Substances & Homeopatic Remedies


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Reprod Nutr Dev. 1998 May-Jun;38(3):255-60.

Oral administration of pectin-rich plant extract enhances C3 and C4 complement concentration in woman colostrum.

Sepehri H, Roghani M, Houdebine ML.

Laboratory of Animal Physiology, Faculty of Science, Tehran University, Iran.


C3 and C4 components of the complement are normally present in human colostrum. These compounds are natural antibacterial agents. Pectin-rich plant extracts have been shown to induce prolactin release and milk synthesis when administered by the oral route in rat. In the present work, extract from a plant rich in pectin, Gossypium herbaceum was given orally to women 2 days after parturition. The extract enhanced concentration of C3 and C4 in colostrum but did not modify the total hemolytic complement activity (TCH50). No change in the concentration of the three compounds was observed in serum of the treated women. Control experiments showed that a treatment by placebo had no effect on colostrum composition. These data suggest that pectin-rich plant extracts favour transfer of C3 and C4 from blood to colostrum by an unknown mechanism. This observation suggests that some plant extracts might be used to reinforce the antibacterial activity of human colostrum.



Eur Respir J. 2005 Nov;26(5):881-6.

A 20-year follow-up study on chronic respiratory effects of exposure to cotton dust.

Wang XR, Zhang HX, Sun BX, Dai HL, Hang JQ, Eisen EA, Wegman DH, Olenchock SA, Christiani DC.

Department of Environmental Health, Occupational Health Program, Harvard School of Public Health, 665 Huntington Avenue, Boston, MA 02115, USA.


In order to evaluate chronic effects of long-term exposure to cotton dust on respiratory health, and the role of dust and endotoxin, longitudinal changes in lung function and respiratory symptoms were observed prospectively from 1981 to 2001 in 447 cotton textile workers, along with 472 silk textile controls. The results from five surveys conducted over the 20-yr period are reported, including standardised questionnaires, pre- and post-shift spirometric measurements, work-area inhalable dust sample collections and airborne Gram-bacterial endotoxin analysis. Cotton workers had more persistent respiratory symptoms and greater annual declines in forced expiratory volume in one second (FEV1) and forced vital capacity as compared with silk workers. After exposure cessation, in the final 5-yr period, the rate of FEV1 decline tended to slow in nonsmoking males, but not in nonsmoking females. Workers who reported byssinotic symptoms more persistently suffered greater declines in FEV1. Chronic loss in lung function was more strongly associated with exposure to endotoxin than to dust. In conclusion, the current study suggests that long-term exposure to cotton dust, in which airborne endotoxin appears to play an important role, results in substantial adverse chronic respiratory effects.



Contraception. 2002 Apr;65(4):259-63.

Gossypol: a contraceptive for men.Coutinho EM.

School of Medicine, Federal University of Bahia, Salvador, Bahia, Brazil.


Gossypol is a polyphenol isolated from the seed, roots, and stem of the cotton plant (Gossypium sp.). The substance, a yellow pigment similar to flavonoids, is present in cottonseed oil. In the plant, it acts as a natural defensive agent against predators, provoking infertility in insects. In most animals, gossypol provokes infertility, and in man it causes spermatogenesis arrest at relatively low doses. Studies carried out in China, Africa, and Brazil have shown that the substance is well tolerated, causing no side effects that lead to discontinuation. The reported hypokalemia of early studies has not been confirmed in the latest trials. The only concern at present appears to be lack of reversibility in over 20% of subjects. Gossypol should be prescribed preferably to men who have completed their families or for those who would accept permanent infertility after a few years of use.