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Nutraceuticals and herbal extracts: A ray of hope for COVID‑19 and related infections (Review)

Abstract. The global pandemic caused by the novel coronavirus
disease 2019 (COVID‑19), for which there is no effective vaccine
or treatment available yet, has led to a global health emergency.
Despite a lack of clinical data, compelling evidence from the
literature suggests that certain nutraceuticals (such as omega‑3
fats, β‑glucans, amino acids, probiotics, vitamins and minerals)
and plant‑based compounds derived from herbal extracts may
potentially be used in the treatment of COVID‑19. In the present
review article, the benets of such natural products in treating
various respiratory complications are highlighted, and it is
tentatively suggested that these benets could be extrapolated to
COVID‑19. These natural compounds may not only modulate
the immunity of a susceptible population, but may also pave the
way towards the development of drugs which may be used to treat
COVID‑19. Although attention has recently focused on these
compounds in this context, further clinical and experimental
studies are required to validate their efcacy. It is thus suggested
that the in vitro and in vivo evaluation of these compounds be
carried out as soon as possible, in order to counteract the ongoing
increase in the number of cases of COVID‑19.
1. Introduction
2. Therapeutic benefits of nutraceuticals for respiratory
3. Therapeutic benefits of herbal extracts for respiratory
4. Conclusion
1. Introduction
Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID‑19). Global health is
threatened by an ongoing outbreak of COVID‑19, a respiratory
disease caused by the novel coronavirus, SARS‑CoV‑2, which
was rst identied in December, 2019 in Wuhan, China (1). As
of August 28, 2020, >24.7 million individuals had been infected
with the virus worldwide, and approximately 838,000 have
succumbed to the disease (2). In total, seven types of coronavi‑
ruses, namely severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus
(SARS‑CoV), Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus
(MERS‑CoV), severe acute respiratory syndrome corona
virus 2 (SARS‑CoV‑2), OC43, NL63, 229E and HKU1, are
known to infect humans. Of these, the rst three can cause
fatal infections, whereas the latter four typically cause mild
common cold‑associated symptoms, particularly in immuno
compromised individuals (3). COVID‑19 is highly contagious
and infected patients exhibit symptoms of fever, pneumonia,
thrombocytopenia, cough, dyspnea, myalgia and asthenia (4).
Prevention and treatment of COVID‑19. As of August 5, 2020,
no vaccine or successful treatment for COVID‑19 has been
reported and only supportive care, personal protection, early
diagnosis and isolation are available to reduce the spread and
severity of the infection (5). Huang et al (6) reported that pat ients
with COVID‑19 develop acute respiratory distress syndrome,
followed by anemia, acute heart injuries and secondary
infections. Empirical therapy with antibiotics (including ceph‑
alosporins, azithromycin, vancomycin, quinolones, tigecycline
and carbapenems), antivirals (including lopinavir, ritonavir,
remdesivir and oseltamivir) and corticosteroids (including
dexamethasone and methylprednisolone) has thus been used
for the treatment of patients with COVID‑19 (7). The clinical
efcacy of all of these treatments, however, warrants further
Potential agents with which to combat COVID‑19. Research
proposals and clinical trials have suggested that some treat
ments, including supplements and phytochemicals, have
the potential to help fight coronavirus infection. A recent
study suggested that the risk of becoming infected could be
reduced by vitamin D3 supplementation. Serum concentra
tions >40‑60 ng/ml (100‑150 nmol/l) were suggested to be
Nutraceuticals and herbal extracts: A ray of hope
for COVID‑19 and related infections (Review)
1Institute of Biochemistry and Biotechnology, University of the Punjab, Lahore, Punjab 54590;
2Ofce of the Registrar, Virtual University of Pakistan, Lahore, Punjab 55150; 3Institute of Industrial Biotechnology,
Government College University, Lahore, Punjab 54000, Pakistan
Received May 16, 2020; Accepted August 27, 2020
DOI: 10.3892/ijfn. 2020.6
Correspondence to: Mr. Ahmed Hamza Tahir, Institute of
Biochemistry and Biotechnology, University of the Punjab,
Quaid‑i‑Azam Campus, Canal Road, Lahore, Punjab 54590,
Key words: coronavirus, COVID‑19, human health, nutraceuticals,
herbal, phytochemicals, natural products
required in order to prevent infection, with even higher doses
required to treat patients already infected (8). In addition,
due to its antiviral and immunomodulatory properties, zinc
supplementation may also be considered for use in the preven‑
tion or treatment of COVID‑19 (9). Zhang et al (10) proposed
that melatonin, which has antioxidant and anti‑inammatory
properties, together with a good safety profile, and also
potentially modulates the immune system, improves sleep
quality, and reduces vessel permeability, anxiety and the use
of sedatives, may lead to better clinical outcomes for patients
with COVID‑19. Ang et al (11) analyzed the potential of tradi‑
tional herbal medicines, which contained a total of 56 herbs,
for the treatment of patients with COVID‑19. The detailed
review by Islam et al (12) also reported that a wide range of
herbal compounds, including tylophorine, lycorine, ouabain,
silvestrol, homoharringtonine and 7‑methoxycryptopleurine,
broadly suppressed different coronaviruses, with IC50 values
ranging from 12 to 143 nM. Yu et al (13) also demonstrated
that the plant‑derived flavonoids, myricetin and scutella
rein, are inhibitors of SARS‑CoV helicase. Collectively, the
above‑mentioned studies suggest that natural products and
dietary supplements may help in the ght against COVID‑19.
A pictorial representation of the potential benecial effects
of nutraceuticals and herbal extracts against COVID‑19 is
depicted in Fig. 1.
SARS, SARS‑CoV‑2 and MERS are known as enveloped
viruses (14), and several bioactive lipids, including omega‑3
fatty acids, such as eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and doco
sahexaenoic acid (DHA), have been reported to inactivate
these enveloped viruses and reduce their proliferation (15).
Some metabolites of EPA and arachidonic acid, such as
thromboxanes, leukotrienes and prostaglandins, induce
inflammation (16), whereas other metabolites of EPA and
DHA, such as maresins, protectins, resolvins and lipoxins,
suppress inammation, modulate the T‑cell response, reduce
microbial load, augment phagocytosis and enhance wound
healing processes. These latter bioactive lipids can be used
in the treatment of airway inammation and common human
lung diseases, such as chronic obstructive pulmonary disease
(COPD) and asthma (17,18). A recent study revealed that both
EPA and DHA, from sh oil, improved breathing for patients
with asthma (19). The oral or intravenous administration
of EPA or DHA could, therefore, potentially promote the
recovery of patients with COVID‑19 (20).
With regards to the recent increase in the number of
published articles on COVID‑19, including reports of infected
cases, fatalities, disease severity and vulnerability (21), the
purpose of the present review article is to draw the attention
of medical and pharmacy professionals towards nutraceuticals
and herbal extracts for the treatment of COVID‑19. The present
review focuses on reported facts and gures to highlight the
potential of natural products to strengthen the immunity of
the general population, and to pave the way for the identica
tion of drugs which may be used in the treatment of patients
with COVID‑19. Mathematical models predict that reported
numbers of cases of COVID‑19 will continue to increase until
a vaccine is made available to the global market (22). The
present review article highlights the therapeutic signicance of
some promising natural products with activity against viruses
in general, and COVID‑19 in particular.
2. Therapeutic benets of nutraceuticals for respiratory
Vita mins. A daily intake of 20‑50 µg of vitamin D was
recently recommended for obese individuals, healthcare
workers and smokers in order to enhance their resistance
to COVID‑19 infection (23). Yalaki et al (24) reported that
supplementation with vitamin D in patients suffering from
acute bronchiolitis increased immunity and normalized
pulmonary function. Other studies have also associated the
administration of vitamin D with the reduced likelihood of
developing respiratory infections (25,26). The administra
tion of high‑dose vitamin C (1,000‑6,000 mg) has also been
reported to decrease the time spent by critically ill patients on
mechanical ventilation by 25%, and also reduced their length
of stay in an intensive care unit (27). Of note, vitamin C has
also been proven to be effective against asthma induced by the
common cold (28,29).
Dietary minerals
Selenium. The importance of selenium for optimal immune
function has been emphasized in the literature (30). Selenium
provides resistance against viral infections through its redox
homeostasis and antioxidant properties (31). Selenium de
ciency has been associated with impaired immune function,
likely due to increased oxidative stress in the host organism (32).
This can lead to alterations in the viral genome, which may
increase virulence and boost pathogenicity (33). Dietary
selenium has been shown to improve immunity against the
lethal H1N1 inuenza virus infection (34‑36) and can also be
potentially used in the current battle against COVID‑19 (37).
Zinc. Elderly individuals are often decient in zinc, which
is essential for immune function, and zinc deficiency is
considered to be a potential risk factor for the development
of pneumonia among the elderly (38,39). Barnett et al (40)
found that older subjects with higher serum zinc concentra
tions (>70 µg/dl) were not only characterized by a lower
incidence of pneumonia (P<0.001), but also with a lower dura‑
tion of disease and less need for antibiotics than older patients
with low serum zinc concentrations (<70 µg/dl). Other studies
have demonstrated that zinc deciency is associated with an up
to 80% higher incidence of pneumonia in children (41,42) and
zinc supplementation has also been reported to signicantly
decrease the development of respiratory diseases among
children suffering from acute lower respiratory tract infec
tions (43). A previous in vitro study also indicated that zinc
salts inhibited the replication of respiratory syncytial virus
(RSV) and prevent cell‑to‑cell spread in human epithelial
type 2 (HEp‑2) cells (44). Zinc is considered to be essential
for the respiratory epithelium due to its anti‑inammatory
and antioxidant activities, along with its ability to regulate
tight junction proteins, including claudin‑1 and Zonula
occludens‑1 (45,46). In a separate study, the length of cilia at
the bronchial epithelium of zinc‑decient rats was shown to be
improved by zinc supplementation (47). In vit ro experiments
in the study by Woodworth et al (48) highlighted the ability
of zinc to boost mucociliary clearance by enhancing the beat
frequency of cilia. Zinc ions have also been found to inhibit
the RNA‑dependent RNA polymerases of influenza virus,
hepatitis C virus (HCV) and rhinoviruses, and to impair the
activity of the RNA‑synthesizing machinery of nidoviruses,
the order of viruses to which SARS‑CoV‑2 belongs (49,50).
Iron. Whereas excessively high serum concentrations of
iron can cause oxidative stress and lead to viral mutations, iron
deciency can impair host immunity and increase suscepti
bility to infections (51). The dysregulated homeostasis of iron,
which alters serum concentrations, has been associated with
several respiratory diseases, including asthma, cystic brosis,
COPD, idiopathic pulmonary brosis, acute respiratory tract
infections and lung cancer (52,53). The strict regulation of
serum iron concentration could thus provide favorable clinical
outcomes for patients with COVID‑19.
N‑acetyl‑cysteine (NAC). NAC, which is derived from the
naturally occurring amino acid, cysteine, is most commonly
prescribed to patients suffering from various respiratory
complications, including respiratory tract infections, idiopathic
pulmonary brosis and chronic bronchitis (54‑56). The anti
oxidant and mucolytic effects of NAC have been reported to
signicantly improve the function of airways and to reduce
COPD exacerbations (57). NAC t reatment has also been reported
to inhibit the RSV infection of human alveolar epithelial (A549)
cells and to reduce mucin release (58). In a previous review
article, Sadowska (59) concluded that NAC may be benecial
in the management of COPD, since it would promote clearance
of mucus and alleviate oxidative stress and inammation. Ta ken
together, these results demonstrate the clear potential of NAC as
an adjuvant supplement for COVID‑19 patients (60,61).
Amino acids
Arginine. Arginine has been reported to act synergistically with
virucidal conditions, such as high temperatures and acidic pH
levels, and can thus potentially inactivate enveloped vir uses (62,63).
Tsuji m oto et al (64) successfully inactivated herpes simplex virus
type 2 (HSV‑2) using a solution of arginine. Similarly, inuenza
A has been shown to be inactivated under similar conditions (65).
Recently, Meingast and Heldt (63) suggested that arginine inac
tivates viruses through a variety of mechanisms, including pore
formation and destabilization of the viral membrane, the inhibi
tion of the function of non‑structural proteins, the suppression
of protein‑protein interactions and aggregation. Ikeda et al (66)
suggested that arginine associates with multiple sites on viral
particles, thereby affecting glycoprotein‑lipid interactions on the
viral envelope. Due to the low cytotoxicity of arginine, a previous
study demonstrated the possible use of an intranasal spray
containing an aqueous solution of arginine to inhibit inuenza
A infection in vivo (67). In a NC/Nga mouse model of asthma,
arginine was found to contribute to improved asthmatic symp
toms by reducing airway inammation in lung tissue and altering
L‑arginine metabolism (68).
Figure 1. Schematic diagram illustrating the potential benecial effects of nutraceuticals and herbal extracts in the management of COVID‑19.
Glutamine (GLN). GLN is one of the most abundant free
amino acids within the human body, with a concentration of
approximately 500‑900 µmol/l (69). In a murine model of
asthma, Lee et al (70) demonstrated that, at therapeutic doses,
GLN suppressed inammation by inhibiting the recruitment
of neutrophils into the airways. In a ventilator‑induced lung
injury (VILI) mouse model, in which the lungs of mice are
acutely injured by acid aspiration, the administration of GLN
was reported to reduce the destruction of lung tissue, lung
edema, cytokine production and neutrophil recruitment to the
lung (71). Oliveira et al (72) proposed that exogenous GLN
may be benecial against asthma and acute respiratory distress
syndrome (ARDS), and during the treatment of lung cancer.
Thus, GLN may provide therapeutic benets to COVID‑19
patients (73).
Probiotics. Nutritional supplementation with probiotics has
been reported to be beneficial for patients suffering from
respiratory tract infections (74‑76). Strasser et al (77) reported
that various strains of probiotics, including Lactococcus lactis
W58, Lactobacillus brevis W63, Enterococcus faecium W54,
Lactobacillus acidophilus W22, Bidobacteriumlactis W51
andBidobacterium bidum W23, helped to reduce the inci
dence of upper respiratory tract infections (URTIs) in trained
athletes, without altering performance. Another probiotic strain,
Lactobacillus casei Zhang, which exhibits immunomodulatory,
anti‑inammatory and anti‑oxidative effects, has been shown to
alleviate the symptoms of URTI and restore gastrointestinal hea lth
in adults and elderly subjects (78). RSV infection has also been
reported to be suppressed by various probiotic strains, including
Lactobacillus gasseri SBT2055 and Lactobacillus rham
nosus CRL1505 (79,80). The results of the meta‑analysis by
Kang et al (81) revealed the efcacy of probiotics in the treatment
of common cold infections. During the COVID‑19 pandemic,
the National Administration of Traditional Chinese Medicine
and the Chinese National Health Commission recommended
the use of probiotic therapy to control coronavirus infection (82);
however, the effectiveness of probiotics in reducing the mortality
rate of patients in intensive care units remains uncertain.
Jayawardena et al (83) suggested the use of probiotics as a dietary
supplement to prevent infection of susceptible populations with
SARS‑CoV‑2. Since probiotics are readily available as dietary
supplements and have negligible side‑effects if administered at
the correct doses, they may thus provide a useful intervention
strategy against COVID‑19 (84‑86). A study to evaluate whether
dietary supplementation with Lactobacillus coryniformis
K8 can help to prevent healthcare workers from contracting
COVID‑19 was registered at (NCT04366180)
on April 28, 2020.
Omega‑3 fatty acids. Fats, which can be classied as saturated
or unsaturated, form an essential pa rt of the human diet and play
a vital role in nutrition and health (87,88). Fats serve as a main
source of energy, participate in cell signaling and responses,
and play a structural role as part of the cell membrane.
Omega‑3 polyunsaturated fatty acids have been reported to
confer health benets in patients suffering from respiratory
complications, such as ARDS, COPD, impaired oxygenation
and pulmonary brosis (89‑92) and are attracting consider
able attention due to their anticoagulant properties and ability
to reduce inammation (93). The consumption of omega‑3
polyunsaturated fatty acids has been associated with a number
of physiological alterations, including the production of lung
surfactants, host‑microbial interactions, alterations in blood
rheology and the production of endogenous eicosanoids (94).
According to the study by Miyata and Arita (95), omega‑3
fatty acids can alleviate the inf lammatory complications
resulting from allergic reactions and asthma. Omega‑3 fatty
acids have also been reported to suppress the synthesis of
immunoglobulin E, leading to reduced airway inammation
and bronchoconstriction in patients with asthma (96). The
lipid mediator, protectin D1, which is derived from omega‑3
fatty acids, has been reported to suppress the replication of the
highly pathogenic inuenza H5N1 virus, and to improve the
survival of H5N1‑infected mice (97). Linday et al (98) found
that the simultaneous administration of cod liver oil (which
contains EPA and vitamin A) and a multivitamin‑mineral
supplement to children led to a statistically significant
(P<0.05) decrease in the mean number of URTI‑related
medical consultations over time. Overall, omega‑3 fatty
acids confer signicant health benets to patients with URTI
complications and shorten the length of stay of acutely ill
patients in hospital (99‑101). Since omega‑3 fatty acids have
proven to be effective in reducing airway inammation and
bronchoconstriction, have also exhibited efcacy against viral
infections (102,103), their potential for use against COVID‑19
warrants further investigation (104‑106).
β‑glucans. β‑glucans, which are potent activators of
immune cells, including neutrophils, natural killer cells and
macrophages, exert a favorable effect on the host defense
system (107). In addition to the immunomodulatory effects,
the administration of β‑glucans has been shown to reduce the
susceptibility of healthy subjects to URTIs and to decrease the
severity of URTIs in infected subjects (108‑111). β‑glucans
have also been shown to exhibit antiviral activity against
HSV‑1 (112,113) and inuenza virus (114,115). More recently,
it was suggested that β‑glucans can help to reduce morbidity
and mortality associated with COVID‑19 (116,117).
3. Therapeutic benets of herbal extracts for respiratory
The use of phytochemicals and natural products for the treatment
of various diseases is gaining worldwide attention (118,119). Prior
to the discovery of antibiotics, herbal extracts played an important
role in the treatment of diseases (120), and puried natural prod
ucts and herbal extracts now provide a rich pool of compounds
for the development of novel antiviral drugs (121). Lin et al (122)
summarized the antiviral activity of various natural products and
herbal medicines against some notable viral pathogens, including
RSV, measles virus, dengue virus, influenza virus, human
immunodeciency virus (HIV), HSV, HCV, hepatitis B virus,
enterovirus 71, coxsackievirus and coronavirus.
Cheng et al (123) examined the activity of naturally occur
ring triterpene glycosides (saikosaponins A, B, C and D),
extracted from medicinal plants, such as Bupleurum spp.,
Scrophularia scorodonia and Heteromorpha spp., against
coronaviruses. They found that the tested phytochemicals
significantly inhibited the early stage of human coronavirus
229E infection by interfering with viral replication, absorption
and penetration. In 2008, Lau et al (124) demonstrated that an
aqueous extract of the medicinal herb, Houttuynia cordata,
facilitated the clearance of SARS‑CoV infection in mice, both
by improving the immune response and by a direct antiviral
effect. Firstly, it stimulated cell‑mediated immunity and,
secondly, it attenuated viral replication by inhibiting pivotal viral
enzymes (RNA‑dependent RNA polymerase and 3CL protease)
involved in the replication process. Another traditional herb,
Pelargonium sidoides, has been tested clinically as a treatment
for human coronavirus, inuenza A virus (H1N1 and H3N2),
RSV, coxsackievirus, parainuenza virus, coughs, URTIs and
gastrointestinal conditions (125‑128). Licorice extract, derived
from the root of Glycyrrhiza glabra, has been shown to exhibit
in vitro activity against vesicular stomatitis virus, vaccinia
virus, SARS‑CoV, RSV and HIV‑1 (129,130). Nigella sativa,
also known as black seed, has emerged as a ‘miracle’ herb, with
potential antidiabetic, antioxidant, anticancer, anti‑inammatory,
bronchodilatory, immunomodulatory and pulmonary‑protective
activities (131,132). In 2005, Li et al screened >200 Chinese me dic
inal herbs for activity against SARS‑CoV and found that herbal
extracts from four medicinal plants, namely Lindera aggregata,
Pyrrosia lingua, Lycoris radiata and Artemisia annua, exhibited
antiviral activity (133). Further fractionation and purication of
the L. ra diata extract identied lycorine as a potential candidate
for the development of new anti‑SARS‑CoV drugs (133). Equally
importantly, Cordyceps (medicinal mushrooms) have signicant
potential to strengthen the cardiovascular, respiratory and
immune systems, and also have general antiviral and antioxi
dant properties (134‑136). The medicinal and health‑promoting
attributes of therapeutic fungi have recently gained considerable
attention in the eld of COVID‑19 research (137‑139).
4. Conclusion
The present review attempted to highlight the potential of
various nutraceuticals and herbal extracts as possible treatments
for COVID‑19. Although strong evidence for the potential of
these compounds to combat the ongoing COVID‑19 pandemic
has already appeared in the literature, new evidence is gradually
emerging (140). The reported clinical data are, however, still
inconclusive and there are also inconsistencies within the data,
since some clinical studies did not achieve the desired effects.
These inconsistencies seem to be related to a number of factors,
including the dose used, the heterogeneity of the target popula
tion, the plasma concentration, the beginning and duration of
the treatment and the route of administration (141). Taking these
factors into consideration, randomized and controlled trials
are required to resolve these controversies and to clarify issues
around the use of these compounds. In addition to an increase
in the reported number of cases, some patients who have recov
ered from coronavirus are testing positive again (142). Clinical
validation of compounds that could possibly help to combat the
COVID‑19 pandemic is thus urgently required.
The authors would like to thank International Science Editing
( for providing
free language‑editing services for this article.
No funding was received.
Availability of data and materials
Not applicable.
Authors' contributions
AHT and MMJ conceived this review. AHT wrote and revised
the manuscript. All authors read and approved the nal version
of the manuscript.
Ethics approval and consent to participate
Not applicable.
Patient consent for publication
Not applicable.
Competing interests
The authors declare that they have no competing interests.
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... Current medical research has conveyed that the risk of infection can decrease by the consumption of nutraceuticals from food such as omega 3, eicosapentaenoic, and docosahexaenoic acids. Also, the consumption of antioxidants contained in agricultural products such as fruits, vegetables, and medicinal plants, can limit the proliferation of the virus and help to interrupt inflammatory processes (Tahir et al., 2020). Nutrients (carbohydrates, proteins, lipids), nutraceuticals (carotenoids, flavonoids, terpenoids), and probiotics (Lactobacillus casei, Bifidobacterium bifidum, Streptococcus salivaris sbsp. ...
... The COVID-19 crisis has intensified, on the one hand, the fragility of the global food and land use system (Davey and Steer, 2020); and on the other, that the nutritional content of food added to a functional microbiota capable of associating to the gut (Tahir et al., 2020;Mahad and Masood, 2020) is a crucial tool that should not go unnoticed by the clinical and dietary nutrition plan, as a basic service of health systems (Charro-Salgado, 1999). This should redirect humanity to the implementation of food systems accompanied by methods and technologies that allow improving food production from a multidisciplinary perspective. ...
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p> Background: The COVID-19 pandemic evidenced the fragility of the agri-food sector by affecting the food supply chains which directly depend on the health of its main actors. In this context, countries need to rethink the agricultural production models, considering environmental and human health as priorities to achieve food safety. Aim: Systematically review the state of the art regarding the role of agricultural genetic resources as a source of resilience in the face of events such as the present pandemic as a point of reflection for the identification of opportunities for the restructuring of regional agriculture sensitive to nutrition for health. Methodology: Exhaustive search and analysis of documentary information regarding the effects of COVID-19 on the agri-food sector and the role of agricultural genetic resources in the current pandemic were conducted. Then, through an analysis of the occurrence and association of the main terms addressed in the literature considered, the thematic axes were drawn to address the central discussion of the systematic review. Results: Terms co-occurrence analysis corroborated the relevance and pertinence of the topic addressed. Additionally, the importance of the conservation of agricultural genetic resources and implementation of sustainable agriculture models, as a source of resilience to pandemics, was visualized. The discussion addressed the impact of the pandemic on the Mexican agri-food sector and the restructuring of post-COVID-19 agriculture through the nation and nutrition-sensitive agriculture for health approaches. Implications: The exhaustive analysis of the relationship COVID-19-agricultural genetic resources-health in Mexico highlights the need for the generation of agricultural policies and the increase in multidisciplinary research that favors biodiversity as a source of sustainability, productivity, and health for agroecosystems and the welfare of humanity. Conclusions: A fatalistic scenario for humanity seems to be dissipating in the face of the possibilities of rethinking the economic, social, and agricultural systems from the approaches of the nation and nutrition-sensitive agriculture for health, where, through the responsible use of agricultural resources it is possible to rebuild an agri-food production system with a tendency to resilience to events such as the current pandemic caused by the COVID-19 disease.</p
... Current medical research has conveyed that the risk of infection can decrease by the consumption of nutraceuticals from food such as omega 3, eicosapentaenoic, and docosahexaenoic acids. Also, the consumption of antioxidants contained in agricultural products such as fruits, vegetables, and medicinal plants, can limit the proliferation of the virus and help to interrupt inflammatory processes (Tahir et al., 2020). Nutrients (carbohydrates, proteins, lipids), nutraceuticals (carotenoids, flavonoids, terpenoids), and probiotics (Lactobacillus casei, Bifidobacterium bifidum, Streptococcus salivaris sbsp. ...
... The COVID-19 crisis has intensified, on the one hand, the fragility of the global food and land use system (Davey and Steer, 2020); and on the other, that the nutritional content of food added to a functional microbiota capable of associating to the gut (Tahir et al., 2020;Mahad and Masood, 2020) is a crucial tool that should not go unnoticed by the clinical and dietary nutrition plan, as a basic service of health systems (Charro-Salgado, 1999). This should redirect humanity to the implementation of food systems accompanied by methods and technologies that allow improving food production from a multidisciplinary perspective. ...
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Background: The COVID-19 pandemic evidenced the fragility of the agri-food sector by affecting the food supply chains which directly depend on the health of its main actors. In this context, countries need to rethink the agricultural production models, considering environmental and human health as priorities to achieve food safety. Aim: Systematically review the state of the art regarding the role of agricultural genetic resources as a source of resilience in the face of events such as the present pandemic as a point of reflection for the identification of opportunities for the restructuring of regional agriculture sensitive to nutrition for health. Methodology: Exhaustive search and analysis of documentary information regarding the effects of COVID-19 on the agri-food sector and the role of agricultural genetic resources in the current pandemic were conducted. Then, through an analysis of the occurrence and association of the main terms addressed in the literature considered, the thematic axes were drawn to address the central discussion of the systematic review. Results: Terms co-occurrence analysis corroborated the relevance and pertinence of the topic addressed. Additionally, the importance of the conservation of agricultural genetic resources and implementation of sustainable agriculture models, as a source of resilience to pandemics, was visualized. The discussion addressed the impact of the pandemic on the Mexican agri-food sector and the restructuring of post-COVID-19 agriculture through the nation and nutrition-sensitive agriculture for health approaches. Implications: The exhaustive analysis of the relationship COVID-19-agricultural genetic resources-health in Mexico highlights the need for the generation of agricultural policies and the increase in multidisciplinary research that favors biodiversity as a source of sustainability, productivity, and health for agroecosystems and the welfare of humanity. Conclusions: A fatalistic scenario for humanity seems to be dissipating in the face of the possibilities of rethinking the economic, social, and agricultural systems from the approaches of the nation and nutrition-sensitive agriculture for health, where, through the responsible use of agricultural resources it is possible to rebuild an agri-food production system with a tendency to resilience to events such as the current pandemic caused by the COVID-19 disease. Key words: nutrition-sensitive agriculture for health; sustainable agriculture; SARS-CoV-2; agricultural production models; regional and national focus. RESUMEN Antecedentes: La pandemia por COVID-19 evidenció la fragilidad del sector agroalimentario al afectar las cadenas de suministro de alimentos que dependen directamente de la salud de sus principales actores. En este contexto, es una necesidad para los países repensar los modelos de producción agrícola, considerando la salud ambiental y humana como prioridades para lograr la inocuidad alimentaria. Objetivo: Revisar de forma sistemática el estado del arte con respecto al papel de los recursos genéticos agrícolas como fuente resiliencia ante eventos como la presente pandemia † Tropical and Subtropical Agroecosystems 25 (2022): #006 Sandoval-Cancino et al., 2022 2 como punto de reflexión para la identificación de oportunidades para la reestructuración de una agricultura regional sensible a la nutrición para la salud. Metodología: Se realizó una búsqueda y análisis exhaustivo de información documental sobre los efectos del COVID-19 en el sector agroalimentario y el papel de los recursos genéticos agrícolas en la pandemia actual. Luego, mediante un análisis de la ocurrencia y asociación de los principales términos abordados en la literatura considerada, se trazaron los ejes temáticos para abordar la discusión central de la presente revisión sistemática. Resultados: Se corroboró la pertinencia y relevancia del tema abordado mediante el análisis de coocurrencia de los términos. Además, se visualizó la importancia de la conservación de los recursos genéticos agrícolas y la implementación de los modelos de producción agrícola sustentable como fuente de resiliencia ante los eventos sanitarios. La discusión abordó el impacto de la pandemia sobre el sector agroalimentario mexicano, y sobre la reestructuración de una agricultura post COVID-19 a través de los enfoques de nación y de la agricultura sensible a la nutrición para la salud. Implicaciones: El análisis exhaustivo de la relación COVID-19-recursos genéticos agrícolas-salud en México pone de manifiesto la necesidad de la generación de políticas agrícolas y el incremento en la investigación multidisciplinaria que favorezca la biodiversidad como fuente de estabilidad, productividad y salud para los agroecosistemas y el bienestar de la humanidad. Conclusiones: Un escenario fatalista para la humanidad parece disiparse ante las posibilidades de replantear los sistemas económicos, sociales y agrícola desde los enfoques de nación y de agricultura sensible a la nutrición para la salud, en donde, a través del aprovechamiento responsable de los recursos genéticos agrícolas es posible reconstruir un sistema de producción agroalimentaria con tendencia a la resiliencia ante eventos como la presente pandemia causada por la enfermedad COVID-19. Palabras clave: Agricultura sensible a la nutrición para la salud; agricultura sostenible; SARS-CoV-2; modelos de producción agrícola; enfoque regional y de nación.
... B-Glucans activate immune cells including neutrophils, natural killer cells, macrophages. Herbs have protective effects, namely Triterpene Glycosides inhibit viral replication, absorption, and penetration in early infection; Houttuynia and Glycyrrhiza have direct antiviral effect; Nigella sativa has antiinflammatory, bronchodilatory effects.[36] ...
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CoVID-19 is the most formidable unequaled global challenge invading 220 countries and territories in this millennium to uncountable saga of mortality, disability as humanity is witnessing devastation of socio-economy with more than 4 million deaths till date. The natural history of CoVID-19 from transmission through varied clinical features to overt complications is still under global research and research groups are on the run to trace its ramifications. This ranges from primary involvement of the pulmonary system to multisystem involvement through web of immunological pathways associated with susceptibility, clinical presentations, and severity of COVID-19. It has been hypothesized that the safe and effective mass vaccination program across the globe can ensure flattening of the pandemic curve to prepandemic normal life. This research group explored the basic and applied researches on molecular and immune mechanisms of SARS COV-2 virus. A sincere attempt has been made in futuristic research vision to find potential strengths, shortfalls, and efficacy of the plant-based immunotherapy, antibodies, and vaccine. Different research groups have hypothesized for the best possible use of these indigenous, stable, secure, efficacious natural products by searching their potential to accomplish emergency demands in this trying time. There is an urgent need to understand the inherent immunological predictors of the natural history of the disease spread over the spectrum from mild to severe forms of the disease and harp on these issues. In the wake of multiple waves with worse situations of evolving clinical features with the “variants of concern” and “variants of interest” and innovative interventions, this research group believes in optimum mix of microbial-derived biologicals with immune modifying drugs will broaden the preventive and curative spectrum.
... In the context of the COVID-19 pandemic, this work has taken on increased urgency. Early research has suggested that markets for nutraceutical products, including medicinal herbs, have been growing rapidly in response to the crisis as consumers seek out traditional and alternative forms of medicine and as medical researchers search for new plant-based compounds to treat COVID infections (Ayseli et al. 2020, Tahir et al. 2020. Natural products companies found themselves overwhelmed by orders for alternative medicines and herbal products (see Mountain Rose Herbs' temporary suspension of new orders, ...
Appalachian mixed mesophytic forests are home to some of the world’s most diverse temperate forests; 90% of their plant biodiversity is in the understory. Many of these understory plants are of great cultural and/or commercial significance, making their protection vital from ecosystem, sociocultural, and economic perspectives. Due to development and forest fragmentation across the Eastern United States, large, relatively undisturbed tracts of Appalachian mixed mesophytic forests exist primarily in federally protected national parks and forests. Protected national forests are managed under a multiple-use mandate; they exist to protect native forest and also to provide services to the public such as recreation and harvestable forest products. A limited number of national forests have permit-based harvest programs for medicinal and culinary understory plants, some of which, like American ginseng, are commercially valuable. Demand for these plants and concern over their conservation status, however, is resulting in national forests shrinking their permit-based harvest programs or eliminating them altogether. Contrary to this trend, I argue that a renewal of the relationship between people and culturally significant understory plants—through the expansion of permit-based harvest programs on national forestland as well as through the intentional cultivation of forest herbs (referred to as forest farming)—presents the best way forward to reestablish viable populations of understory herbs in the mature second growth forests of the Appalachian region. In conjunction with forest farming of understory herbs, permit-based harvesting is an effective mechanism for safeguarding the benefits of biodiversity islands in mixed mesophytic forests.KeywordsDeciduous forestsEastern USAForest botanicalsForest farmingHerbsUnderstory
... Antibiotics (such as azithromycin, cephalosporins, carbapenems, quinolones, tigecycline, and vancomycin,), antivirals (such as lopinavir, oseltamivir, remdesivir, and ritonavir), and corticosteroids (such as dexamethasone and methylprednisolone) have been widely used for the treatment of COVID 19 patients. Nevertheless, the therapeutic effectiveness of such therapies has to be ascertained [5][6][7]. SARS-CoV-2 mutations that change the antigenic phenotype of the virus have the potential to allow variations to escape natural infection or vaccine protection. Evidence suggests SARS-CoV-2 has been mutated and that this has affected immune recognition to such a degree that it urgently needs to be addressed [8]. ...
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Optimized therapeutic bio-compounds supported by bio-acceptable nanosystems (i.e., precise nanomedicine) have ability to promote health via maintaining body structure, organ function, and controlling chronic and acute effects. Therefore, nano-nutraceuticals (designed to neutralize virus, inhibit virus bindings with receptors, and support immunity) utilization can manage COVID-19 pre/post-infection effects. To explore these approaches well, our mini-review explores optimized bio-active compounds, their ability to influence SARS-CoV-2 infection, improvement in performance supported by precise nanomedicine approach, and challenges along with prospects. Such optimized pharmacologically relevant therapeutic cargo not only affect SARS-CoV-2 but will support other organs which show functional alternation due to SARS-CoV-2 for example, neurological functions. Hence, coupling the nutraceuticals with the nano-pharmacology perspective of higher efficacy via targeted delivery action can pave a novel way for health experts to plan future research needed to manage post COVID-19 infection effect where a longer efficacy with no side-effects is a key requirement.
... The exploration of herbs and herbal preparations used in traditional medicine, followed by bioassay-guided isolation of lead compounds from medicinal herbs, represent an attractive approach in combat this pandemic (Tahir et al., 2020). In several African countries, home remedies are used as alternative healthcare remedies to manage COVID-19. ...
Background : The worldwide corona virus disease outbreak, generally known as COVID-19 pandemic outbreak resulted in a major health crisis globally. The morbidity and transmission modality of COVID-19 appear more severe and uncontrollable. The respiratory failure and following cardiovascular complications are the main pathophysiology of this deadly disease. Several therapeutic strategies are put forward for the development of safe and effective treatment against SARS-CoV-2 virus from the pharmacological view point but till date there are no specific treatment regimen developed for this viral infection. Purpose : The present review emphasizes the role of herbs and herbs-derived secondary metabolites in inhibiting SARS-CoV-2 virus and also for the management of post-COVID-19 related complications. This approach will foster and ensure the safeguards of using medicinal plant resources to support the healthcare system. Plant-derived phytochemicals have already been reported to prevent the viral infection and to overcome the post-COVID complications like parkinsonism, kidney and heart failure, liver and lungs injury and mental problems. In this review, we explored mechanistic approaches of herbal medicines and their phytocomponenets as antiviral and post-COVID complications by modulating the immunological and inflammatory states. Study design : Studies related to diagnosis and treatment guidelines issued for COVID-19 by different traditional system of medicine were included. The information was gathered from pharmacological or non-pharmacological interventions approaches. The gathered information sorted based on therapeutic application of herbs and their components against SARSCoV-2 and COVID-19 related complications. Methods : A systemic search of published literature was conducted from 2003 to 2021 using different literature database like Google Scholar, PubMed, Science Direct, Scopus and Web of Science to emphasize relevant articles on medicinal plants against SARS-CoV-2 viral infection and Post-COVID related complications. Results : Collected published literature from 2003 onwards yielded with total 625 articles, from more than 18 countries. Among these 625 articles, more than 95 medicinal plants and 25 active phytomolecules belong to 48 plant families. Reports on the therapeutic activity of the medicinal plants belong to the Lamiaceae family (11 reports), which was found to be maximum reported from 4 different countries including India, China, Australia, and Morocco. Other reports on the medicinal plant of Asteraceae (7 reports), Fabaceae (8 reports), Piperaceae (3 reports), Zingiberaceae (3 reports), Ranunculaceae (3 reports), Meliaceae (4 reports) were found, which can be explored for the development of safe and efficacious products targeting COVID-19. Conclusion : Keeping in mind that the natural alternatives are in the priority for the management and prevention of the COVID-19, the present review may help to develop an alternative approach for the management of COVID-19 viral infection and post-COVID complications from a mechanistic point of view.
... When the COVID-19 epidemic struck the world, one of the four aspects of food systems (food security, sustainable food development) directly influenced by the outbreak was the need for immune-supporting biologically active compounds [22]. Though panic buying and shortages [23] followed, customers generally loaded up on vitamin C and other herbal items. As a result, researchers and the medical profession have increased their efforts to examine drug ingredients that could support the immune system, protect against the acute respiratory virus, and prevents the growth of SARS-CoV-2, the latest coronavirus that induces infection with COVID-19, resulting in many comprehensive studies highlighting the potential of natural compounds to treat SARS-CoV-2 [24]. ...
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The worldwide transmission of acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) as a deadly or devastating disease is known to affect thousands of people every day, many of them dying all over the planet. The main reason for the massive effect of COVID-19 on society is its unpredictable spread, which does not allow for proper planning or management of this disease. Antibiotics , antivirals, and other prescription drugs, necessary and used in therapy, obviously have side effects (minor or significant) on the affected person, there are still not clear enough studies to elucidate their combined effect in this specific treatment, and existing protocols are sometimes unclear and uncertain. In contrast, it has been found that nutraceuticals, supplements, and various herbs can be effective in reducing the chances of SARS-CoV-2 infection, but also in alleviating COVID-19 symptoms. However, not enough specific details are yet available, and precise scientific studies to validate the approved benefits of natural food additives, probiotics, herbs, and nutraceuticals will need to be standardized according to current regulations. These alternative treatments may not have a direct effect on the virus or reduce the risk of infection with it, but these products certainly stimulate the human immune system so that the body is better prepared to fight the disease. This paper aims at a specialized literary foray precisely in the field of these "cures" that can provide real revelations in the therapy of coronavirus infection Citation: Tagde, P.; Tagde, S.; Tagde, P.; Bhattacharya, T.; Monzur, S.M.; Rahman, M.H.; Otrisal, P.; Behl, T.; Hassan, S.S.u.; Abdel-Daim, M.M.; et al. Nutraceuticals and Herbs in Reducing the Risk and Improving the Treatment of COVID-19 by Targeting SARS-CoV-2. Biomedi-cines 2021, 9, x.
... In recent years, the scientific community has focused its attention on the use of phytochemicals/natural products and nutraceuticals for the treatment of various diseases including infectious diseases (54). Underlying this interest is the ability of various natural products and herbal remedies against some important viral pathogens, including RSV, measles virus, dengue virus, influenza virus, human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), HSV, HCV, hepatitis B virus, enterovirus 71, coxsackievirus and coronavirus (55). Therefore, today there are numerous food supplements containing natural ingredients, with the main aim of modulating or improving the functions of the immune system. ...
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The global scientific community is striving to understand the pathophysiological mechanisms and develop effective therapeutic strategies for COVID-19. Despite overwhelming data, there is limited knowledge about the molecular mechanisms involved in the prominent cytokine storm syndrome and multiple organ failure and fatality in COVID-19 cases. The aim of this work is to investigate the possible role of of α-lipoic acid (ALA) and palmitoylethanolamide (PEA), in countering the mechanisms in overproduction of reactive oxygen species (ROS), and inflammatory cytokines. An in vitro model of lipopolysaccharide (LPS)-stimulated human epithelial lung cells that mimics the pathogen-associated molecular pattern and reproduces the cell signaling pathways in cytokine storm syndrome has been used. In this model of acute lung injury, the combination effects of ALAPEA, administered before and after LPS injury, were investigated. Our data demonstrated that a combination of 50 µM ALA + 5 µM PEA can reduce ROS and nitric oxide (NO) levels modulating the major cytokines involved on COVID-19 infection when administered either before or after LPS-induced damage. The best outcome was observed when administered after LPS, thus reinforcing the hypothesis that ALA combined with PEA to modulate the key point of cytokine storm syndrome. This work supports for the first time that the combination of ALA with PEA may represent a novel intervention strategy to counteract inflammatory damage related to COVID-19 by restoring the cascade activation of the immune response and acting as a powerful antioxidant.
... In addition, omega 3 fatty acids may also be useful and effective as an antiinflammatory agent reducing bronchoconstriction. Furthermore, other studies reported that melatonin as an antioxidant and anti-inflammatory agent can modulate the immune system leading to a better prognosis in COVID 19 cases [24]. ...
... In addition, further investigations through preclinical and clinical trial evaluations of these herbal agents for COVID-19 should be specifically conducted (Nugraha et al. 2020). Tahir et al. (2020) highlighted the potential of various nutraceuticals and herbal extracts (such as omega-3 fats, β-glucans, amino acids, probiotics, vitamins and minerals) and plant-based compounds as possible treatments for COVID-19. Although strong evidence for the potential of these compounds to combat the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic has already appeared in their literature; clinical data are, however, still inconclusive and inconsistencies, since clinical studies did not achieve the desired effects, and these inconsistencies may be attributed to a number of factors, including the dose used, the heterogeneity of the target population, the plasma concentration, the beginning and duration of the treatment, and the route of administration. ...
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Diseases negatively impact the environment, causing many health risks and the spread of pollution and hazards. A novel coronavirus, severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus type 2 (SARS-CoV-2) has led to a recent respiratory syndrome epidemic in humans. In December 2019, the sudden emergence of this new coronavirus and the subsequent severe disease it causes created a serious global health threat and hazards. This is in contrast to the two aforementioned coronaviruses, SARS-CoV-2 (in 2002) and middle east respiratory syndrome coronavirus MERS-CoV (in 2012), which were much more easily contained. The World Health Organization (WHO) dubbed this contagious respiratory disease an “epidemic outbreak” in March 2020. More than 80 companies and research institutions worldwide are working together, in cooperation with many governmental agencies, to develop an effective vaccine. To date, six authorized vaccines have been registered. Up till now, no approved drugs and drug scientists are racing from development to clinical trials to find new drugs for COVID-19. Wild animals, such as snakes, bats, and pangolins are the main sources of coronaviruses, as determined by the sequence homology between MERS-CoV and viruses in these animals. Human infection is caused by inhalation of respiratory droplets. To date, the only available treatment protocol for COVID-19 is based on the prevalent clinical signs. This review aims to summarize the current information regarding the origin, evolution, genomic organization, epidemiology, and molecular and cellular characteristics of SARS-CoV-2 as well as the diagnostic and treatment approaches for COVID-19 and its impact on global health, environment, and economy.
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As the SARS-CoV-2 virus wreaks havoc on the populations, health care infrastructures and economies of nations around the world, finding ways to protect health care workers and bolster immune responses in the general population while we await an effective vaccine will be the difference between life and death for many people. Recent studies show that innate immune populations may possess a form of memory, termed Trained Immunity (TRIM), where innate immune cells undergo metabolic, mitochondrial, and epigenetic reprogramming following exposure to an initial stimulus that results in a memory phenotype of enhanced immune responses when exposed to a secondary, heterologous, stimulus. Throughout the literature, it has been shown that the induction of TRIM using such inducers as the BCG vaccine and β-glucan can provide protection through altered immune responses against a range of viral infections. Here we hypothesize a potential role for β-glucan in decreasing worldwide morbidity and mortality due to COVID-19, and posit several ideas as to how TRIM may actually shape the observed epidemiological phenomena related to COVID-19. We also evaluate the potential effects of β-glucan in relation to the immune dysregulation and cytokine storm observed in COVID-19. Ultimately, we hypothesize that the use of oral β-glucan in a prophylactic setting could be an effective way to boost immune responses and abrogate symptoms in COVID-19, though clinical trials are necessary to confirm the efficacy of this treatment and to further examine differential effects of β-glucan's from various sources.
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Severe coronavirus-19 (COVID-19) symptoms, including systemic inflammatory response and multi-system organ failure, are now affecting thousands of infected patients and causing widespread mortality. Coronavirus infection causes tissue damage, which triggers the endoplasmic reticulum (ER) stress response and subsequent eicosanoid and cytokine storms. While pro-inflammatory eicosanoids including prostaglandins, thromboxanes, and leukotrienes are critical mediators of physiological processes such as inflammation, fever, allergy, and pain, their role in COVID-19 are poorly characterized. Arachidonic acid derived epoxyeicosatrienoic acids (EETs) could alleviate the systemic hyper-inflammatory response in COVID-19 infection by modulating ER stress and stimulating the resolution of inflammation. Soluble epoxide hydrolase (sEH) inhibitors, which increase endogenous EET levels, exhibit potent anti-inflammatory activity and inhibit various pathologic processes in preclinical disease models including pulmonary fibrosis, thrombosis, and acute respiratory distress syndrome. Therefore, targeting eicosanoids and sEH could be a novel therapeutic approach in combating COVID-19. In this review, we discuss the predominant role of eicosanoids in regulating the inflammatory cascade and propose the potential application of sEH inhibitors in alleviating COVID-19 symptoms. We also discuss the host-protective action of omega-3 fatty acid-derived epoxyeicosanoids and specialized pro-resolving mediators (SPMs) in regulating anti-inflammation and anti-viral response. Future studies determining the eicosanoid profile in COVID-19 patient or preclinical model are pivotal in providing the novel insight of coronavirus-host interaction and inflammation modulation.
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Cordyceps is a rare naturally occurring entomopathogenic fungus usually found at high altitudes on the Himalayan plateau and a well-known medicinal mushroom in traditional Chinese medicine. Cordyceps contains various bioactive components, out of which, cordycepin is considered most vital, due to its utmost therapeutic as well as nutraceutical potential. Moreover, the structure similarity of cordycepin with adenosine makes it an important bioactive component, with difference of only hydroxyl group, lacking in the 3′ position of its ribose moiety. Cordycepin is known for various nutraceutical and therapeutic potential, such as anti-diabetic, anti-hyperlipidemia, anti-fungal, anti-inflammatory, immunomodulatory, antioxidant, anti-aging, anticancer, antiviral, hepato-protective, hypo-sexuality, cardiovascular diseases, antimalarial, anti-osteoporotic, anti-arthritic, cosmeceutical etc. which makes it a most valuable medicinal mushroom for helping in maintaining good health. In this review, effort has been made to bring altogether the possible wide range of cordycepin’s nutraceutical potential along with its pharmacological actions and possible mechanism. Additionally, it also summarizes the details of cordycepin based nutraceuticals predominantly available in the market with expected global value. Moreover, this review will attract the attention of food scientists, nutritionists, pharmaceutical and food industries to improve the use of bioactive molecule cordycepin for nutraceutical purposes with commercialization to aid and promote healthy lifestyle, wellness and wellbeing.
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Infection caused by the SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus worldwide has led the World Health Organization to declare a COVID-19 pandemic. Because there is no cure or treatment for this virus, it is emergingly urgent to find effective and validated methods to prevent and treat COVID-19 infection. In this context, alternatives related to nutritional therapy might help to control the infection. This narrative review proposes the importance and role of probiotics and diet as adjunct alternatives among the therapies available for the treatment of this new coronavirus. This review discusses the relationship between intestinal purine metabolism and the use of Lactobacillus gasseri and low-purine diets, particularly in individuals with hyperuricemia, as adjuvant nutritional therapies to improve the immune system and weaken viral replication, assisting in the treatment of COVID-19. These might be promising alternatives, in addition to many others that involve adequate intake of vitamins, minerals and bioactive compounds from food.
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Abstract. Background: On March 11, 2020, the World Health Organization (WHO) declared the outbreak of coronavirus disease (COVID-19) a pandemic. Since then, thousands of people have suffered and died, making the need for a treatment of severe acute respiratory syndrome-related coronavirus-2 (SARS-CoV-2) more crucial than ever. Materials and Methods: The authors carried out a search in PubMed, Clinical and New England Journal of Medicine (NEJM) for COVID-19 to provide information on the most promising treatments against SARS-CoV-2. Results: Possible COVID-19 agents with promising efficacy and favorable safety profile were identified. The results support the combination of copper, N-acetylcysteine (NAC), colchicine and nitric oxide (NO) with candidate antiviral agents, remdesivir or EIDD- 2801, as a treatment for patients positive for SARS-CoV- 2. Conclusion: The authors propose to study the effects of the combination of copper, NAC, colchicine, NO and currently used experimental antiviral agents, remdesivir or EIDD-2801, as a potential treatment scheme for SARS-CoV- 2.
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The severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (Sars-CoV-2) global pandemic is a devastating event that is causing thousands of victims every day around the world. One of the main reasons of the great impact of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) on society is its unexpected spread, which has not allowed an adequate preparation. The scientific community is fighting against time for the production of a vaccine, but it is difficult to place a safe and effective product on the market as fast as the virus is spreading. Similarly, for drugs that can directly interfere with viral pathways, their production times are long, despite the great efforts made. For these reasons, we analyzed the possible role of non-pharmacological substances such as supplements, probiotics, and nutraceuticals in reducing the risk of Sars-CoV-2 infection or mitigating the symptoms of COVID-19. These substances could have numerous advantages in the current circumstances, are generally easily available, and have negligible side effects if administered at the already used and tested dosages. Large scientific evidence supports the benefits that some bacterial and molecular products may exert on the immune response to respiratory viruses. These could also have a regulatory role in systemic inflammation or endothelial damage, which are two crucial aspects of COVID-19. However, there are no specific data available, and rigorous clinical trials should be conducted to confirm the putative benefits of diet supplementation, probiotics, and nutraceuticals in the current pandemic.
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Background The World Health Organization characterized the Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) as a pandemic on March 11th. Many clinical trials on COVID-19 have been registered, and we aim to review the study characteristics and provide guidance for future trials to avoid duplicated effort. Methods Studies on COVID-19 registered before March 3rd, 2020 on eight registry platforms worldwide were searched and the data of design, participants, interventions, and outcomes were extracted and analyzed. Results Three hundred and ninety-three studies were identified and 380 (96.7%) were from mainland China, while 3 in Japan, 3 in France, 2 in the US, and 3 were international collaborative studies. Two hundred and sixty-six (67.7%) aimed at therapeutic effect, others were for prevention, diagnosis, prognosis, etc. Two hundred and two studies (51.4%) were randomized controlled trials. Two third of therapeutic studies tested Western medicines including antiviral drugs (17.7%), stem cell and cord blood therapy (10.2%), chloroquine and derivatives (8.3%), 16 (6.0%) on Chinese medicines, and 73 (27.4%) on integrated therapy of Western and Chinese medicines. Thirty-one studies among 266 therapeutic studies (11.7%) used mortality as primary outcome, while the most designed secondary outcomes were symptoms and signs (47.0%). Half of the studies (45.5%) had not started recruiting till March 3rd. Conclusions Inappropriate outcome setting, delayed recruitment and insufficient numbers of new cases in China implied many studies may fail to complete. Strategies and protocols of the studies with robust and rapid data sharing are warranted for emergency public health events, helping the timely evidence-based decision-making.
COVID-19 is an overwhelming pandemic which has shattered the whole world. Lung injury being the main clinical manifestation, it is likely to cause COPD (chronic obstructive pulmonary disease) and ARDS (acute respiratory distress syndrome). The possible cause behind this might be redox imbalance due to viral infection. Elevation in Glutathione (GSH) levels by administration of its promolecule might be effective. N-acetylcysteine is one such drug with potency to scavenge Reactive Oxygen Species, least side effects, and an effective precursor of glutathione. Consequently we hypothesize that N-acetylcysteine along with the conventional treatment may be treated as a potential therapeutic solution in cases of COVID- 19 patients.
As the oldest and most utilized form of medicine for thousands of years, herbal medicine has an indispensable place within the field of medicine that has been established throughout history. However, with the introduction of allopathic medicine over the last century, herbal medicine has been somewhat phased out of modern practice. This is a grave mistake, especially during a time of medical crisis and more particularly in the time of a pandemic. Plants and their active constituents have a greater complexity and diversity than anything that can be created in a laboratory setting, especially in a short period of time. There is considerable evidence that plant-based medicine-phytotherapeutics-could play a significant role against SARS-CoV-2, and the disease it causes, COVID-19. Following these, the field of phytotherapeutics has already been explored during the outbreak in Wuhan, where traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) was employed during treatment to help improve patient conditions. Moreover, laboratory testing dating back to the original SARS epidemic in 2003 provides concrete evidence that certain plant compounds have a direct antiviral effect on SARS-CoV, and could be potentially utilized against SARS-CoV-2. In addition to these studies, historical evidence from the most deadly pandemic preceding COVID-19, the Spanish Influenza Epidemic, clearly presents that phytotherapeutics as part of a holistic approach can save patient lives. Based on this evidence, phytotherapeutics may be the key to preventing, treating, and even having direct actions against SARS-CoV-2.