Archives for: October 2004
STUDY: Genetic markers of occupational susceptibility to fluorosis
JOURNAL: Med Tr Prom Ekol 2001;(7):30-3
AUTHORS: Danilov IP, Protasov VV, Lotosh EA, Luzina FA.
ABSTRACT: To determine markers showing propensity to occupational fluorosis, the authors studied prevalence of ABO, Rh, MN, ABH and Lewis phenotypes, systemic rhesus haplotypes in 229 workers engaged into aluminum production. Propensity to occupational fluorosis was marked by P (+), O (ABO) phenotypes. P (-) phenotype appeared to be a marker of resistance to fluorides exposure. The results obtained could be useful to forecast probability of fluorosis and to better this disease prevention.
COMMENTARY: Flourosis (excessive fluoride intake) can occur when the amount of flouride in drinking water exceeds drinking water 8 ppm (parts per million). According to its own proponents, fluoridation is responsible for about 40% of all fluorosis. True dental fluorosis rates and its corresponding severity is probably under-estimated in the population. This study implies that blood group O individuals may well want to be extra wary about using flouride based products.
QUESTION: I am Type A and am two weeks on the diet. My mother-in-law (O) and sister-in-law (A) also are on this and we are all doing very well. However we are all confused about the use of "domestic mushrooms." What is a domestic mushroom? Is it a common white "button cap" mushroom?
ANSWER: Yes, 'domestic' or 'common' mushroom is also called 'button cap.' The species is Agaricus bisporus.
Recent research seems to indicate that Agaricus bisporus has a lectin with the potential to induce early mutations in the colon to revert back to normal. As such it may be a very important addition to the diet is you have a family history of colon cancer or have been diagnosed with colon polyps, an early warning sign.
1. Yu LG, Fernig DG, White MR, Spiller DG, Appleton P, Evans RC, Grierson I, Smith JA, Davies H, Gerasimenko OV, Petersen OH, Milton JD, Rhodes JM. Edible mushroom (Agaricus bisporus) lectin, which reversibly inhibits epithelial cell proliferation, blocks nuclear localization sequence-dependent nuclear protein import. J Biol Chem. 1999 Feb 19;274(8):4890-9.
2.Yu LG, Fernig DG, Rhodes JM. Intracellular trafficking and release of intact edible mushroom lectin from HT29 human colon cancer cells. Eur J Biochem. 2000 Apr;267(7):2122-6.
3. Yu L, Fernig DG, Smith JA, Milton JD, Rhodes JM. Reversible inhibition of proliferation of epithelial cell lines by Agaricus bisporus (edible mushroom) lectin. Cancer Res. 1993 Oct 1;53(19):4627-32.
QUESTION: I am a type O from Denmark. I have changed to type O diet and some of my allergic problems are gone, almost miraculously. I have previously asked how to take bladderwrack. I can see that in the USA you have not the same trouble as here in Denmark. Here I can purchase dried plant, it is hard and sharp-edged. I have grinded it to a coarse powder, but how much do I take? Until now I have taken 1 big teaspoonful daily and I think it has some effect but find it hard to detect. I will be grateful for an answer. Good luck with your work.
ANSWER: In my clinical practice I'll use anywhere from 500-1500mg of the freeze-dried preparation of Fucus vesiculosis (Bladderwrack), so given the specifics of your question your are probably not too far off the mark. You may want to encapsulate the preparation in '00' capsules (taking 1-3 daily) or just sprinkle the ground powder on a salad or in soups. You can also purchase the North American Fucus Product from this website or call them for a recommendation to a local distributor.
My 30 year old, Type A+ daughter has real problems with varicose veins in the back of her legs. She is expecting her second child which makes it even worse . Her problem is that the veins, which are high up on the back of her thighs, are making it painful for her to sit for long periods of time. Is there anything she can take safely or do , now and while she nurses her newborn, to alleviate the symptoms? Any ideas would be so appreciated, as she is really suffering.
One of the best treatments is the use of the herb Collinsonia canadensis (Stoneroot) which I wrote about for type A in ER4YT. Although recommended by the old Eclectic physicians, Scudder and Lloyd for "venous congestion," there is not a lot of modern research on the plant. I wrote about its amazing abilities to help excessive mucous conditions typical of type A, including sinusitis. Homeopathic physicians have traditionally used Collinsonia for pharyngitis (sore throat), hemmorhoids and varicose veins. It can be used topically in combination with topical applications of Witch Hazel (Hamamelis). Witch Hazel usually works best if applied chilled, before retiring at night. Witch Hazel's effects are principally due to the astrigent quality of the tannins contained in the plant, though it may also possess anti-inflamatory activity as well. Most health food stores stock Collinsonia, and Witch Hazel can be found in virtually every pharmacy.
Varicose veins show a dramatic increase in the levels of mucopolysaccharides, which act to denature collagen, thereby destabilizing the vein. This is due to the increase in uronic acids and of lysosomal enzymes (beta-glycuronidase beta-N-acetylglucosaminidase and arysulfatase). The herb Centella asiatica has also been extensively studied for varicose veins. Its effects seem to be through the inhibition of mucopolysaccharide synthesis by inhibiting these enzymes. In one published trial, the results provided indirect confirmation of regulatory effects of Centella asiatica on metabolism in the connective tissue of the vascular wall. Another demonstrated increased collagen synthesis.
Procyanidolic oligomers, typically derived from grape seed extracts, have also shown dramatic effects in healing varicose veins. One study examining venous perfusion (blood flow) showed significant improvement when this medication were administered. Another study showed the herb Ginkgo biloba to have preventive effects effects when taken for varicose veins.
As for surgical treatments, they are numerous, very traumatic, and only exceptionally indicated.
QUESTION: Are spirulina and chlorella beneficial or neutral for type A's ? Is there a green drink or powder that is beneficial for type A's ?
ANSWER: NAP is just about ready to release a whole-food drink which will deliver a wide array of nutrients to the body. And, unlike any other health drink, it is designed to specifically work with all ABO blood groups.
HARMONIA DELUXE provides an all-natural alternative to processed foods. Ingredients include a wide variety of sprouted seeds and grasses with nutritional integrity and enzymatic activity. The mix also contains antioxidant rich foods such as elderberry, cherry and blueberry, plus phytonutrients such as ginseng and ginger. Look for it to be on the e-commerce site (4yourtype.com) by the end of November.
Serving Size: 2 tsp. (7.85 g) Net weight: 150g Servings Per Container: 19
Chlorella 1500 mg
Barley Grass Leaf Juice 1500 mg
Beet Juice Powder 500 mg
Elderberry Powder 500 mg
Blueberry Powder 500 mg
Cherry Powder 500 mg
Acerola Cherry Powder 500 mg
Larch Arabinogalactan 500 mg
Rose Hips 500 mg
Flax Meal 250 mg
Hawthorn Berry Powder 250 mg
Dunaliela 250 mg
Nori (Prophyra sp.) 100 mg
Fucus vesiculosis 100 mg
Kelp (Laminaria sp.) 100 mg
Ginger Root Powder 100 mg
Ginseng (Eleutheroccus sp.) 100 mg
Parsley Powder 50 mg
Dandelion Leaf Powder 50 mg
QUESTION: I am a type A, and have had dry skin around my nose and between my eyebrows for quite a while now. Anything I can do to help heal it for good??
ANSWER: Many groups As can suffer with seborrheic dermatitis. In my own practice, I've used the following in many blood group As with very good success:
Black current seed oil capsules, 500mg: 2-3 capsule twice daily
Zinc, 25mg: 1-2 capsule twice daily
Pantothenic acid (vitamin B5), 500mg: 2-3 tablets daily
Biotin, 2mg: 2-3 capsule daily
Give this protocol at least 4-5 weeks.
QUESTION: Copyright issue. How do you feel about people making copies of your blood type diet and selling it for profit?
ANSWER: I think it is wrong. Nobody "owns" an idea, and I certainly would not want to get in the way of the ideas and concepts behind my work seeing the widest possible circulation and hopefully helping as many people as possible. If a person is financially strapped they can borrow the books from public libraries and make single copies of the diets for their own personal use.
However just copying the my work to resell it is theft.
I am an O, 43, female and in good health. I am going to have liposuction surgery on my outer thighs and posterior hips. The surgeon has no advice on nutrition, homeopathy or other pre or postsurgury preparations. My question is: Do you have any suggestions for nutrition and vitamins, homeopathy or other supplements to encourage positive and effective results and a powerful and quick healing and recovery? I am particularly concerned with bleeding and bruising. Thank you.
The herb Centellia asiatica (often found in preparations used to help varicose veins) can make a big difference in healing from surgery. Also homeopaths have traditionally used the remedy Arnica (always used in the homeopathic dilutions 3, 6 or 30c, never in tincture). Many people in health food stores and some pharmacists are now conversant in these remedies.
QUESTION: Are type A's the only blood type that benefits from meditation and yoga?
ANSWER: Of all meditation techniques, 'TM' or transcendental meditation is the best studied for its anti-stress effects. Studies have shown that the amount of catecholamines in the urine decreases during and following TM meditation. (1)
This would be of advantage to blood type O. However, of probably more significance, particularly for blood type A and B, it appears that regular practice of TM results in lower resting basal cortisol levels for many practitioners. Evidence indicates cortisol decreases during meditation, an effect especially evident in long-term meditators. However, the responsiveness of cortisol to stressors increased in the TM group when compared to control subjects. The combination of lower resting levels of cortisol, and better cortisol responsiveness to stress is a good indication that meditation practice can help move someone away from maladaption to stress. (2-4)
It is quite likely that these anti-stress results of meditation are available from other forms of meditation as well. As an example, a form of Buddhist meditation has also been studied for its effects on stress hormones. It was found that after meditation, this type of meditation significantly reduced serum cortisol levels as well. (5)
Meditation and visualization appear to be especially effective in type B and AB individuals, though it can be practiced by all blood types if they don't add an additional layer of stress by being concerned if visualization doesn't come readily.
The combination of music with guided imagery appears to be a very useful method for lowering high cortisol. Unfortunately, the one population segment that might actually get the least benefit from music are professional musicians. When researchers have compared the stress effects of the same music on biology or music students' levels of the stress hormones norepinephrine and cortisol, the results were quite fascinating. Irrespective of musical preferences (in fact the biology students actually did not like some of the pieces that the music students preferred), results showed that the cortisol levels were significantly higher for the music majors, while they were lowered for many of the biology students. It appears that the music majors listened to the music more critically and analytically, and that this actually promoted stress. The biology majors, not having many of the distinctions that the music majors have, allowed the music to work its magic.
1. Gallois P, Forzy G, Dhont JL. Hormonal changes during relaxation. Encephale 1984;10(2):79-82 [Article in French]
2. MacLean CR, Walton KG, Wenneberg SR, et al. Effects of the Transcendental Meditation program on adaptive mechanisms: changes in hormone levels and responses to stress after 4 months of practice. Psychoneuroendocrinology 1997 May;22(4):277-95
3. Jevning R, Wilson AF, Davidson JM. Adrenocortical activity during meditation. Horm Behav 1978 Feb;10(1):54-60
4.Infante JR, Peran F, Martinez M, et al. ACTH and beta-endorphin in transcendental meditation. Physiol Behav 1998 Jun 1;64(3):311-5
5. Sudsuang R, Chentanez V, Veluvan K. Effect of Buddhist meditation on serum cortisol and total protein levels, blood pressure, pulse rate, lung volume and reaction time. Physiol Behav 1991 Sep;50(3):543-8
We have known friends who have been on your diet for some years now, and they often speak of their success with the diet. Over the past few years, I have been halfheartedly trying to integrate your diet into my household, and have of late, been rather serious about it. I have had a few stumbling blocks. My children (ages 5 -type A - and 7 type O) are reluctant to try new things and while we eat a healthy diet, it is not blood-type related. My main difficulty with the children is getting them switched from milk to soy and from wheat to soy (and other non-wheat products). I intend this to be a slow, gradual process, but was wondering if you had any insight into making it an easier, more integrated process. I don't see anything of this topic addressed in your FAQ's section. Also, my husband (Type A) has been diagnosed with GERD, where the stomach acid erupts over the protective flap at the top of the stomach. He is a heavy tea drinker, and while fairly flexible about going on this diet, does not want to give up tea to go on coffee, which according to your chart, is highly beneficial for his type. He feels it would aggravate the acid problem he has with GERD. Any comments on this would be appreciated. Thanks for all your work, and continued success.
Let's start with your children. I think the approach you are taking "...slow, gradual process..." is the most sound. The most important area to focus on in the beginning is incorporating more of the beneficial foods for their blood type. Emphasizing a reduction in both milk products and wheat will benefit both of your children, so be patient. Food choices in many respects are a learned choice/preference, so over time exposure to other options might create new preferences for your children. Studies have shown that children, left to their own devices, select over the course of several weeks, as good or better foods when compared with what their parents would have picked for them. The watchwords therefore are...exposure to new foods and patience.
With respect to your husband, GERD (gastrointestinal reflux disorder) can often be provoked by coffee, so he is wise to not incorporate a generally "A friendly beverage" into his diet. Chocolate has also been shown to provoke GERD symptoms, and I have observed clinically that black tea might has a similar effect in some people. Although GERD is often dealt with by medicines which decrease stomach acid, acid is only part of the problem here. Many factors can result in GERD symptoms, including hiatal hernia, food choices, large meals, poor combinations of food, decreased gastrin (a hormone that stimulates stomach secretions and also is thought to help keep the lower esophageal spincter (LES) at the top of the stomach tightly closed), decreased stomach acid in rsponse to food, candida overgrowth, etc...
Since your husband is blood type A, it is likely several things within his control will reduce his symptoms. 1) Follow the appropriate blood type diet 2) Avoid coffee, chocolate and black tea (especially near big meals) 3) Eat smaller size meals!!! The stomach initiates the digestive process by a combination of digestive secretions and by muscular contractions which act to mix food with the digestive secretions. If an individual has lower levels of digestive secretions this could result in a longer stay in the stomach for the food, more mixing, and so more possibility of reflux. 4) Pay attention to food combining!!! A meal with a piece of fish and some vegetables is easier to digest than a steak and potato. 5) Avoid sugars and sweets. (it has been my observation that these can be problematic for people with GERD. 6) Consider using a few drops (between 5-15) of Gentian (Gentiana lutea) in a glass of water 30 minutes before meals. A study has shown that blood type A takes about 45 minutes to produce peak gastrin levels (O's take about 15 minutes). Gentian, a bitter, has been shown to increase gastrin. By taking this bitter 30 minutes before eating, your digestive secretions will be better prepared to digest your meal and your LES should function better. An interesting note, is that digestive bitters evolved as cultural traditions in several European countries. This is one tradition that many A's would benefit from by adding to their dietary regimen.
I work in a hospital as a physical therapist (B+) and am constantly exposed to sick patients. A free flu shot is offered annually at this time to employees. My question: Is it beneficial for me to be immunized or take my chances and risk becoming infected with the flu virus? I have not taken it so far due to some concerns about the effects on my immune system. Thanks for you help. By the way I have enjoyed your book.
You are probably better off with the flu (excepting, of course some really LETHAL variant) as the protection from an actual case is more long lasting, and type B's can get weird vaccine reactions. Elderberry inhibits neuramidiase, the enzyme used by the influenza virus to attach to the nose and throat, so perhaps a cup of elderberry tea before work would be a good idea.
STUDY: Immune responses of healthy humans 83-104 years of age.
JOURNAL: J Natl Cancer Inst 1983 Aug;71(2):265-8
AUTHORS: Dworsky R, Paganini-Hill A, Arthur M, Parker J
ABSTRACT: The immune responses of 19 healthy people 83-104 years of age were compared to those of younger healthy persons. A decline in mitogen response to concanavalin A and pokeweed mitogen, but not to phytohemagglutinin, was observed. Positive skin test to two recall antigens occurred in only 5 of the 19 aged people; 4 of these 5 reported a history of blood transfusion. Antibody titers were elevated for persistent DNA viruses but not for RNA viruses. An excess of ABO blood type B was found, but no human leukocyte antigen (HLA)-A or HLA-B type was found in elevated proportion.
COMMENTARY: It has been my feeling (for quite a long time) that group B individuals on average are a bit healthier than their counterparts. Since they tend to fall almost invariably between A and O with regard to disease susceptibilities, this 'tempering effect' can be expected to translate into a higher percentage of type B individuals attaining a more advanced age.
QUESTION: I have been diagnosed with "Cyclic Neutropenia". I say diagnosed, but the doctors really shrug their shoulders and say "who knows why" your white blood cell count drops to 500 every month or so, and then mysteriously starts back up again after a few weeks. After two premature births, the doctors thought it was due to pregnancy... but, at the age of 43, my doctor was alarmed to find the condition still current. I had an oncologist thoroughly examine me, and a hematologist do a thorough investigative panel...and they have no idea what's happening. I started your type O blood diet only four days ago, and feel like a new woman. I am going to get my blood tested after about a month of being on your diet...and then we'll see who's shrugging their shoulders! Do you have any ideas as to what my body is doing or what the scientific reasons are for my blood count to drop so low? I also have trouble with anemia at times. Thank you so much for your discoveries. It would be so nice to have an answer when so many just don't know
ANSWER: The neutrophils are the types of white blood cells that are primarily responsible for gobbling up invading bacteria and other infectious organisms. Cyclic neutropenia is a disorder in which the number of these special cells drops dramatically in a cyclical pattern -- usually about every 21 days.
The disorder is typically seen in childrenm ywho will have a normal number of these cells, then they will drop to extremely low levels lasting for about a week, and then rise again. During the time of a low neutrophil count, children can experience symptoms which include fever without an obvious cause, ulcers of the mouth, sore throat, enlarged lymph nodes, skin infections, and even more serious infections due to this important part of the immune system being limited.
How this disease arises is not entirely understood, but between 25 to 34 percent can be shown to due to inheritance. The remainder more than likely have some inherited basis for their disease, but it is often difficult to determine this. The diagnosis of cyclic neutropenia is often quite difficult because the symptoms may be quite variable in different children ranging from the rather mild in those whose numbers drop only moderately to the very severe in those whose neutrophil numbers drop to zero. This, coupled with the fact that these symptoms occur only during the low phase, makes cyclical neutropenia a difficult diagnosis to make. While it is apparently widespread to associate this disorder with a higher risk of leukemia (especially in children) in reality there is no evidence to suggest that cyclic neutropenia are at any greater risk for leukemia.
Although there appears to be no correlation with blood type, there is some evidence that variation in neutrophil levels may be related to variations in prostaglandin levels and certain mineral defficiencies, including copper. In addition to the blood group O program, I would also recommend taking a mineral supplement that included both zinc and copper, and perhaps an essential fatty acid supplement like black current seed oil capsules. Finally, I would also advocate 400mcg of folic acid twice daily. Keep me updated on your followup.
QUESTION: Dr. D'Adamo, I'm a Type O with Fibromyaliga and I have found some relief in my pain levels in eating in accordance with the Type O Plan, have you done any research into this condition and could you offer any specific diet or supplement guidelines that would help me further.
ANSWER: In my own patients and the outcomes registered on this website, it soon becomes quite obvious that those who are type O and suffering from fibromyalgia can see quite dramatic responses if they can stick to the wheat-free component of the diet for long enough duration. A recent study indicates that dietary lectins interacting with enterocytes (cells lining the intestines) and lymphocytes may facilitate the transportation of both dietary and gut-derived pathogenic antigens to peripheral tissues, which in turn causes persistent immune stimulation at the periphery of the body, such as the joints and muscles. (1)
This, despite the fact that many nutrition 'authorities' still question whether lectins even get into the systemic circulation!
In genetically susceptible individuals, this lectin stimulation may ultimately result in the expression of disorders like rheumatoid arthritis and fibromyalgia via molecular mimicry, a process whereby foreign peptides, similar in structure to endogenous peptides, may cause antibodies or T-lymphocytes to cross-react and thereby break immunological tolerance.
Thus by removing the general and type O specific lectins from the diet, we allow for the immune system to redevelop tolerance, the inflammation begins to ebb, and healing can begin.
1.Cordain L, Toohey L, Smith MJ, Hickey MS. Modulation of immune function by dietary lectins in rheumatoid arthritis. Br J Nutr. 2000 Mar;83(3):207-17. Review.
QUESTION: Why not have a competition for the most innovative question of the month, with a product you advertise as prize (secretor test kit etc.)Thank you.
ANSWER: What a great idea! I've contacted NAP and they are willing to provide a $50 gift certificate towards any NAP products. I will announce the best question (and hopefully answer it) on the last day of each month.
STUDY: Flavonoids activate wild-type p53.
JOURNAL: : Oncogene 1996 Oct 17;13(8):1605-14
AUTHORS: Plaumann B, Fritsche M, Rimpler H, Brandner G, Hess RD.
ABSTRACT: Flavonoids are diphenyl propanoids widely distributed in edible plants. They play a dual role in mutagenesis and carcinogenesis. Some of them act as anticarcinogens or inhibit the growth of tumour cells, whereas others act as cocarcinogens, are mutagenic or able to induce DNA damage. To further elucidate this dual role, we investigated the influence of apigenin, luteolin and quercetin on the tumour suppressor protein p53, regarding p53 accumulation, cell cycle arrest, apoptosis, and biological activity. We found that incubation of the non-tumour cell line C3H10T1/2CL8 with these flavonoids resulted in induction of p53 accumulation and apoptosis. Apoptosis occurred out of the G2/M phase of the cell cycle. The G2/M arrest seems to be p53-dependent as it did not occur in p53 knockout fibroblasts which further supports the recent finding that p53 is involved in the G2/M checkpoint control. Differences between the flavonoids tested concerned p53 accumulation kinetics as well as the biological activity of accumulated p53 and might be due to different modes of flavonoid action. These data suggest that both aspects of flavonoid effects, i.e. inhibition of tumour growth through cell cycle arrest and induction of apoptosis, are functionally related to p53.
COMMENTARY: Quercetin is widely distributed in the plant kingdom and is the most abundant of the flavonoid molecules. It is found in many often-consumed foods, including apple, onion, tea, berries, and brassica vegetables, as well as many seeds, nuts, flowers, barks, and leaves. It is also found in medicinal botanicals, including Ginkgo biloba, Hypericum perforatum (St. John's Wort), Sambucus canadensis (Elder), and many others. It is often a major component of the medicinal activity of the plant, and has been shown in experimental studies to have numerous effects on the body.
Flavonoids, as a rule, are antioxidants, and a number of quercetin's effects appear to be due to its antioxidant activity. Quercetin scavenges oxygen radicals,(1,2) inhibits xanthine oxidase,(3) and inhibits lipid peroxidation in vitro.(4) As another indicator of its antioxidant effects, quercetin inhibits oxidation of LDL cholesterol in vitro, probably by inhibiting LDL oxidation itself, by protecting vitamin E in LDL from being oxidized or by regenerating oxidized vitamin E.(5) By itself, and paired with ascorbic acid, quercetin reduced the incidence of oxidative damage to neurovasculature structures in skin, and inhibited damage to neurons caused by experimental glutathione depletion.(6)
1. Saija A, Scalese M, Lanza M, et al. Flavonoids as antioxidant agents: importance of their interaction with biomembranes. Free Radic Biol Med 1995;19:481-486.
2. Miller AL. Antioxidant flavonoids: structure, function and clinical usage. Alt Med Rev 1996;1:103-111.
3. Chang WS, Lee YJ, Lu FJ, Chiang HC. Inhibitory effects of flavonoids on xanthine oxidase. Anticancer Res 1993;13:2165-2170.
4. Chen YT, Zheng RL, Jia ZJ, Ju Y. Flavonoids as superoxide scavengers and antioxidants. Free Radic Biol Med 1990;9:19-21.
5. DeWhalley CV, Rankin JF, Rankin SM, et al. Flavonoids inhibit the oxidative modification of low density lipoproteins. Biochem Pharmacol 1990;39:1743-1749.
6. Skaper SD, Fabris M, Ferrari V, et al. Quercetin protects cutaneous tissue-associated cell types including sensory neurons from oxidative stress induced by glutathione depletion: cooperative effects of ascorbic acid. Free Radic Biol Med 1997;22:669-678.
STUDY: The involvement of Helix pomatia lectin (HPA) binding N-acetylgalactosamine glycans in cancer progression.
JOURNAL: Histol Histopathol 2000 Jan;15(1):143-58
AUTHORS: Brooks SA.
ABSTRACT: The lectin from Helix pomatia, the Roman snail (HPA), recognises terminal alpha N-acetylgalactosamine residues. A large number of lectin histochemical studies have demonstrated that expression of HPA-binding glycoproteins by cancer cells to be a marker of metastatic competence and poor prognosis in a range of common human adenocarcinomas, including those of breast, stomach, ovary, oesophagus, colorectum, thyroid and prostate. Around 80% of metastases arising from primary breast cancer are predictably HPA positive, but, intriguingly, around 20% do not express HPA binding glycoproteins reflecting the complexity of metastatic mechanisms and the further disruptions in cellular glycosylation that attend tumour progression. HPA binding is not an independent prognostic factor, but is strongly associated with the presence of metastases in local lymph nodes. It does appear to be independent of other clinical features of prognostic importance such as tumour size, histological grade, S-phase fraction, ploidy, and there is little convincing evidence of any association with oncogene expression or hormone receptor positivity. The precise nature of the metastasis-associated HPA binding partner(s) is a question of some interest, but thus far remains unclear. HPA will recognise, for example, the Tn epitope and blood group A antigen, but its prognostic significance appears to be through recognition of a much broader and heterogeneous array of N-galactosaminylated glycoproteins. Their synthesis appears to be mediated through alteration in expression or activity of one or more of the enzymes of glycosylation. The most likely putative roles of HPA-binding ligands in the metastatic cascade may be enhancement of invasive capacity, or interaction with an as yet unidentified lectin-like receptor facilitating adhesion processes. The prognostic information provided by HPA lectin histochemistry may be used clinically to inform the physician and aid treatment decisions; far more interesting is the challenge of further understanding the precise nature of the HPA-binding ligands, and defining their role in the complex mechanisms of metastasis.
COMMENTARY: Helix pomatia (escargot snail) has been used as a traditional anti-cancer remedy since medieval European times. This article casts additional light upon the technical aspects of the lectin and its peculiarities. Certainly those individuals who are blood group A will want to consider addtional Helix pomatia to their diet.
My recipe for Escargot
STUDY: Researchers find milk thistle extract may hold the key to developing effective herb-based treatments for neurological disorders.
JOURNAL: "Neuroimmunological Effects of Five Commonly Used Herbal Products," released at the 2001 Annual Meeting of the Society for Neuroscience.
AUTHORS: Smita Kittur, M.D.; Skuntala Wilasrusmee, M.D.; Karen Straube-West, Ph.D.; Chumpon Wilasrusmee, M.D.; Burk Jubelt, M.D.; and Dilip S. Kittur, M.D.,
ABSTRACT: An extract from milk thistle, an herb long used in European folk medicine as a liver tonic, shows the ability to boost both the immune and nervous systems at the same time. If these findings found in a laboratory setting prove correct in human trials, then researchers at SUNY Upstate Medical University may have found the newest plant-based product to be used to treat numerous neurological disorders, including Alzheimer's and Parkinson's disease, brain trauma, stroke and spinal cord injury.
The result comes from the collaborative works by scientists in the Neuroscience laboratory and the Transplantation and Immunology laboratory in the Department of Surgery at SUNY Upstate Medical University in Syracuse, N.Y.
"Our findings contribute to the much needed scientific data about herbal products and how they can be used to develop new therapeutic agents to fight disease," said Smita Kittur, the study's principal investigator. "It was interesting and surprising to us that milk thistle extract consistently demonstrated both neuro- and immunostimulatory effects. This means that this product can boost the immune system to help fight infection and possibly serve as a catalyst to aid in the regeneration of new nerve cells."
The Upstate research team was the first to use a uniform test to learn the effects, if any, that herbs have on both these systems within the human body. "With this method of study, we can now properly compare and relate the effects many herbal products have on both of these vital systems that control so much of what makes us healthy," said co-investigator Wilasrusmee. "This is something that to our knowledge has never before been accomplished."
To conduct the study, researchers used both nerve and white blood cells from mice to study how each of five commonly-used herbal products would affect the cells. The herbal products included ginger, St. John's Wort, echinacea, tea and milk thistle. The dried preparations of these products were homogenized in a culture medium to enhance their solubility, sieved through a 0.45 mm Millipore filter paper to remove particulate material and bacterial contaminants, and used fresh the same day. All experiments were done in triplicate and repeated twice to confirm the results.
"Surprisingly, we found that milk thistle extract not only helped the nerve cells to grow more neurites (branches of nerve cells necessary for their normal function and that aid in the regeneration of new cells), but it also kept the nerve cells alive longer," said Smita Kittur. "We did not find this result in any of the other herbs we had tested."
"We also found that St. John's Wort, widely used as a treatment for depression, had only an immunostimulatory effect. Tea had a suppressive effect on both the nervous and immune systems, while ginger had only an immunosuppressive effect," she said.
The next step in their research, the scientists say, is to study the mechanisms of action of these herbal products in animals and eventually conduct this experiment in human clinical trials.
"These herbal products need to be standardized so that everybody can have the same results when using these products," Smita Kittur said. "We also need to better understand the serious and minor side effects these herbal products have on our nervous and immune systems. Lastly we hope to learn through future studies how these herbs interact with traditional medicines."
COMMENTARY: Milk thistle (which I reported yesterday may hold some promise for hepatitis C sufferers, may also prove the be a valuable remedy for nerve regrowth with valuable applicability in traumatic nerve injury and perhaps Alzheimers. We know that the sactive ingredient in the plant (silymarin) increases intracellular glutathione which may be in part responsibile for its anti-oxidant properties.
What sources did you use to support your blood type demographics and timeline. What was your marker that identified blood types in early man (ie. DNA?) Why is AB only a recent bloodtype?
The work of physicial anthropologists Frank Livingston and William C Boyd and the paleoserologist AE Mourant. Many of their findings were the result of grave exhumations and blood grouping via reconstitution of remains. Mourant's work was centered around classic epidemiologic studies with regard to population densities. It is important to realize that the blood type genes are "squelchy": beyond the expression of antigenicity, and the production of opposing blood group antibodies, they seem to code for many secretory functions (particularly digestive), in addition to having other non-Darwinian manifestations, presumably by their interactions with co-adjacent alleles on the same chromosomes.
In understanding the presumed blood type timeline, it is important to remember that it is not probably the case for blood types to having arrived one after the other, like "Act One", "Act Two" etc: indeed the ABO mutations may have first occurred as long as 7 million years ago, but with regard to A and B there were probably only very small clusters of mutations existing in isolated pockets here and there. Eventually, with a change in conditions for the better, their special attributes became a plus rather than a hindrance. It is important to realize is that the digestive and immune characteristics of a blood group are a reflection of their response to the environmental conditions which would have served to encourage their growth and expansion. Is this an ongoing process? Undoubtably. Some sources seem to think that A is the current "wild type."
AB is recent in the sense that is is not the result of evolutionary forces. It is the result of intermingling between the A and B genepools. These two groups did not have extensive contact with each other until about AD 500 onwards.
QUESTION: I understand there are several subtypes of A. Your last book gave some information on the A2 subtype. Can you shed some light on the others?
ANSWER: The A3 subgroup is much more uncommon than the A2 subgroup. The frequency ranges significantly between different ethnic groups from, 1 in 1000 of group A Danes to 1 in 150,000 French blood donors (1).
There is some genetic variability of this sub type but the most common mutation is the substition of one amino acid for another at the gene codon. (1,2,3).
It has been demonstrated that the ennzymes that produce the A3 antigen are quite variable and fit into 3 categories:
1. An enzyme with no A transferase activity.
2. An enzyme with an optimum pH of 6, which resembles the A1 producing enzyme but with only one third its activity.
3. An enzyme with an optimal pH of 7 resembling the A transferase but has very low activity (1).
The result of this is that the reactions with the anti-A typing sera are 'mixed field' (populations of agglutinated and non agglutinated cells on the same slide). The cause of this is the markedly reduced expression of A antigens on the red cells. This relates to the variation of A enzyme produced. Some A3 individuals have been observed to have only 3-4% the A antigen compared to that of A1 individuals.
Other A individuals have been demonstrated as having two distinct populations of red cells; one with A antigen and another totally devoid of the A antigen (1).
Genetically, A3s are blood group A (with regard to clotting and other disease issues). Dietwise, they are probably more similar to A non-secretors rather than secretors.
1. Daniels G Human Blood Groups. Blackwell Science Ltd 1995 Chapter 2
2. Issitt P.D. and Anstee D.J. Applied Blood Group Serology. Fourth Edition. Montgomery Scientific Publications. p218-246
3. Yamamoto F.I. Molecular Genetics of the ABO Histo-Blood group System. Vox Sang 1995; 69: 1-7.
I have been following ER4YT for about six weeks now and am very pleased with the way I've been feeling. I have more energy , less tired muscles and as an added bonus I've lost 12 lbs. I am an A type and my question is: As a letter carrier I am required to walk about 8 miles a day carrying weights up to 40 lbs. I know that my preferred form of exercise should be yoga but I can't afford to quit my job. Is there anything I should be doing in the way of diet or supplements to lessen the effects of such strenuous exercise?
Over-exercised type A's tend to have higher levels of cortisol which can result in fatigue and muscle weakness. Try 250mg of vitamin C (any form is fine) daily. It may help balance this out.
QUESTION: My husband is type O and when he takes Glycyrrhiza glabra, he feels that his sexual ability (potency) reduces. Is there by any chance a connection between licorice and sexual ability?
ANSWER: Large doses of licorice have been known to cause breast tenderness in men (I remember in school clinic a case of a man with rather large breast enlargement due to drinking over 1 gallon of strong licorice tea over a period of 2 years.)
Licorice has been shown to lower testosterone (1), and to bind with estrogen receptors (2). In rational amounts and in non-sensitive individuals this is probably not much of an issue; however people do vary significantly in their sensitivity to licorice and prudence should be used with taking licorice or any other herbal supplement.
You husband may want to switch over to using DGL licorice, as this form still possesses many of licorices' benficial properties while elininating the potential for its more serious side effects, such as edema (swelling) and high blood pressure.
1. Armanini D, Bonanni G, Palermo M. Reduction of serum testosterone in men by licorice. N Engl J Med. 1999 Oct 7;341(15):1158
2. Zava DT, Dollbaum CM, Blen M. Estrogen and progestin bioactivity of foods, herbs, and spices. Proc Soc Exp Biol Med 1998 Mar;217(3):369-78