Thursday, January 31, 2013

Antimicrobial Peptide Found in Bee Venom

Extending the Honey Bee Venome with the Antimicrobial Peptide Apidaecin and a Protein Resembling Wasp Antigen 5
Honey bee venom is a complex mixture of toxic proteins and peptides. In the present study we tried to extend our knowledge of the venom composition using two different approaches.
First, worker venom was analysed by liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry and this revealed the antimicrobial peptide apidaecin for the first time in such samples. Its expression in the venom gland was confirmed by reverse transcription PCR and by a peptidomic analysis of the venom apparatus tissue.
Second, genome mining revealed a list of proteins with resemblance to known insect allergens or venom toxins, one of which showed homology to proteins of the antigen 5 (Ag5)/Sol i 3 cluster. It was demonstrated that the honey bee Ag5-like gene is expressed by venom gland tissue of winter bees but not of summer bees. Besides this seasonal variation, it shows an interesting spatial expression pattern with additional production in the hypopharyngeal glands, the brains and the midgut.
Finally, our immunoblot study revealed that both synthetic apidaecin and the Ag5-like recombinant from bacteria evoke no humoral activity in beekeepers. Also, no IgG4-based cross-reactivity was detected between the honey bee Ag5-like protein and its yellow jacket paralogue Ves v 5.

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Green Propolis Better than Red in Helping to Heal Wounds

Comparative Study of Topical Green and Red Propolis in the Repair of Wounds Induced in Rats
Rev Col Bras Cir, 2012 Dec;39(6):515-520
To evaluate the healing action of green and red propolis, correlating it with the content of flavonoids.
We performed quantification of total flavonoids of green and red propolis ethanol extracts for subsequent incorporation in ointment base to 20%. We used 20 Wistar rats divided into four groups: 0.9% saline (S), ointment base (B), green propolis ointment (G) and red propolis ointment (R). All animals were submitted to excisional lesions in the midian back region. The rats were treated daily for 15 days. During this period we observed weight, body temperature and diameters of the wounds. For histological analysis, samples were collected from wounds. At the end of the experiment we performed blood collection and removal of the kidney and liver for biochemical and histological analyzes.
The levels of total flavonoids of green (4.50%) and red (5.92%) propolis were high (> 2%), but, while the latter showed a content larger than the former, the evolution of green propolis was better in the repair of wounds, both macroscopically and histologically. There were no nephrotoxicity or hepatotoxicity, a result confirmed by biochemical tests (ALT and albumin). Propolis influenced the reduction of total cholesterol, triglycerides and glucose.
There was no correlation between total flavonoid contents and the healing action of propolis. This reveals the need for elucidation of the flavonoids found in each class of propolis to unravel which one(s) would be important for the healing process.

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

German Apitherapy Conference: Call for Papers and Active Participation

Dear Wonderful Apitherapy Friends,

Time is running fast and the XI-Th. German Apitherapy Congress,Expo and Workshops with International Participation (March 22-26, IBB Hotel, Passau) is becoming closer.
We invite you now to prepare your journey to Passau, Germany and to submit your work for presentation and discussions.
Your participation to all our round tables and discussions are important also for all of us because the main goal of our event is, as always, a fruitful experience exchange.
We are happy to let you know that we have already confirmations of participations of speakers and participants from the following 15 countries:
1.       Austria
2.       Brazil
3.       Chile
4.       China
5.       France
6.       Germania
7.       Hungary
8.       Japan
9.       Lithuania
10.   Malaysia
11.   Morocco
12.   Portugal
13.   Romania
14.   Slovenia
15.   Switzerland
This year too we have highly attracting themes of discussions.
Please check all details on our preliminary program in order to register, well informed, through  
If you know someone that could be interested to participate too, please forward this information.
We will be happy to see you in Passau, to promote experiences, discussion and new ideas in Medicinal/Therapeutical Beekeeping, Bee products, Apitherapy, Apipuncture and Api-Phytotherapy.
Best regards from our organizing team,
Dr Stefan Stangaciu
President of the German Apitherapy Society

Monday, January 28, 2013

4 Reasons to Eat Manuka Honey

ZEST, 1/25/2013
…Known scientifically as Leptospermum scoparium, Manuka is the honey's Maori-given name. It is native to New Zealand’s North Island. Maori people used the leaves of the Manuka plant for a medicinal drink that was used to reduce fever-like symptoms, while the oil from the crushed leaves was applied to wounds as a natural antiseptic…
Each tub of Manuka honey bears its own Unique Manuka Factor  (UMF) – a scale that identifies the level of anti-bacterial potency in that particular supply. A UMF rating of 10+ is the minimum required to gain the UMF rating and thus be considered effective for purpose. Honey that meets this minimum requirement is commonly referred to as Active Manuka Honey. Optimum levels of UMF are 10+ to 15+.
All honeys boast some level of antibacterial powers, but Manuka is accepted to contain properties that are superior to those found in other strains.
So why should you should add a regular teaspoonful to your diet?
1. Digestive health:
If you’re feeling bloated and uncomfortable then give Manuka Honey can aid a variety of issues, including bloating, acid reflux, indigestion, stomach ulcers and irritable bowel syndrome. Simply stir into a mug of hot water or tea to soothe your pains.
2. Immunity:
Feeling a cold or sore throat coming on? Stir a teaspoon of Manuka honey into your hot lemon drink to prevent the cold bug taking a grip. Manuka honey is high in antibacterial levels and recommended in the treatment of ulcers, strep throat, cold sores, skin infections, cuts and abrasions…

Sunday, January 27, 2013

Apimedica: High Doses of Propolis Non-Toxic

Apimondia Apimedica-Apiquality International Forum
Oct. 22-25, 2012
Zhenjiang, China
Acute Toxicological Test of Propolis
ZHUO Bi-rong, SHI Pei-ying, WU Zhen-hong*
(Bee Science College of Fujian Agriculture and Forestry University, State and Local Joint Engineering Laboratory of Natural Biotoxi, Fuzhou 350002, China )
This project used Fixed-dose procedure to study acute toxicity reaction of mice to ethanol extract of propolis. The result showed that mice, which have been lavaged with ethanol extract of propolis were all live during 0~14 days. In addition, the tested mice shown no-affected locomotor activity and had no abnormal symptoms. The mice showed no abnormal secretion in mouths, noses and ears. Also the mice showed other normal symptoms such as eyelid without prolapse, clear eye pupil, normal excretions, and smooth hair. Autopsy results showed no obvious abnormity characterization of the organs. The organs index has no obvious difference with control group (The max dose is 2000mg/kg).
In conclusion, mice had no acute toxicity reaction to ethanol extract of propolis. Since 2000mg/kg is 100 times of the human body recommended dose, people can also use propolis with this dose.
*Corresponding author,
(福建农林大学蜂学学院,天然生物毒素国家地方联合工程实验室,福州 350002,中国)
采用固定剂量法研究蜂胶醇提物对正常小鼠的急性毒性反应,经过研究发现,对小鼠灌胃蜂胶醇提物 0~14 d 内,小鼠无死亡,且其自主活动无异常症状,口、鼻、耳等无异常分泌物,眼睑无下垂,眼瞳清澈,两便正常,毛发光滑,尸检各器官无明显异常表征,各器官指数与对照组相比无显著差异,最高的使用剂 2000 mg/kg综上说明了蜂胶醇提取物对正常小鼠无严重的急性毒性反应。且因2000 mg/kg 约是人体推荐服用剂量的100 倍,因此人体可放心使用。