(Natural News) Now that antibiotic resistance is becoming prevalent in different bacterial species, it has become crucial to find new sources of antibacterial compounds. One study, conducted by researchers from the Center for Complementary Medicine and University Medical Center Freiburg, has shown that medication from anthroposophical medicine known as Berberis Decoctum D2 possesses antibacterial potential. This was observed through the evaluation of bactericidal properties of different anthroposophic drugs.
Anthroposophical medicine is a widely used practice in German-speaking areas that involves a holistic approach to man and nature. This practice integrates medication with other forms of therapy, such as art, eurythmy, psychotherapy, counseling, and rhythmical massage, that are performed by medical personnel. Although they are clinically used for treating infectious diseases, anthroposophic medications have no antibacterial claims. Practitioners of anthroposophical medicine believe that substances in nature are associated with the human formative processes so these medications work simply by improving the ability of the body to heal itself. However, this does not eliminate the possibility that these medications, which are prepared from plants, minerals, and animal-based ingredients, contain antibacterial compounds.
In this study, which was published in BMC Complementary and Alternative Medicine, the bactericidal activity of selected preparations from Anthroposophical Medicine was evaluated. Only drugs that had no alcoholic content, were prepared using only one plant, and are used for treating infectious diseases were used for this study. Following these criteria, only 33 anthroposophic drugs were studied.
The antibacterial activity of these medications was tested against Gram-positive bacteria, Bacillus subtilis and Staphylococcus aureus, as well as Gram-negative bacteria, E. coli and Pseudomonas aeruginosa. It was determined that only Berberis Decoctum D2, Betula Cortex Decoctum D2, Solidago virgaurea Mother Tincture, and Geum urbanum Mother Tincture have antibacterial activity. However, pH neutralization revealed that the bactericidal activity of tinctures from Solidago virgaurea and Geum urbanum was only brought about by their initially acidic pH values so they were eliminated from further studies.
The antibacterial potentials of Berberis Decoctum D2, Betula Cortex Decoctum D2 were further analyzed using the drop plate method. In this experiment, it was shown that Betula Cortex Decoctum D2 did not have a significant antibacterial effect and was, thus, excluded from the succeeding experiments, leaving only Berberis Decoctum D2.
For Berberis Decoctum D2, it was observed that its antibacterial activity only worked against B. subtilis and S. aureus. Since B. subtilis has not been implicated in human diseases, the researchers focused on activity against clinical isolates of methicillin-resistant and methicillin-susceptible S. aureus strains. They were able to observe that Berberis Decoctum D2 was effective even against the methicillin-resistant strain, although higher concentrations were needed compared to common antibiotics.
Berberis Decoctum D2 is derived from the roots and bark of Berberis vulgaris, which has been shown to contain berberine. Previous studies have shown that the alkaloid berberine is an effective antimicrobial agent. The presence of this compound could potentially be attributed for the antibacterial activity of Berberis Decoctum D2.
The results of this study show that the Anthroposophic medication Berberis Decoctum D2 has selective activity against Gram-positive bacteria, specifically B. subtilis and S. aureus. This is possibly due to the presence of berberine in the drug. Additionally, it was also revealed to be effective against methicillin-resistant S. aureus strains, showing its potential use as an antibiotic against resistant bacteria. (Related: Antibiotic resistance poses ‘catastrophic threat’ to mankind over next 20 years: Breaking report.)
Other natural antibiotics
Aside from Berberis Decoctum D2, other natural sources for antibacterial compounds include:
- Garlic – Previous studies have proven that garlic is effective against Salmonella and E.coli. Aside from this, it has also shown potential in treating multi-drug resistant tuberculosis.
- Honey – This sweet substance isn’t just for culinary purposes. It has exhibited antibacterial activity against over 60 kinds of bacteria, which is attributed to high levels of hydrogen peroxide content. Similar to Berberis Decoctum D2, honey is also effective against methicillin-resistant S. aureus strains.
- Echinacea – Members of the Echinacea family have been traditionally used for treating wounds and infections. Recently, it was discovered that these flowering plants exhibit antibacterial, as well as anti-inflammatory activities.
Learn more about the antibacterial potential medications from Anthroposophical Medicine by visiting AlternativeMedicine.news today.