Cistus incanus and swine flu

Influ­en­za, a respi­ra­to­ry dise­a­se cau­sed by influ­en­za viru­s­es, is still a world­wi­de thre­at with a high poten­ti­al to cau­se a pan­de­mic. Bes­i­de vac­ci­na­ti­on, only two clas­ses of drugs are available for anti­vi­ral tre­at­ment against the patho­gen. Cystus052, a plant extra­ct from a spe­cial varie­ty of Cis­tus inca­nus that is rich in poly­me­ric poly­phe­nols, exhi­bits anti­vi­ral acti­vi­ty against a broad ran­ge of patho­ge­nic influ­en­za viruses.

On a mole­cu­lar basis Cystus052 acts by unspe­ci­fic bin­ding to the sur­face of the virus par­tic­le, ther­eby pre­ven­ting viral attach­ment to cells. Sci­en­tists has demons­tra­ted anti­vi­ral action of Cystus052 against all influ­en­za viru­s­es tes­ted so far inclu­ding sub­ty­pes H1N1, H5N1, H3N2 and H7N7. Becau­se of the broad and unspe­ci­fic action Cystus052 also is acti­ve in vitro against the novel H1N1 swi­ne influ­en­za viru­s­es that have emer­ged in Mexi­co. Moreo­ver, anti­vi­ral action has alre­a­dy been shown for human viru­s­es of the same sub­ty­pe (H1N1).

Cystus052 may have seve­ral advan­ta­ges with regard to its use as an anti­vi­ral agent. First, the plant extra­ct has been appli­ed for cen­tu­ries in tra­di­tio­nal medi­ci­ne wit­hout reports of adver­se effects or all­er­gic reac­tions. This appa­rent lack of side effects would even allow long-term pro­phyl­ac­tic use. Fur­ther­mo­re, a broad and unspe­ci­fic anti-patho­gen action as shown for Cystus052 pre­vents emer­gence of viral resis­tance and the com­pound may also be acti­ve against oppor­tu­ni­stic bac­te­ri­al infections.

• Rai­ner H. Buben­zer, Ber­lin (Novem­ber 2009).
• Ehr­hardt C, Hrin­ci­us ER, Kor­te V, Mazur I, Droeb­ner K, Poet­ter A, Dre­schers S, Schmol­ke M, Planz O, Lud­wig S: A poly­phe­nol rich plant extra­ct, CYSTUS052, exerts anti influ­en­za virus acti­vi­ty in cell cul­tu­re wit­hout toxic side effects or the ten­den­cy to indu­ce viral resis­tance. Anti­vi­ral Res. 2007 Oct;76(1):38–47 (Abs­tract).
• Droeb­ner K, Ehr­hardt C, Poet­ter A, Lud­wig S, Planz O: CYSTUS052, a poly­­phe­­nol-rich plant extra­ct, exerts anti-influ­en­­za virus acti­vi­ty in mice. Anti­vi­ral Res. 2007 Oct;76(1):1–10 (Abs­tract).
• Kalus U, Kie­se­wet­ter H, Rad­tke H: Effect of CYSTUS052((R) and green tea on sub­jec­ti­ve sym­ptoms in pati­ents with infec­tion of the upper respi­ra­to­ry tract. Phy­to­ther Res. 2009 May 14 (Abs­tract).
• Kalus U, Gri­gro­rov A, Kade­cki O, Jan­sen JP, Kie­se­wet­ter H, Rad­tke H.: Cis­tus inca­nus (Cystus052) for Trea­ting Pati­ents with Infec­tion of the Upper Respi­ra­to­ry Tract A pro­s­pec­ti­ve, ran­do­mi­sed, pla­ce­bo con­trol­led cli­ni­cal stu­dy. Anti­vi­ral Res. 2009 Oct 11 (Abs­tract).
• Droeb­ner K, Ehr­hardt C, Muel­ler, C, Hrin­ci­us ER, Buett­ner M, Lud­wig S, Planz O: Ear­ly anti­vi­ral acti­vi­ty of CYSTUS052 against H5N1 influ­en­za virus is more effi­ci­ent com­pared to osel­ta­mi­vir. Plan­ta Medi­ca. 2008 Jul;74:934 (Abs­tract).
• Ehr­hardt C, Eike R, Hrin­ci­us ER, Droeb­ner K, Kor­te V, Mazur I, Pöt­ter A, Schmol­ke M, Planz O, Lud­wig S: CYSTUS052, a poly­phe­nol rich plant extra­ct, exerts potent anti-influ­en­­za virus acti­vi­ty in cell cul­tu­re by blo­cking viral attach­ment to host cells. Plan­ta Medi­ca. 2008 Jul;74:1019 (Abs­tract).

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