Randomized, double-blinded, placebo-controlled clinical study released.
The February issue of the Journal of Clinical Pharmacy and Therapeutics published an article describing what researchers at the universities of British Columbia, Alberta and Dalhousie describe as a breakthrough in the fight against viral infections such as the common cold and the flu.
Their research was done using ECHINILIN™, (pronounced: ee-kin’-i-lin), which is a highly standardized form of Echinacea purpurea. ECHINILIN™ is the culmination of eight years of immunological studies done by scientists at Factors R & D Technologies Ltd. in collaboration with researchers at the universities of Alberta, British Columbia and Dalhousie in Canada, as well as Heinrich-Hein University in Düsseldorf, Germany, and Karl-Franzens University in Graz, Austria.
In contrast to other over-the-counter cold and flu treatments, ECHINILIN™ does not mask or suppress symptoms. Rather, clinical trials with human volunteers showed that ECHINILIN™ stimulates the immune system, which more quickly mounts an attack against the invading virus.
Dr. Tapan Basu, Professor of Nutritional Biochemistry, University of Alberta, and lead investigator of the human clinical studies, comments: “We saw an immediate increase in the white blood cell counts (macrophages), of participants when they were given ECHINILIN™, which indicates that their immune system was stimulated to target and destroy the viruses. The end result was a remarkably high reduction in both severity of symptoms and duration of the infection.”
Currently, there are no vaccines or anti-virals for the common cold. Antibiotics are also ineffective in treating cold viruses. Similarly, there are very few anti-virals for flu viruses and of these only two or three strains are targeted. None have been tested against new and emerging viruses.
In this regard, Dr. Tim Lee, Professor of Immunology at Dalhousie Medical School, who participated in the clinical research study, commented that: “This is a remarkable study for a number of reasons. First, there are no other products or even prescription drugs that work at the therapeutic level to stimulate the innate immune system. Because ECHINILIN™ stimulates the immune system, and since it is highly effective against cold viruses, of which there are over 200 strains such as the rhinovirus and coronavirus, I anticipate that it will also prove an effective adjunct in the fight against many viruses since all viruses require an immune system response. As an immunologist I am excited about ECHINILIN™’s potential in a world of constantly new and mutating viruses.”
Dr. Tapan Basu points out that “many studies have sought to find a treatment for the common cold and other viruses with very little or no success. For example, studies with echinacea have been done before, but the research has been disappointing. In contrast, ECHINILIN™ is triple-standardized, (alkylamide, polysaccharide, cichoric acid), and the randomized, double-blinded, placebo-controlled human studies showed it to be consistently effective in fighting off cold and flu viruses.”
ECHINILIN™ does not require a prescription and is now available in the health section of food and pharmacy stores.
References: Goel, V, et al., “Efficacy of a standardized echinacea preparation (EchinilinTM) for the treatment of the common cold: a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial,” Journal of Clinical Pharmacy and Therapeutics, (2004) 29, 75–83
– 30 –