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Old 09-01-2009, 10:36 AM   #1
drummagick
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Default Sambucol and cytokine storm

I was just reading a thread over at FluTrackers and came across a link to this.


The effect of Sambucol, a black elderberry-based, natural product, on the production of human cytokines: I. Inflammatory cytokines.Barak V, Halperin T, Kalickman I.
Immunology Laboratory for Tumor Diagnosis, Department of Oncology, Hadassah University Hospital, Jerusalem, Israel.

Sambucus nigra L. products - Sambucol - are based on a standardized black elderberry extract. They are natural remedies with antiviral properties, especially against different strains of influenza virus. Sambucol was shown to be effective in vitro against 10 strains of influenza virus. In a double-blind, placebo-controlled, randomized study, Sambucol reduced the duration of flu symptoms to 3-4 days. Convalescent phase serum showed a higher antibody level to influenza virus in the Sambucol group, than in the control group. The present study aimed to assess the effect of Sambucol products on the healthy immune system - namely, its effect on cytokine production. The production of inflammatory cytokines was tested using blood - derived monocytes from 12 healthy human donors. Adherent monocytes were separated from PBL and incubated with different Sambucol preparations i.e., Sambucol Elderberry Extract, Sambucol Black Elderberry Syrup, Sambucol Immune System and Sambucol for Kids. Production of inflammatory cytokines (IL-1 beta, TNF-alpha, IL-6, IL-8) was significantly increased, mostly by the Sambucol Black Elderberry Extract (2-45 fold), as compared to LPS, a known monocyte activator (3.6-10.7 fold). The most striking increase was noted in TNF-alpha production (44.9 fold). We conclude from this study that, in addition to its antiviral properties, Sambucol Elderberry Extract and its formulations activate the healthy immune system by increasing inflammatory cytokine production. Sambucol might therefore be beneficial to the immune system activation and in the inflammatory process in healthy individuals or in patients with various diseases. Sambucol could also have an immunoprotective or immunostimulatory effect when administered to cancer or AIDS patients, in conjunction with chemotherapeutic or other treatments. In view of the increasing popularity of botanical supplements, such studies and investigations in vitro, in vivo and in clinical trials need to be developed.

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/11399518



First I heard of this. Have I missed a thread or two?

I just ordered 4 bottles of Sambucus from Vitacost. I have been using it prophylactically when I have been exposed to flu and flu like symptoms (closely) twice in the last couple months, and dodged the bullet both times.

So, It shouldn't be used if yo do get the flu?
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Old 09-01-2009, 01:07 PM   #2
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Well, there IS a lot of controversy regarding the use of elderberry and H5N1:

Quote:
Elderberry / Sambucol


Elderberry is a controversial herb with respect to H5N1. There is evidence that black elderberry extract (trade name: Sambucol) can reduce the risk of contracting ordinary influenza strains, or shorten the course of disease in those who contract the typical flu. It does so (at least partially) by increasing the production of inflammatory cytokines like IL-1, IL-6, and TNF! (citation) While black elderberry extract be appropriate for ordinary Type A influenza, there is a concern it could make avian flu more lethal. Ordinary strains of flu do not trigger massive production of TNF, and ordinary flu viruses are generally susceptible to the action of TNF. Avian flu, by contrast, does trigger massive production of TNF, while the virus is relatively resistant to the anti-viral effects of TNF. If TNF is a significant cause of the illness and mortality in avian flu, anything that increases TNF would be undesirable.


It has been pointed out that black elderberry does not just increase TNF and other cytokines. It also may reduce the spread of the virus through inactivation, or exert anti-inflammatory effects as well as contributing to the cytokine storm. It may be that combining elberberry with other anti-inflammatories may allow it to check the infection without producing tissue destroying levels of cytokines. But there is insufficient evidence to make a solid conclusion, while there are significant red flags that should be raised about the mode of action of elderberry.
This is an excellent article:
http://www.med-owl.com/health/H5N1-Virus-Therapy.html
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Old 09-01-2009, 01:35 PM   #3
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Since this was tested again on 'preparations' of elderberry and no ingredient list is given for those preparations...who knows. I make my own and don't add other herbs to it.

I recall years ago reading that some forms of Sambucol as sold in 'preparation' form had other herbs in it. Echinacea was the one mentioned IIRC. A known immune stimulator. Whereas edible dark colored berries of all sorts are known as anti-inflammatory. I'll keep it in the medicine chest myself.
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Old 09-01-2009, 04:52 PM   #4
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I bought my Sambucol nearly three years ago, on recommendations that is a good anti-viral against influenza..,

It's been around that long!
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Old 09-01-2009, 04:56 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Susan4 View Post
Since this was tested again on 'preparations' of elderberry and no ingredient list is given for those preparations...who knows. I make my own and don't add other herbs to it.

I recall years ago reading that some forms of Sambucol as sold in 'preparation' form had other herbs in it. Echinacea was the one mentioned IIRC. A known immune stimulator. Whereas edible dark colored berries of all sorts are known as anti-inflammatory. I'll keep it in the medicine chest myself.
Technically, tincture of elderberry is a "preparation."

Using the term does NOT imply that is has other ingredients.

Taking the raw ingredient and making it into a more useable form, isolating it's active ingredients, or mixing it with other compounds are all "preparations."
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Old 09-01-2009, 05:40 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Auburn Boy View Post
Technically, tincture of elderberry is a "preparation."

Using the term does NOT imply that is has other ingredients.

Taking the raw ingredient and making it into a more useable form, isolating it's active ingredients, or mixing it with other compounds are all "preparations."
Tincture of elderberry is elderberry and alcohol....another ingredient. I doubt they sell it that way because it tastes horrible. So I suspect there's at least some corn syrup or glycerine in it. Plus some stabilizers plus some ??? Who knows what...at one point it was echinacea as well.
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Old 09-02-2009, 06:50 PM   #7
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Arrow

S4:
Quote:
"Tincture of elderberry is elderberry and alcohol....another ingredient. I doubt they sell it that way because it tastes horrible."
You can buy elderberry tincture at any health food or supplement store.

As for bad taste, try goldenseal tincture sometime. Really bad flavor is not a factor in whether a tincture is sold to the public. There are plenty of horrible-tasting products that sell quite well.
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Old 09-02-2009, 09:37 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Susan4 View Post
Tincture of elderberry is elderberry and alcohol....another ingredient. I doubt they sell it that way because it tastes horrible. So I suspect there's at least some corn syrup or glycerine in it. Plus some stabilizers plus some ??? Who knows what...at one point it was echinacea as well.

there is glucose syrup as the first ingredient of sambucol. i found this out the hard way when my type I diabetic son checked his blood sugar before supper tonight and it was REALLY HIGH... took us a while to figure out it was from the sambucol i just bought for him to take as a preventative every day after school.

/BOnks my head for not checking ingredients before dosing him up....
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Old 09-02-2009, 09:56 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Susan4 View Post
Tincture of elderberry is elderberry and alcohol....another ingredient. I doubt they sell it that way because it tastes horrible. So I suspect there's at least some corn syrup or glycerine in it. Plus some stabilizers plus some ??? Who knows what...at one point it was echinacea as well.
I took my tincture of elderberry with me on a trip. One dropperful every four hours, right out of the bottle.

Doesn't taste that bad..,

It was 60% ethanol and elderberry. Nothing else, nada. No glycerine, no preservatives, no sugar..,

By "other ingredients" they usually mean "ACTIVE" ones. Alcohol.., Meh.
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Old 09-03-2009, 12:12 AM   #10
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Taste is no big deal. For crying out loud, 1 teaspoon twice a day is not a major taste challenge.

It is vodka. Some folks like vodka. Everyone I know makes the tincture with the cheapest vodka they can find. I'm not a big fan of vodka but even I can tell the difference between the cheap and the good stuff.

I've not seen anything that says it has to be taken straight. Add it to some fruit juice and that 1 teaspoon of tincture won't even be noticed.

Or just have your mother make you take it like when you were a kid!

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Old 09-03-2009, 07:24 AM   #11
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When you're marketing a product, I suspect it gets considered.

I'm really not trying to be ornery here folks I love elderberry, got a huge bucketful to process in my laundry sink. I'm just wary of the Sambucol TM product
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Old 09-03-2009, 12:29 PM   #12
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We use the Honey Gardens Elderberry Syrup -- which actually tastes pretty good. DS#2 doesn't like the taste, so I mix his in some juice or diet lemon-lime -- makes a decent elderberry "spritzer."

I personally am of the opinion that if you take the elderberry early enough, you kill off the virus before it can replicate enough to cause the cytokine storm in the first place. I think the cytokine storm happens when the immune response comes too late in the process: Virus replicates, then big immune response, lots of inflammation, more over-response to the inflammation, and bam, cytokine storm.

I have absolutely no medical training whatsoever, this is just my (hopefully logical) analysis from reading this stuff over the past 4 years.
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Old 09-03-2009, 01:15 PM   #13
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I don't know about all of the studies but I do know when I start coming down with a cold, I start going heavy on elderberry.

I have tried Sambucol and the Vitamin Shoppe brand. Both seem to be the same strength.

I also use the SambuActin lozenges from Solaray. They are in my briefcase when I fly overseas to Asia.

For me, it either keeps me from progressing or it reduces the time I am ill.
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Old 09-03-2009, 01:31 PM   #14
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Oh, I forgot about those SambuActin lozenges -- we go through a lot of those, too!
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Old 09-14-2009, 12:30 PM   #15
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Old 09-14-2009, 12:35 PM   #16
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Welcome to ThisBlueMarble, neuf08

heh... turns out he was a spammer, posting links to his online vitamin store in every post.
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Old 09-14-2009, 05:31 PM   #17
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We are opting to take the elderberry all through this. We made a supply of tincture and have been using that. Today the first batch of syrup (per PCS recipe) is just finishing. We are supplying these to family and friends along with a lecture on the pros and cons and they can make their own choices. Those traveling are using lozenges.

Actually cooking down the elderberries and adding sugar as a preservative made me realized this is an excellent pancake syrup, with some gel it would be jelly, it would make a great pie.

Friends making their own from the information I found here gifted me a bottle of elderberry wine!

If we didn't think of it in terms of it being medicine we would be making dessert of it.

PCJ's article helped us feel comfortable with the way we are using it, a worthwhile read.

http://thisbluemarble.com/showthread.php?t=13844

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