serrapeptase medical research


 
 

The Wonders of Serrapeptase

 

Serrapeptase has been used to treat ailments for more than 25 years, but initially this enzyme was mostly used in Europe and Asia as an anti-inflammatory agent. However, as word regarding the effectiveness of this enzyme spread, other countries around the world recognized its benefits and started using it for various illnesses and health disorders. Despite its success, questions often remain such as what exactly is Serrapeptase and what are the benefits for which it has gained such enormous popularity?

 

What is Serrapeptase?

 

Serrapeptase can easily be rated as a ‘super enzyme’ due to its benefits. Initially this enzyme was isolated from bacteria Serratia sp. E-15 that live in the intestines of silkworms, but today it is produced commercially through fermentation and in laboratory settings in order to meet its unexpectedly high demand. The theory is that the enzymes extracted from the bacteria are capable of dissolving dead tissue without having any harmful effects on an organism’s healthy cells. In the case of the silkworm, Serrapeptase makes it possible for this insect to leave the silk cocoon after it has transformed into a moth by breaking down proteins contained within the cocoon (1).

 

Interestingly, enzymes such as Serrapeptase can be found in various microorganisms and two of the most common are Escherichia coli and Salmonella typhimurium. Furthermore, the September 2003 edition of ‘Life Extension Magazine’ mentioned that Serrapeptase has been used in Europe and Asia for more than 25 years, whereas in the US it started gaining recognition after 1997 when it began being sold as a dietary supplement. Health benefits of Serrapeptase:

 

Serrapeptase has been shown to be beneficial for reducing both pain and inflammation. Serrapeptase supplementation may also be beneficial for:

 

  • Respiratory Health
  • Thinning mucus (ears, nose, & throat)
  • Pain and Inflammation associated with Arthritis and Atherosclerosis

 

Currently, researchers are also evaluating the ability of this enzyme to promote cardiovascular health by analyzing the role Serrapeptase plays in preventing the development of arterial plaque (4).

 

How it Works?

Serrapeptase is also known as serrapeptidase, serratiopeptidase, and serratiapeptidase. It is a proteolytic enzyme in that it helps speed up the breakdown of proteins within an organism (1, 3, 8). This enzyme has been shown to reduce pain and inflammation in three different ways:

 

  1. Serrapeptase breaks down fibrin, which is an important protein in the blood that is involved in blood coagulation or clotting.
  2. Serrapeptase has the ability to reduce pain by blocking the release of Bradykinin in damaged tissue. Bradykinin is a protein that is responsible for triggering a pain response.
  3. And finally, Serrapeptase alleviates pain by blocking the release of Bradykinin in damaged tissue. Bradykinin is a protein that is responsible for triggering a pain response.

 

Serrapeptase has the ability to inhibit the release of pain-inducing amines such as bradykinin from inflamed tissue (11, 20, 26, 27). Bradykinin is a protein that causes blood vessels to dilate and its main function is to increase the sensation of pain. Bradykinin also makes nerves in inflamed tissue more sensitive, causing them to be hypersensitive to heat and light touch and creates a general sensation of soreness. By leading to the reduction of proteins that cause pain sensations and soreness, Serrapeptase shows promise as a pain-reducing supplement.

 
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Seiichi Nakamura and his team of Japanese researchers randomly assigned patients to receive Serrapeptase for 4 weeks or a placebo in order to evaluate the effects this enzyme has on respiratory health. After four weeks, the researchers found that Serrapeptase supported healthy mucus clearance by reducing neutrophil numbers and altering the viscoelasticity of sputum (15). This was reported in the September 8, 2003 issue of ‘Respirology.

 
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Similarly, another study was published in the ‘International Journal of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery’ in March 2008. This study demonstrated that the use of Serrapeptase after dental surgeries can greatly reduce swelling, inflammation, and pain (7).

 
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Another publication that serves as evidence of the efficacy of Serrapeptase was published in ‘Minerva Cardioangiologica’. An Italian team of researchers from the University of Naples published this study explaining that this enzyme can play a beneficial role in reducing pain, weakness, swelling, and nighttime cramps that are associated with inflammation and venous thrombosis (3).

 
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Serrapeptase is also capable of reducing neutrophils in the bloodstream, which are white blood cells that have been associated with respiratory inflammation. In ‘Natural Therapies for Emphysema and COPD’, author Robert J. Green stated that neutrophils in the immune system are responsible for fighting infections. However, their excessive accumulation at the areas of inflammation can harm the healthy tissues in those areas. In particular, neutrophils tend to accumulate in lungs of individuals who have respiratory diseases and cause inflammation (31). Serrapeptase may have beneficial effects on respiratory health by reducing the number of neutrophils that can accumulate in the respiratory system (15). Furthermore, the ability of Serrapeptase to makes thick fluids thinner allows it to be very useful at reducing the accumulation of thick mucus in the lungs as well as the ears, nose, and throat.

 

Serrapeptase for Infections Related to Implants

 

It is common for the human body to develop infections in the tissue surrounding orthopedic devices that are implanted in the body. In most cases, these infections pose a great threat to the entire body. When this occurs, doctors will occasionally remove a device if an infection develops. Based on this information, a study was carried out by a team of Turkish researchers in order to evaluate the effects of Serrapeptase on reducing the numbers of bacteria that cause these types of infections.

 

The study involved drilling holes in the right femurs of 60 rats. Cement made out of a substance called Polymethylmethacrylate was used to fill the cavities. In addition, a Kirschner wire was connected to the knee joints. After the operation, each rat was injected with staphylococcus epidermidis in order to cause an infection to develop. Twenty of the rats died 14 days after the procedure due to the infection. The forty rats that were still alive were then separated into two groups:

The first group was given antibiotics along with Serrapeptase.

The second group was given antibiotics and saline (saltwater) injections.

The conclusions of the study, which were published in 2006 in the ‘Journal of Bone and Joint Surgery’, showed that Serrapeptase in combination with antibiotics effectively reduced the number of staphylococcus epidermidis and enabled the animals in this group to survive (14). Additional research has also demonstrated the effectiveness of Serrapeptase at inhibiting the reproduction of biofilm-embedded bacteria that cause prosthetic device infections (17).

 

Serrapeptase for Reducing Postoperative Swelling

 

A group of German researchers and doctors conducted a study on the ability of Serrapeptase to lessen postoperative pain, inflammation, and swelling. Patients who underwent ankle surgeries were selected for this study and 66 patients were divided into three groups. The first group was given Serrapeptase after the operative procedures in order to reduce inflammation. The conclusions of this study were reported in the issue of ‘Fortschritte der Medizin’ in February, 1989. The group that was given Serrapeptase had 50% less swelling than the other patients by the third day of Serrapeptase treatment (52).

 

Similarly, another study was published in the ‘International Journal of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery’ in March 2008. This study demonstrated that the use of Serrapeptase after dental surgeries can greatly reduce swelling, inflammation, and pain (7).

 

Serrapeptase for Heart Health

Numerous researchers have demonstrated the efficacy of Serrapeptase as a healthy enzyme for maintaining good heart health. Around 40 studies were conducted and all proved Serrapeptase to be helpful in improving heart health. Among all of these studies, the late Dr. Hans A. Nieper of Hanover was the leading researcher. He was well known around the globe for being one of the best integrative physicians available at the time. He was also widely known for being among the best cardiovascular doctors in the world.

 

Dr. Nieper was the first person who showed strong belief in the positive effects of Serrapeptase on heart patients. He spent an extensive amount of time conducting studies on this very issue. His main goal was to see whether or not Serrapeptase was capable of reducing the accumulation of plaque in the arteries. Interestingly, it was he who called Serrapeptase ‘the miracle enzyme’ after discovering the benefits it has to offer to heart patients. Through his thorough research, Dr. Nieper was able to determine that Serrapeptase is effective at reducing fat, plaque, and cholesterol debris that are associated with atherosclerosis (4). Atherosclerosis is a condition that is caused by the accumulation of plaque in the arteries. It is one of the major causes of strokes, heart attacks, high blood pressure, and other cardiac conditions.

 

Dr. Nieper performed several experiments and discovered that Serrapeptase can dissolve harmful particles that accumulate and form plaque in the arterial walls. These particles include cellular waste, fat, fibrin, bad cholesterol, and calcium. Moreover, he also proved that Serrapeptase did all of this without harming the living, healthy cells or tissues that line the arterial walls.

 

What makes his studies even more reliable is the fact that modern science and the recent studies conducted have shown that plaque formation inside the arterial walls is a form of inflammation (32). In other words, this means that Serrapeptase is capable of improving heart health by reducing the accumulation of harmful particles in the arteries.

 

According to Dr. Nieper, Serrapeptase supplementation is different from other cholesterol reducing drugs because it dissolves dead tissue and other harmful particles within the arteries without affecting the natural process of cholesterol creation in the body. The human body does require good cholesterol to carry out different functions within the body effectively. Therefore, Serrapeptase does not block healthy cholesterol circulation instead it only digests the dead tissue and cells as well as harmful substances in the arteries. Also, Serrapeptase does not cause any side effects like most drugs (9-18).

 

He also proved through his studies that Serrapeptase works very well in cleaning up debris that can form plaque in the carotid arteries. The carotid arteries are responsible for transporting blood and oxygen to the brain from the heart. Dr. Nieper, in his biography, ‘The Curious Man’ referred to several issues surgeons face while dealing with plaque formation in carotid arteries which eventually narrows the arteries. He stated that “quite frequently surgeons face difficulties in opening up semi-blocked or closed carotid arteries. It is their fear that the debris that will be caused by the surgery can move into other smaller arteries which can eventually result in death by stroke”.

 

According to Dr. Nieper, Serrapeptase is a safer alternative because the risk involved with such surgeries can be avoided with the use of this enzyme. He noted that he had used Serrapeptase on patients with severe arterial narrowing and observed great improvement and even life-saving results. These patients were diagnosed with constricted arteries based on ultrasound reports. He prescribed three tablets to be taken each day and most of his patients showed significant improvement in their blood flow.

 

Furthermore, through such studies, Dr. Nieper was also able to prove that Serrapeptase worked faster than many other drugs to remove arterial plaque. It also works faster than EDTA chelation therapy. EDTA chelation therapy is a process used commonly for removing plaque and for restoring overall cardiovascular function. Finally, he also proved that Serrapeptase is capable of dissolving blood clots and restoring the health and proper functioning of the veins and arteries (36).

 

 

 

People suffering from heart-related conditions may experience improved heart health by taking Serrapeptase. Here are some tips for doing so based on Dr. Nieper’s findings:

 

  • Serrapeptase can be taken every day. Remember, you should take Serrapeptase on empty stomach and only as recommended by most doctors.
  • People suffering from chronic inflammation may be able to take higher doses.
  • It is best to take Serrapeptase one hour before eating or two hours after eating.

Make sure you talk to your doctor about taking Serrapeptase along with other drugs. Although Serrapeptase has not yet shown any reactions when taken in conjunction with other drugs, it is always best to be on the safe side when it comes to your health (36).

 

Serrapeptase for Arthritis

 

In 1947, Dr. Arnold Renshaw from Manchester took the initiative of investigating the efficacy of Serrapeptase on improving the symptoms of inflammation that are associated with arthritis. In the Annals of Rheumatic Diseases, he reported that 700 patients were recruited to take Serrapeptase for inflammation and the results were marvelous (33). He also added that 283 patients out of 556 with different types of arthritis showed great recovery after taking Serrapeptase and 21 patients showed slight recovery. Similarly, 264 patients out of 292 with rheumatoid arthritis showed great recovery. Most of the patients started showing recovery after two months of taking Serrapeptase.

 

Arthritis can be classified into two major types: rheumatoid and osteoarthritis. Rheumatoid arthritis is the type in which the joints are inflamed due to a virus or an autoimmune reaction. Osteoarthritis is a condition in which the joints become weak.

 

Rheumatoid vasculitis is a very dangerous condition that can at times be fatal. It is the inflammation of the blood vessels and is regarded as one of the most complicated forms of rheumatoid arthritis. Major complications associated with this condition include the development of skin ulcers and neuropathies. This condition can also severely affect the brain, the heart, and the nerves and as a result, can cause heart strokes or heart failure.

 

According to numerous studies, Serrapeptase also works faster on osteoarthritic pain than rheumatic pain (11, 33). Furthermore, many studies have revealed that the only way to naturally control arthritis is by supplementing the diet with systemic enzymes and/or maintaining a strict diet.

 

 

 

Serrapeptase may be highly beneficial for inflammation associated with both forms of arthritis. Normally, patients take strong medications which are quite dangerous to their overall health. Furthermore, some of the medications also contain steroids and medical research has shown that most of the conventional anti-inflammatory drugs prescribed for arthritis only produce shown short-term relief.

 

Fortunately, studies related to arthritis have demonstrated that digestive enzymes are safer and more effective than most of the anti-inflammatory drugs. More specifically, Serrapeptase has the ability to improve inflammation and pain to a greater extent than most drugs. In addition, it does not cause side effects (9-18).

 

Today, research indicates that Serrapeptase can provide the following benefits to those suffering from chronic inflammation:

 

  • Reduced risk of thromboembolic complications
  • Reduced risk of cartilage damage that can occur due to immobility
  • Decreased extent of muscle atrophy
  • Improved mobilization
  • Reduced pain due to swelling

Serrapeptase capsules, in particular, have been shown to be highly effective for cleansing the body of dead tissues. Once this occurs, the body’s healing process is activated and dead tissues are replaced with new and healthy tissue (33).

 

Serrapeptase for Chronic Inflammation

 

Inflammatory reactions generally consist of pain, swelling, tissue damage and even muscle spasms according to the injury. The release of enzymes such as cyclooxygenase and prostaglandins usually cause these types of complications to develop. The symptoms of inflammation can be treated by corticosteroids and non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs that reduce the accumulation of harmful fluids that leak from the circulatory system into areas of inflammation (5, 6). These types of drugs also inhibit the release of cyclooxygenase and prostaglandins (7). However, the potential side effects of these drugs include delayed wound healing and adrenal suppression and cannot be used for certain conditions (8).

 

Serrapeptase has been shown to reduce inflammation and swelling without causing harm to healthy tissue or adverse side effects and is, therefore, a safer alternative to anti-inflammatory drugs (9-18). Furthermore, when taken in capsule form, Serrapeptase is easily absorbed through the intestines and released into the body through the bloodstream (19). Once released into the body, this enzyme promotes the degradation of cellular debris and causes fluid accumulations to become less thick, thereby facilitating the drainage of harmful substances away from the site of inflammation. As a result, Serrapeptase has the ability to rapidly decrease the signs and symptoms of inflammation while speeding up tissue repair (19-25).

 

There are three major reasons as to why Serrapeptase capsules are an ideal supplement to reduce chronic inflammation. Here are the reasons:

  • Serrapeptase breaks down fibrin, which is an important protein in the blood that is involved in blood coagulation or clotting.
  • Serrapeptase thins the fluids that are associated with inflammation. This allows fast drainage away from the site of inflammation and leads to quicker recovery times after injury or surgery.
  • Finally, Serrapeptase has the ability to alleviate pain by blocking the release of Bradykinin in damaged tissue. Bradykinin is a protein that is responsible for triggering a pain response.

Conventional non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs that are prescribed for chronic inflammation are aspirin, naproxen, and salicylates. Unlike Serrapeptase, these non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs cause numerous side effects including prolonged wound healing. Interestingly, most of us don’t realize that some headaches and migraines are related to arterial inflammation. In these instances, taking Serrapeptase instead of non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs may prove beneficial for both pain relief and reduced inflammation. Additionally, Serrapeptase has been regarded as being quite useful for trauma relief.

 

Serrapeptase for Breast engorgement

 

Millions of women every year are affected by complications related to breast lumps and cysts. Cysts or lumps moving freely within the breast tissue indicate fibrocystic breast diseases. The pain and the condition itself get worse during menstruation. These lumps are usually soft initially and get harder with time. At times, the cysts become full of fluid as a result of increased hormone levels. Over time, the cysts also become surrounded by fibrous tissues and can become chronically inflamed.

 

Several studies involving supplementation with Serrapeptase have been conducted in the past with women who had breast tenderness and cysts. The results were quite effective on women who were already taking other medications. They were not told to stop taking their medication, but were given Serrapeptase as a dietary supplement. Serrapeptase supplementation reduced breast swelling, breast firmness, and pain. The conclusion was that Serrapeptase is effective in alleviating breast cyst inflammation and swelling without any side effects (10, 34).

 

Serrapeptase for Mucus Buildup

 

In addition to being able to digest and break down dead tissues, Serrapeptase also has the ability to reduce the elasticity and thickness of nasal mucus as well as lower the number of neutrophils in mucus samples (24). Also, some studies have shown that patients have found Serrapeptase to be highly beneficial in cutting down the thickness of mucus and reducing recurring coughing compared to many of the common treatment methods (15). Similarly, patients with respiratory issues have also benefited from using Serrapeptase merely because it prevents the increased production of mucus and makes the mucus less thick.

 

Serrapeptase, unlike most medications, does not completely impede the product of mucus. Instead, it works on the elasticity and thickness of the mucus. By breaking down the dead tissues, Serrapeptase allows the body to restore healthy lung and tissue function.

 

Moreover, Serrapeptase has also proven to be very helpful for mucus buildup in the nose, throat, and ears. (34). However, it is recommended to consult a doctor before taking Serrapeptase for conditions related to the ear, nose, and throat. At times, these conditions have nothing to do with inflammation, in which case, the use of Serrapeptase would not help the patient overcome the infection.

 

Serrapeptase for Muscle Inflammation

 

In March 2007, The Myositis Association reported that myositis is a condition in which a patient experiences extreme swelling and inflammation in the muscles. This inflammation and swelling can be the result of an injury, an infection, or side effects of medications. It has been reported that this type of inflammation can become chronic in some cases. Weakness, muscle aches, and fatigue as well as difficulty standing, reaching upward, climbing stairs, lifting weights, and swallowing are all symptoms of myositis.

 

Research has shown that Serrapeptase has anti-inflammatory properties (11, 13). Serrapeptase is also known for providing relief from pain as reported by Life Extension. Furthermore, Serrapeptase has the ability to thin fluids which surround the area of injury. By thinning these fluids, Serrapeptase has the ability to reduce both pain and inflammation. Also, Serrapeptase can break down fibrin and other types of dead tissue that can elevate the degree of pain and inflammation.