V. B. Lower respiratory tract infection
The lower respiratory tract infection are the infection consisting of the trachea (wind pipe), bronchial tubes, the bronchioles, and the lungs, including the bronchitis and pneumonia. According to The World Health Report 2004 – Changing History(1), in 2002 lower respiratory track infection were still the leading cause of deaths among all infectious diseases, and accounted for 3.9 million deaths worldwide and 6.9% of all deaths that year.
Pneumonia is defined as a condition of the inflammation of the lung as a result of infection, caused by bacteria, such as bacteria Streptococcus pneumoniae or influenza viruses in most cases. Fungi, such as Pneumocystis jiroveci, certain medication such as PPI Stomach Acid Drugs and other conditions such as impaired immune systems.
F.3. Phytochemicals to prevent pneumonia
Genistein, a radioprotective soy isoflavone and protein kinase inhibitor, blocks the invasion of pathogenic bacteria in mammalian epithelial cells. In the study to evaluate the direct effect of genistein on the survival and growth of the probiotic Lactobacillus reuteri and selected opportunistic bacteria in vitro as a prelude to in vivo use for managing postirradiation sepsis, showed that in the CFU assays, significant reductions in CFUs were found for S. aureus and B. anthracis when cultured in the presence of 100 muM genistein. However, L. reuteri, E. coli, S. sonnei, and K. pneumoniae were not altered by in vitro culturing in the presence of 100 muM genistein, according to the Armed Forces Radiobiology Research Institute(60).
Puerarin is a major isoflavonoid derived from the Chinese medical herb Radix puerariae (kudzu root), In the study to investigate the myocardial protective effect of puerarin injection (PI) in children with severe pneumonia, conducted by Hospital Affiliated to Weifang Medical College, indicated that
change of serum myocardial zymographic parameters was indirectly proportional to the severity of childrens condition. The reduction of myocardial contractive function was demonstrated by the change of cardiac blood flow parameters in Ultrasound Doppler examination (P < 0.01). Both PI and FDP had the effect in protecting myocardium and improving heart function, showing insignificant difference between their efficacy (P > 0.05), but PI had less stimulation to vessels and without any obvious adverse reaction(61).
The fermented leaves and stems of Cyclopia intermedia are used to brew Honeybush tea, a herbal tea indigenous to South Africa. The plant is also used to manufacture a sweet herbal infusion used for restorative properties such as soothing coughs and alleviating bronchial complaints including tuberculosis, pneumonia, and catarrh. According to the study by University of the Free State, flavonoids are presumed to contribute significantly toward the scavenging effects of active oxygen species, our results indicate that the tentative claimed health-promoting properties may be attributed to the presence of these and other phenolics in C. intermedia(62).
Strong evidence of experimental and animal studies have shown the activities of catechins, the main constituents of green tea, against infectious agents. In the study to investigate the association between green tea consumption and the risk of pneumonia in humans, foudn that Green tea consumption was associated with a lower risk of death from pneumonia in Japanese women(63).
Resveratrol is a type of natural phenol in the group of Stilbenoids, produced naturally by many plants when under attack by bacteria or fungi. It has been studied by many researchers for it health benefits in treating chronic diaereses, including cancer, diabetes, heart disease, etc. According to the study by the Chang Gung University, pretreatment with RSV for 3 days markedly increased alveolar macrophage infiltration, elevated NK cell activity, and decreased bacterial burden in the infected lung with a subsequent decrease in mortality. These effects were associated with significantly less-severe inflammatory phenotypes in lung tissue and bronchoalveolar lavage fluid, including reduced neutrophil infiltration of the lungs, reduced phagocytosis activity, and reduced secretion of cytokines such as TNF-alpha, IL-1beta, and IL-6. To further characterize the underlying mechanism responsible for these effects of RSV, LPS derived from S. marcescens was used to induce acute pneumonia in rats, with or without RSV pretreatment. RSV was shown to ameliorate acute pneumonia via inhibition of the NF-kappaB signaling pathway, including inhibition of IkappaBalpha phosphorylation and subsequent NF-kappaB activation(64).
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