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Ginseng for Alzheimer's disease
Lane Simonian
Posted: Sunday, February 17, 2019 10:22 AM
Joined: 12/12/2011
Posts: 4779


This from a recent patent review of ginseng from Alzheimer's disease touches all the bases:

The gathered data represented outstanding merits of ginseng in treatment of neurodegenerative and neurological disorders. These effects have been mediated by neurogenesis, anti-apoptotic and antioxidant properties, inhibition of mitochondrial dysfunction, receptor-operated Ca2+ channels, amyloid beta aggregation, and microglial activation as well as neurotransmitters modulation. However, these compounds have limited clinical application of for the prevention or treatment of neurodegenerative and neurological disorders. This might be due to incomplete data on their clinical pharmacokinetic and toxicity properties, and limited economic investments. There is an increasing trend in use of herbal medicines instead of chemical drugs, so it is time to make more attention to the application of ginseng, the grandfather of medicinal plants, from basic sciences to patients’ bed.

The following clinical trial results were not placebo-controlled nor double-blinded, but suggest that ginseng can be used to treat Alzheimer's disease:


 2012 Nov;15(6):278-82. doi: 10.1179/1476830512Y.0000000027.

Heat-processed ginseng enhances the cognitive function in patients with moderately severe Alzheimer's disease.

Abstract

OBJECTIVES:

Ginseng has been reported to improve cognitive function in animals and in healthy and cognitively impaired individuals. In this study, we investigated the efficacy of a heat-processed form of ginseng that contains more potent ginsenosides than raw ginseng in the treatment of cognitive impairment in patients with moderately severe Alzheimer's disease (AD).

METHODS:

Forty patients with AD were randomized into one of three different dose groups or the control group as follows: 1.5 g/day (n = 10), 3 g/day (n = 10), and 4.5 g/day (n = 10) groups, or control (n = 10). The Alzheimer's Disease Assessment Scale (ADAS) and Mini-Mental State Examination (MMSE) were used to assess cognitive function for 24 weeks.

RESULTS:

The treatment groups showed significant improvement on the MMSE and ADAS. Patients with higher dose group (4.5 g/day) showed improvements in ADAS cognitive, ADAS non-cognitive, and MMSE score as early as at 12 weeks, which sustained for 24-week follow-up.

DISCUSSION:

These results demonstrate the potential efficacy of a heat-processed form of ginseng on cognitive function and behavioral symptoms in patients with moderately severe AD.


. 2011 Nov; 35(4): 457–461.

Jae-Hyeok Heo, Soon-Tae Lee, Min Jung Oh, Hyun-Jung Park, Ji-Young Shim, Kon Chu, and Manho Kim

Improvement of Cognitive Deficit in Alzheimer’s Disease Patients by Long Term Treatment with Korean Red Ginseng

A 24-week randomized open-label study with Korean red ginseng (KRG) showed cognitive benefits in patients with Alzheimer’s disease. To further determine long-term effect of KRG, the subjects were recruited to be followed up to 2 yr. Cognitive function was evaluated every 12 wk using the Alzheimer’s Disease Assessment Scale (ADAS) and the Korean version of the Mini Mental Status Examination (K-MMSE) with the maintaining dose of 4.5 g or 9.0 g KRG per d. At 24 wk, there had been a significant improvement in KRG-treated groups. In the long-term evaluation of the efficacy of KRG after 24 wk, the improved MMSE score remained without significant decline at the 48th and 96th wk. ADAS-cog showed similar findings. Maximum improvement was found around week 24. In conclusion, the effect of KRG on cognitive functions was sustained for 2 yr follow-up, indicating feasible efficacies of long-term follow-up for Alzheimer’s disease.



Lane Simonian
Posted: Friday, August 16, 2019 7:50 PM
Joined: 12/12/2011
Posts: 4779


Here is another promising clinical trial in which panax ginseng was one of the plants used.

Composing of Radix polygonum multiflorum preparata, Panax ginseng, Acorus gramineus, Coptis chinensis, and Ligusticum wallichii, Huannao Yicong Decoction (HYD) is a clinical protocol, which is used to treat the elderly patients with cognitive impairment and Alzheimer’s disease in Xiyuan Hospital of China Academy of Chinese Medical Sciences...

Effect and Safety of Huannao Yicong Formula () in Patients with Mild-to-Moderate Alzheimer's Disease: A Randomized, Double-Blinded, Donepezil-Controlled Trial.

RESULTS:

A total of 52 patients completed the trial, 28 in HYF group and 24 in donepezil group. Compared with the baseline, HYF and donepezil significantly decreased the total scores of ADAS-Cog and CM-SS, and significantly increased the scores of MoCA and MMSE after 6-month treatment (all P<0.01). Both treatments remarkably reduced the serum levels of AchE and Aβ42 (both P<0.05). The CM-SS total effective rate of HYF was significantly higher than donepezil [75.00% (21/28) vs. 54.17% (13/24), P<0.05]. No severe adverse events were observed in both groups.

CONCLUSION:

HYF is effective and safe for improving the cognitive function in mildto-moderate AD patients.


HowDoYouDeal
Posted: Saturday, August 17, 2019 11:50 AM
Joined: 2/17/2019
Posts: 328


That is ridiculously good news.
Lane Simonian
Posted: Saturday, August 17, 2019 12:40 PM
Joined: 12/12/2011
Posts: 4779


That was my feeling, too.  I would not say the future looks bright, but it is starting to look a lot better based on a number of "alternative" treatments for Alzheimer's disease.
Lane Simonian
Posted: Sunday, February 23, 2020 12:11 PM
Joined: 12/12/2011
Posts: 4779


This study looks at the mechanism behind ginseng's neuroprotection in Alzheimer's disease.

Korean Red Ginseng Inhibits Amyloid-β-Induced Apoptosis and Nucling Expression in Human Neuronal Cells.

Abstract

INTRODUCTION:

The accumulation of amyloid-β (Aβ) plaque in the brain is a characteristic feature of Alzheimer's disease (AD) and the cause of fatal oxidative damage to neuronal cells [or more accurately a cause]. Korean red ginseng (RG) is used extensively in traditional medicine and is known to have anti-oxidative and anti-inflammatory properties.

CONCLUSION:

RG confers protection against neuronal apoptosis by reducing ROS levels and suppressing mitochondrial dysfunction and NF-κB activation, which results in suppression of NF-κB-mediated activation of Nucling expression in Aβ-treated cells. Supplementation with RG may be beneficial for preventing Aβ-induced neuronal cell death associated with AD.

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/32018260


LDDaughter
Posted: Sunday, March 1, 2020 8:36 PM
Joined: 12/22/2011
Posts: 1065


I think there are a number of small studies like this that show existing Alzheimer's medications working more effectively in combination w herbs and other supplements. I have a few noted somewhere and will try to post as well. Wouldn't it be nice if physicians actually knew about these options?
Lane Simonian
Posted: Monday, March 2, 2020 11:24 AM
Joined: 12/12/2011
Posts: 4779


Thanks, LDDaughter.  If you find those studies, I will be excited to see them, as I am sure that I have missed some of them over the years.

These are the two clinical trials that I know of in which herbs in combination with existing Alzheimer's medications have produced better results:

A formula (formula F) was prepared to counteract oxidative stress (OS) in the brain. The formula contained the most common antioxidants and was intended to: (a) protect proteins, lipids, DNA and proteoglycans from oxidation (carnosine, coenzyme Q(10), vitamin E, vitamin C, beta-carotene, selenium, L-cysteine and ginkgo biloba); (b) reduce homocysteine (HCy) blood levels (vitamins B(6), B(9) and B(12)), and (c) sustain the pentose phosphate cycle in circulating cells (vitamins B(1), B(2) and B(3)). Formula F contained low doses of each antioxidant component and was administered in a two-phase ampoule...Forty-eight subjects completed the trial. Significant decreases in OS and HCy were only observed when there was an increase in glutathione (in erythrocytes) and a decrease in sickle erythrocytes in patients treated with formula F. The MMSE II score remained almost the same in the group treated with donepezil and placebo, whereas some significant improvements were found in the group treated with donepezil plus formula F.

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/20224285

Compared to CT alone, CT + H [conventional therapy plus herbs] significantly benefited AD patients. A symptomatic effect of CT + H was more pronounced with time. Cognitive decline was substantially decelerated in patients with moderate severity, while the cognitive function was largely stabilized in patients with mild severity over two years. These results imply that Chinese herbal medicines may provide an alternative and additive treatment for AD.

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5729264/

 


LDDaughter
Posted: Monday, March 2, 2020 6:10 PM
Joined: 12/22/2011
Posts: 1065


Lane Simonian wrote:

Thanks, LDDaughter.  If you find those studies, I will be excited to see them, as I am sure that I have missed some of them over the years.

These are the two clinical trials that I know of in which herbs in combination with existing Alzheimer's medications have produced better results:

A formula (formula F) was prepared to counteract oxidative stress (OS) in the brain. The formula contained the most common antioxidants and was intended to: (a) protect proteins, lipids, DNA and proteoglycans from oxidation (carnosine, coenzyme Q(10), vitamin E, vitamin C, beta-carotene, selenium, L-cysteine and ginkgo biloba); (b) reduce homocysteine (HCy) blood levels (vitamins B(6), B(9) and B(12)), and (c) sustain the pentose phosphate cycle in circulating cells (vitamins B(1), B(2) and B(3)). Formula F contained low doses of each antioxidant component and was administered in a two-phase ampoule...Forty-eight subjects completed the trial. Significant decreases in OS and HCy were only observed when there was an increase in glutathione (in erythrocytes) and a decrease in sickle erythrocytes in patients treated with formula F. The MMSE II score remained almost the same in the group treated with donepezil and placebo, whereas some significant improvements were found in the group treated with donepezil plus formula F.

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/20224285

Compared to CT alone, CT + H [conventional therapy plus herbs] significantly benefited AD patients. A symptomatic effect of CT + H was more pronounced with time. Cognitive decline was substantially decelerated in patients with moderate severity, while the cognitive function was largely stabilized in patients with mild severity over two years. These results imply that Chinese herbal medicines may provide an alternative and additive treatment for AD.

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5729264/

 

These are both very interesting studies!! I wonder if formula F is or was ever on the market?

I found the studies I was thinking about. They didn't have to do with herbs, but with supplements added to conventional meds. This ginseng may be the same one your posted?  I do others..not so much herbs, but nutritional stuff etc  w/o conv meds that I'll post in a new thread.

 Supplements used in combination with medications (Adjuvant)

                     wVitamin D

  Annweiler C, Herrmann FR, Fantino B, Brugg B, Beauchet O. Effectiveness of the combination of memantine plus vitamin d on cognition in patients with Alzheimer disease: a pre-post pilot study. Cogn Behav Neurol. 2012 Sep;25(3):121-7.

           

               wVitamin B12

            https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5028542/

           

               wGinseng

            Heo JH, Lee ST, Chu K, et al. An open-label trial of Korean red ginseng as an adjuvant treatment for  cognitive impairment in patients with Alzheimer’s disease. Eur J Neurol. 2008 Aug;15(8):8658.

            https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S1226845317303524

    

               wLipoic Acid

      Hager K, Marahrens A, Kenklies M, Riederer P, Munch G. Alpha-lipoic acid as a new treatment option for Alzheimer [corrected] type dementia. Arch Gerontol Geriatric. 2001 Jun; 32(3): 275-82.

     

      Hager K, Kenklies M, McAfoose J, Engel J, Munch G. Alpha-lipoic acid as a new treatment option for  Alzheimer’s disease--a 48 months follow-up analysis. J Neural Transm Suppl. 2007 (72): 189-93.



Lane Simonian
Posted: Monday, March 2, 2020 11:19 PM
Joined: 12/12/2011
Posts: 4779


Thanks very much, LDDaughter.  As far as I know, formula F never made it to market.  I have seen the 2008 ginseng study, but not sure if I ever posted it.  I appreciated the links in your new post (one, though, was to a different article and a couple of them don't link to anything now).
Lurker123
Posted: Monday, March 9, 2020 8:38 AM
Joined: 1/25/2020
Posts: 4


From the paper "This work was supported by the grants from the Korean Society of Ginseng 2009 and 2010, funded by Korea Ginseng Corporation."  

Any scientist who points out the flaws in this paper must be in it just for the money, but I'm sure the Korean society of Ginseng and the Korea Ginseng Corporation funded this work purely out of altruism.
Lane Simonian
Posted: Monday, March 9, 2020 11:34 AM
Joined: 12/12/2011
Posts: 4779


Unless the results were falsified, it does not matter.  That goes for any trial where big money and powerful sponsors are involved.
MissHer
Posted: Tuesday, March 10, 2020 9:41 AM
Joined: 11/13/2014
Posts: 2296


Thank you Lane for all of your hard work. I still believe everything my grandparents and parents taught me. Eat right, take your supplements, get some fresh air and sunshine, the chemicals that they spray on our food causes cancer. My parents did the organic growing and let the cows graze on grass, their natural food source. My mom had chelation therapy and had to travel out of state . We can't have such things here. There are no natural practioners here. We have to go out of state to see one.   Our state gets lot's of funding for the Iowa State University. (Always with strings attached, of course) We tried getting fluoride out of our water but ISU decided that it was good for us, so that was all it took. (They have a dental school at ISU.) I'm sure all of the farm chemical runoff in our water is just fine,too. Big AG here in IA,Monsanto country. GMO's are just fine because Monsanto's scientist said so. (According to our "huge farm" senator, who get's lots of money from them. (Open secrets) ) Another huge lobbyist in DC. We have lot's of ALZ patients here and thyroid issues but who cares. It's all about the money and we all know that. We aren't stupid. 

We did manage to get a dentist that can safely remove those mercury fillings,though. I don't know how he achieved that, and it's great, but expensive. He is located in Iowa City. Mercury is only bad in light bulbs. lol


Lane Simonian
Posted: Tuesday, March 10, 2020 10:23 AM
Joined: 12/12/2011
Posts: 4779


I appreciate all your posts, MissHer.  We have lots of thyroid problems here in western Nevada which may be the result of mercury in the water from old mining operations.  I cannot eat wheat perhaps because of Monsanto's herbicides.  

What poisons the body, poisons the brain.  And what is good for the body is good for the brain.  An unhealthy diet and exposure to environmental toxins are probably two of the greatest risk factors for Alzheimer's disease.  A healthy diet and avoiding environmental toxins (which is almost impossible these days) reduce the risk of Alzheimer's disease.

It is easier to blame amyloid and tau than it is to blame powerful polluters and chemical companies for the explosion in Alzheimer's cases.  


Lane Simonian
Posted: Saturday, March 28, 2020 2:22 PM
Joined: 12/12/2011
Posts: 4779


Good, new article on the potential of ginseng to treat a variety of neurological diseases.

https://www.frontiersin.org/articles/10.3389/fncel.2020.00055/full