SEATTLE, WA--(Marketwire - March 28, 2012) - Plandaí Biotechnology, Inc. (OTCBB: PLPL), a producer of highly bioavailable plant extracts, today provided details on the use of its proprietary green tea gallate catechin extract for preventing malaria symptoms. Three separate studies have demonstrated the antimalarial potential of the green tea catechins, EGCG and ECG, on blood stages of the malaria parasite plasmodium falciparum. The studies unequivocally demonstrate that EGCG and ECG, and, accordingly, green tea crude extracts, strongly inhibit P. falciparum growth in vitro.
The studies have, however, confirmed that the effects of green tea gallate catechins in preventing malaria have been hindered by the low oral bioavailability of its polyphenolic catechins. Moreover, absorbed green tea catechins are known to undergo rapid and extensive metabolic transformations. These drawbacks are most probably the reasons why no association has been reported so far between green tea consumption and its antimalarial effects despite the large use of this beverage in several Asian countries where malaria is endemic. These studies conclude that appropriate pharmaceutical strategies must be devised to increase the low bioavailability of green tea gallate catechins in such a way to make them more amenable as antimalarial agents. Indeed, eight fold higher concentrations of green tea gallate catechin (EGCG) were found necessary in one of these studies to show induced lethal effects on sporozoites.
Plandaí Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Roger Duffield commented, "The proprietary process employed by Plandaí to process green tea catechins results in a product with six to eight time greater bioavailability than traditional extracts, with the opportunity to be engineered specifically as an antimalarial agent. This suggests that, for the first time, a viable, affordable malaria treatment is within our reach."
Each year, approximately 500 million people worldwide become infected with malaria. Of those infected, roughly two million will die from the disease. The development of vaccine options has so far proved challenging due to the complexity of the parasite. Many researchers consider plant-derived bioactive compounds attractive candidates for drug development since they represent lead structures for new or existing drug targets. Currently, most medications including antibiotics, anticancer drugs and drugs directed against parasites are based on natural compounds.
About Plandai Biotechnology, Inc.
Plandaí Biotechnology, Inc., through its recent acquisition of Global Energy Solutions, Ltd. and its subsidiaries, focuses on the farming of whole fruits, vegetables and live plant material and the production of proprietary functional foods and botanical extracts for the health and wellness industry. Its principal holdings consist of land, farms and infrastructure in South Africa.
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