There are a great number of wonderful secrets beneath the sea waters. Those include not only historical artifacts like the wreck of the RMS Titanic, but numerous unknown secrets of our Mother Nature. Many scientists are trying to look at seaweed and other underwater flora in order to find new treatments and new natural substances to treat various diseases and health conditions. Seaweed are really unique and interesting type of herbal remedies which give modern scientists plenty of opportunities to make really amazing discoveries. It was recently announced that scientists from Sheffield Hallam University suggest adding seaweed and seafood to our daily diet in order to consume less calories and reduce our risks of obesity. According to the findings of the newest study, a group of American scientists managed to extract a natural compound from seaweed, which can turn into a scientific breakthrough and open a way to creating a new effective rheumatoid arthritis treatment.
A scientific team from the Scripps Institution of Oceanography at UC San Diego found out that certain type of seaweed blooms have a unique property. They are packed with natural organisms known as ‘cyanobacterium‘, which can produce a special chemical substance. This chemical compound bleaches and destroys coral reefs. This property was discovered way back in 2008, when the scientists noticed coral riffs color changes close to the Kona coast in the Hawaii region. A year later, the samples of seaweed were delivered to the labs of the United States. After analyzing the processes and the substance released by seaweed, it was discovered that it has amazing anti-bacterial and anti-inflammatory properties, so it can be used as a totally new natural arthritis treatment, as well as a remedy to relieve the symptoms of other chronic diseases linked to bacterial infections and inflammation.
As the lab tests have shown, the mentioned therapeutic properties of seaweed blossoms are caused by compounds called honaucins which are produced by cyanobacterium and have visible bleaching effects on corals. These amazing properties of underwater compounds are considered to be the result of evolution since the organisms producing honaucins are among the several species of cyanobacteria which have been living on earth for millions of years. Professor William Gerwick, one of the study leaders, Professor of Skaggs School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences Professor Scripps Institution of Oceanography, said that the discovery has a great potential for various uses and should primarily be used to create osteoarthritis or rheumatoid arthritics treatment. ‘In different arenas these compounds could be helpful, such as treating chronic inflammatory conditions for which we currently don’t have really good medicines,’ the scientist underlined.
Rheumatoid arthritis is quite a common disease, and it is estimated that in today’s UK,over 10 million people suffer from it. It usually affect aging people, and the main cause of it is wearing out cartilage, that results in chronic and sometimes very strong joint pains. Unfortunately, till now there is no effective rheumatoid arthritis treatment, and everything that doctors offer to treat the symptoms of arthritis include painkillers and various anti-inflammatory prescription drugs. Since most of arthritis patients are people in their late 50s and early 60s, having an effective natural arthritis treatment would be a really amazing alternative to prescription drugs and pharmaceuticals. Despite the fact that, according to Dr. Gerwick, ‘it’s a long road to go from this early-stage discovery to application in the clinic but it’s the only road if we want new and more efficacious medicines,’ a great deal of people are waiting with hope for the new treatment. Check out scientific details and comments in regards to this interesting discovery in one of the last year issues of the journal Chemistry & Biology. Click here for more information.Author Info: Hi! My name is Carla and I am a 5th year medical student at HYMS. I am interested in alternative medicine and I have done months researching the topic of herbal medicine. Besides, I like interviewing people and learning more about their experiences with one or another type of herbal treatments. I am willing to contribute to this site with my knowledge, and I would be happy to help you out to the best of my ability with any specific questions or problems related to alternative medicine.