Potentized homeopathic drug Arsenicum Album 30C inhibits intracellular reactive oxygen species generation and up-regulates expression of arsenic resistance gene in arsenine-exposed bacteria Escherichia coli. De A, Das D, Dutta S, Chakraborty D, Boujedaini N, Khuda-Bukhsh AR. Cytogenetics and Molecular Biology Laboratory, Department of Zoology, University of Kalyani, Kalyani 741235, India; E-mail: prof_arkb@yahoo.co.in, khudabukhsh_48@rediffmail.com. Zhong Xi Yi Jie He Xue Bao. 2012 Feb;10(2):210-27.


OBJECTIVE: To examine if potentized homeopathic drug Arsenicum Album 30C (Ars Alb 30C) can reduce sodium arsenite-induced toxicity in Escherichia coli.

METHODS: E. coli were exposed to low arsenite insult after they grew up to log phase in standard Luria-Bertani medium. E. coli were treated with 1 or 2 mmol/L sodium arsenite alone (control), or Ars Alb 30C was added to the medium of a subset of sodium arsenite-treated bacteria (drug-treated), or homeopathically agitated alcohol was added to the medium containing a subset of sodium arsenite-treated bacteria (placebo-treated). A sub-set of untreated E. coli served as the negative control. Glucose uptake, specific activities of hexokinase, lipid peroxidase (LPO), superoxide dismutase (SOD) and catalase, intra- and extra-cellular sodium arsenite content, cell growth, cell membrane potential, DNA damage, intracellular reactive oxygen species (ROS), adenosine triphosphate (ATP) and free glutathione content and expressions of arsB and ptsG gene in normal control, sodium arsenite-treated, drug-treated and placebo-treated E. coli were analyzed. Treatments were blinded and randomized.

RESULTS: In sodium arsenite-treated E. coli, glucose uptake, intracellular ROS, LPO and DNA damage increased along with decrease in the specific activities of hexokinase, SOD and catalase, intracellular ATP and free glutathione contents and cell membrane potential and growth, and there were increases in expression levels of arsB gene and ptsG gene. Ars Alb 30C administration reduced arsenic toxicity in E. coli by inhibiting generation of ROS and increasing tolerance to arsenite toxicity and cell growth.

CONCLUSION: Ars Alb 30C ameliorated arsenic toxicity and DNA damage, validating efficacy of ultra-highly diluted remedies used in homeopathy.

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