Monday, August 07, 2017

Punarnava - Herbal remedy for Hepatitis C

Hepatitis C is an infectious disease caused by the hepatitis C virus (HCV). The virus spreads through blood-to-blood contact, and is usually associated with the use of intravenous drug use, blood donations and other unhygienic use of medical equipment leading to exchange of blood. Once infected, a patient can go years without facing severe symptoms, like liver failure and cirrhosis, only to feel it’s accumulated effects after a long period. HCV affects over 8 million people in the country and has been a cause of major cause for concern.Now, a new class of drug resistant strand of HCV have emerged making the situation worse.

A group of scientists from the Indian Institute of Science (IISc) have now come up with a possible deterrent to the virus, derived from a common herb used to relieve pain. Boerhavia diffusa is a flowering plant and a common ingredient in many ayurvedic medicine, with the plant commonly referred to as a Punarnava, something that rejuvenates the body. Now, with their new study, the scientists have identified dehydrorotenoid boeravinone H, a compound found in the plant, as a possible inhibitor of the HCV virus. The study showed that the presence of the compound inhibiting the entry and binding of particles like HCV, with no noticeable side-effects. Although researchers are still studying as to how exactly the compound inhibits HCV growth, the result could be used to develop a new class of drugs to fight the drug resistant HCV’s. The herbs that were prescribed by our elders may have had some truth after all.

Learn more about Ayurvedic Medicinal Herbs
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