JAMMU, Jan 20: A team of scientists at Patanjali Research Institute has found classical ayurvedic nasal drop ‘Anu taila’ effective against the black fungus (mucor), by using sophisticated scientific technologies.
The intractable mucormycosis caused by Mucorales primarily targets immune compromised individuals. The first-line therapy, intravenous liposomal Amphotericin B and surgical debridement of necrotic tissue, is contraindicative in individuals with compromised kidneys. This invokes a pressing need to identify safer treatment options.
Antifungal effect of the classical nasal drop, Anu taila, against Mucor spp. was investigated through microbiological, cytological, analytical chemical (HPLC and GS/MS/MS) and field emission scanning electron microscopic (FE-SEM) approaches. Anu taila pre-treated spores germinated late, resulting in reduced infectivity, observed as milder monocytic immune response. Conversely, Anu taila pre-treated THP-1 cells exhibited an improved immune response, through TNF-?, against Mucor spores. Repeated Anu taila application abolished fungal microarchitectures faster than Amphotericin B, evident from rapid replacement of hyphae, sporangiophores and sporangia with fused biomass, in the FESEM images. Anu taila down regulated sterol-C5-desaturase-coding ERG3 gene, crucial for ergosterol biosynthesis and resultant structural integrity, in Mucor spp.
Taken together, Anu taila was found effective against Mucor spp., with both prophylactic and curative implications, attributable to its phytochemical composition.
This is yet another instance of scientific validation and modern applicability of ayurvedic medicines, in order to take them closer towards much-deserved acclamation and glory.