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Arlesheim, Switzerland

Marschollek B.,University of Bern | Nelle M.,University of Bern | Wolf M.,University of Bern | Baumgartner S.,University of Bern | And 3 more authors.

Clinical trials have reported statistically significant and clinically relevant effects of homeopathic preparations. We applied ultraviolet (UV) spectroscopy to investigate the physical properties of homeopathic preparations and to contribute to an understanding of the not-yet-identified mode of action. In previous investigations, homeopathic preparations had significantly lower UV light transmissions than controls. The aim of this study was to explore the possible effects of external factors (UV light and temperature) on the homeopathic preparations. Homeopathic centesimal (c) dilutions, 1c to 30c, of copper sulfate (CuSO4), decimal dilutions of sulfur (S8), 1x to 30x, and controls (succussed potentization medium) were prepared, randomized, and blinded. UV transmission was measured at six different time points after preparation (from 4 to 256 days). In addition, one series of samples was exposed to UV light of a sterilization lamp for 12 h, one was incubated at 37°C for 24 h, and one was heated to 90°C for 15 min. UV light transmission values from 190 or 220 nm to 340 nm were measured several times and averaged. After each exposure, UV transmission of the homeopathic preparations of CuSO4 was significantly reduced compared to the controls, particularly after heating to 37°C. Overall, the nonexposed CuSO4 preparations did not show significantly lower UV transmission compared to controls; however, the pooled subgroup of measurements at days 26, 33, and 110 yielded significant differences. UV light transmission for S 8 preparations did not show any differences compared to controls. Our conclusion is that exposure to external factors, incubation at 37°C in particular, increases the difference in light transmission of homeopathic CuSO4 preparations compared to controls. ©2010 with author. Published by TheScientificWorld. Source

For millennia, mistletoe (Viscum album) has been an important element of human culture. Its uses have ranged from practical, for example, as animal food, to ceremonial, for example, in initiation rituals; however, special attention has always been given to its potential as a medicinal plant. From the time of Hippocrates, physicians have recommended mistletoe to cure different diseases, especially epilepsy. Juice or powder gained from leaves, berries, or stems of mistletoe were given as a drink or applied as a plaster or ointment. Often, mistletoe was mixed with other organic or inorganic ingredients. New interest arose in the early 20th century, when mistletoe's potential in cancer treatment was determined. While Rudolf Steiner developed the basic concept, Ita Wegman was the first physician to specifically apply a mistletoe extract in cancer patients. Steiner based his concept on careful observation of morphological patterns, considered polar qualities of mistletoe in summer and winter, and designed a unique pharmaceutical processing. From ancient times, oak mistletoe was regarded as a most valuable, but very rare, medicinal plant, and it has been used in cancer therapy since 1927. Due to the limited availability of oak mistletoe, a programme was launched to safeguard the stocks of oak mistletoe by searching for wild sites in France and by cultivating V. album on Quercus robur and Q. petraea. One century after mistletoe was introduced into cancer therapy, results from more than 100 clinical studies have indicated that mistletoe has several beneficial effects. Recently, new clinical studies have confirmed the specific potential of oak mistletoe. Once revered as an important healing plant by Celtic druids, mistletoe is now proving its relevance as a cancer-specific remedy more and more. © 2015 S. Karger AG, Basel. Source

Klein S.D.,University of Bern | Sandig A.,University of Bern | Baumgartner S.,University of Bern | Baumgartner S.,Hiscia Institute | Wolf U.,University of Bern
Evidence-based Complementary and Alternative Medicine

Homeopathic remedies are produced by potentising, that is, the serial logarithmic dilution and succussion of a mother tincture. Techniques like ultraviolet spectroscopy, nuclear magnetic resonance, calorimetry, or thermoluminescence have been used to investigate their physical properties. In this study, homeopathic centesimal (c) potencies (6c to 30c) of copper sulfate, Hypericum perforatum, and sulfur as well as succussed water controls were prepared. Samples of these preparations were exposed to external physical factors like heat, pressure, ultraviolet radiation, or electromagnetic fields to mimic possible everyday storage conditions. The median transmissions from 190 nm to 340 nm and 220 nm to 340 nm were determined by ultraviolet light spectroscopy on five measurement days distributed over several months. Transmissions of controls and potencies of sulfur differed significantly on two of five measurement days and after exposure to physical factors. Transmissions of potencies exposed to ultraviolet light and unexposed potencies of copper sulfate and Hypericum perforatum differed significantly. Potency levels 6c to 30c were also compared, and wavelike patterns of higher and lower transmissions were found. The Kruskal-Wallis test yielded significant differences for the potency levels of all three substances. Aiming at understanding the physical properties of homeopathic preparations, this study confirmed and expanded the findings of previous studies. © 2013 Sabine D. Klein et al. Source

Wyss E.,Research Institute of Organic Agriculture FiBL | Tamm L.,Research Institute of Organic Agriculture FiBL | Siebenwirth J.,Clinic for Homeopathy | Baumgartner S.,Hiscia Institute | Baumgartner S.,University of Bern

A laboratory model system with the rosy apple aphid (Dysaphis plantaginea Pass.) on apple seedlings was developed to study the effects of homeopathic preparations on this apple pest. The assessment included the substance Lycopodium clavatum and a nosode of the rosy apple aphid. Each preparation was applied on the substrate surface as aqueous solution of granules (6c, 15c, or 30c). Controls were aqueous solutions of placebo granules or pure water. In eight independent, randomized, and blinded experiments under standardized conditions in growth chambers, the development of aphids on treated and untreated apple seedlings was observed over 17 days, each. Six experiments were determined to assess the effects of a strict therapeutic treatment; two experiments were designed to determine the effects of a combined preventative and therapeutic treatment. After application of the preparations, the number of juvenile offspring and the damage on apple seedlings were assessed after 7 and 17 days, respectively. In addition, after 17 days, the seedling weight was measured. In the final evaluation of the six strictly therapeutic trials after 17 days, the number of juvenile offspring was reduced after application of L. clavatum 15c (-17%, p = 0.002) and nosode 6c (-14%, p = 0.02) compared to the pure water control. No significant effects were observed for leaf damage or fresh weight for any application. In the two experiments with combined preventative and therapeutic treatment, no significant effects were observed in any measured parameter. Homeopathic remedies may be effective in plant-pest systems. The magnitude of observed effects seems to be larger than in models with healthy plants, which renders plant-pest systems promising candidates for homeopathic basic research. For successful application in agriculture, however, the effect is not yet sufficient. This calls for further optimization concerning homeopathic remedy selection, potency level, dosage, and application routes. ©2010 with author. Published by TheScientificWorld. Source

Endler PC.,Interuniversity College for Health and Development Graz Castle of Seggau | Thieves K.,Interuniversity College for Health and Development Graz Castle of Seggau | Reich C.,Interuniversity College for Health and Development Graz Castle of Seggau | Matthiessen P.,Witten/Herdecke University | And 4 more authors.

Introduction: Repeatability of experiments is an important criterion of modern research and a major challenge for homeopathic basic research. There is no recent overview about basic research studies in high homeopathic potencies that have been subjected to laboratory-internal, multicenter or independent repetition trials. Methods: We considered biochemical, immunological, botanical, cell biological and zoological studies on high potencies, i.e. beyond a dilution of 10-23. Main sources of information were reviews, personal contact with members of the homeopathic basic research community, and the MEDLINE and HOMBREX databases. Studies were extracted from the publications and grouped into models. Studies were further sorted according to repetition type (laboratory-internal, multicenter, or independent) and results achieved. Results: A total of 107 studies were found. Of these, 30 were initial studies. In the attempt to reproduce one of these initial studies, 53 follow-up studies yielded comparable effects (35 laboratory-internal, 8 multicenter, 10 independent repetitions), eight studies showed a consistent, yet different result from the initial study (2 laboratory-internal, 2 multicenter, 4 independent repetitions), and 16 studies yielded no effects (5 laboratory-internal, 2 multicenter, 9 independent repetitions). When all repetitive studies are considered, 69% reported effects comparable to that of the initial study, 10% different effects, and 21% no effects. Independently performed repetition studies reported 44% comparable effects, 17% different effects, and 39% no effects. Conclusions: We identified 24 experimental models in basic research on high homeopathic potencies, which were repeatedly investigated. 22 models were reproduced with comparable results, 6 models with different results, and repetition showed no results for 15 models. Independent reproductions with either comparable or different results were found for seven models. We encourage further repetition trials of published studies, in order to learn more about the model systems used and in order to test their repeatability. © 2009 The Faculty of Homeopathy. Source

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