Life Extension Magazine 2011
Neutralize a Lethal Enzyme
By Judith Sherman
AKBA, a principal component of boswellia, acts by numerous mechanisms to prevent cancer cells from proliferating. It induces apoptosis, or programmed cell death, by switching on the aptly named "death receptor" on cancer cell surfaces, an effect accompanied by activation of so-called "suicide" pathways inside cancer cells.65
Boswellic acid also blocks important signaling molecules required for cancer cell replication.66 And AKBA further inhibits tumor growth by suppressing a growth factor, VEGF (vascular endothelial growth factor), required by cancers to grow necessary new blood vessels.67
Boswellia oil extracts can distinguish between healthy and cancerous tissue, suppressing tumor cell viability but sparing normal cells.68
Finally, AKBA has recently been shown to suppress activity of a cellular receptor, CXCR4, that cancer cells use to trigger the metastases that account for 90% of cancer deaths. To date, boswellia extracts have also shown promise in reducing malignant cell growth, replication, or metastases in cancers of the prostate, bladder, cervix, colon, as well as in multiple myeloma, a cancer of the bone marrow. 66-73
Boswellia Extracts Relieve Arthritis Suffering
Early studies involved combinations of boswellia extracts with other known natural anti-inflammatory agents such as Withania somnifera (ashwagandha), Curcuma longa (curcumin), and zinc. In one such study, 42 patients were randomly assigned to receive this combination of nutrients or a placebo for 3 months.85
The treated group, but not the placebo recipients, demonstrated a significant drop in pain severity and disability scores. A similar study included the widely used WOMAC score of physical function difficulty and demonstrated significant reductions in that parameter as well as in pain and disability.86 No significant side effects were noted in either study.
More recently, studies have been conducted using boswellia extracts alone in double-blind, placebo-controlled trials, with doses up to 3,600 mg per day. Again, significant reductions are routinely reported in all parameters, including joint pain and swelling, ability to flex the joint, and increased walking distances.87
A 2008 study using a purified extract containing 30% of the vital AKBA was conducted among 70 patients with osteoarthritis.88 Subjects received the extract at doses of either 100 or 250 mg per day, or a placebo, for 90 days. Both doses of the extract, but not the placebo, resulted in clinically and statistically significant improvements in pain scores and physical function.88 Several other features of this study are worthy of notice. First, samples of joint fluid revealed a significant reduction in MMP-3 (matrix metalloproteinase-3), the inflammatory enzyme responsible for much of the cartilage destruction seen in osteoarthritis. Secondly, improvements in pain and functional ability were evident as early as 7 days into the 90-day treatment program.
A follow-up study was conducted in 2010 to evaluate the efficacy of both the standard 30% AKBA extract and the newer, more bioavailable extract.45 Patients received just 100 mg of either supplement, or placebo, again for 90 days. In this case, both supplements produced significant improvements in pain scores and function and a reduction in MMP-3 levels. In both groups, improvements were evident in only 7 days, although the highly bioavailable preparation was more effective in providing a meaningful level of joint protection.
The enzyme 5-lipoxygenase or 5-LOX triggers seven of the top ten leading causes of death in the United States, including cancer and heart disease.
Excess 5-LOX leads to deadly release of pro-inflammatory molecules, including leukotrienes. While few safe drugs exist to neutralize 5-LOX, an exciting natural 5-LOX inhibitor with greater absorbability was recently developed. An abundance of compelling data indicates that the bioactive compounds in boswellia block the inflammatory response induced by 5-LOX that accelerates the onset of multiple killer diseases of aging.
This new form of boswellia has been shown to absorb 52% better into the bloodstream, thus providing more of this natural 5-lipoxygenase inhibitor to cells throughout the body.
If you have any questions on the scientific content of this article, please call a Life Extension® Health Advisor at 1-866-864-3027.
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