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1: J Ethnopharmacol. 2005 Sep 14;100(3):276-83.

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Effects of ethanol and water extracts of propolis (bee glue) on acute inflammatory animal models.

Hu F, Hepburn HR, Li Y, Chen M, Radloff SE, Daya S.

College of Animal Science, Zhejiang University, Hangzhou 310029, China.

The anti-inflammatory effects of ethanol (EEP) and water (WSD) extracts in ICR mice and Wistar rats were analyzed. Both WSD and EEP exhibited significant anti-inflammatory effects in animal models with respect to thoracic capillary vessel leakage in mice, carrageenan-induced oedema, carrageenan-induced pleurisy, acute lung damage in rats. The mechanisms for the anti-inflammatory effects probably involve decreasing prostaglandin-E(2) (PGE(2)) and nitric oxide (NO) levels. In rats with Freund's complete adjuvant (FCA) induced arthritis, propolis extracts significantly inhibited the increase of interleukin-6 (IL-6) in inflamed tissues, but had no significant effect on levels of interleukin-2 (IL-2) and interferon-gamma (IFN-gamma). The results are consistent with the interpretation that EEP and WSD may exert these effects by inhibiting the activation and differentiation of mononuclear macrophages.

PMID: 15899563 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]

2: Yakugaku Zasshi. 2005 Mar;125(3):315-21.

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[Xanthine oxidase inhibitory activity and hypouricemia effect of propolis in rats]

[Article in Japanese]

Yoshizumi K, Nishioka N, Tsuji T.

Fancl Corporation Central Research Laboratory, Yokohama 244-0806, Japan.

The xanthine oxidase (XOD) inhibitory activity of propolis from China and Brazil was measured. The propolis from both place were seen to have XOD inhibitory activity. However, a stronger tendency was shown in the propolis from China. The compounds in each the propolis were measured quantitatively. A great deal of chrysin, galangin, and caffeic acid phenetyl ester were found in the propolis from China, an abundance of p-coumaric acid and artepillin C in the propolis from Brazil. Therefore it was revealed that the propolis compounds are very different depending on their place of origin. The XOD inhibitory activity of these five compounds was measured. Caffeic acid phenetyl ester had the strongest activity, with chrysin and galangin next; p-coumaric acid and artepillin C showed weak XOD inhibitory activity. We evaluated the hypouricemic effect of propolis from China on hyperuricemia induced by the uricase inhibitor, oxonic acid (500 mg/kg p.o., 1 h before the test drugs), and measured plasma uric acid values in rats. Oral propolis had a hypouricemic effect 2 h after its administration to oxonate-pretreated rats. These results suggested that a continuous intake of propolis may be effective for the prevention and the treatment of gout and hyperuricemia.

PMID: 15738631 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]

3: Fitoterapia. 2002 Nov;73 Suppl 1:S53-63.

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Phytochemical compounds involved in the anti-inflammatory effect of propolis extract.

Borrelli F, Maffia P, Pinto L, Ianaro A, Russo A, Capasso F, Ialenti A.

Department of Experimental Pharmacology, University of Naples 'Federico II', Via D. Montesano 49, 80131, Naples, Italy.

Two ethanolic propolis extracts (EPE) with and without the caffeic acid phenethyl ester (CAPE), CAPE and galangin (major components of propolis) were investigated for anti-inflammatory activity in rats using carrageenin foot oedema, carrageenin pleurisy and adjuvant arthritis. In our experiments, EPE with CAPE and CAPE alone significantly inhibited carrageenin oedema, carrageenin pleurisy and adjuvant arthritis. In contrast EPE without CAPE and galangin did not exhibit anti-inflammatory effects in acute and chronic inflammation. These results suggest that the anti-inflammatory activity of propolis is due to CAPE.

PMID: 12495710 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]

4: J Pharmacol Exp Ther. 2001 Dec;299(3):915-20.

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Caffeic acid phenethyl ester, an inhibitor of nuclear factor-kappaB, attenuates bacterial peptidoglycan polysaccharide-induced colitis in rats.

Fitzpatrick LR, Wang J, Le T.

GI Inflammation Laboratory, Otsuka Maryland Research Institute, Rockville, Maryland, USA.

Caffeic acid phenethyl ester (CAPE) is an anti-inflammatory component of propolis (honeybee resin). CAPE is reportedly a specific inhibitor of nuclear factor-kappaB (NF-kappaB). The aims of our study were 1) to evaluate the effect of CAPE on cytokine production, NF-kappaB, and apoptosis in two cell lines; 2) to assess the effect of CAPE on NF-kappaB in rats with peptidoglycan-polysaccharide (PG-PS)-induced colitis; and 3) to evaluate the efficacy of CAPE against this colitis. In vitro experiments used rat macrophage (NR8383) and colonic epithelial cell (SW620) lines. NF-kappaB was evaluated by electrophoretic mobility shift assay. Cytokines and apoptosis were measured by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay. Colitis was induced by intramural injections of PG-PS into the distal colon. CAPE (30 mg/kg) or vehicle was administered once daily to rats by intraperitoneal injection, for 1 week. Various macroscopic and biochemical indices were measured on day 21. CAPE (30 microg/ml) significantly inhibited NF-kappaB and TNF-alpha production in the macrophage cell line. In macrophages, CAPE significantly increased DNA fragmentation. CAPE exhibited generally similar effects in the colonic epithelial cell line. CAPE treatment reduced the mean level of colonic NF-kappaB in rats. CAPE also induced a significant reduction in gross colonic injury. Moreover, colonic cytokine levels (TNF-alpha and IL-1beta) were significantly reduced in CAPE-treated rats. In summary, CAPE inhibits NF-kappaB, causes a reduction of pro-inflammatory cytokine production, and induces apoptosis in macrophages. These mechanisms likely contributed to the attenuation of PG-PS-induced colitis by CAPE.

PMID: 11714876 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]

5: Arch Pharm Res. 1999 Dec;22(6):554-8.

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Suppressive effects of propolis in rat adjuvant arthritis.

Park EH, Kahng JH.

College of Pharmacy, Sookmyung Women's University, Seoul, Korea.

The effects of ethanolic extract (EEP) of propolis on chronic inflammation were evaluated using rat adjuvant arthritis. In the chronic inflammatory animal model, the arthritis index was suppressed by EEP treatments (50 mg/kg/day and 100 mg/kg/day, p.o.). Moreover, physical weakness, induced by the chronic disease state, was dose-dependently improved in the EEP-treated groups. Its analgesic effect, assessed using the tail-flick test, was comparable to prednisolone (2.5 mg/kg/day, p.o.) and acetyl salicylic acid (100 mg/kg/day, p.o.). In carrageenan rat hind paw edema, which was conducted to test the effects of subfractions of EEP, the petroleum ether sub-fraction (100 mg/kg, p.o.) showed an inhibitory effect on the paw edema whereas EEP (200 mg/kg, p.o.) showed a significant anti-inflammatory effect at 3 and 4 hrs after carrageenan injection. From these results, we conclude that the ethanolic extract of propolis had a profound anti-inflammatory effects on both chronic and acute inflammations.

PMID: 10615859 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]

6: Drugs Exp Clin Res. 1995;21(6):229-36.

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The use of aqueous propolis extract against radiation-induced damage.

El-Ghazaly MA, Khayyal MT.

Department of Drug Radiation Research, National Centre for Radiation Research and Technology, Nasr City, Cairo, Egypt.

Whole body exposure to gamma radiation has been experimentally shown to exaggerate inflammatory responses and to enhance the release of mediators. A thirteen per cent aqueous extract of propolis (bee glue) was previously shown to have potent antiinflammatory activity. The present study was carried out to show whether the extract could influence the exaggerated inflammatory response in irradiated animals. Rats were exposed to acute (2 and 6 Gy) & fractionated (1 Gy/week) doses of gamma ionizing radiation. Treatment with the aqueous extract orally (5 ml/kg) before and after radiation exposure markedly reduced the exaggerated paw oedema response to carrageenan. In the acute phase of adjuvant-induced arthritis, exposure to ionizing radiation caused an increase in serum acid phosphatase level. Malondialdehyde concentration in plasma and superoxide dismutase activity in blood significantly increased. Treatment with aqueous propolis extract prior to irradiation reduced malondialdehyde concentration in plasma and normalized the serum acid phosphatase level. The extract stimulated the release of superoxide dismutase enzyme. Aqueous propolis extract could possibly be of therapeutic value in protecting against inflammatory responses induced by gamma radiation.

PMID: 8907698 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]

7: Drugs Exp Clin Res. 1993;19(5):197-203.

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Mechanisms involved in the antiinflammatory effect of propolis extract.

Khayyal MT, el-Ghazaly MA, el-Khatib AS.

Department of Pharmacology, Faculty of Pharmacy, Cairo University, Egypt.

Propolis is a natural product produced by the honey bee. The extract contains amino acids, flavanoids, terpenes and cinnamic acid derivatives. In various in vitro models propolis extract was shown to inhibit platelet aggregation and to inhibit eicosanoid synthesis, suggesting that it might have potent antiinflammatory properties. A 13% aqueous extract was tested orally in three dose levels (1, 5 and 10 ml/kg) on the carrageenan rat paw oedema model and on adjuvant-induced arthritis in rats. In both models, the extract showed potent dose-related antiinflammatory activity, which compared well with that of diclofenac (as a reference standard). The extract was then tested on an isolated sensitized guinea pig lung preparation to study its effect on the release of prostaglandins, leukotrienes and histamine. It is concluded that propolis extract has potent antiinflammatory properties in vivo. Its activity can be well correlated with its effects on the release of various mediators of inflammation.

PMID: 7513636 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]

8: J Ethnopharmacol. 1991 Oct;35(1):77-82.

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Antibacterial, antifungal, antiamoebic, antiinflammatory and antipyretic studies on propolis bee products.

Dobrowolski JW, Vohora SB, Sharma K, Shah SA, Naqvi SA, Dandiya PC.

Institute of Management and Protection of Environment, Krakow, Poland.

PMID: 1753797 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]