmune diseases affecting 5-8% of the population, 78% of whom are women. Although more women are affected, men are more likely to have more severe forms of autoimmune diseases.
Prevalence of autoimmune diseases: ratio of female to male sufferers.
Hashimoto’s thyroiditis 10 : 1
Systemic lupus erythematosus 9 : 1
Sjogren’s syndrome 9 : 1
Antiphospholipid syndrome – secondary 9 : 1
Primary biliary cirrhosis 9 : 1
Autoimmune hepatitis 8 : 1
Graves disease 7 : 1
Scleroderma 3 : 1
Rheumatoid arthritis 2.5 : 1
Antiphospholipid syndrome 2 : 1
Hormones influence immunity.
Oestrogens and androgens directly influence immune responses by interacting with hormonal receptors on immune cells. Likewise, hormone secreting tissues express a variety of inflammatory cytokine receptors, demonstrating how intimately the endocrine and immune systems are linked, and explaining why women may be more susceptible to autoimmunity.
Autoimmune disease benefits from a holistic approach.
Autoimmune diseases often cross many different medical specialities. This can lead to a scattered approach in medicine, and may contribute to complex cases being potentially undiagnosed and difficulties in developing treatment approaches.
Did You Know?
About the Immune System
Essentially, your immune system is your body’s Department of Defence. The immune system is highly organised and acts like a powerful, well-regulated army to protect us against all manner of invading antigens.
Lines of defence consist broadly of three highly specialised cell types, each with specific roles, much the same as an army is made up of soldiers, sergeants and generals.
The Soldiers: Neutrophils, Basophils, Macrophages, Natural Killer Cells, Cytotoxic T Cells, Eosinophils and Lymphocytes.
As we constantly come into contact with many kinds of diseases and pathogens, the immune system has developed a variety of soldiers that respond as a first line of cellular defence. These “soldiers” are white blood cells, constantly on immune surveillance, each with their own weapons and methods of attack to fight off sworn enemies - viruses, bacteria, fungi, parasites and any other foreign antigens that challenge the defence network.
The Sergeants: T Helper CellsT helper cells (Th) are like the sergeants who are in command of the soldiers. There are two main types of Th cells (Th1 and Th2) which direct the two specific arms of immune defence. The Th1 arm of immunity is called into action to mount a cell-mediated immune response that fights bacterial, viral or fungal infections. Meanwhile, the Th2 immune response is utilised to respond to environmental or food antigens, or parasites. If either the Th1 or Th2 “sergeants” take over too much of the action, the other is down-regulated and suppressed, like a seesaw, leading to an imbalance in immune responses
A healthy immune system requires balance between Th1 and Th2 lymphocytes to be maintained by the Tr lymphocytes in the GALT (gut-associated lymphoid tissue)
The sergeants need to be coordinated by the generals of the immune system, T regulatory cells, that oversee and regulate the balance between Th1 and Th2 activity.
The Generals: T regulatory Cells, Gut Mucosal Immunity
The T regulatory cells (Tr) are predominantly found in the gut-associated lymphoid tissue (GALT) and are very important, as they are the lymphocytes that control Th1 and Th2 cells.
If Tr function is impaired, then Th1 and Th2 lymphocytes are left unchecked and an imbalance of the immune seesaw may occur.
If the immune system fails to recognise antigens from self tissue, it can turn its attack on the body itself and destroy our own cells and tissues, resulting in autoimmunity.
A healthy immune system depends on our immune cells functioning as they should.
The modern Naturopath has formulas of herbs and nutrients to assist you to balance your immune system. The range of formulas and products work for symptomatic relief of acute infections or for addressing the core drivers of chronic immune dysregulation.