Ginger-Based Nanoparticle Discovered, Can Treat Inflammatory Bowel Diseases

First Posted: Aug 19, 2016 05:56 AM EDT

Fresh ginger root could make wonders. A team of scientists from Atlanta Veterans Affairs Medical Center makes use of ginger to the fullest. They turned the ginger into ginger-derived nanoparticles (GDNPs), which could potentially treat inflammatory bowel diseases.

The findings of the study will be printed in the September issue of Biomaterials. The study involved experiments with cells and mice. It was led by Dr. Didier Merlin from VA and the Institute for Biomedical Sciences at Georgia State University and other colleagues, according to Phys.Org.

In the study, the researchers utilized a kitchen blender to break the ginger up into single pellets. It used super high-speed centrifuging and ultrasonic dispersion of the ginger juice. They advise people not to try this at home. Dr. Merlin theorizes that the particles would be a good medicine for inflammatory diseases such as ulcerative colitis and Crohn's disease. The GDNPs could also aid in combating cancer linked to colitis.

The ginger-derived nanoparticle was about 230 nanometers in diameter and over 300 of them could fit across the width of a human hair. The team fed the particles to lab mice. They are nontoxic and have significant therapeutic effects. The results showed that the particles were absorbed particularly by cells in the lining of the intestines. This is where the IBD inflammation occurs. The GDNPs also lessen the acute colitis and inhibited chronic colitis and colitis-associated cancer. They also enhanced the intestinal repair.

They targeted the colon as such boosting the survival and proliferation of the cells that make up the lining of the colon. The GDNPs also reduced the production of proteins, which promote inflammation and raise the levels of proteins that fight inflammation.

The team stated that having these compounds in nanoparticle may be a more effectual way to target colon tissue than simply providing the herb as a food supplement. They further stated that it could be a very cost-effective source of medicine.

Ginger is a flowering plant in which its root is widely used as a spice or a folk medicine. It belongs to the family of Zingiberaceae otherwise turmeric, cardamom and galangal. It originated in the tropical rainforest in Southern Asia. It is mainly used as kitchen spice although some people used it to treat certain medical conditions because of its health benefits.

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