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Astragalus: Properties, Benefits, Side-effects?

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Astragalus: Properties, Benefits, Side-effects?

Pharmacological studies of astragalus root were mainly performed with extracts acuos

years or fractions enriched in saponins and polysaccharides. Are described hepatoprotective properties, antioxidants, immunostimulants, antiviral and other cardiotonic.

Astragalus root has immunostimulatory properties, without suppressing immune function with prolonged use. Activity is related to its content of polysaccharides, and the sugar moiety that stimulates NK cells, enhance the functions of T cells and increase the production of interferon.

The root of Astragalus administration improves peripheral tissue oxygenation and the stress response by adrenal activity increase. The pharmacological response was related to the presence of triterpene saponins and since this fraction is responsible for the increase of the adrenal activity.

The root of Astragalus also has radioprotective properties.

1 - Hepatoprotective properties. The extract of the root of Astragalus protect liver from damage caused by carbon tetrachloride (CCl4), prevents the decrease of hepatic glycogen and increases the level of serum protein and albumin. Were clinical studies with extracts of Astragalus. In 1-2 months, the symptoms of the disease subside, improves the welfare state and the patient's appetite and GPT levels return to normal. In patients with chronic hepatitis treated with Astragalus improves cellular immunity and phagocytosis of reticuloendothelial cells is stimulated.

2 - anti-inflammatory properties. Both the methanol extract of the root of Astragalus as astramembranina I (saponin isolated from the root), have anti-inflammatory properties in some experimental models in vivo, both orally and intravenously.

3 - Antioxidant Properties. In an in vitro study, Astragalus shown to inhibit lipid peroxidation by 40%, a suspension of rat heart mitochondria. The antioxidant activity is common to flavonoids and explains, in part, its cardioprotective properties.

4 - Immunostimulatory properties. One of the most important properties of this species is its ability to enhance the immune response. In vivo assays performed with Astragalus polysaccharides increased response in mice after parenteral administration of a polysaccharide purified from aqueous extract was observed. The astragalanos I and II have a variety of effects in mice when administered parenterally, such as increased weight and number of spleen cells and their response to sheep red blood cells and stimulation of the phagocytic activity of peritoneal macrophages . Administration of extracts of Astragalus enhances the cytotoxic response of specialized cells, increasing from 5 to 6 times its response. Cell phagocytosis of reticuloendothelial system is also intensified, increasing the activity of T cells, stimulates the production of natural interferon and enhances its activity. Improves response in patients treated with anticancer since drug response power and reduces the undesirable effects thereof. In experiments with astragalán, longer survival was obtained in the group of animals treated with the polysaccharide. Astragalus decreases immune hyperactivity in patients with systemic lupus erythematosus and myasthenia gravis, two severe autoimmune diseases. Astragalus improves immunity against infections and other respiratory tract when ingested before the full development of these infections.

The use of recombinant interleukin-2 (rIL-2) in immunotherapy is limited by the toxicity associated with high doses. Astragalus was administered with 100 u / ml of rIL-2 versus 1,000 U / ml of rIL-2 alone in an in vitro study of renal carcinoma in mice. The group receiving Astragalus + rIL-2 showed a higher lysis of tumor cells. These results were confirmed in another study in which Astragalus enhanced the inducing activity of rIL-2 célulass LAK cells against melanoma. Fifty u / ml of rIL-2 with Astragalus extract was more effective than 500 u / ml of rIL-2 alone.

Astragalus combination of medicinal plants with two other mice were offered a rate of 9 g / kg, or 20 g / kg for 7 days. The weight of the thymus and spleen increased when compared with the control group. IgG serum 41-47% and increased the conversion percentage of lymphocytes also increased. The combination of plants increased resistance to cyclophosphamide immunosuppressive effects of stimulating macrophages to produce interleukin-6 and tumor necrosis factor.

Twenty-eight patients with SLE showed significantly lower activity of natural killer cells, compared to normal controls. Pre-incubation of peripheral blood mononuclear cells stimulated with Astragalus natural cytotoxicity of natural killer cells in lupus patients and also in the control patients.

5 - Antiviral properties. Astragalán has antiviral properties, and that inhibits the replication of some viruses, such as coxsackie, causing myocarditis. In other viral diseases such as chronic viral hepatitis or HIV, has been shown the positive effect, but due to the increase of the immune response, not the antiviral effect. It may benefit patients with chronic viral hepatitis and the HIV virus infected people, however further studies are required to confirm this possibility.

To provide an extract of Astragalus orally to patients with viral myocarditis, increasing T3, T4 and the ratio T4/T8 lymphocytes demonstrated, suggesting improved immune response. In mice infected with coxsackie B-3 virus, causative agent of viral myocarditis, Astragalus inhibited viral replication in myocardial tissue, also improving myocardial electrical activity.

6 - Antibacterial properties. Not directly inhibit the growth of bacteria, but protects against the effects of endotoxin from Escherichia coli, also acts to increase the immune response in infections caused by Shigella, Streptococcus, Staphylococcus and Diplococcus.

7 - Antineoplastic activity. Significantly increases the power of the interleukin-2 (rIL-2) recombinant substance that acts against cancer cells, improving survival in some people with cancer. Animals with experimentally induced cancer survived for longer when treated with the active ingredient Astragalán. In patients treated for cancer, formulas with Astragalus potentiated the effects of anticancer agents but protected the patient from the toxic effects of these drugs.

The ability to reduce the toxic side effects of anticancer agents 116 Chinese herbal formulas were evaluated. Quan formula-Shi-Da-Bu-Tang which includes Astragalus, was selected as the most effective in relation to the stimulation of the production of hematopoietic factors and interleukins. Enhancing the activity of anticancer agents inhibiting recurrence, increased survival time and reduced toxicity caused by chemotherapy was also shown.

Two randomized studies mice received implants of renal carcinoma cells. One group was treated intraperitoneally with 500 mg of Ligusticum lucidum and Astragalus daily for 10 days. The other group received saline as control. The cure rate in the Astragalus / Ligusticum group was 57% when the tumor burden was 2 x 105 and 100% when the tumor burden was 1 x 105.

In another study, 10 of 12 patients with small cell carcinoma of the lung, including 4 with disseminated disease I gained between 3 and 17 years of survival time when they received Astragalus with chemotherapy and radiotherapy.

8 - Cardiovascular effects. Among others we can highlight the hypotensive properties of astramembranina I. Saponins possess anticoagulant properties. There are references on the use of the root of Astragalus in traditional Chinese medicine in cases of stroke, congestive heart failure and angina pectoris, with good results. In preliminary studies this plant was used after heart attacks.

The antioxidant activity partly explains the cardiotonic action of Astragalus. In one study, Astragalus was administered to 43 patients after acute myocardial infarction. Astragalus significantly improved LV function as compared to controls.
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In another study, 20 patients with angina treated for 2 weeks with Astragalus, that demonstrating a significant improvement in cardiac output by means of echocardiography. In another study, 92 patients with ischemic heart disease treated with Astragalus showed marked improvement of angina and electrocardiogram significant improvement compared with controls.

One of Astragalus saponins, the astragaloside IV was injected in 19 patients with congestive heart failure, demonstrating significantly improved LV function, end systolic volume and end-diastolic volume. After 2 weeks of treatment, 79% of patients reported the disappearance of chest pain and dyspnea. Additionally, heart rate was significantly decreased.

Ninety-Two patients with ischemic heart disease were treated with Astragalus, showing a significant improvement of anginal pain. Electrocardiograms were significantly improved in 82.6% of patients. In another study, 20 patients received Astragalus for two weeks, showing an increase in cardiac output. Unlike digitalis, the adenosine triphosphatase activity was inhibited no.

Astragalus saponins demonstrated provide a positive effect on cardiac function through the inhibition of lipid peroxide formation in the myocardium and decreasing clotting mechanisms.

9 - Other effects:

It stimulates the pituitary-adrenal cortex activity.
Restores the formation of red cells in the bone marrow.
Glomerulonephritis: Astragalus proved effective in experimentally induced glomerulonephritis in rats, particularly in the treatment of proteinuria. Rats given high doses of Astragalus showed less proteinuria and lower holders pathological changes than the control group.
Male Infertility: Astragalus extracts demonstrated a stimulating effect on the number and motility in animal studies.
Lipid: decreased levels of cholesterol, triglycerides, apoprotein and lipoprotein-a
Directions

Astragalus root is indicated for the treatment of patients with compromised immune system, viral infections and patients with hypertension. You can decrease the immune hyperactivity in patients with systemic lupus erythematosus and myasthenia gravis so its use is recommended in these cases.

Plus you can tell patients with AIDS, viral hepatitis and peripheral vascular disease. It is also used in asthma, peptic ulcer, respiratory disorders, diarrhea and infections generally caused by Diplococcus, Staphylococcus and Streptococcus. In Chinese medicine is also used for diabetes, heart disease and Alzheimer's disease.

Article Wiki Closed - Astragalus: Properties, Benefits, Side-effects?
asked Jun 10, 2014 by Lancomega Level (10,245 points)
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