From Klamath to the AfaMax® extract
The antioxidant, anti-inflammatory and anti-tumoral properties of AFA-phycocyanins.
We have seen how Klamath algae contain the specific cyanobacteria molecules called phycocyanins, molecules typical to blue-green algae which are capable of inhibiting the greater part of inflammatory processes much better than pharmaceutical drugs, and without producing any side effects. Phycocyanins are, in fact, selective and partial inhibitors of COX-2, and yet at the same time are able to keep COX-1 fully intact.
We have seen how Klamath algae contain the specific cyanobacteria molecules called phycocyanins, molecules typical to blue-green algae which are capable of inhibiting the greater part of inflammatory processes much better than pharmaceutical drugs, and without producing any side effects. Phycocyanins are, in fact, selective and partial inhibitors of COX-2, and yet at the same time are able to keep COX-1 fully intact. Whereas COX-1 carries out important and beneficial homeostatic functions, COX-2 leads to the production of various inflammatory eicosanoids (prostaglandins, leucotrienes, thromboxans), which are only useful when not in excess. The great advantage of phycocyanins is precisely their ability to inhibit only partially COX-2 (around 50%-60%), thereby reducing inflammatory conditions without compromising the capacity of the body to regulate inflammation. This means that phycocyanins are very valid natural and physiological alternative, capable of powerfully assisting the body in its fight against inflammation.
Phycocyanins also directly inhibit the enzyme 5-lipoxigenase, and thus also the production of leucotriene B4 (LTB4), which is responsible in particular for respiratory-allergic symptoms. Klamath algae’s antinflammatory action is further enhanced by its synergy with an enormous quantity of anti-oxidants and Omega 3. Most importantly, however, the phycocyanins contained in Klamath algae have a rare structure which differs from that of other phycocyanins (such as those of Spirulina): one of its sub-components is in fact comprised of a molecule, phycoerytrocyanin or PEC, which makes the entire molecule all that much more powerful.
AFA-phycocyanins, the unique type of Klamath algae’s phycocyanins, possess an antioxidant activity which is 75 to 200 times greater than that of the more common phycocyanins contained in Spirulina; while their selective COX-2 inhibition activity is 30% greater! It must also be said that although the concentration of AFA-phycocyanins contained in Klamath algae guarantees an excellent anti-oxidant protection and carries out a preventive anti-inflammatory action, it doesn’t produce any elevated anti-inflammatory effects. It is for this reason that we invented and improved the specific extract of AFA-phycocyanins AfaMax®, which increases the concentration of AFA-PC by approximately 300%, that is 3 times as much, thereby reaching some very specific health goals.
We have already seen how phycocyanins are powerful natural anti-inflammatory agents, and also how the AFA-phycocyanins are the most powerful among all known phycocyanins. In vitro data have been confirmed by in vivo studies, both on animals and humans. A recent study carried out by the University of Ferrara tested the capacity of AfaMax® to inhibit inflammation in mice, that was generated by an injection of capsaicine (the active ingredient in chili pepper) directly on their mucous membranes. One case involved the membrane of the stomach, and another case involved that of the urinary tract: in both cases, the previous intake of the AfaMax® extract inhibited inflammation by 90% to 100%!
AfaMax® has demonstrated its efficacy also in two human preliminary studies:
a) the first study involved 10 patients suffering from chronic psoriasis who failed to show any signs of response from other pharmacological or natural treatments; yet 9 out of 10 patients reported radical improvements, in fact in some cases completely resolving their condition, upon taking 3 tablets per day of the AfaMax® based product (AlgoZym®); b) the second study involved 20 women suffering from fibromyalgia reporting widespread pain, asthenia and stiffness; they were treated with 2 tablets per day for 2 months of the product AlgoZym®: at the end of the study, despite the treatment’s low dosage and short duration, there was a statistically very significant reduction in pain, while the symptoms of stiffness and asthenia disappeared in 2/3 of the cases.
The antiproliferative capacities of the AfaMax® extract have been tested with positive results on different lines of cancer cells. Comparing the efficiency of AFA-PC with respect to those of Spirulina- PC, in relation to human cultured leukaemia cells, it was shown that while the Spirulina PCs had a maximum inhibiting effect of 49% even at high dosages (50μM), the AFA-PCs were able to inhibit proliferation by 100% at a dosage of just 10μM (5 times less)!!! These data are of course preliminary, but they are indeed extremely promising!
Recent studies carried out on C-phycocyanin, which is also present in Klamath algae and is concentrated in AfaMax®, have revealed further important properties, particularly at the cardiovascular level, an area where phycocyanins have also demonstrated to carry out specific cardioprotective and anti-atherosclerotic activities, in addition to aiding in cholesterol reduction. Phycocyanins have also shown a very high wound healing (cicatrizing) and anti-ulcer activity, explained by ability to powerfully stimulate the production and activity of fibroblasts.